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NAS Drive Advice

Discussion in 'Networking & NAS' started by Butters, Aug 31, 2009.

  1. Butters

    Butters Member

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    Hi all.....so its time for me to centralise and share the familys music and photos and keep it backed up so figure the best way to do that is with a NAS.

    It needs to serve x2 laptops, 1x desktop, Xbox360, PS3, and a SONOS and maybe movies via my Archos (not sure if that can be done so would just be a bonus rather than a must). I don't want anything that requires a networking degree to set up and have a max budget of £300 9less is always better!!).

    I have thought of the free software and redundant pc set up but want something - shall we say more asthetic and compact. Also thought about the cheap NAS route like a WD World book however Iit seems to me that if these go faulty they are not designed to be end user repairable.

    I quite like the idea of the Netgear Readynas with 2x 1tb drives due to the ease (it seems) of being able to swap out drives when they go faulty and that currently you pay for 1 harddrive and can send off for the additional hard drive free, but not sure if there are better options for the same or less money.

    Any help would be much appreciated.
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2009
  2. Andy-D

    Andy-D Member

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    I've just purchased a ReadyNAS Duo and I am VERY impressed. Good solid constuction, easy to set up and it just works!!!

    I have 2 of 1TB drives in mine. As I was moving my disks over from another NAS (IcyBox - 2 units died) I was able to configure 1 disk first and then copy over data from my second via onbe of the USB ports. Then when all was copied over I simply plugged in the 2nd disk and my Raid drive was configured automatically.

    I'm using mine as a backup destination and as a media store for ny EVA8000.
    I've also sent off for the free drive. As I only purchased an empty NAS, I think I will only get a 500GB drive.... but hey its free.
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  3. Butters

    Butters Member

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    Thanks Andy - do you use the iTunes client? if so is it easy to set up multiple accounts accessing a single music database.

    Also - in your experience so far is it noisy or quiet??

    cheers

    steve
  4. Doctor_AB

    Doctor_AB Member

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    I am in the same boat and seriously considering the netgear, interested to hear the answers to itunes question. Does the netgear have bittorrent client built in?

    butters dont mean to hijack thread but am in the same situation as you.
  5. redknag

    redknag Member

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    Worth considering Synology too. I've got one that i'm very impressed with. Does bittorent, newsgroups, security, etc etc etc.
  6. t72bogie

    t72bogie Active Member

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    yeah, bittorrent built in, but havnt most people moved onto newsgroups these days ....waayyy faster, SSL connected etc - of course the Netgear has a client available for that too

    loads of info on NETGEAR ReadyNAS Community, and the 3rd party addons section on the forums is good :smashin:
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  7. Rob

    Rob Member

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    The Q-nap products are well regarded. I use a TS-409 4bay NAS using 4 x 1tb WD drives. I started out with a 2 bay Icy-box but quickly ran out of space. This give me about 3 TB (using raid 5) so I have a backup if a disk fails, which has happened.

    I would certainly recommend a 4-5 bay if you store alot of HD video. It is surprising how quickly they fill up. The Synology, Qnap & ReadyNAS are all good products. Any of these would be a good choice.
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  8. Butters

    Butters Member

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    no worries matey all inputs are useful!!
  9. next010

    next010 Active Member

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    I'd give another vote to Synology kick ass gear does a lot, excellent support and community too.

    Has a built in UPnP/DLNA server which they update its inhouse not third party, they also have an iTunes server if needed. Has built in BT & more via download station.

    The only thing is you'll probably have to buy the HD's to equip it with. You might want to consider something like the DS209j which can take two HD's and be gotten reasonably cheap.
  10. Butters

    Butters Member

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    Had a look at the Synology gear. i like the look of the DS209+ as its black not white (getting fussy now!!) but that is considerably more.

    I will be accessing the NAS by wireless not ethernet cable the majority if not all the time. With that in mind - will super dooper NAS units with loads of memory and super fast CPU's perform any better i.e 1.2ghz processor and 512m ram than a lesser spec'd cheaper unit or do they rely on how fast the network runs??

