External Harddrive

Discussion in 'Hardware & Software' started by ShinRa, Feb 7, 2014.

  1. ShinRa

    ShinRa Companion Cube

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    Soooo my 500gb external back ups are just about all filled up. All my photos, music, life is on 3 external drives all exactly mirrored with one another. A bit overboard and maybe slightly over paranoid? Perhaps, but you can never be too careful. I decided that one major piece of my life is missing from these externals, my games. And with a steam library of over 100 games, I'm guessing I'm going to need some bigger drives. Currently, my externals take up about 450gb. If I add my steam folder to it, I'm assuming at LEAST 1-1.5tb will be added to that. So I'm looking at grabbing 3 brand spankin' new 3TB externals. Herein lays my question/concern. Are 3TB harddrives stable? To me, it seems like that's a LOT of data to be writing onto a disk. Me being the already over paranoid freak I am about losing my lifes works, I want to make sure I invest in the RIGHT harddrive. So what're your recommendations? I hope this post was long and drawn out enough that you think "well, i just wasted 2 minutes of my life, might as well help the guy out."
     
  2. BabyHeadCrab

    BabyHeadCrab The Freeman

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    I mean, they're kind of slow and expensive but they're no more volatile than their smaller cousins
     
  3. ShinRa

    ShinRa Companion Cube

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    Slow I can live with. Expensive...worth the price to me for backup. So you answered my question in terms of life expectancy. I assume the best brand is still WD?
     
  4. BabyHeadCrab

    BabyHeadCrab The Freeman

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    Yar go with WD or Seagate
     
  5. Krynn72

    Krynn72 The Freeman

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    Short answer... no they're not. But if you intend to use them as backup drives you should be ok. Meaning you plug them in, transfer data, and unplug them again and put them aside until your next backup. And for the love of god, do not get Seagate. Their >1tb drives are shit.

    Look at this:
    http://blog.backblaze.com/2014/01/21/what-hard-drive-should-i-buy/
    [​IMG]
     
  6. ShinRa

    ShinRa Companion Cube

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    Whoaaaaa that's an amazing chart krynn! It looks like, sadly, my best option is that Hitachi that has 2.9 avg years and a 1.1% failure rate. That's only 2TB though. Argh. Can't technology move along any faster?!
     
  7. Vegeta897

    Vegeta897 Banned as all fuck

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    I bought this (3TB USB3) in October 2012 and have been doing daily backups since then. It goes to sleep automatically after the backup. That list of harddrives Krynn posted looks like internal only, though I'm not sure if the My Book is actually using one of them.
     
  8. Ikagara

    Ikagara Vortigaunt

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    Enclosures have normal internal hard drives inside of them, nothing special about the drives in them.

    why not get more smaller capacity hard drives like 1.5tb or 2tb if they are more reliable and build nas with the drives in some raid configuration.
     
  9. Vegeta897

    Vegeta897 Banned as all fuck

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    Duh, but that doesn't tell me if it's on the list Krynn posted or not, or if it is, which one.
     
  10. Destructo-Bot

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    I have dual 4TB USB 3.0 Seagate drives that I use for backup with FreeFileSync. I get about 80 to 120MB/s transfer for large files. Definitely recommend the newer USB standard if you are upgrading... when you are talking multiple TB's it makes a huge difference.
     
  11. ShinRa

    ShinRa Companion Cube

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    Yea I can only imagine. I got a free 1TB harddrive from amazon with all my "credits" that I had. Using USB 2.0, it took the drive 2 hours to transfer 100gb. I transferred the other 400gb in about an hour and a half using USB 3.0.
     
  12. Destructo-Bot

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    What software are you using to backup with anyway? I'd definitely recommend FreeFileSync as it does differential transfers (nothing is copied if nothing has changed) and it uses Volume Shadow Copy for locked files which means backing up an OS drive works superbly.
     
  13. ShinRa

    ShinRa Companion Cube

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    You're going to have to really dumb that down for me. Mind telling me what I'd use it for? Currently, I make a folder on my desktop with everything I want to back up. I then plug in all 4 externals, and copy the files into each one.
     
  14. Higlac

    Higlac Companion Cube

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    If you're going to drop that much on an external then you should do this properly.

    Keep your important (non-replaceable) stuff on the other externals or stored someplace online. You can never consider data backed up unless you have three copies of it. 1. In use, like an internal drive. 2. On site, as in an external on the desk. 3. Offsite, as in Carbonite or Dropbox.
     
  15. ShinRa

    ShinRa Companion Cube

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    Well currently I have 4 copies. They're on 4 externals, however they're all located in the same place - my office. I'm not comfortable/familiar with offsite storage such as dropbox. Would I be able to store over 500GB of stuff into a cloud-based system such as carbonite or dropbox?
     
