December 19, 2014, 11:35:47 PM

Author Topic: Any NAS Experts? quick question  (Read 1982 times)

eninja

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Any NAS Experts? quick question
« on: August 04, 2014, 11:41:33 PM »
I got two laptops, I want to have a common storage where I can access the storage on either laptops.
Access means I can do image editing of file saved on the actual common storage.

While having this setup, I want my internet to be on wifi still.

What are my options?
Specifically, I worry when I attach a LAN cable to my laptop. My laptop will search internet on the LAN network and ignore wifi reception. Is this correct?

Does common setup always use Ethernet LAN? I was thinking like, I connect my external storage system to both laptops thru USB.

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Any NAS Experts? quick question
« on: August 04, 2014, 11:41:33 PM »

Jim Saunders

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2014, 11:56:30 PM »
Assuming your NAS has ethernet, you could get another router and have it connect your laptops and your NAS on cable, and leave your internet connection connected to your wifi router.  In concept that would make your NAS network invisible to the internet, but until I knew the two networks weren't talking I'd assume they are.

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #2 on: August 05, 2014, 01:27:00 AM »
I got two laptops, I want to have a common storage where I can access the storage on either laptops.
Access means I can do image editing of file saved on the actual common storage.

While having this setup, I want my internet to be on wifi still.

What are my options?
Specifically, I worry when I attach a LAN cable to my laptop. My laptop will search internet on the LAN network and ignore wifi reception. Is this correct?

Does common setup always use Ethernet LAN? I was thinking like, I connect my external storage system to both laptops thru USB.

How do you connect to Wi-Fi?  Do you have a DSL or Cable Modem with wireless router?  If so, just plug in the NAS to a lan port on the router and it can be seen over Wi-Fi.  You will have to configure IP's most likely.

A access point will also work if you set up static IP's correctly.

When you are connected to a different network, your laptops will no longer connect.  Even that can be changed, most of the better NAS units can be accessed from the internet so you can reach them anywhere.

This does require a good knowledge of how to set them up securely so that only you can access them.

There are NAS units that have Wi-Fi modules as well.

Beware, Wi-Fi is slow, so accessing large image files to edit over Wi-Fi can be painful.  You will want as fast of a Wi-Fi as possible.  That's also a bag of worms, since the speed ratings are deceptive.  A N-600 unit has a 300Mb/sec speed on 2.4G and 5G but you can only use one at a time, so your speed is half.  Out of the box, they usually do not enable 300mb/sec but 144, so your speed is 1/4 of the 600 you thought you were getting.  144 is very slow for image editing.

It might be worth it for you to pay someone local to set you up.  You can also learn to do it, its just sometimes a long learning experience.


There are lots of ways to do what you want, but it involves having a very detailed knowledge of your setup, as well as your knowledge of networking.

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #3 on: August 05, 2014, 01:55:30 AM »
A NAS is actually much more of a backup solution than a working environment. Files on your NAS should be a copy of the data from your computer for both performance and safety reasons (loss of connection that can lead to corrupted files, concurrent access to files...). That's how I use mine. I used the NAS as primary storage unit only for the files I can get back easily.

As for the setup, I recommend a good router, connected to the internet on one side, on the other side the NAS connected by ethernet to the router with a static IP, and your laptops connected by wifi to the router.

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2014, 02:47:48 AM »
i think the best way to go is to use a thunderbolt or usb3 external portable drive to store the raw/originals as well as the catalog/database of edits. the newer models have 2 hard drives in one enclosure in a mirrored raid in case one of the drives inside fails. just plug the external drive into whatever laptop you want to use and you have instant access to the latest files and their edit data (provided you have e.g. lightroom installed on both those 2 laptops).

if you are intent on using a NAS, it will be a better user experience to have that device on a dedicated gigabit ethernet wired LAN segment/subnet. configure the address manually on your laptops, without a default route/gateway. the wireless interface should be on a different subnet with a default route and dns server address so that it can access the access point or router and internet name resolvers.

so, get a gigabit ethernet switch, plug in the NAS to that switch, configure a private IP address (different than the wifi addresses) on the NAS, configure the IP's on the laptops within the NAS network address space (without default gateways), and then plug the laptops into the switch.

i think i remember that lightroom does not support network storage for files & catalogs but i could be wrong. and i don't even know if you're using that software or not.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2014, 02:55:27 AM by MonkeyB »
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binky7

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2014, 03:03:08 AM »
I got two laptops, I want to have a common storage where I can access the storage on either laptops.
Access means I can do image editing of file saved on the actual common storage.

