Windows - NAS vs external drives? Thoughts pls

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hammerhead69 Offline
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Tongue  NAS vs external drives? Thoughts pls
Post: #1
Hi
I have an asrock vision 3d hooked upto my Onkyo amp and have always used external hard drives simply plugged into the rock to store my media. The time ive spent organising my movies, photos, tv shows and music with all the artwork etc has been epic so i have complete backups kept in another house !
One of my drives is now making a low dragging scrapping kind of noise, i fear it maybe on its way out. As far as my media is concerned its all safe due to BU, but it does mean another £150 or whatever for a new WD 3TB ext drive ( i have 2 plugged in so 6TB in use and 2 backed up replicas) plus another 2TB and 1.5TB with odds and sods on.
Anyway, before i buy another same 3TB WD or try to RMA it, whats the view on NAS vs Extrenal drives?
Although one day i will probably get round to it, at present i have no need for my media to be in one place to stream all over my house, i guess what i really need to know from experienced users is do you think the drives slotted into a NAS will be more hard wearing and ultimatly last longer or is there no difference?
Oh and also, sometimes if i watch a film, then goto watch a tv show, my TV external HD has gone to sleep and takes 30 seconds or so to wake up, would this still occur with a nas?
I'm expecting any replys i might get to suggest i get a NAS, if that is your opinion could you recommend any, i need 6TB min 8TB would be wonderful
Thanking you all in advance for what this forum brings
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CpTHOOK Offline
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Post: #2
Since you wont be streaming throughout your network....an NAS is not always necessary, but it is ideal. BUT... If you plan on keeping your media safe, you can always go RAID5 with three 3TB drives if your MOBO supports such features. With RAID5....you get data striping across all drives with parity. In other words, your data will be safer. Even if a drive fails your parity will save your data until you can replace the broken drive.

One thing you should understand(Left this out when I posted the first time)... an NAS will not guarantee a longer drive life. Your HD(s) WILL fail eventually, so you must be prepared. Even if you have redundant back-ups somewhere else, you are wasting those drives...drives which will also eventually fail someday!

With regards to the grinding sound you hear from your current drive... I would TX all data to a healthy drive ASAP, seems as though you may have a head crash on your crippled drive!!
(This post was last modified: 2012-05-13 00:44 by CpTHOOK.)
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hammerhead69 Offline
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Post: #3
Check this......turned xbmc off last night, scratchy sound continued, unplugged media centre with hd's attached, scratchy sound continued.............moved my two year olds toy box and found his airplane was stuck and making a scratchy sound hahahahaa

oh well looks like i don't need to rush into anything now, but i think a NAS is the way forward really,
had a quick look into some other peoples NAS and your one, looks great and ticks all the boxes for what i want but i really dont have the time to learn how to build one and tinker about with it to get it working right, could you recommenad an off the shelf version? i'd rather pay well for something that'll last.

Re the comment about my BU drives, i was under the impression that drives age and wear with time and heat
Do you believe/know that they just wear with age even if just packed away as a safe guard?
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CpTHOOK Offline
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Post: #4
(2012-05-13 22:45)hammerhead69 Wrote:  could you recommenad an off the shelf version? i'd rather pay well for something that'll last.

For a prebuilt server option, there are plenty out there to choose from. Ur biggest concern is not so much your equipment but the software you plan to run. Most of us in XBMC tend to lean toward unRAID due to its reliability and ease of use. This prebuilt option will run unRAID...

I can dig the fact that you feel building a DIY server is complicated, but believe me, it is far from it! The only thing you need is the time and cheddar. Prior to ultimately deciding on prebuilt just take a glance at this thread. In it Eskro will pretty much outline the advantages of DIY vs. PreBuilt with regards to cost and scalability.

(2012-05-13 22:45)hammerhead69 Wrote:  Re the comment about my BU drives, i was under the impression that drives age and wear with time and heat
Do you believe/know that they just wear with age even if just packed away as a safe guard?
You are absolutely correct with regard to HD(s) lifespans. More specifically, the Drive life is usually determined by the amount of LCC's or "DrivePark's" allotted. The average drive should operate properly under normal climate conditions and placement for up to 100,000 LCC's before any concern is needed, although most drives will far exceed that amount. So your looking at about 3-5 years before drive(s) begin reaching failure concern status. With regards to your redundant 1:1 BU's....IMHO, you are wasting those drives and the money you paid for them. Using an NAS with parity is a much better option than 1:1 redundancy!
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Beer40oz Offline
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Post: #5
HP 658553-001 ProLiant N40L Ultra Micro

CptHOOK how many TB's max can it do for Unraid?
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CpTHOOK Offline
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Post: #6
(2012-05-14 03:17)Beer40oz Wrote:  HP 658553-001 ProLiant N40L Ultra Micro

CptHOOK how many TB's max can it do for Unraid?

Well... That server has 4 drive bays I believe, and unRAID 5.0b12 and above accept 3tb drives. So 12tb max I'm guessing. Not owning one of these I can't say for sure taking into account memory and the servers disk controller and PSU.
(This post was last modified: 2012-05-14 03:30 by CpTHOOK.)
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Queball Offline
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Post: #7
(2012-05-14 03:27)CpTHOOK Wrote:  
(2012-05-14 03:17)Beer40oz Wrote:  HP 658553-001 ProLiant N40L Ultra Micro

CptHOOK how many TB's max can it do for Unraid?

