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NAS used as a normal computing drive - benefits? Drive sizes? Seagate? WD?

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techiemon

Member
Joined
Jan 29, 2007
Hi guys. I have a 3-5 year old 6TB WD drive that seems to be crapping out on me. I was using a Vantec HX-4R external HDD contoller to run it from my old system to transfer stuff to my new system, but I started noticing problems and then finally well... it just doesn't work anymore. It spins, but Windows doesn't recognize it. I took it out of Vantec, stuffed in in a normal port internally, same thing. Bios recognizes it, it spins, but nothing. So... I took it out of my new machine, popped it into the old machine where it was before, same problems, wouldn't even boot up the machine, entered bios, it's there, saved, system restarted, BUT this time Win 7 ran a diskcheck! woohoo!! 2 hours later it is still running, so not sure of the result, but it is is troubling because it went through doing the whole delete $I30 errors, happens to be all photos, I am quite sad.. It is now in the process of try to recover the orphaned files, I am hoping, if not, I will try a recovery program to try to get them back.

HOWEVER, now... I need a couple of new HDDs to back everything up... Someone has recommended the Seagate Ironwolf over either the Barracuda or WD or Toshiba drives. Why? Is NAS better for normal computing? Safer? I see no advantage really as I don't have a RAID and do not do NAS, but.. maybe I can find some use for it? If I buy two NAS do they have to be the same size? I am just wondering if NAS is going to be better for long term?

Also, how worried should I be about a Toshiba 6TB drive that is 100% for everything EXCEPT spinup retry count which is at 52% just after a year of use? Is this is a serious problem? The drive houses my programs, photos, documents, etc. I try to back up most of that, but wondering how worried I should be? Everything else on that drive is working 100% according to Active @Harddrive software. And Cyrstal disk is calling that drive GOOD. So.... what's going on?

Suggestions on new drives? NAS or no? Just Barracuda? Size recommendations? Some people say 4TBor below. What do you think?

Many questions here.

I usually go with 6TB, but now after this WD that is dying on my old system, I am not so sure I want to use them anymore. But my new system has 2. 1 Toshiba and 1 WD.

And yeah, I have gone over some data from backblaze, but somehow seems all of them are actually not significantly different in MHO.

Edit: By the way is HDD Regenerator still the software of choice to find and fix HDDs? This software seems very very powerful, any comments?
 
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Blaylock

"That Backfired" Senior Member
Joined
Jun 5, 2013
Location
Go Blue!
First, I need to mention this isn't my strong suit, however, when I built my NAS a few years ago I did do a ton of research into this.

Backblaze was a great resource for finding reliability but it also showed just how close these drives are to each other. In years past certain brands were far superior, today it seems that many manufacturers have closed that gap. I've never been a fan of Seagate as they have let me down in the past, but that's with a sample of one. Hardly a sample size worth using for data. I have always preferred WD, Toshiba, and Hitachi.

As far as the drive type/color, I would not use a NAS drive (red) for a 24/7 drive as the write speed isn't as good as, say a blue, black, or gold. They're designed for fast reads. If you're looking for maximum reliability in WD then stick with the Black or Gold. I'm not sure what the names for the Toshiba/Hitachi are anymore. I think it used to be the Ultrastar but don't quote me on that.

IMO RAID is best if you plan on storing large amounts of data for many, many years, like family photos/videos, movies, etc. Utilizing a RAID 5, 6, 50, or 60 will add redundancy for when a drive eventually fails. They all eventually will. Also, it is vitally important to remember that a RAID system is no substitute for a routine back-up schedule. Redundancy is good if you have a drive (or 2) fail. A back-up is good in case you have an entire system failure. Offsite back-ups are the ideal method as they will protect you even if your house is swept away in a typhoon.

Anyway, these are just my ramblings. I hope they help. Good luck.
 

trents

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 27, 2008
Hi guys. I have a 3-5 year old 6TB WD drive that seems to be crapping out on me. I was using a Vantec HX-4R external HDD contoller to run it from my old system to transfer stuff to my new system, but I started noticing problems and then finally well... it just doesn't work anymore. It spins, but Windows doesn't recognize it. I took it out of Vantec, stuffed in in a normal port internally, same thing. Bios recognizes it, it spins, but nothing. So... I took it out of my new machine, popped it into the old machine where it was before, same problems, wouldn't even boot up the machine, entered bios, it's there, saved, system restarted, BUT this time Win 7 ran a diskcheck! woohoo!! 2 hours later it is still running, so not sure of the result, but it is is troubling because it went through doing the whole delete $I30 errors, happens to be all photos, I am quite sad.. It is now in the process of try to recover the orphaned files, I am hoping, if not, I will try a recovery program to try to get them back.