While having this setup, I want my internet to be on wifi still.

What are my options?
Specifically, I worry when I attach a LAN cable to my laptop. My laptop will search internet on the LAN network and ignore wifi reception. Is this correct?

Does common setup always use Ethernet LAN? I was thinking like, I connect my external storage system to both laptops thru USB.

This link should answer most of your questions.
http://consumer.media.seagate.com/2010/08/the-digital-den/what-is-a-nas-and-why-do-i-need-one/

In addition to the link above, here's my $0.02 as well.

If you plan on using WiFi to access your NAS files, then expect low file transfer rates. About 2-8MB/sec depending on your connection speed and distance.

However, if you access your NAS via Gigabit Ethernet wire, then you can expect file read/transfer rates anywhere from a low of 25MB/sec all the way to Ethernet's maximum read/transfer rate of around 120MB/sec. Some can even get faster speeds if they have the network infrastructure that supports link aggregation, etc., but that's quite advanced and beyond most home networks' budgets.

So an average person can expect to get read speeds of 70-90MB/sec or more if he chooses a NAS with a reasonably fast processor, and with higher performance models, easily able to see read/write file transfer rates at full Gigabit speeds.

Btw, the top NAS brands will all allow you to access your files seamlessly over the internet if you wish. Think of having your own personal cloud. They also can let you install apps to let you do many other cool things such as  hosting your own photos publicly or privately among other things...

Having said that, look at Synology, ReadyNAS OS6, or QNAP NAS models for some options.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2014, 03:12:54 AM by binky7 »

docsavage123

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2014, 03:11:45 AM »
Hi work in storage myself, and have had many NAS boxes.

I currently have a Readynas Pro 6 bay box.

The easiest way to send traffic to and from your NAS over the ethernet cable is to setup private ethernet network that has a different IP range so static to the WIFI on your router.

Get a router with gigabit ports and obviously your laptop and NAS have gigabit ports as well. Setup a private network say laptop is 10.0.0.1 and NAS box is 10.0.0.100 , setup a subnet of 255.255.255.0.

I am assuming you are a windows user, so I would edit your host file in the windows\system32\drivers\etc folder and put in the name of the NAS box and its IP address. That way the laptop will know straight away where to look for the NAS box. This is due to your router using DHCP and normally the ip range is 192.168.x.x

This way all your internet traffic will go through wifi and you will have a private network through to you NAS box which also isolates it so you must remember your IP address range.

I have used this option in the past and has worked quite well
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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2014, 03:11:45 AM »

eninja

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2014, 03:40:33 AM »
Thanks all for the advise and tips.
So far I understand what you all said and learned.

So next thing for me is to shop in local store what they can offer.

But do you usually edit images on laptop's local storage or external LAN-Wired storage?

Thanks.

LDS

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #8 on: August 08, 2014, 07:04:28 AM »
But do you usually edit images on laptop's local storage or external LAN-Wired storage?

That depends on your workflow, your network reliability, and how do you plan to backup data.

Working on a local copy is of course faster, and you remove a good slice of equipement that could corrupt a file from the path (network card, network devices, ecc.), especially when editing implies making many changes to a file. Performing backups or syncs of files is usually safer, because it implies accessing the whole file, and good software calculates a "fingerprint" of the file (CRC, hash, whatever) before copying it, and then compares it after it has been copied, and can thereby spot any error.
And if your only copy of the files are on the remote storage, of course you also need a backup on a separate storage. But if you need to access the same files from different devices, without attaching the storage directly each time, you may need to share them via a remote storage.

