Storage options

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by jamespetts, May 6, 2013.

  1. jamespetts

    jamespetts Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 21, 2011
    London, England
    I am running out of space on my computer's internal storage (only about 2.2Gb left), which is rather a shame, since I have spent the afternoon taking photographs in the local park, and have nowhere to put them.

    What in the way of additional storage do people here who use additional storage prefer - an additional internal hard drive (I currently only use an SSD for performance and noise reasons), external hard drive(s), and, if the latter, USB, e-SATA or ethernet connected? I already have a backup drive connected via ethernet , but that is needed for backup: if I were to use that for primary storage of anything, I should have no backup should that medium fail.

    Also, I use Lightroom: how, especially if an external USB or e-SATA drive were used, would one go about telling the catalogue that many photographs were moving? How do those with external hard drives organise things?
  2. WasOM3user

    WasOM3user Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 20, 2012
    Lancashire, UK
    I have a three disc Raid 5 array in my main PC and a Raid 5 network array as backup to that.

    Yes it's a bit noisier than an SSD but you have to be in a real quiet room to hear the WD drives in the PC.

    Once lost the data on a drive and don't want to go through that again hence the arrays.
  3. fransglans

    fransglans Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 12, 2012
    I use as my main storage and mobile harddrive as
    Secondary. I trust smugmug more than my own storage.
  4. jamespetts

    jamespetts Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 21, 2011
    London, England
    Hmm - RAID-5 seems expensive, bulky and noisy (I am in a very quiet room and have sensitive hearing). Internet based storage does not seem practical for RAW files which I want to edit - I can only imagine that saving them is rather glacial (and how does one synchronise one's Lightroom catalogue?). I am also sceptical that using an external provider is a good idea - what if they were to start charging (or if they already charge, vastly increase the price), or become insolvent, or to become less reliable? These are all real possibilities.
  5. jziegler

    jziegler Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 15, 2012
    Salem County, New Jersey
    I have a primary drive ssd, and a larger secondary spinning drive that i only use for photos. Music is on a different PC. It works well, and the secondary drive sounds down when I'm not working on photos.

    Sent from my LG-LS840 using Tapatalk 2
  6. jamespetts

    jamespetts Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 21, 2011
    London, England
    Interesting - do you recommend any particular type? What capacity do you use, and to what do you set your spindown time?
  7. twokatmew

    twokatmew Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2012
    Lansing, MI, US
    I use a 120GB SSD for OS & apps (Windows 7);
    500GB 7200RPM hard drive for data storage;
    1TB 7200RPM internal hard drive for data storage & limited backup;
    2TB external USB3.0 drive for backup;
    2TB WD MyBook Live NAS for backup & streaming music to my WD TV Live;
    and an assortment of 500GB & 1TB drives accessed via USB3.0 drive bay for off-site storage.

    I gave up RAID a while back, as it alone (IMO) doesn't provide sufficient redundancy to prevent data loss. When it requires attention, it can be significant. I'm a retired IT pro, and I specialized in security, backup and disaster recovery. (Just telling you this to provide a frame of reference.)

    I use Acronis True Image Home for creating boot drive recovery images and monthly total data backup. In addition, I use SyncbackSE for nightly and weekly backups.

    My setup is probably way overkill, but I worked in medical IT, where we had to be HIPAA-compliant with zero tolerance for data loss. So my nightly, weekly and monthly backups to different drives with an off-site storage rotation gives me peace of mind. :biggrin:
  8. jziegler

    jziegler Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 15, 2012
    Salem County, New Jersey
    I went the opposite direction as you. I had the conventional drive first and added an ssd later. I have a 1tb drive, i don't remember the brand. I think it is a typical 7200rpm drive, internal 3.5". Since all of you're apps and system files are on an ssd, speed isn't as important. O think spin down tome is 15 or 20 minutes.

    As for lightroom, the best thing is probably to use it to move the files. That way your catalog well be correct.

    Sent from my LG-LS840 using Tapatalk 2
  9. RobWatson

    RobWatson Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I've got drives attached to an older netbook sitting in the garage acting as a server. The drives are shared so all my devices can get to them. Wired connection to the router is plenty fast for routine use.

    I use regular internal drives mounted in an old computer case (well part of one) and some IDE/SATA to USB adapters and plug them all into a USB hub which plugs into the netbook. Kind of rigged but it sits on a shelf out of the way. Much cheaper than an actual external USB drive but basically the same thing.
  10. Promit

    Promit Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 6, 2011
    Baltimore, MD
    Promit Roy
    I have a dedicated NAS/HTPC running a RAID 5 array, currently at 6tb of physical storage. (Wanted to run ZFS but it went poorly, settled for Win8 storage space.) Everything also gets backed up to a cloud service called Crashplan, and I am thinking of adding some kind of archival storage that isn't internet based.

    Actually I don't find the NAS approach very helpful, since what I really want is dynamic nearline storage for my PC. But I don't know if that is even possible on consumer equipment.
  11. Ian.

