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Author Topic: Will this set-up work?  (Read 6546 times)

foreverodd

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Will this set-up work?
« on: June 15, 2009, 09:50:39 AM »

I have a D-Link DIR 615 Wireless N router at my place, where I am going to school, and a Linksys WRT54G wireless router at my place where I am during the summers.  I am looking for a solution that will allow me to have some redundancy in my backups in case of a hard-drive failure, etc. so that I do not loose any data.  I have one (DIR 615) or two (WRT54G) laptops connected to my network on avg. at a time wirelessly, as that is all I tend to use is the wireless (NOT Wireless N) on my laptop.

I was wondering how the DNS 323 (RAID 1) would work on this network set-up, for transfer speeds in both playing movies/music from the NAS on my laptop or something along the lines of the DLINK DSM-750  (if I decide to expand) to stream content from the DNS 323 to play on my TV, backups, and general file read and writes for documents and other files.  I plan on storing important data (ie: home movies and pictures) along with other files, so am wondering about reliability as I have heard about files just vanashing.  I was looking at getting two Western Digital Caviar Green WD10EADS 1TB 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s (http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16822136317) or two SAMSUNG Spinpoint F1 750GB 3.5" SATA 3.0Gb/s (http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?item=N82E16822152099).  Anyone have any opinion on this set-up or recommendations as to how it would work or how to improve?  Thank-you in advance.
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ECF

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2009, 04:25:28 PM »

That should work out great. thats pretty much what I have setup at home and it works out great. No problems streaming to my DSM-750 and 2 Xbox's at the same time either.
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Never forget that only dead fish swim with the stream

fordem

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2009, 05:53:16 PM »

Whether or not it will work for you will depend on your wireless environment - and I will say this - many persons using wireless do not learn how close their wireless network is to failure until they attempt to use network attached storage over it - storage stresses your network, and if there are any problems it WILL fail.

A good 802.11g wireless network is capable of perhaps 22~25 mbps throughput, 802.11n promises perhaps x3~x4 that - I say promises because the 802.11n spec still remains to be ratified, and even in a near perfect environment I have found the "draft-n" gear to be sadly lacking.

If it does work you will find backups to be painfully slow - to the order of 4MB/sec at max and quite possibly well under 0.5MB/sec - it depends on the file sizes involved.  I will not comment on streaming, as I have not attempted it, and at this time have no plans to do so wirelessly.
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RAID1 is for disk redundancy - NOT data backup - don't confuse the two.

foreverodd

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2009, 06:40:57 PM »

Thank-you for your responses.  fordem, how do you classify a wireless network as being close to failure?  I agree with you that 802.11n is just in draft and thus in its infancy so it is hard to say whether or not it will live up to its expectations.  Since I do not currently have a wireless-N card (the router just happened to be on sale just as cheap as the decent G's the store had in stock that I bought it) I am just running it as a wireless-G network.

Hmm... sounds like it would not be a good idea for me, as that does sound painstakingly slow, which would please me much :)  Since I would be mostly backing up pictures and movies (and thus viewing/watching them) the file sizes would be fairly large at times.

Now, ECF and fordem, seem to contridict each other.  ECF, are you streaming to a laptop wirlessly, preferably one that does NOT have a wireless-N card?

Is their perhaps a better option out their for me, if my main goal is to back-up my data in a redundancy set-up to help ensure against data-loss?

Thanks.
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fordem

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #4 on: June 16, 2009, 06:11:02 AM »

The tcp/ip network protocol suite is what is known as 'self healing' - it is capable of detecting errors and requesting retransmissions for packets containing errors, and it does so, for the most part, transparently - ie, without the knowledge of, or any action by, the user.

Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your point of view), this 'self healing' property masks the errors - on a lightly loaded network - for example, one used primarily for web browsing, you could have error levels into the 90% percentile and the users would be none the wiser - untill they attempted to transfer data files of a few MB or more (the files used in webpages are usually just a few KB) across that network, at which point it would fail, and unfortunately, many of the file transfer protocols are not quite as accomodating - the user will have to restart the transfer which may fail again, and again, and again - unless/untill the underling cause of the failure is identified and fixed.

So - a wireless network being close to failure would/could be classified as one with high levels of errors and retransmissions.  The most common cause is interference, and that interference can come from many sources - other wireless networks, other 2.4 GHz radios, weak signals, etc.

When wireless works, it can work well - but the exact same equipment that works well for me, out in the middle of the rainforest, might not do so for you in an apartment building in the suburbs of Metropolis where you have a few dozen other networks, plus baby monitors, wireless door viewers, surveillance cameras, and whatever else, in close proximity
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RAID1 is for disk redundancy - NOT data backup - don't confuse the two.

ECF

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2009, 08:27:40 AM »

Yeah I have an older laptop 802.11G only. its seems to work well I haven't had any issues accessing my NAS to retrieve or send files. I dont do any major backups wirelessly. I have my XBox's and DSM-750 wired because I dont like streaming HD video wirelessly I want to get the most out of the bandwidth to avoid lag spikes and choppy video instances due to the inherent properties of using wireless.
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Never forget that only dead fish swim with the stream

foreverodd

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2009, 08:52:49 AM »

I understand what you are saying.  I know their are a couple other wireless routers in the area.  I am currently in a basement apartment, when at school, and a house when not.  At school my landlord lives upstairs and has a wireless router (same brand/model as mine) and when not at school I can detect other wireless devices in the area.  At school I just have a cell phone and the landlord upstairs has a cell & wireless phone too.