  16. Higlac

    Higlac Companion Cube

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    Carbonite maybe, Dropbox probably not. They will, however store things that are not easily replaced, such as pictures or (encrypted) financial documents. The idea being that you have a quick backup in case your data in use (on the laptop) is destroyed somehow, and that if there were an issue at that physical location (housefire or theft) you would still have all the important data backed up somewhere. Unless you have 500 gigs of family movies that nobody else has a copy of, then you should be fine. If it's just a steam library, or something like that, then you should be able to re-download.

    My suggestion of having a RAID array would allow you to have a large storage volume, while still protecting data should one of the drives fail.
     
  17. ShinRa

    ShinRa Companion Cube

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    Ok that makes sense. I guess I never took into account theft or fire. I always figured having 4 drives with all my stuff on it makes for safe keeping since it's highly improbable that all 4 would fail at the same time. I will definitely look into the RAID array and Carbonite. Thank you!
     
  18. Destructo-Bot

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  19. Krynn72

    Krynn72 The Freeman

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    Does this save the files onto the external just in a normal folder structure? At the shop I work at, we do a lot of Data Recovery jobs from failing hard drives, and some people use backup software that saves everything into a proprietary container file, only open-able by the software itself. Recovering data off a failing/failed drive in such cases is incredibly difficult, and has low likelihood of success, as even if we can recover that file, it may not be 100% intact. So if the software can't read it, every single shred of data you had backed up on the drive is gone. Whereas if the software is just a glorified copy/paste batch process and every file is copied separately onto the external in the same way its on your PC, then we have a individual chance of recovering each file, so if part of it is corrupted, the rest of it is usually unaffected and can be recovered fine.

    Honestly, if copy/paste is working for him, I really see no reason to complicate it. I've got a few TBs of data backed up on a couple of things and I just copy/paste, works fine. In my opinion, the only reason someone needs software to do this for them is when they've got thousands+ of files changing on a daily basis located in several different places.

    And I ****ing hate RAID so ****ing much, makes recovery a god damned nightmare on bad drives. Anyone who uses RAID setups and has issues with their hard drives deserves all that they get.
     
  20. Higlac

    Higlac Companion Cube

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    Why do you hate raid so much? If one drive fails it yells at you, then you take that one out, put a new identical drive in, and let it rebuild...
     
  21. Krynn72

    Krynn72 The Freeman

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    Usually when people bring us data recovery from a mirrored raid setup, its because both drives are having problems, and their controller failed or their entire PC is ****ed for some other reason. A lot of them are just striped and not mirrored though, because HURR DURR IZ FASTUR. Most people don't pay attention to warnings their PC gives them until it starts having a problem that affects them, so its not uncommon for us to find two failing drives. Of course, we're not talking experienced PC users who have been building their systems for the decade or more, these are business users or home users who had someone else build it or bought it from a brand name already configured that way. The kinds of people who say "I was getting an error before it stopped working" and when I ask what the error said, their response is "I don't know, it was just a black screen with text on it." GEE THANKS.

    I imagine there's a reason we only see people like this, and not people who know how to properly setup and use it. Still, I never saw a reason for using RAID for a normal person. Again, its got its place, but for a normal chump like most of us... why? Just back up your shit normally and use that other hard drive for something more useful. If you're concerned about loosing programs because you suck at saving your disks/product keys because your life is a hot mess, then make an image of your drive and back that up as normal. Saves a ton of HDD space man.
     
  22. ShinRa

    ShinRa Companion Cube

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    I probably should have mentioned my idea of a "backup" doesn't involve thousands or even hundreds of files changing on a daily basis. Most of the files I have stored on these externals have been there for years. If i add it to my external, it's because I want it for life. So basically only new things get added, older stuff doesn't come out.
     
  23. Higlac

    Higlac Companion Cube

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    Me: White text on a black screen? What does it say?
    Them: I don't know, can't I just bring it in to you?
    Me: Why the **** did you call then?


    I was just figuring that instead of buying a handful of externals, he could buy one box and some internal drives, which would save some space, and provide a bit of redundancy.
     
  24. Pikminiman

    Pikminiman Assistant Writer

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  25. Destructo-Bot

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    It copies to a normal file/folder structure, no proprietary formats. The purpose of the software is that it is completely set and forget. All he has to do is save his stuff either on his desktop folder or to one of the drives and it will automatically be replicated to the other two, three, or four drives (or however many he wants to use). The replication can be configured to happen on a set schedule (ex: every day at midnight) or immediately when new/deleted/modified files are detected in the base folder.
     

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