Basically we have hq scans of thousands of old family photos. Plus tons of family video. We want to host them where we can still have total control over the content and restrict access. I'm a php programmer, so the security is not an issue. What is an issue is finding a host to store 10 TB of data and not be paying a ton of money.

We really are not planning on a lot of traffic. Maybe 1-10 visitors a day; family only. Kind of like an online library.

  • Totally non server-fault related question, how did you scan in all of your photos? Did you and your uncle do it yourselves or have another service do it? Jan 28 '10 at 16:41
  • Ourselves. HP has some great scanners that let you scan multiple photos at one time and auto separates them into different files.
    – Citizen
    Jan 28 '10 at 16:51

15TB is going to cost ~$1.5k at an absolute minimum just for a hosting company to buy, plus the server to serve it, power, break/fix support - oh and then there's their profit - it's going to be expensive for you to pay a hosting company for that amount.

Given the extremely low usage you're expecting I'd be tempted to buy a NAS box with ~8 slots, the disks themselves, R5 them and share them from his/your home PC via dyndns or similar. It should save you a fortune.

Oh and for some reason this post made me think of this t-shirt;

alt text

  • Thanks. And i may have to get him that t-shirt. He'd get a kick out of it.
    – Citizen
    Jan 28 '10 at 16:26
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    Priced out commercial solutions, all very expensive for 10TB of data (even S3). Seriously, buy the box and host it at home since you are expecting such little traffic, then if you need more bandwidth or transfer speed colo it somewhere which should cost you under $100/month. Jan 28 '10 at 16:40
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    It depends on whether you can survive the odd spot of downtime but pretty much anything will do. I'd be tempted to pickup a mid-range Dell PC or low-end server (something like a T110) with a pair of smallish local disks to mirror, no more than 4GB of memory, a single dual-core CPU will do then add an OS; Windows 7 or Server 2008 would be fine, Ubuntu Server if you fancy more of a challenge then just pickup an external NAS (something like Thecus N7700PRO would give you about 11.5TB usable) or you could go the SuperMicro.com route and semi-build your own.
    – Chopper3
    Jan 28 '10 at 16:51
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    No one has mentioned this yet that I see...but what are you doing to back that data up?? Don't forget that in your specing out of information, having it archived and/or redundantly saved! You wouldn't want to lose a large chunk of that (and RAID isn't a backup, and RAID 5 for that much data could easily bite you with an unrecoverable read error on a large disk)... Jan 28 '10 at 17:06
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    I don't like the idea of having data only at one place, no matter how duplicate/raided/heavy-duty it is. A robbery or a fire would end it all. If you're going the NAS route, buy two and have two members of the family host it (and mirror it when new things are added), or at the very least buy a tape backup system to send out tapes somewhere else (I think tape is cheaper than a second NAS or blu-ray disks)
    – mtone
    Jan 28 '10 at 17:40

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