Storage?

laserman70

Very Active Member
As our business increases, we need a good external storage.
Has anyone bought anything recently that they would recommend?
We want something that is quality.
I appreciate you help and opinions.
 

choucove

Active Member
When you are talking about external storage, are you looking at a localized storage device, like a server or NAS, or are you talking about external storage in the sense of off-site or online data backup?

I am believing that you are talking about localized storage, but to give you any recommendations really I would have to know more about your needs. How many computers are in your network and what kind of network configuration do you have? What files are you needing to store, how much space do you use currently, and how much space do you foresee needing? Do you currently have any kind of localized storage, like a file server or NAS, or will this be your first? Are you only looking for something to do backups to, or something that will store, protect, backup, and share out all of your files?
 

laserman70

Very Active Member
We have 4 computers on network.
something that will store, protect, backup, and share out all of your files
 

WildWestDesigns

Major Contributor
We use a NDAS device and that really works well and I would imagine that it would work for yours as well. We use it to store files, we have 3 computers that are on a weekly backup of the OS as well. 8 computers on the network in total.
 

cdiesel

Very Active Member
Check out Synology. We've got three of their units (totalling 45TB) and are very happy with them.

They'll auto backup, run different RAID arrays, you name it.
 
For local onsite....The Seagate GoFlex is great...They have a USB smaller unit
and a 2-3TB network unit....I use both...
500g for laptop....3tb network unit for entire network.
Software is simple and easy to install
 

GB2

Very Active Member
I've got 2 - 4TB Buffalo NAS Terra Stations, one for data and one for immediate real time back up. They've worked flawlessly since I installed them. I also do another offsite backup via external hard drive every couple of weeks.
 

Border

Very Active Member
Check out Synology. We've got three of their units (totalling 45TB) and are very happy with them.

They'll auto backup, run different RAID arrays, you name it.

These look like a pretty slick setup. Like they may have the RAID capability built right in and hold 2 drives. And it looks they just hook right into your network via ethernet without any other hardware, correct?

Pardon me, I am a little slow when it comes to throwing network & storage solution terms around.
 

ironchef

Very Active Member
So you guys have a raid 0 and a raid 1 setup? Both externally on same nas? Or two different stations?
 

ironchef

Very Active Member
I have 2 pcs. Working on getting two more. Then i will buy a switch to connect all the pcs and printers. And also a nas. I'm guessing that's the recommended setup for a good network system?
 

choucove

Active Member
A simple NAS is a nice way to begin in the proper network storage environment where all computers are saving business data to a central protected location instead of on their own individual workstations. However, not all NAS, nor servers, are created equally and it's worth it in the end to get something high quality and do it right to begin with. Synology is a great enterprise brand, they're more expensive than some, but they're also more powerful and reliable.

One thing to keep in mind is a NAS will ONLY store files, you can't really do much else with it. If you want more flexibility and customizability, the next step is to look into a file server. Servers act similar to a NAS, where you can store and share out files, but generally are built using the same kind of hardware as your desktop computer making them more powerful, more versatile, and usually running the same or nearly the same operating system so it can be very intuitive for people to set up and well documented online for help. A server also gives you the flexibility to perform additional tasks if you so choose, such as running automatic backups, network printer sharing, email, FTP, web hosting, firewall/router, etc. It can be much more versatile of a system because it's running a full function operating system on standard computer hardware. This also means that replacing or upgrading hardware in a server is a lot more feasible than a NAS, which is basically pre-configured and offers no means for replacing faulty hardware or upgrading the base configuration hardware.

A basic file server, such as the HP ProLiant ML110 G7 server that we have used a ton of, can be configured and ready to go for around $1,500 when you figure in your hard drives and operating system, but can go over $2,500 when you start adding in more powerful hardware and fault-tolerant capabilities that far exceed your NAS systems. Most of the server systems we have been setting up are in that higher price range, but they include a hardware-based high performance RAID for data on enterprise class hard drives, dual redundant high efficiency power supplies, a very powerful quad core processor, and anywhere from 8 GB to 16 GB of RAM.
 

cdiesel

Very Active Member
Choucove hit the nail on the head. A NAS is a great way to start building a proper network. I like a NAS vs a combined file server/dhcp/email/web hosting/etc for one simple reason. If you are running a combined server, you have no business hosting your own email, website, etc. Host that stuff offsite for faster, more reliable service for your clients. For instance, if you're hosting your own email and you lose your internet connection due to provider or your own hardware failure, your email will bounce. Not good.

