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I did install a QNAP NAS TS410 for a customer (professional photographer) with 3 Hitachi Deskstar 7200rpm 2TB disk configured as RAID5. The NAS and the workstations are connected over a Gigabit network.

He and his co-worker are accessing the photos (about 1TB of photos) over a mapped network drive from their windows machines (Windows XP - 32bit and Windows 7 Ultimate - 32bit). Both are using Photoshop CS5 to edit the photos.

The problem is that to save a edited photo takes a really long time, it takes about 3 times as long to save a photo as to open it.

After some tests I can exclude the network, the NAS and the windows machines as source of the issue. I think the problem is the Photoshop software and its handling of the network drives. Officially network drives are not supported by Adobe.

I do not have any experience with the Adobe products, especially with Adobe Photoshop CS5. What are your recommendation to solve the performance issue?

Should my customer copy the photos to the local drive, edit them and upload them again to the network drive or is Adobe Drive or Adobe Version Cue the answer?

One requirement is that the photos need to be accessible / editable from both computers even when one of them is offline. Adobe Version Cue needs a dedicated service running to be usable, so this solution is not possible as far as I understand the Cue software.

Thank you for your input to this issue and have a nice day :-)

Greetings

grub

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1 Answer 1

Photosshop CS5 and Network Drives are NOT a good match. First, the Network Drives will NOT respond as fast as a local drive with the same interface. You just CAN NOT send 200 megabytes non stop to a network but you can a drive. Second is what is called latency. Networks take microseconds to respond. This adds up and limits what real speed you can get. For really fast drives on a network, you must switch to a Fiber Based connection and this is out of reach for most consumers. Fiber Connect can handle speeds well above a normal Serial ATA interface because like RAID 0, there may be a 100 drives acting as ONE!

The best solution is a local drive for edits then "write back" to the Network Drives when done. I use this princple for my systen that is a 4 terabyte NAS (Network Attached Storage) with twin RAID 0 drive arrays each of 4 terabyte with dual SSD (Solid State Drive). My limit is the backplane. I are running fast QUAD core CPU, 16 gigabytes of memory and ALL local drives are RAID configured. I still wait!

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Hi Ron Thank you very much for your answer. I really didnt think that anyone will respond to the question anymore :) I'm aware of the differences between local disks and network attached storage. What really annoys me is that write operations from photoshop to the nas take so much longer then read operations. I'm pretty sure that this is an issue with photoshop and the cifs mount but i'm not able to get to the root of the issue. have a nice day :-) –  grub May 6 '11 at 11:43

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