Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 23
  1. #1
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    CT
    Posts
    364
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    NAS hard drive systems

    Hey all.

    I'm thinking that a NAS hard drive might work for me in a specific situation. I've just recently learned about these and would like confirmation that I'm on the right track.

    I have 4 PCs on a network, 2 of which are on and used all day, 1 of which is turned on for an hour or two a day and a 4th that gets turned on and used only occasionally (digitizing board). Currently all 4 computers are networked with one of them acting as a primary PC. All data files that are used throughout the system are stored on that primary PC hard drive, and accessed by the other PCs via the network. It is in effect acting as a server.

    My office is evolving and I'd like the idea of the primary PC not needing to be accessed by the other computers. I'd like to get these data files off of it and onto an independent hard drive.........hence the idea of the NAS hard drive.

    My thinking is that the regularly used PCs would save all system wide accessible data files to the NAS instead of their own data drives. Then any of the 4 PCs on the system could access the NAS to pick up the files when needed.

    I would need to rewrite my Excel macros to save to that NAS drive on the network but that is doable since I'm already using the macros to save files from other PCs onto the primary PC data drive.

    Is this a realistic use for a NAS hard drive?

    Thanks,
    BH

  2. #2
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Manning, South Carolina
    Posts
    9,484
    Thanks
    376
    Thanked 1,472 Times in 1,340 Posts
    BH,

    You're right on target! I use a Western Digital NAS on my home network of 4 computers. I store all of our pictures there (the only thing my wife and I share on a regular basis) as well as all my downloaded files from the internet as they are usually programs that will get installed on more than one machine. The system works great.

    Check your router as many newer routers have a USB port to which you can attach any USB hard drive and the NAS software is built right into the router. If your router doesn't have this feature I highly recommend the WD drives.

    BTW: you don't have to use the Cloud features of the drive, I don't, but it is nice to have them if you want them.

    HTH
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

    PowerShell & VBA Rule!

    My Systems: Desktop Specs
    Laptop Specs

  3. #3
    Silver Lounger
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Forever West
    Posts
    2,107
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 261 Times in 250 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by RetiredGeek View Post
    BH,

    You're right on target! I use a Western Digital NAS on my home network of 4 computers. I store all of our pictures there (the only thing my wife and I share on a regular basis) as well as all my downloaded files from the internet as they are usually programs that will get installed on more than one machine. The system works great.

    Check your router as many newer routers have a USB port to which you can attach any USB hard drive and the NAS software is built right into the router. If your router doesn't have this feature I highly recommend the WD drives.

    BTW: you don't have to use the Cloud features of the drive, I don't, but it is nice to have them if you want them.

    HTH
    Ditto except I use 2 WDC 2TB NAS devices and all my Windows computers can Map the drives plus my macOS Sierra and Linux computers whether wired or wireless. Both are attached via Ethernet cable to my Router.

  4. #4
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    CT
    Posts
    364
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    Thanks guys.
    I had actually found that WD NAS on Amazon and was settling in on ordering it. Thanks for confirming it as a good choice.
    BH

  5. #5
    Bronze Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Delaware, US
    Posts
    1,207
    Thanks
    20
    Thanked 101 Times in 90 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by bhdavis View Post
    I had actually found that WD NAS on Amazon and was settling in on ordering it. Thanks for confirming it as a good choice.
    Before you push the order button...

    WD is a good choice but they make more than one type of NAS (as do others). I strongly suggest that you get a mirrored drive. This will help safeguard your data should something happen to one of the two drives. It is a more expensive solution, but is well worth the extra bucks.
    Graham Smith
    DataSmith, Delaware
    "For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.", Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - 2008)

  6. #6
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    CT
    Posts
    364
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
    Quote Originally Posted by gsmith-plm View Post
    Before you push the order button...

    WD is a good choice but they make more than one type of NAS (as do others). I strongly suggest that you get a mirrored drive. This will help safeguard your data should something happen to one of the two drives. It is a more expensive solution, but is well worth the extra bucks.
    Thanks.........and I almost did do just that. However in the end I decided to stay with the single bay and my present back up system of a separate SSD cloned drive sitting on the shelf. While this NAS data drive won't get cloned it is only holding data files a simple full disk back up via the USB port will be more than adequate. While the NAS HDD is 2tb we actually have less than 100gb of data files.

    I prefer this method because this way the back up drive is not permanently connected to the system. Any strange electrical or hacking event cannot touch it if it is sitting on a shelf in the closet.

