Which NAS do list members prefer?

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Madman Riley

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I had a QNAP system but it failed on me so I switched to Synology DS412+ and never looked back. Has worked great for over a decade with no issues. Of course, this is all just one anecdotal account and it should be viewed as such.
Given the numerous known and unaddressed QNAP failures (in other words 'non-anecdotal'), alternatives that work are to be solicited. So thank you!


Turns out Mr. Gibson added one MORE comment in his latest podcast just yesterday:

QNAP I don’t like QNAP. I’ve said it before but, sadly, it’s worth reminding everyone due to recent events. At this point I’m pretty sure that I will never like nor recommend the use of QNAP’s products for any purpose... and I’d recommend this as a general policy.

Time and again the company has demonstrated itself to be too irresponsible. They have a well established track record of ignoring security researcher’s reports until their users are struck with disaster.

Nor do they fess up when they’re confronted. They obliquely refer to an “Improper Authorization Vulnerability in HBS 3” (which is their Hybrid Backup Sync offering). And it certainly is.
But it would be more correctly described as yet another hardcoded firmware backdoor credential that was discovered, as they will all inevitably be, and has been widely exploited by multiple breeds of ransomware which is now competing to see which can get in first to encrypt all of a user’s data.

Despite only asking 500 USD equivalent in bitcoin for decryption, there’s clearly no safe way to have any QNAP device publicly exposed to the Internet.

And QNAP themselves have begun recommending that their own users should not run on the default port 8080, but should attempt to hide their services elsewhere among the 65 thousand other ports because... that’s right... If you can’t make it secure, then at least make it obscure.

No thank you.
 

madship

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And here I am with hard drives inside my primary machine like some ludite...

I thought you just used an old machine you have kicking around for a NAS? Unless you suddenly need purpose built performance. I was actually thinking of doing this very thing with an old machine one of these times. My main Mac Pro tower has 4 3.5" and 2 5.5" drive bays though so I'm not short on space.

Any opinions on WD vs Seagate nowadays? (Or anyone else. Toshiba?)
My sense from reading reviews, using them myself, and servicing other machines is 6 of one and a half dozen of the other at this point. In other words, but the enterprise model with the 5 year warranty with the best price today. WD isn't even making their 'Black' models anymore. I don't see anyone just reading Seagate the riot act anymore either.

Anyway, the last drive pair I just bought was a Seagate 10TB Exos 7200rpm and then a WD 10TB Elements USB for its backup.
I bought Seagate Ironwolf drives with my Synology, The price was probably better at the time. I've used WD external drives and never had a problem with them, The Ironwolf's are designed for NAS, they have been running 24/7 for two years without a problem. The only bad sectors are the same sectors identified upon installation. I have no space issues yet but do wish I had a few dollars more to spend when I bought them. Something will fill them before their time comes.
 
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HomerJAU

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Are the files stored in a Windows compatible format. Can you just put the drive in another computer and read them.
I had bad experiences with DOS "Backup and Restore" and also Backup software. I developed a preference for just having plain hard drives added to the computer and storing the files in FAT or NTFS or whatever is current. Or copying folders to CDs and DVDs

If one of your RAID drives fails, do you have to come up with an identical one or just one that has the same or more capacity.
NASs from QNAP and Synology run a Linux based system with non-Windows compatible drives as far as swapping on out of a NAS and into a Windows PC (but you can reformat to NTFS and use them that way).

As far as file compatibility theres no issues moving files backward and forward between a NAS and Windows or MACOS.

The best file system on a NAS is BTRFS which has better features than NTFS and supports auto detection and correction of bit rot if you use RAID 5 or higher. Basically, with those RAIDs therse ‘kind of like’ 3 versions of a file across the array, so when your system reads files it compares all 3 bits on different drives and if one is not the same then it’s changed to match the other two, hence the auto self healing. But you can also set the entire array to be checked for every file (every bit) on a regular schedule. I do mine every 4 months, it runs for about 4 or 5 days across 4 RAIDs and doesn’t affect use at all.

