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NAS Enclosure Solutions

Tags:
  • NAS / RAID
  • Backup
  • Enclosure
  • Storage
  • Product
Last response: in Storage
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August 10, 2009 6:25:42 AM

I'm looking for a backup/sharing solution that employs RAID 1 and NAS. I could setup a server, but it's both bigger than what I'm looking for, and overly complex. I don't have a ton of room left on my desk after a desktop, several laptops, monitors, etc.

My MyBook World Edition I works great for sharing between the computers, but I've always been nervous backing everything up on a single external, which is why I would like a RAID 1 option. I know RAID isn't a backup solution, viruses get copied to both hard drives, but at least it would remove the nagging worry of drive failure.

A MBWE II would be perfect for this, but I have perhaps 5-6 spare 500 GB drives laying around, why spend the money buying two more, so I set out in search of an enclosure that performs the functions of the MBWE II and/or an MBWE II enclosure someone had stripped of it's drives. I've found one on ebay but alas didn't get it, I also found the MASSCOOL NAS-390UES2R ( http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... ) which looks due out soon and appears to meet all my requirements, plus appears to have the added bonus of remote file sharing via FTP (possibly other methods).

Several questions I pose to people in this forum.
1) Are there any other suggestions for external enclosures that allow for RAID 1 and NAS? I would like to compare other options, but haven't found many people selling only enclosures.
2) Has anyone ever used MASSCOOL/their enclosures. This one appears to be bran new, and I have no experience with them or their products.
3) Anything I haven't thought of in regards to sharing and backup of data? Again, I know a NAS lacks the features of a full server, but I'm thinking size and saving money mostly, as long as I have a reliable backup and can share my data, it's good

Thanks for any input.

More about : nas enclosure solutions

August 10, 2009 6:34:44 PM

Please read others posts, not just the title.

1) I already have a blue ring MBWE, however, the first edition does not come with the RAID1 ability that I would like. This includes the version you linked me. Again, I have considered the MBWE II which has RAID1, but...

2) I have 5-6 spare 500GB hard drives laying around, I don't wish to spend $300 buying another NAS system w/ drives, I would much perfer a cheaper ~$100 solution of just buying the enclosure which has NAS/RAID1 ability and plugging my own drives into it. This would save me money and give me something to do with drives that aren't in use.

All of this was pointed out in my original post.
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a b G Storage
August 10, 2009 7:26:30 PM

BeanBagKing said:
Please read others posts, not just the title.

1) I already have a blue ring MBWE, however, the first edition does not come with the RAID1 ability that I would like. This includes the version you linked me. Again, I have considered the MBWE II which has RAID1, but...

2) I have 5-6 spare 500GB hard drives laying around, I don't wish to spend $300 buying another NAS system w/ drives, I would much perfer a cheaper ~$100 solution of just buying the enclosure which has NAS/RAID1 ability and plugging my own drives into it. This would save me money and give me something to do with drives that aren't in use.

All of this was pointed out in my original post.


For one, I did read you original post but must have messed up the link (sorry about that) which was supposed to be to the MBWE RAID Edition; which would have addressed one of your issues. And two, wanting an enclosure to slap your extra drives into that costs ~$100 is just not likely; let alone buy an enclosure that has decent NAS and RAID functionality. Hence my recommending the My Book 2TB RAID1. If an enclosure exists that can accept more than two drives, has NAS and RAID1 functionality, for about $100, and that isn't a total piece of $hit, then I've never seen it.

For what you want and wanting it on the cheap typically do not fit in the same sentence.

However, in the $200 range there is this and this and this. But, between you and me, I would not trust my data to a Silicon Image software RAID solution; but that's just me, RAID1 or not.

Another idea is to wipe your extra drives, sell them used on eBay, and use the proceeds to buy a couple 1.5TB drives, RAIDing them and setting up a share.

In the long term, you might be better off biting the bullet, plunking down the cash, and build your own homebuilt NAS solution; especially if you that many drives laying around. Have you ever checked out FreeNAS or Openfiler? You can have a robust NAS solution with minmal hardware specs using FreeNAS; and it's free, no licensing costs. But for RAID functionality, a hardware RAID controllers is the better way to go and can be had for cheap on eBay, I usually see a few 4 port or 8 port 3Ware 8506's and 9500's that typically sell for $100-$150.

Good luck!
August 10, 2009 8:10:55 PM

chunkymonster said:
If an enclosure exists that can accept more than two drives...


Sorry, perhaps I wasn't too clear, I have 5-6 extra drives, doesn't mean I -have- to use all of them. 2x500GB drives would be pleanty, in RAID 1, giving me 500GB to back everything up on. The MASSCOOL case I linked to is $135, which is close enough to the range I'm looking for, but I have no idea if it's a piece or not. I've seen the MBWE II Enclosures (stripped of drives) for $50 before, just haven't been able to get my hands on one. So solutions in my price range do exist, I was just hoping someone could bring up others and/or tell me if MASSCOOL is reliable.

I realize what I want is cheap, but I also don't expect a world of options or terabytes of space for that price.

In the mean time I'll check out those links and the FreeNAS software, but I still don't think that's the route I want to take.
a c 415 G Storage
August 10, 2009 11:14:27 PM

I've never really heard of anyone using RAID-1 as an external backup option - only for the primary disks in the system in order to improve performance or reduce downtime.

IMHO you're better off taking the two drives and alternating backup cycles between them - that's a better solution from a data recovery point of view...
August 11, 2009 12:07:29 AM

sminlal: Yes, it is because you have less of a chance of backing up viruses is you alternate backup cycles, however, it requires a greater degree of organization than I'm willing to put into it. My music and movies aren't that important to me.

If your not familiar with RAID1, it mirrors the data between two drives, meaning that if one drive fails, you still have your data on the other, nothing is lost. Because of this, it also has the risk of mirroring viruses or corrupted data, so no, it isn't the preferred method of backing up data, but is more than sufficient for my home use.

RAID 0 I think is what your thinking of for improving performance and reducing downtime, where data is split between several disks, however, the loss of one disk means you lose everything, the opposite of what I'm looking for.
November 17, 2009 7:51:45 AM

Going to presume you are aware the Masscool solution you put forth is now available for 119$ shipped. I am also looking at it for a data storage solution that is easily adaptable to my home network(with a couple of western Cav Black 1tb's). @this price point with hot swap capability 4 raid options and so many "jacking in" options I fail to see where you could go wrong.http://www.directron.com/3538naswlbk.html for a few dollars more....seems the best choice as Masscool seems to have myriad customer service issues. Their(Masscool) website doesn't list a manual has little to no data on the product. The Galaxy,by way of comparison, allows you to go thru the entire manual to see if the product fits your needs. However, I digress. Whatever option you go with plz re-post as I'm anxious to hear back on this. Personally I am leaning towards the galaxy.
November 17, 2009 8:12:45 AM

I actually never went with any of them, and probably won't for the foreseeable future. Tuition fees these days are outrageous and rend/car/internet bills don't help, long story short I'm scraping together every cent I own, nothing left for new tech as sad as that makes me.

If anyone else has experience with these products, let us know, I may still be interested at some point.
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