I’ve got a Synology DS1511+ that’s been treating me pretty well for the past 6 years; 5 bays, Linux-based, has a web-based UI.
I recently upgraded from a set of 2GB disks to a set of WD 6TB Reds, which was fairly painless aside from the rebuild time.
I’ve had it hosting my RSS feed reader ever since Google Reader was untimely murdered.
It might be worth looking at the recent revisions (DS1517+, I believe) if you’re looking for a COTS solution.
I’ve been considering the DAS for my next device, whenever that may be. I mean, let’s be honest. 99% of the time I use the NAS it is from just this one machine. Is it worth the extra money to keep letting the HTPC connect to the NAS? Just to avoid the hassle of setting up file sharing on my desktop?
Also, there are lots of stupid apps out there, like Lightroom automatic backup, that won’t work across a network share. They do local disk only.
However, the main advantage of the NAS over the DAS for me, especially the Synology, is auto backup to the cloud. With a DAS, my desktop has to do that work itself. With a NAS, it can back itself up without my desktop giving a shit.
I’d probably go with single disk (RAID-5 or equivalent), but also buy a 6th drive to keep as a cold spare. I’d rely in this case on a weekly or monthly Glacier backup to cover the unlikely scenario of two disks failing inside of the time it takes to rebuild the array from a single drive failure.
The wrinkle here is that if your motherboard goes out you likely need a replacement, compatible mobo to recover your data. Software raid works everywhere and, more importantly, can be recovered anywhere.
I’m not sure of the state of soft raid on Windows, but I won’t trust hardware raid on Linux.
Disk is so much slower than ram and cpu that compute is negligible.
It’s RAID 1. The disks are identical and should be able to read in any controller.
(Yes, I know some bullshit RAID controllers do some proprietary nonsense with even basic RAID 1, but this is Intel RST. It both does RAID 1 correctly and is readily available on any motherboard I’d ever buy).
I’m confident I could literally just plug either drive from the array into any SATA port and read the data, Intel RST be damned.
I just wrote a script that combed through all my hard drives, found all my iPhone photos, and put them in a single folder on my latest external hard drive. It’s taken a lot off my mind, as a lot of those are just for me. Other photos and videos are published on my blog or facebook or youtube and other places. But 90% of my photos are just for me and the sake of my memories.