I am beginning to wonder if it would be better for me to get an external hard-drive that contains two bays and allows for a RAID 1 setup.  I am a little leery of this as they all seem to be proprietary and not sure about the quality.  Having my storage attached to the network, is not a high priority, it is more important to have data integrity/security for my important files against data loss.

Any recommendations/comments welcomed?

Thanks again for your time.
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fordem

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2009, 06:31:29 AM »

Without getting into a discussion on brands and proprietary technologies - typically DAS (direct attached storage) will be faster and potentially more reliable than NAS (network attached storage).

I'd also like to point out that NAS is not inherently slower or less reliable than DAS - it is just that you have introduced another "layer of complexity", both physical - the network infrastructure, and logical - the transport and management protocols, and it is this layer that has the potential to cause problems.

DAS has a limitation in that it is attached to a single systems, as compared to NAS - which by design, is available to multiple systems, and it is this which creates the need for the additional complexity.

This is all about choosing the solution to fit the need - if what you're trying to do is backup a single system, then DAS would be better - if you want shared storage to backup several machines, then NAS might be a better fit.  Please note - this does not rule out DAS, there is no reason why you cannot move an external USB drive from system to system.

If you need simultaneous access to the shared storage, then DAS is no longer an option, and NAS is what you are left with.  If however you choose NAS, then you need to consider the limitations of your network, as this becomes a critical factor (with DAS, you don't even need the network)

Also - many consumer NAS devices offer a host of other "non-storage-related" features, AV streaming, etc which I suppose need to be considered if you have a leaning to that direction.

Please note - there is a third option - SAN or storage Area Networks - I have not discussed this as I feel that these are unneccessary complexities for SOHO & consumer use.

Also - the above only discusses the storage side of things and ignores the network which is where the problems arise for most SOHO & consumer NAS users, I don't plan to get into a discussion so let me say - wireless works, but is generally slower and less reliable than wired - and leave it at that.
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RAID1 is for disk redundancy - NOT data backup - don't confuse the two.

foreverodd

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2009, 03:25:31 PM »

Thank-you for your response.  Ya, a SAN is definitely overkill and overly complex for home.  Wireless typically just transmits or receives at one time, which could lead to data loss or quite degraded performance.

I think I am just going to go for DAS as it seems to be the "safer" bet in my scenerio, as a NAS isn't really necessary for me at this point.  Now it is just a matter of figuring out what to get.  I have been looking at (not sure if I can mention other branded products here but will try :P) the WD MyBook Mirror Edition which would allow me to have a RAID 1 configuration.
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rws8258

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2009, 11:51:08 AM »

If DAS is okay with you; but, you really want to protect your data, there is another way to look at this...

Get two external HDs. Use one this week; use the other next week. On swap-out day, sync them both. But, and this is most important, keep them at separate locations and swap them around, weekly.

Or, you can make one drive the primary and the other will be your secondary. Sync them weekly, monthly, whatever. Just separate them once your sync is done.

You must sync (mirror, backup, whatever) and separate your files--offsite storage. This way --and, it's the only way-- you can guarantee your data is truly safe and restorable. RAID ain't safe(ty), it's only convenient.

I AM NOT RECOMMENDING THIS, BUT: NewEgg has WD's 'Elements' External 1Tb (WDE1UBK10000N (click here)) was on a 24-hour only sale two days ago for $99.99 (Reg. $119.99) + Free S&H, with a promo code. But, I just checked and it's now on an unadvertised sale, still free S&H. No promo code needed. Shop their deals on external hard drives, if you prefer to shop around.

Just my 2 cents.
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1 x DNS-323 (BNS323A....B1), F/W: 1.07
2 x 1.5Tb Barracuda 7200.11, ST31500341AS, F/W: CC1H

rws8258

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #10 on: June 19, 2009, 07:33:29 PM »

Reply to myself:

The 'Egg' launched a 10%-Off Sale today on all Internal, External and Laptop drives! (Promo Code: EMCHDD10A) That's an additional 10 bucks off for the above drive! Plus, S&H is still free on this drive... for the moment!

Listen, I'm not here to sell anybody a hard drive; and I fully understand Moore's Law. But, I mean... just D@#%! What a deal!

Needless to say, that did it for me... A 1Tb solid, W.D. external drive for the low, low price of $89.99, delivered to my door...

Yeah, I bit that hook. ;D (Just glad I waited another day.)

Edit: Too bad USB v3.0 is not coming out 'til late this year, probably next year(?) before we see wide product deployment--at reasonable prices. Oh well.

Edit 2: Well, that didn't last long... It's already back up to $109.99, which is still $10 off. Still free S&H, too.

Plus, the additional 10% off (up to $10) promo code on all Internal, External and Laptop drives is good 'til midnight tomorrow (6/22/09). E-Blast Subscribers only. One redemption per account.
« Last Edit: June 21, 2009, 02:06:44 PM by rws8258 »
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1 x DNS-323 (BNS323A....B1), F/W: 1.07
2 x 1.5Tb Barracuda 7200.11, ST31500341AS, F/W: CC1H

rkaye

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Re: Will this set-up work?
« Reply #11 on: July 22, 2009, 10:01:00 AM »

when picking sata hard drives you could also consider 5400rpm vs 7200rpm; the lower rpm drives run much cooler and are anticipated to last longer.
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