That said, it's not unusual, especially in some business environment, to work on remote files - but the whole "path" to the files needs to be "safe" enough, and that means devices, cables, power supply, etc. etc. to minimize troubles. IMHO, in such a situation working via a cabled network is better than via WiFi.

e17paul

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #9 on: August 08, 2014, 08:47:53 AM »
i think the best way to go is to use a thunderbolt or usb3 external portable drive to store the raw/originals as well as the catalog/database of edits. the newer models have 2 hard drives in one enclosure in a mirrored raid in case one of the drives inside fails. just plug the external drive into whatever laptop you want to use and you have instant access to the latest files and their edit data (provided you have e.g. lightroom installed on both those 2 laptops).

if you are intent on using a NAS, it will be a better user experience to have that device on a dedicated gigabit ethernet wired LAN segment/subnet. configure the address manually on your laptops, without a default route/gateway. the wireless interface should be on a different subnet with a default route and dns server address so that it can access the access point or router and internet name resolvers.

so, get a gigabit ethernet switch, plug in the NAS to that switch, configure a private IP address (different than the wifi addresses) on the NAS, configure the IP's on the laptops within the NAS network address space (without default gateways), and then plug the laptops into the switch.

i think i remember that lightroom does not support network storage for files & catalogs but i could be wrong. and i don't even know if you're using that software or not.

+1

I have just bought a Lacie 5 disk RAID connected over Thunderbolt, will report back as I migrate photos onto it. That gives 5 times the speed of a single external HD, in the realms of SSD speed. USB3 would be next best, but would be close to the maximum bandwidth that USB3 is capable of.

The downside of RAID set ups is that a 2 disk system is twice as likely to fail, and my 5 disk system is 5 times as likely to fail. The future is large capacity SSD drives, but it will take a number of years for the prices to come down far enough for a large and fast growing photo library.

The suggestion of mirroring the drives is a good one, and gives immediate backup in case of HD failure, but does bring the speed back down to that of a sigle HD drive. That may not be important, I have just upgraded my system for the first time in 7 years, and have futureproofed the set up as far as possible.

When my existing backup becomes full I will add a 2 disk RAID, probably as a NAS over ethernet - the speed limitation of Gigabit ethernet will not be relevant to backup storage. Hopefully prices will have drifted further downwards by then.

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dstppy

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #10 on: August 08, 2014, 11:30:15 AM »
+1

I have just bought a Lacie 5 disk RAID connected over Thunderbolt, will report back as I migrate photos onto it. That gives 5 times the speed of a single external HD, in the realms of SSD speed. USB3 would be next best, but would be close to the maximum bandwidth that USB3 is capable of.

The downside of RAID set ups is that a 2 disk system is twice as likely to fail, and my 5 disk system is 5 times as likely to fail. The future is large capacity SSD drives, but it will take a number of years for the prices to come down far enough for a large and fast growing photo library.

The suggestion of mirroring the drives is a good one, and gives immediate backup in case of HD failure, but does bring the speed back down to that of a sigle HD drive. That may not be important, I have just upgraded my system for the first time in 7 years, and have futureproofed the set up as far as possible.

When my existing backup becomes full I will add a 2 disk RAID, probably as a NAS over ethernet - the speed limitation of Gigabit ethernet will not be relevant to backup storage. Hopefully prices will have drifted further downwards by then.
I've not worked with USB3 yet, but, in my experience, USB's throughput wasn't the slowdown, it's how it works with the computer's BUS.

Optimized connections like Thunderbolt and FireWire have a lot better consistent throughput/access.

--------------
I was noticing slowdowns on LightRoom before I switched the drive to a FW800/SSD (then ran out of space) a FW800 enclosure with a hybrid drive (SSD and disk built in one) haven't been much slower.