You can use any drives together in a RAID, even different sizes but the sixpze is limited by the smallest drive. Ideally if buying new go with 3 of same size and speed (5400 or 7200rpm). The spec show WDs a little faster than Seagates. Hitach has a good reputation but most expensive of the 3.
 

svengaleekie

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I have D-Link, Weston Digital and Buffalo Nas's the can all feed multichannel files to my Sony or Oppo players to be played, the WD is a bit weird though, you have to be careful with naming and tagging files or it will play through an album in alphabetical order!
 

atrocity

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Over the years I've discovered that my preference isn't for one system but for multiple systems. I've got a pretty careful and elaborate backup routine, so my fear isn't so much of losing data permanently as having it become temporarily unavailable.

A year or so back I was given a Dell the original user got frustrated with (or, more accurately, she got frustrated with W*nd*ws). I maxed out its RAM with 16 gigs, pulled the original hard drive, put in a 1TB SSD and installed what was then FreeNAS but is now TrueNAS.

TrueNAS is free and loaded with features, certainly more than I'll ever use. But if you just want a reliable, expandable server with the robust data protection you get with the ZFS file system, you can ignore all the fancy stuff.

In my current setup, the internal SSD is used as a scratch drive that all my computers can access. When I digitize analog sources, I wind up using a combination of W*d*ws and Linux tools, so having the data located where any computer can process it is a must.

In addition to that, I have four external USB 3 drives. If blazing fast speed is important to you, you can probably stop reading right here. Personally, I'm less concerned about speed than I am about reliability, budget and ease of expansion, so USB 3 is fine with me.

Those four drives are in reality two different mirrors with two different sets of data. One pair is just for music that can be played on a Squeezebox (PCM stereo, DSD stereo, AC-3, DTS). The other is for multichannel DSD and multichannel FLAC that plays on other hardware. It also stores all of my HD-DVD collection that I was able to rip before the discs rotted.

As with RAID, in theory anything I write to either of those shares winds up getting written to two identical disks. If one fails, it's a very simple operation to replace it, during which time your data is still available. It's also very simple to add another mirror at any time. In fact, both of those shares originally started as single drives that had mirrors added later.

But, RAID is *not* backup, so those primary drives are backed up to a combination of cheap standalone WD single-disk NASes and USB drives connected to other Linux boxes. I've found the latest Raspberry Pi 4 to be a perfectly acceptable server to host the backups.

The advantage to a hybrid system like that is ease of cutover should the primary box fail. Hopefully that won't happen any time soon, but if it does, all I have to do is re-map the client machines to access the backups instead of the primaries.

In the case of my normal Squeezebox music, I keep the mirrored drives on TrueNAS, a copy on a USB drive connected to the Pi and two copies on two different single-disk standalone WD NASes. It's also backed up to a server in France and another in Norway. It took me 18 months to rip all my CDs, so I am heavily, heavily motivated to take backing up seriously.

My experience with the cheap single-drive WD NAS boxes is that they're great until suddenly they aren't. Specifically, I've had AT LEAST three of them get bricked when I obediently attempted to update the firmware after much nagging. They seemed to go through the update process, then never, ever booted again. In every case, I was able to remove the hard drives, put them in a USB enclosure and use them elsewhere. One of the drives does show in TrueNAS as having 264 uncorrectable sectors, though that count has never changed since I started using it. The other two drives are allegedly completely free of errors, so the fault was somewhere in WD's software. I still have two of their boxes that are begging me to upgrade, but I'm not falling for that again.

Anyway, this is all my typically long-winded way of saying that rather than committing to a single brand or approach, it's probably safer to use a mix of hardware and software. Hopefully everything won't fail at once and if/when anything does, recovery will be relatively simple.

If anyone is tempted to try to roll their own NAS, I'd suggest getting a Raspberry Pi 4 with 8 gigs (probably overkill, but better too much than too little) and one or more USB 3 drives. That's a cheap way to get started and figure out quickly if that approach is right for you. If not, the Pi can be used for a whole bunch of other things, including as a Squeezebox player or, with Kodi, a multichannel player.
 

gene_stl

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Once again Thank You everybody who has taken the time and effort to add to this thread.

Another question occurs to me. Those of you that have more than one NAS, are they separate entities on the network or do they somehow talk to each other and "coordinate"what they are doing.

