If the connection is via USB, then you're in the realm more of SAN than
NAS. (Storage Area Network vs Network Attached Storage) I have never
liked the SAN approach for what we do as it ties the storage (in small
systems) to one machine.
I got involved with the LaCie EthernetDisk which was 500 GB and used
Embedded Windows XP. It wasn't a great product, but being able to create
shares with security was a plus.
When I moved to more of the mainstream SOHO NAS solutions (Netgear
ReadyNAS NV+ and Thecus N5200), I was really impressed. The original NV+
is fairly slow, though I can usually play a few channels of 96/24 off it
(I think at least four), over the Gigabit Ethernet LAN.
The Thecus units I've had since 2008 are faster than the Netgears (I
actually own four and am possibly buying my neighbour's off-site backup
as he's considering moving and is heading towards retirement). They are
fine for storage and limited playback. I'd want something faster for my
main NAS if I was running things off it.
I have used ViceVersa Pro for ten years at least to manage backups--it
is normally batch but they may have options for immediate backup
now--not something I'm interested in.
With the less-than-wonderful experience I've had with desktop drives
above 1 GB in NAS units (Seagate 1.5 GB) I would suggest seriously
considering the Western Digital RED drives to go in the NAS. My pair of
ReadyNAS NV+ from 2007 still are running strong with four 500 GB Server
Seagate drives. I replaced one drive under warranty. These were online
for three years then sat out two years and now have been reborn as dorm
room servers for the boys. I used one this year for non-redundant files.
Search www.richardhess.com/notes for NAS and I have the brands listed
that are worth looking at but I've only used the original Netgear and
If you are using a single NAS unit, I'd suggest RAID 6 as that gives you
more margin for error/failure. You can lose any TWO discs in RAID 6
without losing data. For that, I'd suggest at least a 5-bay NAS. With
five 2 GB WD Reds, you'd end up with super redundancy with 6 TB of
storage (more or less). The next NAS that I get--either the used one
from my neighbour or a new one--will use 2 GB WD Reds.
On 2013-04-16 8:10 AM, Tom Fine wrote:
> Is anyone using any of the USB-attached RAID backup systems? If so,
> can you share your recommendations and experienced. Connection would
> be to a PC that has two external USB2 drives as the main storage. I'd
> like to have some WindowsXP-compatible software that is crash-proof,
> doesn't hog resources and runs in the background, using idle times to
> keep things backed up to the attached RAID array. I've seen 2-HD and
> 4-HD enclosures, and I'm curious which kind other folks are using? I
> can't afford nor do I have the expertise to deal with one of the fancy
> NAS systems (plus, it would take forever to back up my studio drives
> over Ethernet, the backup needs to be via USB).
> Input much appreciated. Up to now, I've been manually backing up to a
> third, bigger USB drive. There's got to be a better way that won't
> take down Windows or be unreliable.
> BTW, for what it's worth, I signed up for Carbonite for my office PC
> last year. So far, 9 months into it, it's only got the PC and external
> hard drive 30% backed up! So, not a practical solution if you have a
> lot of data to backup! I don't run the PC 24-7, but I do leave it on
> overnight most nights. To Carbonite's credit, the software prioritized
> My Documents and the key system-identification files and those got
> backed up first. But stuff like my iTunes library, my extensive
> audio-documentaton library, my HDTracks downloads, it'll take
> literally years. Not practical!
> -- Tom Fine
Richard L. Hess email: [log in to unmask]
Aurora, Ontario, Canada 647 479 2800
Quality tape transfers -- even from hard-to-play tapes.