    I am not super teccie but presume that the efficiency of a NAS rely a lot on the network they are hooked up to?? Or is my thinking complete twaddle???
  11. Butters

    Butters Member

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    Ta for the feedback on this thread chaps - unless i am advised otherwise i definately might possibly could potentially buy the Netgear tommorrow :rolleyes:

    I will then return - begging for help on how to move my iTunes library off my current external hard drive, onto a NAS, then add and combine the other 2 household iTunes libraries currently on laptops onto the NAS, and share a single library between us all......

    i am already pooping it at the thought of loosing all thats working so well at the moment!!!
  12. J3kyll

    J3kyll Member

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    It's not all about the network speed.. i'd personally recommend synology too..
    I've been a customer close to 4 years.. excelent support.
    You can also upgrade the RAM to 1024MB! the units use sandard 667 sodimm
  13. damiant

    damiant Member

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    its all about the read write speed
  14. t72bogie

    t72bogie Active Member

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    you need a gig network so that you are not restricted by 10/100 ethernet

    ...also watch out for service when things go wrong e.g. QNAP have great products but are a small Taiwanese company, and quite a new entry to the market, they dont have local UK support infrastructure ...so its a 10 day turnaround to get a faulty unit replaced from Taiwan


    dunno if Synology are the same...I suspect so, as I cant find any mention of UK prescence on their site either

    whereas the bigger, more established vendors like Netgear/readynas (and others) will do you a 24 hour turnaround and 3x longer warranty

    ...just something to bear in mind when you are using one of these boxes for critical stuff - check out the warranty and support arrangements ! :)
  15. EpsomJames

    EpsomJames Member

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    I'm a fan of the QNAP NAS boxes. Probably a bit more expensive than some makes, but the quality is good.

    The early models were a touch on the slow side and the early interface wasn't fantastic looking, but just upgraded to the TS-219P and applied the latest firmware and very pleased with this model.

    QNAP Systems, Inc. ( TS-219P Turbo NAS ) - Quality Network Appliance Provider

    Not had a problem with reliability on any of them.

    HTH
  16. Butters

    Butters Member

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    Looks nice but £300 without drives :eek:
  17. SteveBM

    SteveBM Member

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    Hi guys

    Been following this thread from the sidelines but thought I'd wade in with my 2cents.

    I've done a lot of research into this and was really confused by the choice. I really wanted a reliable RAID solution for my 30gb iTunes library and DVD backups.
    I've today bought a ReadyNAS Duo with no disks installed from Misco for £147. I've already got 1 1tb drive, and have bought another to complement that.

    Be aware that some vendors are showing the ReadyNAS as out of stock, so I wonder if this is being replaced soon. Also, the 500gb free drive offer ends at the end of Sept. I'm going to apply and sell on Ebay.
    I'll also sell my 500gb Linkstation Live so that will soften the blow financially.

    Overall cost was a big factor for me, hence the Netgear.

    With regards the comments about iTunes, I've been through consolidating multiple libraries once before and can offer some advice here when the time is right - Let me know! :smashin:

    I've read forum posts that the Netgear may not operate effectively out of the box as a firmware update is required - so beware of this too.

    I'll let you know how I get on!!

    cheers! :thumbsup:
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  18. Butters

    Butters Member

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    Please do let me know how it goes.....

    I would also really appreciate the heads up on multiple iTunes users with a single library - i have read so many articles and still don't understand it!!
  19. J3kyll

    J3kyll Member

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    i can confirm Synology has a UK office...

    Hope this helps
  20. Member 351202

    Member 351202 Member

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    Synology and QNAP get my vote - always go for the fastest CPU/RAM you can afford in a NAS as you will notice the difference.

    I run a QNAP 209II at home and it does take a while to download/extract etc.
  21. Seph23

    Seph23 Member

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    Three great comments IMO.

    The Qnaps have a great reputation, as do the synology boxes.

    I personally have a Synology CS407 which is a great 4 disk NAS, containing 4 1TB drives using a raid5 array.
    The Synology community is great and the customer support is unlike any other I’ve came across.

    Two of my Samsung disks failed in my CS407 and synology took the whole lot off me and rebuilt the raid array and managed to save all data free of charge without any costs to me what so ever.

    I have around 1TB free now and I think I will be either looking at the DS509+ next year or one of the Qnap turbos.

    If your going to be storing Videos (and lets face it HD videos before long, if not already like myself), then you certainly want to get a min of 4 disks.