HOWEVER, now... I need a couple of new HDDs to back everything up... Someone has recommended the Seagate Ironwolf over either the Barracuda or WD or Toshiba drives. Why? Is NAS better for normal computing? Safer? I see no advantage really as I don't have a RAID and do not do NAS, but.. maybe I can find some use for it? If I buy two NAS do they have to be the same size? I am just wondering if NAS is going to be better for long term?

Also, how worried should I be about a Toshiba 6TB drive that is 100% for everything EXCEPT spinup retry count which is at 52% just after a year of use? Is this is a serious problem? The drive houses my programs, photos, documents, etc. I try to back up most of that, but wondering how worried I should be? Everything else on that drive is working 100% according to Active @Harddrive software. And Cyrstal disk is calling that drive GOOD. So.... what's going on?

Suggestions on new drives? NAS or no? Just Barracuda? Size recommendations? Some people say 4TBor below. What do you think?

Many questions here.

I usually go with 6TB, but now after this WD that is dying on my old system, I am not so sure I want to use them anymore. But my new system has 2. 1 Toshiba and 1 WD.

And yeah, I have gone over some data from backblaze, but somehow seems all of them are actually not significantly different in MHO.

Edit: By the way is HDD Regenerator still the software of choice to find and fix HDDs? This software seems very very powerful, any comments?

High retry count means sectors are getting marginal and hard to read. This can slow performance down dramatically and probably indicates pending failure. I would not trust it. Yes,this can sometimes happen within a year. Occasionally, every drive manufacturer will turn out a lemon model that has a high failure rate. Usually it’s a drive firmware issue that causes poor wear management.

There is a free program called Macrium Reflect that I use to make complete images of the system drive on a backup drive. An image contains OS, all programs, all data and all settings. Macrium allows you to schedule the time and frequency of the images and it creates them automatically. Typically, you set the frequency at 1x monthly for full images and 1x weekly for differential images. Macrium automatically deletes older images to conserve disk space. You create a “rescue disk” on optical media or a thumb drive. In case of hard drive failure you can boot from the rescue disk and locate an image stored on the backup drive which will then allow you to restore the system to a new drive exactly as it was before problems arose. At the same time, I use Windows File history to automatically back up only data on an hourly basis. That way you your data is very current and the only things lost would be less than 1 hr. old.

Concerning drive brands, don’t worry about that. One is as good as the other. I think that it is more important to regularly check the SMART info with Crystaldiskinfo or some other tool so as to catch potential problems early before data corruption is extensive or before failure.


 

habbajabba

Member
Joined
Oct 29, 2005
Location
Oregon
Like Blaylock states, just because you have a nas or drive or whatever doesn't mean you don't need an actual separate physical backup scheme. Cloud is great right up to the point the internet is down. Still as long as the servers don't burn down you should be OK. I have four 6tb's in my nas but no actual backup of the nas itself. My nas uses a snapshot scheme which basically saves the file structure which incl. the host addressing (passwords and all) of said files. It's super quick and easy but I need a huge spare to backup the nas itself up in case of hd failure. In which case the nas would require a new 6tb drive to replace the failed one, on the fly so to speak. The 6tb's ironwolf pro' are like $200 whereas the 8's are around $250. SSD's for data are in the $1000 range at same capacity so unless you use a raid setup to perform just one function (poe cams for instance), the large capacity ones are simply out of range. Bottom line I'd need at least one spare 6TB drive to backup my data at this point and I don't want to get any more 6's. I need to spend at least $500 to upgrade my nas just to get two more TB's which is why 10's will probably be it.

I allow a TB of space (a month?) for my cams and use the older western dig's for this and the newer ironwolf pro's for my good stuff. I've never used hdd regenerator but SpinRite I have. All I can tell you is spinrite took foreeeever so I never completed it. Best bet on any modern system is to replace when hd throws errors. With a good UPS and some tlc a decent hd should last 7 maybe even 10yrs easy, unless you're literaly flogging it daily. I'd go with the largest ironwolf PRO (better smart capabilities incl. raid) spinner you can reasonably afford. My next ones will be at least 8 hopefully 10's but I imagine with just 2 10's in a raid1 it may last me the next 20 yrs of data collecting. I also have a burner that will burn a 100GB disc (at $20ea) that will last a century if need be. But how important is most stuff really unless it's actually being used?

If you built a desktop that had nas capabilities it would have to stay running all the time to act as a a nas. My nas uses ~30watts which leaves me to use laptops and mini pc's for regular stuff cutting down on the clutter and freeing up desk space. I could use it for a desktop but in order to run a vm in a container, like windows10 or ubuntu, all the other features of the nas from that same terminal are not accessible. In other words you have to spend thousands to run a proper vm with nas capabilities that is worth the time of day. Best just to keep things simple and separate. Less energy, less money, more secure, same results. A good running vm is awesome but puts all your resources on the same table, while at the same time forcing you to divide them.
 
