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Using a NAS as a working backup

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craig hawkes
Using a NAS as a working backup
on Jan 21, 2019 at 12:44:37 pm

So I have an issue that’s been plaguing me for ages and i realise there any many similar posts but nothing quite answers my issue added to the fact that i am not 100% technically minded.

Fundamentally, I need to understand what is the best investment for our small film company when it comes to keeping an up to date back up of projects, without needing to constantly buy cheaper single drive hard drives.

At the moment we have 2 iMacs and each IMac has an LaCie 2big thunderbolt 3 harddrives which we edit from. At the moment this all works fine and recently added some eGPUs to boost render and exports - perfect for what we need!

Our issue is what is the best solution after that? At the moment we upload all the video files to the LaCie hd before we begin editing then save a copy to another external hd using usb 3 which is also none raid so very slow transfer speeds (which we call the working backup). The intention of this hd is to be a replica of the main working LaCie harddrives. However this gets difficult to keep up to date as it takes forever to transfer projects.

Then Once the project completes we transfer the project to another hd (we have separate storage harddrives) for archiving.

The problem is; there is no up to date copy of the working LaCie harddrives unless we donate an hour everyday to physically drag and drop the content to the backup (so this often goes undone; dangerous i know!).

On top of that, based on the current rate of work we’ll have 20+ external “storage” harddrives. Also, based on slow speeds of these “storage” harddrives it takes forever to search up archived footage - its quite impractical!

So my solution (and this is where I need the advice) is to purchase a QNAP NAS (Qnap TS-453BT3-8G 4 Bay Desktop Thunderbolt 3 NAS) which has 2 thunderbolt 3 ports and can be connected to 2 computers at the same time. I would then daisy chain the
IMac 1 to the LaCie then to the QNAP and do the same for the other iMac. And get the QNAP to keep a carbon copy of both “working” LaCie harddrives, while also housing all the archive footage that is currently on the “storage” harddrives

Is this possible or is there a better way?

Each way I turn I’m looking at £1k -£2k+ spend and as a small company i just want to make sure the money is spent wisely - as we dont have loads of it! so before I do the aforementioned,I wanted to check if there are alternatives?

Thanks in advance


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Bob Zelin
Re: Using a NAS as a working backup
on Jan 21, 2019 at 11:38:41 pm

I can sit here and tell you details about the QNAPs, but the bottom line, is that you will ALWAYS run out of storage. Drives have a finite size. If you wind up getting a 4 bay QNAP, and set this up as RAID 5 with 10TB drives, this will give you 30 TB of usable storage. How long will 30 TB last you? You said that you are going to have 20+ external hard drives. Well - all of that adds up to a LOT of storage. You only have 1 - 2000 quid to spend on this.
QNAP and others offer many models, but the expense is the drives.

SO - let's say that you could afford a 12 bay with 10TB drives. That is 100 TB of usable storage after RAID 6.
Guess what happens after you fill up all 100 TB. You have to buy MORE STORAGE. Just like the old days of videotape where there was always another Sony VTR that you had to buy - today's game is storage. As the formats get bigger and bigger, and the file sizes get bigger and bigger, you constantly have to buy more storage.

Will all of this cost you more than 1000 - 2000 quid. You bet !

A modern larger QNAP will let you store lots of media, and edit right off the QNAP. Then you can use your existing 20 drives as the backup. Will this cost more money - yes !

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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craig hawkes
Re: Using a NAS as a working backup
on Jan 22, 2019 at 8:18:14 am

Hi Bob,

thanks for your kind words. Yes this is a very tough lesson to learn (one always thinks of the sexy stuff like cameras and lens but not storage ha).

I guess for the time being i am looking for a storage solution that will sort us out for the next 6/12 months with the ability to expand as and when we need it - although the annoyance of having to take up physical space in my tiny studio is a bit wearing; it isnt my main concern.

So my initial idea would be to hook this QNAP to my 2 iMacs at the same time (please note that the QNAP will be connected by daisy chaining it in this configuration = iMac1 > Lacie 2big HD > Qnap < Lacie 2big HD
firstly, will i be able to connect the QNAP by daisy chaining as explained above? Secondly, will the QNAP be able to make constant back ups of both Lacie HD's at the same time?

Thinking ahead, my plan would then purchase another one of these as and when we need it later on and daisy chain that - if thats at all possible?

the fundamental bottle neck in this is; we dont have a large budget for this so purchasing a £5k+ system is a little too much out of the question (although if you have suggestions then please let me know as it would be good to have an idea of what i need to plan for in the future if we ever need it)

And again, thanks for your advice!


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Michael Tiemann
Re: Using a NAS as a working backup
on Jan 22, 2019 at 8:31:14 pm

RAID is not backup. It is so not backup that there's a famous thread you can read about it:

https://serverfault.com/questions/2888/why-is-raid-not-a-backup

Manifold Recording
Pittsboro, NC
https://manifoldrecording.com/


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