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Author Topic: Backup HD's  (Read 14095 times)

ckimmerle

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« on: May 05, 2007, 07:50:40 PM »

I've been going back and forth on this, but am wondering if anyone can tell me the pros and cons of the two main ways to backup disks:

1. Duplication of a volume (exact copy of folders and files)
2. Proprietary backup sets (Retrospect, WD, etc)

I like the idea of duplicating volumes because I can then see the files and folders in their original structure, but that leaves them open to viruses that target image files. The backup sets are better protected and easier to incrementally update, but a bit unwieldy when trying to access individual archived files.

Anyone have any thoughts?

Chuck
« Last Edit: May 05, 2007, 07:51:24 PM by ckimmerle »
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Recked

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« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2007, 11:49:30 AM »

Hi,

Not sure if this will help, but for the time being I am using ViceVersa Pro and mirroring my local Lightroom library and all other shot/scanned image files to both my Windows 2003 server and also a backup Infrant ReadyNas NV. So I have all my image files in three places and also my keeper Raw files and their adjusted final files are then written to gold dvd's. (Exhausting!!!!!   )

Compression is the main reason to use backup software and also the ability to verify the data written though ViceVersa does have a "Compare" function which generates a report showing any discrepancies, files sizes etc.

I, like you, prefer to see the data and not have to do a restore to ensure what I backed up is really there.

Good luck!
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RicAgu

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« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2007, 12:27:47 PM »

If you are on a Mac I would seriously consider using Softraid.  

www.softraid.com

Amazing product and spectacular support.
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nicolaasdb

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« Reply #3 on: May 19, 2007, 01:07:26 AM »

I am still very confused about the whole storage part.....I am working of off 6 2TB 800 firewire LaCie external HD's, but actually only 3 because the other 3 are backup drives.

I have been looking into raid drives but they are way more expensive and you get less GB's.....

Untill there is a better cheaper solution, I guess this is the only way to work.
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PatrikR

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« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2007, 02:38:01 PM »

I've been considering getting a RocketRAID PCI card (HighPoint RocketRAID 2220) for my old G5 Mac and installing five 1TB Sata II drives to it and run it in RAID 5 mode, giving me 4 TB of real protected storage. RocketRAID supports up to 8 Sata II drives, but I don't think I can install more than 5 drives inside my Mac G5.

I also plan to throw the SuperDrive (internal CD/DVD drive) away and install an IDE HD instead and run the system software from that disk.

I think, not sure yet, that this would be the best "budget" solution, that would provide big storage and reasonable speed over a gigabit ethernet for less than 2000 euros. The Gigabit ethernet works very well between my macs and provides speeds that are fast enough for storage needs. I tried several of the NAS solutions and all were very very slow and seemed of poor quality. Atleast such quality that I wouldn't want to trust my files to hose devices.

The NASes I tested were extremely slow. The Jumbo Frame options were a joke. They didn't really work as advertised. The manufacturers even advertise them for video usage... I think the NAS is a great idea but todays implementations are really weak. I wish Apple would bring something like that for us photographers.

I know a few people with X-RAIDs but they report how big, bulky, noisy and expensive they are. They also told me that the fibre channel is fairly limiting since you can't put very long cables without expensive FibreChannel amplifiers. Also one told how you can install non-Apple HDD to the X-RAID but then losing all the smart features of the system like the LEDs on the front panel.

If anybody has any experience with RocketRAID and Mac G5 please comment my plans before I make another "huge mistake"   .

Patrik
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BernardLanguillier

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« Reply #5 on: May 31, 2007, 04:59:01 AM »

If RAID5 is enough protection, then new eSATA RAID5 enclosures offer the best performance/price/security ratio IMHO.

Regards,
Bernard
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61Dynamic

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« Reply #6 on: May 31, 2007, 10:45:37 AM »

RAID is not a guarantee against failure. Even with RAID 5 there is a chance of data loss. Having backups in addition is a must.

Episode 2 of the podcast Macbreak Tech covers RAID setups as well as the upcoming ZFS file system which will solve many of the issues found with current file systems and RAID systems. A bit techy, but well worth the listen.

AC&NC has a visualization of the different RAID levels along with pluses and minuses.
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Roy

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« Reply #7 on: May 31, 2007, 05:37:15 PM »

Quote
I've been going back and forth on this, but am wondering if anyone can tell me the pros and cons of the two main ways to backup disks:

1. Duplication of a volume (exact copy of folders and files)
2. Proprietary backup sets (Retrospect, WD, etc)

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=115908\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

If you are using a Mac, duplication of your boot drive with a program such as Carbon Copy or SuperDuper gives you a volume you can boot from, and these programs are smart enough not to copy information that hasn't changed.

How did RAID become part of this discussion? RAID isn't backup; it just a somewhat more relaible and/or faster disk system. RAID does nothing to mitigate the consequences of fire, theft, human error, natural disaster or equipment failure. In fact, RAID makes your system more complex and adds points of failure. For example, a failed RAID controller can zap your data just as fast as a head crash.