    You might find the SmallNet Builder website interesting, plenty of info/reviews on NAS's.

    I hope this helps.
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  22. Seph23

    Seph23 Member

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    ^^ what Digital Era said above, the RAM/CPU will be directly proportional to your transfer speed.
  23. Seph23

    Seph23 Member

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    It appears Itunes may have changed recently, as previously you couldnt make playlists containing music from a shared location.

    That doesnt appear to be the case anyore and you can simply 'Add Folder to Libary' once inside itunes and all music will be added.
  24. EpsomJames

    EpsomJames Member

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    Totally agree. I had a TS-109 Pro and it was a little on the slow side (500Mhz CPU, 128Mb RAM). I'm finding the 219P a lot quicker (1.2Ghz Marvell CPU, 512Mb RAM).

    I considered the Netgear ReadyNAS Duo but read too many posts that it was underpowered for certain operations (like Squeeze Center). If that doesn't matter to you then seems good value for money.
  25. SteveBM

    SteveBM Member

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    Will do. I am worried now as I just stumbled across a hard disk compatibility list for the ReadyNAS - Neither of mine are on it, so hopefully it will work. Schoolboy error! :eek:

    With regards iTunes, I'll explain my setup. (at the risk of going OT)
    The iTunes library location in iTunes points to the share on the NAS. The share contains the music and the all important .itl library file.

    iTunes also has the "let itunes manage my library" and "copy music to library when adding" options ticked.

    When I set it all up from scratch, I moved all the music to folder on the NAS and then added that folder to the NAS. iTunes created new folders for each artist, and added each track to the location I had given in the itunes library location. It took hours to copy all tracks across. I ended up with a directory structure organised by artist which itunes had created.
    Once the copy was complete, I deleted the original folder. Now, when I add a new track or album, I just drag it from my desktop into itunes, and it automatically adds it to the itunes library.
    Each instance of iTunes points to the same library location.

    I did toy with my Linkstation's ITunes server facility but gave up as wi-fi performance of this seemed to be really poor.

    I would strongly recommend you spend some time updating the MP3 tag information for your library before you start as you can end up with loads of files stored under Unknown Album / Artist, etc. I used MP3 Tag for this purpose.

    Hope this helps.
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  26. EpsomJames

    EpsomJames Member

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    Yeah, I'm wondering if I should have gone for the TS-419P or TS-439Pro (4 HDD versions) instead of the TS-219P now :rolleyes:

    The 219P will do for the moment.
  27. Member 351202

    Member 351202 Member

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    yes my 209 is full :(

    I will wait for 2TB drives to come down in price then get a 4 bay and use the 209 for backups.
  28. Butters

    Butters Member

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    Thanks you lot!! You are driving me up the value chain by the second!!

    It looks like the QNAP TS219p is looking like the unit that fits the bill (but not my pocket).

    My primary usesage as laid out at the beggining is to store and share all the family photos and iTunes library across 4 users plus feed my SONOS and ensure it is all backed up hence the 2drive requirement.

    I guess as is with all things tech, buy the best at the time, and thinking along the lines of better processors and memory the QNAP ticks the boxes. So as an aid to making me spend more than i intended :D could you help me with the following -

    I will be accessing this over wireless (using ports on the SONOS boxes), will the faster processor e.t.c still be a benefit in that situation??

    The 1tb hard drives (each) can be had for as little as £48 and as much as £80 - (samsung / WD / Seagate) does that make a huge difference to overall performance??

    7200 or 5400 speed

    Would there be a difference in speed plugging the NAS directly into the router over plugging it into a SONOS ethernet port

    So I could get the NAS for £290 and the drives for say £110 which is £110 more than a readynas duo - but will i reap the benefits with my setup??

    really appreciate all the inputs :thumbsup:

    Thanks

    Steve
  29. Seph23

    Seph23 Member

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    Deffo get the Qnap over the netgear.

    As your only streaming music and viewing photos, you wont really be putting your NAS under much strain, so the slightly slower CPU/memory will be fine.

    I myself use mine for streaming 40GB video files, backing up and central storage for all our PCs etc, so I need a bit my umpf :)
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  30. J3kyll

    J3kyll Member

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    You can buy a synology 209+ (same spec as qnap) for a better price.
    Netgear are the king of slow transfers from the feedback i've recieved!
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