    Thanks again everyone. The WD NAS should be here on Thursday. I'm looking forward to connecting it into the network.

    BH

  7. #7
    Silver Lounger RolandJS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Austin metro area TX USA
    Posts
    1,773
    Thanks
    100
    Thanked 132 Times in 129 Posts
    "...I strongly suggest that you get a mirrored drive..." Graham, I want to learn from you; what is a mirrored drive? How does that work?
    "Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee." Ben Franklin revisited.
    http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forum...-Technologies/

  8. #8
    Bronze Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Delaware, US
    Posts
    1,207
    Thanks
    20
    Thanked 101 Times in 90 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by RolandJS View Post
    "...what is a mirrored drive? How does that work?
    Mirrored drives are a type of RAID (redundant array of independent disks), in this case RAID 1. The way it works is that the drive controller is connected to two identical drives and it writes simultaneously to both. The result is that the 2nd drive identical to the first. If either drive fails, then the other one still has a copy of everything. It's a good relatively low cost way to provide a backup without having to actually do a backup.
    Graham Smith
    DataSmith, Delaware
    "For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.", Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - 2008)

  9. #9
    WS Lounge VIP Browni's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Rochdale, UK
    Posts
    1,693
    Thanks
    38
    Thanked 170 Times in 148 Posts
    Jean, this is a screenshot from the settings in my WD NAS.

    mbldraid.PNG

  10. #10
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Edinburgh, UK
    Posts
    256
    Thanks
    27
    Thanked 50 Times in 22 Posts
    From experience dearly bought, RAID comes in a number of different accents, and not all of them are compatible one with the other. I had a MB failure, and the replacement MB that my son fitted did not support the version of RAID that my drives were using. My data was inaccessible, full stop!

    Others would be able to speak to the differences in RAID versions, but, be warned!

  11. #11
    3 Star Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Edinburgh, UK
    Posts
    256
    Thanks
    27
    Thanked 50 Times in 22 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by RetiredGeek View Post
    BH,

    (the only thing my wife and I share on a regular basis)

    HTH
    RG - Gosh!

  12. #12
    WS Lounge VIP
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    8,342
    Thanks
    51
    Thanked 1,011 Times in 940 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by JohnFleming View Post
    From experience dearly bought, RAID comes in a number of different accents, and not all of them are compatible one with the other. I had a MB failure, and the replacement MB that my son fitted did not support the version of RAID that my drives were using. My data was inaccessible, full stop!
    This is the reason for not using RAID at home. In business you can afford the replicated hardware to recover the data.
    BH has the right attitude, save the money and spend it on an external drive with regular backup - backup to one of the existing PCs is even cheaper and probably easier because you can use backup software with a schedule.

    What you do need to do is monitor the NAS for disk problems. They should be reported via the NAS interface.

    cheers, Paul

  13. #13
    Bronze Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Delaware, US
    Posts
    1,207
    Thanks
    20
    Thanked 101 Times in 90 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul T View Post
    This is the reason for not using RAID at home.
    If you are counting mirrored drives (RAID 1) in that then I have to disagree. A mirrored NAS is relatively inexpensive protection for a failed drive and there's nothing special required to recover the data. If one drive fails, everything is still there on the mirrored drive. If the drive controller fails, you can connect either of the two drives to a computer everything is there.

    Any other type of RAID is probably not a good idea, particularly RAID 0 which I have seen used in a NAS and which could be a real problem if one drive failed. If I were to use anything other than RAID 1, it would probably be a 3 drive RAID 5 system, but that's an expensive overkill for home.
    Graham Smith
    DataSmith, Delaware
    "For every expert there is an equal and opposite expert.", Arthur C. Clarke (1917 - 2008)

  14. #14
    Silver Lounger RolandJS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Austin metro area TX USA
    Posts
    1,773
    Thanks
    100
    Thanked 132 Times in 129 Posts
    Graham, one can be using RAID 1 with any motherboard, correct?
    "Take care of thy backups and thy restores shall take care of thee." Ben Franklin revisited.
    http://collegecafe.fr.yuku.com/forum...-Technologies/

  15. #15
    WS Lounge VIP
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    8,342
    Thanks
    51
    Thanked 1,011 Times in 940 Posts
    Roland, you can use almost any modern motherboard to create a RAID 1 array, but can you recover the array post failure?
    My point is that it is cheaper and easier to run a daily backup to a standard disk than to use special hardware that may not provide an easy recovery path.
    Everything is easy when it's working, recovery is always the tricky bit.

    cheers, Paul

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •