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I am looking for something on the cheaper side that is basicly an external drive but I would like to have more then 1 drive, like 2 or more drives that run in raid 1.

I have an external drive that had a ton of really important stuff on it, it just died on me, tried running every possible tool on it and everything says the file system has an un fixable error and I need to format to save anything on it.

So next time I want to have backup for my backup, a raid 1 would be the best answer for this?

Also the NAS is just optional, all that adds is support to save throught my network right? Do most nas settups allow me to also access with USB if I wanted to? Thanks

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closed as off-topic by Tog, Mokubai, Excellll, Moses, Indrek May 2 at 18:55

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RAID 0 does not make data redundant. In fact it doubles the failure rate. RAID 1 duplicates data, making the data more reliable. –  Mike Cooper Sep 14 '09 at 6:29
    
thanks I meant to type raid 1 –  jasondavis Sep 14 '09 at 8:36
    
Sounds like you want something like a Drobo. –  ultrasawblade May 2 at 11:44
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3 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

There are hundreds of off the shelf solutions for this. Most if not all multi-HDD external Drives allow for mirroring of the data. (RAID 1) One problem with them is you have two identical drives in a single enclosure that is usually doing some sort of proprietary data handling. Too many opportunities for what still ends up as data loss if one of the drives dies or the drive controller craps out. The other is that you are only getting half the storage you are paying for.

The Drobo has become a popular choice for many but there seem to be issues that are not fully addressed. It is one of the few solutions that can grow as your needs for storage do.

After hunting, reading and spending way too much money I have decided that RAID is not the way to go for me and my needs for simple data mirroring. I have two size and speed matched external drives connected via Firewire 800 to my media server. On the server I run Chronosync with a scheduled job to do a full sync between the drives every 3 days. Sounds a bit overwrought but it meets my needs of data protection, network access to the data and no need for my intervention. This is a Mac only product but I am sure there are Windows products available.

As for the NAS question, it does allow connection to the data via your network. Most NAS equipped drives do not like trying to have a drive mapped via network and USB at the same time on a single machine. Remember though that NAS often adds some sort of overhead to the connection.

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thanks for the info, and what exactly do you mean by this, NAS often adds some sort of overhead to the connection? –  jasondavis Sep 14 '09 at 6:23
    
RAID 0 actually doubles the failure rate, since half the data is on each drive. –  Mike Cooper Sep 14 '09 at 6:30
    
@jasondavis Many NAS solutions have "client" software that have to be used to access the data. Those packages produce overhead in the form of adding another process. @Mike Cooper Yep.I transposed 0 for 1 there. Good catch. –  TomB Sep 14 '09 at 7:47
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I might suggest looking at offsite backup as well. I'm looking at backblaze, though my current backup plan tends to simply be backing up everything to a networked share on a 1tb hard disk on my main system, so i have at least two copies of critical files on seperate systems.

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build your own NAS server with FreeNAS. of course FreeNAS supports RAID and USB drives.

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