Doug,
You're right. The Synology units we have incorporate built in RAID controllers. Keep in mind we're talking file storage here, so you're really going to want to do RAID 5. RAID 5 is hot swappable and redundant. For instance, we had a drive go bad last week. The only way we noticed was the system slowed a little while the RAID was rebuilding. We lost zero data, and experienced zero downtime.

They also have built in backup software, so you can plug in a small external drive and backup to it to be stored offsite.

Unless you're a much larger company and can afford more bandwidth, redundancy, and really need to host your own stuff it doesn't make much sense. Google will host email up to 10 addresses for free, and it integrates VERY easily with mobile devices. Godaddy and a million others will host your website for $10 a month. We have very active (in terms of sign/graphic) websites hosted with Godaddy without a hitch.
 
Hey Chris!

What model of synology do you recommend? I have around 2TB of storage and growing fast setup on gigabyte switch with 5 workstations.

Thank you!
Spencer
 

trik

Member
Unless you're a much larger company and can afford more bandwidth, redundancy, and really need to host your own stuff it doesn't make much sense. Google will host email up to 10 addresses for free, and it integrates VERY easily with mobile devices. Godaddy and a million others will host your website for $10 a month. We have very active (in terms of sign/graphic) websites hosted with Godaddy without a hitch.

Be careful on your web host and storage backup. I have an unlimited hosting account with Godaddy, and backed up an art work folder, 68 gig, got an email from the day after everything loaded, saying it appears the files I uploaded were not related to my site and appeared to be data storage. I told them it was files that needed to be accessed from remote locations, and they did not buy it, I had to remove it within 10 days or they were going to. I read my terms and agreements with GoDaddy, Ipower, and Bluehost, they all had similar verbiage about not being able to use your account for data storage, even though my account is unlimited.
 

Border

Very Active Member
Doug,
You're right. The Synology units we have incorporate built in RAID controllers. Keep in mind we're talking file storage here, so you're really going to want to do RAID 5. RAID 5 is hot swappable and redundant. For instance, we had a drive go bad last week. The only way we noticed was the system slowed a little while the RAID was rebuilding. We lost zero data, and experienced zero downtime.

They also have built in backup software, so you can plug in a small external drive and backup to it to be stored offsite.

Thanks Chris!
I just ordered the DS212J model and some hard drives. This setup will sit out in my detached shop which is hard wire connected through ethernet cable underground. At least I'll have backup copies of all my files in 2 separate buildings at all times then, in case of fire or something...theoretically, anyways.

:corndog::U Rock:
 

ironchef

Very Active Member
Hey border. Please provide the link or info on what you bought and what made you pick that product.thanks. im also in the market for a nas
 

Border

Very Active Member
Hey border. Please provide the link or info on what you bought and what made you pick that product.thanks. im also in the market for a nas

Here you go:
http://www.amazon.com/Synology-Disk...ttached/dp/tech-data/B005YW7OLM/ref=de_a_smtd

I looked into these because of the recommendation from Cdiesel (Chris). It has a built-in RAID capability so if one drive fails, you still have your data on the other disc.
After trying several other solutions over the last few years and after reading all the fantastic reviews from others, it seemed like a no-brainer for me and the setup I have here with a hard-wired network between two separate buildings. -My workstation in one and the backup server (with RAID) in the other. Certainly not fool-proof but a good step in the right direction at least.

Can't wait to try it out!
 

signswi

Very Active Member
Check out Synology. We've got three of their units (totalling 45TB) and are very happy with them.

They'll auto backup, run different RAID arrays, you name it.

Yep, get a Synology NAS and an Amazon S3 account for automatic disaster offsite backup (the NAS will keep the S3 account up-to-date). Which NAS model you get will depend on your budget and storage needs. I recommend the DS412+ for most sign shop needs (I consider 4-bay to be the minimum, I don't like 2-bay as the RAID options aren't as good).
 

ironchef

Very Active Member
Hey to all. Im just going to get a switch and a 2tb external hdd. With an ethernet port. And use that until i can buy a decent nas or server.
 
Top