Well... That server has 4 drive bays I believe, and unRAID 5.0b12 and above accept 3tb drives. So 12tb max I'm guessing. Not owning one of these I can't say for sure taking into account memory and the servers disk controller and PSU.

It has four hot-swap bays but many users use a Nexus DoubleTwin or X-Swing bracket to mount 2 more 3.5" drives in the 5.25" bay, bringing the total drive count to 6. I remember reading that the motherboard has the additional sata ports for the additional drives but has to be reflashed. If 3TB drives were used you would have 15TBs of storage. I could be wrong but I also think some users reported that the server supported the use of 4TB drives. If this were true the total storage would be 20TB. On the Unraid forums check this thread out http://lime-technology.com/forum/index.p...ic=11585.0.
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couto27 Offline
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Post: #8
Only considerer a Nas if you connect it by cable when playing blu-rays, strange issues might happen

HD streaming movies 720p is ok (not blu ray )

im in the same situation, 6TB inside the htpc, but as long i still have 3.0 usb ports, external will be cheaper and less buggy.

considerer a future proof model like this one-- synology ds712+ little expensive but has superfast performance.

Portuguese Blog & Forum Discussion about audio & video.
Visit our Blog & Forum CinemaHIFI.PT





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malte Offline
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Post: #9
CpTHOOK Wrote:With regards to your redundant 1:1 BU's....IMHO, you are wasting those drives and the money you paid for them. Using an NAS with parity is a much better option than 1:1 redundancy!
Don't mix redundancy with backup. Just one reference of many.
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CpTHOOK Offline
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Post: #10
Always willing to learn more, but please explain Y the terms 1:1 redundancy and 1:1 BU would not be considered one in the same?
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malte Offline
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Post: #11
Redundancy just helps you when one of your drives crashes. In case of user, software or raid-controller errors the data is lost on all operational drives. In this case only a true (external) backup will help you to save your data.
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CpTHOOK Offline
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Post: #12
(2012-05-14 15:47)malte Wrote:  
CpTHOOK Wrote:With regards to your redundant 1:1 BU's....IMHO, you are wasting those drives and the money you paid for them. Using an NAS with parity is a much better option than 1:1 redundancy!
Don't mix redundancy with backup. Just one reference of many.

just to be clearer, when I mentioned the term redundancy I was referring to OP's redundant 1:1 backups. I believe what you are saying is that a Parity array(whether software or RAID controlled) is not as safe as 1:1 redundant backup and that I should not compare the two when it comes to the safety of data.

The poster question seems to be more related to whether he should continue to keep saving media to his external drives and continue 1:1 backups or go for an NAS. When it comes to performance and the best use of his drives, especially when it is just media, IMHO, NAS w/parity would be a better option. The chances of more than one drive crashing concurrently in a Parity NAS is very unlikely. BUT, you are correct when pointing out that 1:1 backups would keep his media safer. If ultimate media safety is paramount then a 1:1 backup option would of course be a better option.

Excuse me if I confused you with my statement and the use of the term redundancy!
(This post was last modified: 2012-05-14 18:35 by CpTHOOK.)
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malte Offline
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Post: #13
CpTHOOK Wrote:just to be clearer, when I mentioned the term redundancy I was referring to OP's redundant 1:1 backups. I believe what you are saying is that a Parity array(whether software or RAID controlled) is not as safe as 1:1 redundant backup and that I should not compare the two when it comes to the safety of data.
Maybe I was wrong when I picked up the term redundancy. I was talking about RAID vs. backup. It does not matter if you operate your system with RAID 1 (1:1-redundancy) or RAID 5 (with parity drive).

CpTHOOK Wrote:The poster question seems to be more related to whether he should continue to keep saving media to his external drives and continue 1:1 backups or go for an NAS.
I think the discussion is not NAS vs. backup. The initial question was to replace the main external hard disks (not the backup disks) with an NAS.

CpTHOOK Wrote:When it comes to performance and the best use of his drives, especially when it is just media, IMHO, NAS w/parity would be a better option. The chances of more than one drive crashing concurrently in a Parity NAS is very unlikely.
As said above, I am not talking about drive crashes. The chances that you accidently delete data or that you loose data because of bad written software or maybe malware are higher than a HD crash. And if you accidently delete data it will be deleted on all parity or redundant drives. Thats why you need a backup additionally to your redundancy. You are right, it is just media and most of us won't need 1:1 backups for it. But if you count the time that alot of us spend with downloading/ripping/renaming/sorting/decorating our movie collections it may be worth to have it in a safe placeSmile

What I think is not necessary is RAID in a home environment. I personally use a file server (HP N36L) without RAID but I have a 1:1 backup of all my data on an external drive. If one of my NAS drives crashes I have to order a new one and when it arrives I restore all my data from backup. Of course, in the meantime (2-3 days) I can't access the media that was stored on this drive. So, in worst case I have to read a bookSmile
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CpTHOOK Offline
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Post: #14
:Wink:Fair enough....great debate, as I have leaned something from it!

Obviously two differences of opinion with regard media storage so hopefully we can agree to disagree. I think the user will be able to read these posts, the info contained in them, and make the best decision that will fit his need. So....until next time, be easyCool
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waver123 Offline
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Post: #15
Is your asrock running windows or linux? There should be a configurable option for hd inactivity sleep time, most nas also provide this configuration option in their gui.

The nas will probably be lower in power usage for serving files but you don't need that right it seems. Is your media player running on asrock? Do you only turn it on when you need to watch stuff?
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