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Hi, Tom,

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 
the Thecus.

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.

Cheers,

Richard

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
http://www.richardhess.com/tape/contact.htm
Quality tape transfers -- even from hard-to-play tapes.