As I have mentioned before, my main NAS box is one of these…
14 x 25 x 23 cm, and it is light and compact and uses fuck all power.
This + laptop + small inverter + 12 volt DC lead acid battery = computing power and information retrieval anywhere.
This is a screen cap from my actual *main* (as in, hot and online 24/7) NAS, as you can see, 4 identical 2TB WD greens with duplication turned on (every file exists at least twice, and no two copies of the same file are on the same physical hard disk.
7.2 TB total usable space and 3 TB currently free, 2 TB shared folders, 2 TB of duplication, 200 GB of backups and 25 GB for the system itself.
In this second pic we can see the root of my shared folder, this appears via network mapping as the Z: drive on all my PC’s and laptops.
In here we can see I have some sort of directory structure
BACKUPS is not the 202 gig of automatic windows backups mentioned above, this is backups of other and older shit, going back to 1999 on this NAS box, eg old emails and crapola.
DISK IMAGES is exactly what it says, Macrium Reflect disk images, which thanks to it being on a NAS, and thanks to the way Macrium works, means I can if I choose just mount them the same way as virtual clone drive.
DRIVERS, exactly what is says, copies of all the drivers and driver CD’s for all the hardware I have ever had, currently run, and then some, absolutely fucking invaluable.
ECR Originally I meant to call this ER, like the hospitals, as it was where I was keeping all the files and shit that other people might call workspace, workbench or work in progress, but by the time I noticed the typo I’d already mapped it and just never bothered, so all the project stuff goes in here, so if I shoot some stuff on the 1080p video camera the raw files go in here, as do the project files (videostudiopro 17 / handbrake / vegas etc) but not the actual finished products, this means I can revisit older projects and change them etc
GAMES what it says, all the pirate games as well as a dupe of the stream directory on my main PC
GED FILES, one of my little hobbies, genealogy, lots of genealogy software uses files with the .ged extension.
GUEST, what it says, the one directory that a guest on the LAN has read and write, but not edit or delete, permissions to.
LIBRARY, this has everything, monster selection of pdf manuals, bike stuff, computer stuff, engineering stuff, hobby stuff, mil-tech stuff, science stuff, there are around 6,000 manuals in here, plus the library also contains technical videos, all my website archives, teleport pro copies of other websites that I grabbed before they disappeared into the ether…
MOBILES, all my android mobile devices sync daily, via the excellent SyncMe app, their entire contents, both internal memory and add in micro SD card contents, fucking everything.
MP3 Jukebox, what it says, at last count some 50k files all sorted and indexed, so A-B directory, Black Sabbath directory, Paranoid 1970 directory…. magic
PHOTOS, again, what it says, but I know that I will never lose another photo, and I can easily find any photo
SOFTWARE, again what it says, categorised by iso’s and flat files, anything and everything, together with serials, every windows OS from Chicago 95a to present, and a bunch of other besides, multiple versions of office, and paint shop pro, and acrobat, and bryce, and partition magic, and so on, because you never know when you need a version that is 3 iterations old etc.
VIDEOS, my own little digital blockbuster store, bliss… this is of course the shit worth keeping, so not godzilla or spider man 2 or prometheus etc etc etc
VIDEOS – MINE, videos I have made, things I have converted over the years from old family cine, all my own work, none of it is commercial of course, just irreplaceable
Z-PRIVE – my donkey and midget porn collection..lol.. actually this is just a useful second string of “are you sure”, call a directory private and put all the shit in there that you really do want to think once, twice, thrice, before you share it or attach it to an email or some such, eg scans of passprts and driving licences, ebanking records, scans of vehicle ownership papers, rent agreements, invoices and receipts, insurance documents, all that good stuff, all in one place.
I can sit at any computer in my place, and all that stuff is the Z drive, whoch of course also means that I can have three different computers all working on the same word document, and thanks to versioning etc there is just the one copy they are all working on, you don’t get nests of New Folder inside New Folder and so on.
You don’t get “accidental” duplication of data either, that 2TB of data, it was once 4.5 TB, there was so many large files or sets of files that were duplicated more than once, which isn’t just a waste, it makes shit real hard to find.
Copernic does a full text index of the whole thing, so I can find anything.
Another incredibly useful thing, I can sit down at the laptop in the kitchen and compose an email, and just attach a picture I took on one mobile that morning and an email attachment sent to the other mobile that lunchtime, it is all just *there*
I can sit on any device anywhere in the house an access any file, I don’t have to get up or use another pc or anything, but, some jobs are nice to break up that way, for this bit of the job I need the high resolution and a 46″ screen and a hot i7 CPU, for this bit of the job I can sit there with the stinkpad on my lap and type away.
Pick up that box, and I know I have everything I need to start again, nothing lost.
With it all on gigabit LAN (except for the mobile android devices that use the wifi) everything is in reality just as fast as if it was on a spinning rust hard disk in the machine you are sat at.
Obviously, for security purposes ( and you should have a proper router, not the freebie shit the telco will give you) the NAS box is locked down hard, totally inaccessible from outside the LAN, and the LAN itself locked down pretty tight so even if someone plugs in a patch lead or manages to sniff the wifi keys, they find themselves on their own little vlan that doesn’t connect to anything.
It’s also physically secure, you can come here and look around every room, and you won’t see the NAS boxen, because they aren’t in any of the rooms, or under the floors, or in the attic… you don’t need to physically touch them from month to month, so you don’t need them on show in the front room.
In the old car I also had an auto sneakernet, there were three sites that the computer in the car would log into via wifi and vpn, this being one of them, and each site had the same directory in the tree, and the car would auto sync every one, and itself… who needs the fucking cloud or dropbox….
I got that idea after building the same thing for a digital photographer, PC built in the car, with a multi card reader, all the DSLR’s synced to that, and an office PC at one location, and his SOHO PC at home, and he never had to physically do anything except maybe wait 20 minutes and drink a coffee and smoke a fag while the systems synced up automagically, those high res RAW images were big, he’d easy shoot a few gig at a time..
A pukka home NAS setup is, in short, absolutely everything that is advertised about being fantastic about my butt, that shit is all just *there*, with none of the drawbacks, nobody else has access to it, nobody can cut your access to it, it doesn’t need an internet / WAN connection, it doesn’t have any months fees, it is on an ethernet connection that not even fairly large commercial concerns could afford as a WAN connection, speed wise, and best of all, SHTF, you can pick it up as easy as a gallon of petrol, and walk away….