--------------
Personally, I only ever trusted RAID for mirroring. I have a RAID1 setup in a NAS in the basement that I haven't bothered to keep up to date.  Easier to just wait for the drive I'm using locally to fail, then swear a whole bunch  ;D
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LDS

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #11 on: August 08, 2014, 05:28:02 PM »
i think i remember that lightroom does not support network storage for files & catalogs but i could be wrong. and i don't even know if you're using that software or not.
AFAIK there could be issues storing catalogs on a network file systems. Catalogs are databases (SQLite), and usually databases don't like much network file systems for their data because they may lead to data integrity issues due to the way network file system protocols work (there are no problem using remote disks through protocols like iSCSI, but maybe somewhat lower performances).
There should be no issues using network storage for files, though, but slower performance in accessing them.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2014, 05:30:41 PM by LDS »

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #12 on: August 08, 2014, 05:45:59 PM »
I've not worked with USB3 yet, but, in my experience, USB's throughput wasn't the slowdown, it's how it works with the computer's BUS.

Check if USB 3 devices and your PC support USB Attached iSCSI (UAS) - it greatly increases USB 3 file transfer speeds. Some motherboards (i.e. Asus) may also support a "turbo" mode that improve speed over the standard BOT (Bulk-Only Transport) used since USB 1.1

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #12 on: August 08, 2014, 05:45:59 PM »

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #13 on: August 08, 2014, 08:17:57 PM »
Forget all about wifi connected NAS as part of your photographic workflow. Right now. Cable connections rule. The low connection speed of even a strong wifi connection will drive you insane for most file/folders that photographers and videographers deal with on a daily basis.

I have a 5 bay Synology DiskStation 1511+ NAS stacked with RAIDed 4Tb HDD's. It's nice and fast on the network, but even cabled up it's not fast enough to work directly from. Until Lightning or eSATA connected NAS hardware is an everyday reality, importing a folder from your NAS, doing your work and sending it back is a simple matter. If you're seriously cashed-up take a look at a new, fully optioned MacPro with Lightning connected external storage. This is gold-standard for video editing.

Anyone looking for NAS hardware should take a long hard look at the update to my Synology 1511+, the Synology 1513+ https://www.synology.com/en-global/products/overview/DS1513+ The simplicity and flexibility and mac-like quality of the GUI make it a hot contender. Search for reviews and read nothing but praise.

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« Last Edit: August 09, 2014, 01:37:34 AM by pwp »

LDS

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #14 on: August 09, 2014, 11:18:57 AM »
the speed limitation of Gigabit ethernet will not be relevant to backup storage

Actually, Gigabit Ethernet allows for speed around 100MB/s - you may hit the disk speed bottleneck far before hitting the network speed limit unless you have fast disks on the other side - but most NAS disks are slow ones (RAID may increase speed - but RAID 5 only increase read speed, and decrease write one).

But to exploit Gigabit Ethernet full speed usually is necessary to enable "Jumbo frames". Usually each Ethernet packet is just about 1500 bytes in size (it's called MTU - Max Transmission Unit), and transferring many large files thereby implies a lot of packets - the packet management overhead may impact performance. Modern network devices support larger MTUs, up to about 9000 bytes, called "Jumbo frames". Usually they are disabled by default, because not every device may support them, and some older software may have issues.
But when Jumbo frames are enabled on *all* devices used (network cards, switch/router, etc.), the number of packets transmissions is reduced and performance thereby increases.

Also the protocol used is important. If you use "shared folders" using "Windows shares" (SMB protocol, often called also with its old "CIFS" name), there is the older, pre-Vista version (SMB1) which is slower than the newer SMB2 and SMB3 versions introduced with Vista/7 and 8. OSX uses SMB2 as its default network file system protocol since 10.9. Check what your NAS supports, and configure it as needed.

iSCSI delivers even better perfomance, but it is not designed to share files, it is designed to use a remote disk/partition as a local one.

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Re: Any NAS Experts? quick question
« Reply #14 on: August 09, 2014, 11:18:57 AM »