Photo Storage +
Mass Storage Solution
About a week ago, my main PC suffered an internal drive failure - which so happens to be were my most recent source images were stored along with some other important data. What did I say - I said oh well, I have my trusty external backup and other backups, which I could use to make a full recovery. No worries! So, I ordered a new drive to go inside my main PC and upon arrival I was all set to install and recover from the LOCAL backup. Then Things started to turn bad with the reality I and laziness I fell into over the last couple of years.
First, I realized my backups were spread across several external sources and not one had a full master copy, It was a puzzle to "remember" where all the bits were at. I had most of the files, but I was having trouble pulling everything together, and to realize my crashed drive was fried, which left me my local backup - So, technically I only needed to recover my local files. But then,
In my hast as I was opening my PC side compartment I needed to move the external drive out of the way, taking a short cut, I just moved the external over to the side. I then then slide open the PC, I leaned the side cover against the wall, then tilted the PC over slightly to get access to the bad drive, but at the same time I knocked over the cover with my elbow, which in turn knocked the external drive, down to the floor about 3 feet. Upon impact it made a weird noise, at this point I was like, this can not be happening but it did, i just dropped my only good backup to the floor.
I went ahead and installed the new drive, formatted the drive, reapplied power to the external drive and of course - blinky blue light. I tried and tried to access the drive but to no avail - in a last hope attempt I downloaded recovery software from the mfg. all recovery attempts failed. I turned the drive upside down and gave it another try - luck was with me, very slowly the recovery bar made it's way across the screen, I left the room and did a prayer. The recovery did not finish and stopped at about 80%, with a failed report. At least now I could mount the drive and access almost all my photography files along with some of the most recent folders still on my desktop - I had recovered them. Some files were lost, but not my images. Many lessons learned here.
So, what did I do to future proof ? I purchased a Synology DiskStation 2415+ with a set of six 10 Terabytes of Pro NAS and six 10TB Surveillance drives, for a total of 12 10TB drives, and in a RAID setup you get about have the full volume size. The SkyHawk is setup as two volumes to support continuous IP camera recording and a secondary backup of certain data from the main NAS which ensures I have 3 full copies of my most important data. While the IronWolfPros are setup to support the mass storage needs along with a wake on demand 20 terabyte of additional backups. I am covered.
What is my workflow and setup now: The Mass Storage Synology DS2415+ is setup in a redundant raid configuration, My PC is still my main work area due to its local (now SDD) disk connection - real fast and the source for most of my files. All data is backed up to the DS2415+ with secondary backups going to attached storage - back ups of backups now. The only concern is a local hazard like a flood or fire. I now sleep without worry about my data, but dream about a off-site solution for full protection - it is coming.
Learn More about This System:
So where do I store my long term archives - the offsite storage?: I keep a copy of my data on Amazon Glacier, low cost solution for protection of your data - do it for your protection! Stuff happens, be prepared. I have 4 TB on glacier, and at night rest assured my data is recoverable - fires, floods, or or otherwise.
Update on Setup: I am very pleased with the ease which Synology has developed to make backups effortless. This is beyond a basic NAS it is more like a full blown NAS system with many available applications.
- I used link aggeration to increase overall bandwidth, this particular unit supports 4 giga ethernet ports which can be bonded to form 2x.
- I added a 256gb SDD as a Cache read, which speeds up the overall system, on a heavy backup load the cache shows about 100gb usage.
- In addition I set up my IP Cameras with the Surveillance Station, although the software is free the license beyond the 2 free license, additional ones have a one time cost, about 60.00 per, or you can buy them in bulk at a reduced cost. Surveillance Station is a very useful tool, featuring analysis, and motion detection. With the analysis you can set it to send emails when a package is dropped on your doorstep, or someone approaches for that matter. Also features timeline video recording / playback..