I hear so many photographers talking about RAID and for most I think it is false sense of security as well as a waste of money. What most people need is a well thought-out backup strategy.
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Roy

digitaldog

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« Reply #8 on: May 31, 2007, 05:50:18 PM »

I just got the Sonnet 5 drive RAID enclosure (SATA drives), pretty happy so far. I have one drive that's being cloned each night using SuperDuper. I can't boot from it due to issues with SATA but that's not a big deal, I have FireWire drives I could boot from and the key here is this is a clone so I could restore the HD in no time. SuperDuper is awesome, brain dead and can be automated to do this each night.

Then my Lightroom libraries are being written to two Raid drives (mirror). But I also keep a copy on two external FireWire drives since I travel and need access to these files. I feel I'm in pretty good shape here. The Sonnet is a nice unit, I have a 160gig for the Mac backup and two 500gig's for the LR libraries. There are still two bays empty and of course, the drives are hot swappable. This wasn't an expensive system to setup either.
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DarkPenguin

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« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2007, 01:12:47 PM »

Saw this ...

http://www.drobo.com/products.aspx

Curious if anyone has tried it.
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61Dynamic

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« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2007, 02:10:28 PM »

The Dr.Robo folks have been advertising quite a bit at my local photo association. The guy demoed it to me once and it looks promising though it has some downsides.

The biggest is that it's only USB 2.0. Firewire models are "coming soon." Next up is that it's using proprietary RAID solution. This means if you are unfortunate to find yourself in a situation where you need to take your drives into a recovery service, you will be SOL.

Otherwise, the promise of easily managed and upgradeable RAID may appeal to many.

Of course, if you use Macs, the Drobo will be a hard sell by the time October comes around. OS X Leopard will come with ZFS support. This means a simple, expandable RAID built in for free with a more stable and open-source file system along with a few other benefits. (assuming real-world ZFS performance lives up to the promises)

Engdget has a review of the Drobo.
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DarkPenguin

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« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2007, 11:38:42 PM »

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djgarcia

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« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2007, 11:27:16 AM »

As posted above, it cannot be overemphasized that RAID is a complement to backups, not a substitute. RAID will not help you if you accidentally delete files, reformat your volume or something corrupts it. RAID only safeguards against hardware failure. You always need good backup procedures.

Oh, yeah, and don't forget about the recovery process. Backups are no good unless you can actually restore them. Make sure you test both sides of the overall process .
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61Dynamic

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« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2007, 12:01:11 PM »

The DrRobo is covered in episode 171 at DL.TV also. Episode 172 has a follow up.

I should have linked to some ZFS stuff previously for those interested. So here are a couple articles on ZFS. They are the least geeky ones I've come across but they still may go into geek-vile once in a wile. Worth a read anyway.
Who's minding the store?
Time Machine and the future of the file system
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DarkPenguin

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« Reply #14 on: June 12, 2007, 10:58:11 AM »

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jliechty

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« Reply #15 on: June 12, 2007, 06:28:24 PM »

Quote
No ZFS for you!

http://www.engadget.com/2007/06/12/apple-no-zfs-for-leopard/
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Reading the editor's comment [a href=\"http://www.informationweek.com/news/showArticle.jhtml;?articleID=199903281]here[/url], it seems that the people speaking on both sides are confused. ZFS won't be the default, but that doesn't mean it's not there. We'll have to wait for further info, however, to see to what extent ZFS will be implemented.
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Mort54

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« Reply #16 on: June 12, 2007, 11:51:23 PM »

Any approach that requires proprietary software to retrieve files is a huge NO-NO as far as I'm concerned. Software companies go out of business at a frightening rate. And formats that were supported one day are not supported the next. I don't want anything between me and the files contents but the OS file system. So, I will no use any backup software that keeps incremental backups, or compressed backups, because the only way to retrieve a file from such a system is to pray that the company making the backup software doesn't go out of business or change their format.
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PShizzy

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« Reply #17 on: June 27, 2007, 03:59:43 PM »

I own a drobo. Love it. It's not for everyone, that's for sure. USB 2? Not a big deal, as it's not necessarily that speedy.

But the fact that you don't have to have matching drives, and can add newer drives on the fly, that's HARD to beat.

BTW, it did literally take me 2 seconds to plug in the drives and about a minute to format and run the thing.

Becuase it's USB and not super fast, I use an internal drive (750GB) to host all my files, with Drobo mirroring them, and I use Syncback SE to always keep those matching.

Drobo is small, about the size of a thick loaf of bread. Stylish enough.

As for recovery? Well if you lose a drive, just pop one back in, no "rebuild" before you can access your data. You can access it anytime, but it does rebuild.

And my friend has one as well, so if my Drobo died hardware wise, I could just pull out my drives and read them in his Drobo (Drobo recognizes disks in packs, so you can also remove the pack and start with a new pack.)

Again, not for anyone, but it is a good product.

BTW this writeup here is COMPLETELY BIASED because I own a drobo and have a referral code for 25 dollars off a drobo.  Please take my writeup with a grain of salt, and if you still feel you'd like a drobo, feel free to contact me for the referral code.

Thanks,

Max
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Nill Toulme

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« Reply #18 on: June 27, 2007, 04:13:40 PM »

Max I still don't get it — what is it that makes drobo any better than one or more plain old external firewire or USB drives?

Nill
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