One of the reasons I have started to "get off the dime" on this is I don't want to experience loss of data if a computer dies , and my "Music" Folder is growing as I rip CDs and SACDs. I intend to start ripping my vinyl and I have a Music in the Wild stalker pal who sends me lots of his recorded files.
I don't want to lose or have to do any of this stuff over.

I guess I was thinking of doing it on the cheap but I see that that is an incorrect approach. There is nothing like sharing your experiences and I thank all of you for that.

Pleez , keep em coming.(y)(y):LB
 

HomerJAU

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Each NAS is independent and is a separate device on your network. You can copy files between each or even set up to sync files.

BTW: You can also move discs between NASs of same vendor, move a RAID array from old to new without losing any data.
 

atrocity

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Another question occurs to me. Those of you that have more than one NAS, are they separate entities on the network or do they somehow talk to each other and "coordinate"what they are doing.
They don't exactly talk to each other in the way I think you mean (at least not by default), but adding to what HomerJAU has already said, you can easily move files back and forth between them. The NASes aren't exactly connecting to each other directly, instead you have each individual NAS "mapped" as a drive on your computer. As long as the NASes share their files in a standard way (which, as far as I know, they *all* do, or there'd be no point!), your computer will simply present them to you as an attached disk drive.

So, to use a Windows example, you might have a QNAP NAS mapped to S:, a Western Digital to T: and a big TrueNAS box to Z:. At that point, you can add, copy, move or delete files to/from any of them using exactly the same processes that you'd use with disks directly connected to your computer.
 

Mcallister

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I’ve also been looking at getting a NAS it will be used for both music and 4K movies in full 4K and lossless rips. Would something like the Synology 220+ be a good choice?
 

gene_stl

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So the NAS appears as a Network Drive,(or drives) even if it is really a Raid of some description.
 

LuvMyQuad

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So the NAS appears as a Network Drive,(or drives) even if it is really a Raid of some description.
Yes. You can also map it with a drive letter like D:/, E:/, F/: etc. My NAS is mapped as Q:/. It makes it easier to copy files and such.

You can even have partitions... MCH files in Q:/, Stereo in S:/, etc
 

HomerJAU

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Would something like the Synology 220+ be a good choice?
I would go for the 420+. You really need RAID and two discs means one is a backup only (RAID 1).

4 drives will give 3 drives for data and one for backup (actually the data is distributed over all 4 to give the backup but you end up with 3 x single disc size as usable). This is RAID 5 which adds disc rot protection as per my earlier post.

4K movies are huge. Start putting Concert Videos and ISO backups and raw disc rip backups and you need shite loads of space. For the 220+ you would need to buy 2 x 12TB drive minimum (RAID 1 will give you 12TB uusable) but you could easily need bigger drives down the road.

A 4 drive NAS gives better options moving forward. But best you do your own math and budget and decide.

You can always start with the 420+ with only 2 drives then add more as needed.
 

paligap

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What holds me back from diving into NAS is that I assume the network needs to be wired to be effective for hi-res multi-channel music. The PC I use to download and rip music is located far from my primary listening system, and it would be a real PITA to run Cat5 wires. I've made do with using external drives that mirror my internal drives, including a portable one that I update frequently to use with the player in my listening systems.

There's probably a better way, and I'll eventually reach the limits of my existing drives, anyway.
 

LuvMyQuad

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What holds me back from diving into NAS is that I assume the network needs to be wired to be effective for hi-res multi-channel music. The PC I use to download and rip music is located far from my primary listening system, and it would be a real PITA to run Cat5 wires. I've made do with using external drives that mirror my internal drives, including a portable one that I update frequently to use with the player in my listening systems.

There's probably a better way, and I'll eventually reach the limits of my existing drives, anyway.
Im not sure why you might think you need a wired connection between the ripping PC and the playback system.
The NAS can be wired, but the playback can be wireless.
 

paligap

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Im not sure why you might think you need a wired connection between the ripping PC and the playback system.
The NAS can be wired, but the playback can be wireless.
Well, I've read it here and elsewhere, but maybe I misunderstood.
 

gene_stl

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I rip SACDs using a Sony BDP which happens to be hardwired to my Ethernet but the laptop that records the ISOs is wireless and it seems to work fine.
I think I get like 400K per second iirc.
 
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