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OP
techiemon

techiemon

Member
Joined
Jan 29, 2007
Hi all, I am really looking for something simple. Not RAID or NAS, I think it is too complicated and I don't need that. I am interested in the Macrium Reflect that was recommended, but wondering, is it really that simple? And home version free version is all I need? How easy to set up? Like 10 minutes?

What I want to make sure is that it will basically copy everything over to another drive without me doing anything?

Here is a situation. I have a 1TB M.2 SSD. And then I have a 6TB Toshiba that houses a lot of my programs, documents, photos, etc. When I set up Macrium what will happen? If my Toshiba drive dies will I just basically swap it out and put the copied one in and everything is installed and working as it was on the old disk? No corruptions or programs that won't load?

And how to deal with the M.2 SSD where the O/S with programs and documents, some photos, etc? I don't really want to buy another disk for that. But... seems like I might have to.

What size disks do you recommend for stability? Someone is telling me no more than 4TB, what do you guys think? And which one if I go with Seagate? Barracuda is enough? If WD, blue, black or? hell even green?

This part confuses me... why would it auto delete stuff? is it auto deleting on backup copy only? And if the rescue disk fails, can I still access files from the Macrium backup? I really do not want to spend too much time with this. But I think I really need a local solution rather than me just copying stuff over randomly, automated is good. But what happens if I power off the Vantec external device, will it back up whenever I turn it on? EDIT: Wait, after rereading it a few times, I think I got it.. But... ok... If I want 2-3 different drives imaged on this one Macrium back up, how does that work? Do I need a bigger drive? My TD is 6 my SSD OS is 1. So if I buy an 8 am I good? No partitioning I assume. And how long does that monthly backup take? 24 hours? And... if one of the drives fails in my system... how to deal with it? Just replace it, then use the image to restore the one m.2? but leave the other HHD 6TB alone? How does this work?

There is a free program called Macrium Reflect that I use to make complete images of the system drive on a backup drive. An image contains OS, all programs, all data and all settings. Macrium allows you to schedule the time and frequency of the images and it creates them automatically. Typically, you set the frequency at 1x monthly for full images and 1x weekly for differential images. Macrium automatically deletes older images to conserve disk space. You create a “rescue disk” on optical media or a thumb drive. In case of hard drive failure you can boot from the rescue disk and locate an image stored on the backup drive which will then allow you to restore the system to a new drive exactly as it was before problems arose. At the same time, I use Windows File history to automatically back up only data on an hourly basis. That way you your data is very current and the only things lost would be less than 1 hr. old.

Also... ok, now on to the Toshiba spin up issue. Here are two programs. SMART [email protected] and Crystal disk. Notice the difference? Which one do I trust? :shock::cry:

2021-02-03 23_21_02-AsPowerBar.jpg
 
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The_Jizzler

Member
Joined
Feb 7, 2003
Some simple guidelines to help you target your needs a bit further...

If the data needs to be accessed via network by multiple machines, then you need a NAS.

If the data needs to be available at all times, then you need RAID

If the data needs to be preserved/protected from disaster, then you need backups/multiple copies
 

habbajabba

Member
Joined
Oct 29, 2005
Location
Oregon
In windows it is relatively quick and easy to install the OS, BUT, losing all your settings and whatnot is a major PITA. I like using FreeFileSync for file backups myself but since you only have one data drive your options are flash drives or external drives atm.
I previously was using Veeam for my windows backups. I've used Clonezilla and Macrium as well. The deal with disk imagers is they are only as good as is the boot disc the software makes that's supposed to work with the actual backup image/s. If the boot disc fails for any reason the entire backup scheme FAILS.
I'd start with veeam, making a backup, then a boot disc, and then verifying that it works. Clonezilla is nice but is a boot disc software only so you have to interrupt everything to use it. Veeam will image on the fly in windows and has a nice tray icon for access with scheduling and all. Macrium I don't care for as it required extra files in order to work and the gui is from the 80's.
You need to buy another 6TB hd, preferably an 8tb or even larger. Image the ssd to the spinner and then freefilesync the spinner to your new 'spare'. If either of the first 2 drives fail you will have lost nothing other than maybe having to replace one or the other. I also use portable software as much as is possible for this reason. My portable stuff always runs and resides on the data drive, never the OS one. I like the ability to open my browser regardless of what the OS system disk does, or doesn't.
https://www.veeam.com/windows-endpoint-server-backup-free.html
https://freefilesync.org/download.php
https://sourceforge.net/projects/clonezilla/files/clonezilla_live_stable/2.7.1-22/

I just grabbed both the windows and linux free versions of veeam. The linux version requires a login so I gave them someone else's info. Someone who doesn't live anywhere near me and doesn't even own a pc lol.
 
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