    Ian. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2013
    I just built a quiet PC (see here).

    OS/apps on SSD. Photos on a Seagate 1TB HD that is virtually silent. So I don't care about spin down. Nobody can hear it, although it's in our small living room.

    Network backup to 1TB WD My Book NAS. No fan! Quiet when backing up. Silent, sleeps when not in use. Wakes when you click on the icon. Cheap. Plug into the router and it's ready.

    I failed to find a 2 disk network storage (NAS) that had no fan or powered off to complete silence. So I may buy another WD My Book.

    Useful information at Silent PC Review.
  12. Pecos

    Pecos Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 20, 2013
    The Natural State
    I use a Synology Server NAS - one unit in my basement and a corresponding backup at my son's house in another state. Setup was a little tricky but there are lots of options and bundle software.
  13. Biggstr

    Biggstr Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 2, 2012
    Ashburn, VA
    A Word of Advice ... to the Cloud!

    I'm an avid photographer. In 2010 my house burnt down; I lost 41 year's accumulation of slides and digital photos. I had religiously backed up the computer I used for storage and post-processing with state-of-the-art stand-alone drives sitting right next to the computer. The computer and all of the back up drives went up in smoke.

    I now store all digital photos and important family documents (don't forget these) in SugarSync, which I have found is the best "cloud" based on features, price, and speed. (I have 1 TB of storage.) ALL of the data on ALL four family computers are backup up in the "cloud" in almost real time.

    I learned my backup lesson the hard way. If you value your digital photos, please make sure they are backed up off site. The relatively new "cloud" technologies makes this so simple to do.
  14. Adubo

    Adubo SithLord

    Nov 4, 2010
    Talk about back up :eek: thats a lot of space and storage. Everything's used? I mean, any of tem almost full or something...?

    My storage isnt much. 500gb internal to my super basic PC (use it for dloads, torrents mp3 vids apps etc)

    Backed up using a toshiba 1TB. I dont back up often, only when i put something important (a weeks worth of stuff, a few music albums -- only when major changes are done)

    Have a 320gb my passport full of music (10-12gb space left) and another 500gb my passport for vids.

    A seperate toshiba 1TB for images. (And smugmug)

    A noob IT question, is it alright if i dont use much of my internal HD and mainly access the HDs, say, when i edit using CS5, i directly use my 1TB...?

    Thinking about, Digital memories are kinda cheap compared to the "memories" stored... Especially photographs

    Sent from my iPhone using Mu-43 App
  15. Ian.

    Ian. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2013
    I think this list covers everyones expectations. Let me know if I missed anything important:
    1. Quiet Operation
    2. Lots of storage
    3. Off-Site backup
    4. Easy to set up
    5. Near instant, zero effort, backups.
    Can you tick all the boxes?
  16. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    David Dornblaser
    I am Mac based. I backup locally with Time Machine/Time Capsule. My external drives are G-Technology Drives. I backup online with Sugarsync. I used CrashPlan in the past but it had issues. I also have duplicate online with Dropbox, iCloud, iTunes Match, etc. Everything is quiet and backs up automatically.
  17. twokatmew

    twokatmew Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2012
    Lansing, MI, US
    I can, though my system did take a bit of time to set up. Now everything runs automatically, and I get an email telling me the job was successful or failed. Still, I periodically test my backups, because a backup is only as good as its ability to be restored! :biggrin: The only part that's not automatic is me putting a bare drive into a case and dragging it off to my safe deposit box or a friend's house. :smile: I'm lacking true disaster recovery, though, as I don't have copies of my data stored in other states or countries.

    BTW, Ian, that's a very cool build (your quiet PC)! :biggrin:
  18. twokatmew

    twokatmew Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2012
    Lansing, MI, US
    Adubo, I have plenty of free space on each drive, more than I need, but then storage is relatively cheap, and you never know when you'll need more. For instance if I'm working on a project, whether it be audio, video, photo, etc., the "working" files and various iterations take up tons of space. Once I finish the project, I keep the original files, my last iteration and the final product, so a lot of space gets freed up then. Sometimes I work on more than one project at a time, so my use of storage ebbs and flows.

    I'm sorry, I don't understand your question: "A noob IT question, is it alright if i dont use much of my internal HD and mainly access the HDs, say, when i edit using CS5, i directly use my 1TB...?"

    Could you please explain further? :smile:
  19. sinclair

    sinclair Mu-43 Veteran

    Not sure what drive the OP are using that he can't stand the sound. I have 3 spinning drives in my Mac Pro, and I don't hear a thing. The OS and software are on a 256GB SSD for speed, and my user folders are on a 2TB Raid-0 internal to the Mac. It's just as quiet as my MacBook, but faster.
  20. jamespetts

    jamespetts Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 21, 2011
    London, England
    You also don't seem to have zombie apocalypse data recovery enabled by sending your data into space every month. A major omission, I think.