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simonfarussell

Back up solutions for a freelancer

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As mentioned in the title I'm a freelancer so need to back up my own and some client projects plus my own assets. I probably have about 4-6TB of this data.

 

I currently use a Time Machine 2TB drive plus a few of other lacie rugged drives to back my stuff up on. It works ok but isn't an ideal solution as it's a bit messy. Just wondering how other people did it and what you found worked. And ideally I'm after a reasonably cost effective system!

 

 

 

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I use a synology 413J, with 6tb, works well. Then I have a old imac which uses chronosync to take my client data onto a 2tb fw drive connected to the imac which has backblaze backups to 'the cloud'. Also use dropbox pro for all live jobs other than proxy renders, which has 'packrat' enabled which gives me unlimited access to deleted files......some would say i'm paranoid

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I have this sitting beside my computer: Seagate Backup Plus 4tb. 4tb of external space, cost me ~$130 on sale. Backs up every night using SyncBack Free. I looked into going the NAS route, but if all you need is a few terabytes, plain external drives are just so damn cost effective.

 

Anything current that I'm working on is in my SkyDrive folder (25gb).

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After a job is done we either burn the entire project directory to 2 Blu-ray disc clones or 2 hard drives, if its a larger project. One clone is stored at the office, the other at home. The practice of burning to Blu-rays will inevitably need to be replaced when they start getting phased out, but for now its a reliable, cost-effective solution. If something disastrous happens, you lose a project instead of all projects as would happen with a raid array. We had a raid 5 controller pop after a power surge and lost everything. All data was corrupt. I will never use anything other than a raid 10 or raid 1 from now on.

 

Also, I throw up all master final renders onto Amazon Glacier.

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My method is a removable drive bay (FW800, eSATA etc), and bare 2GB SATA drives

 

e.g. http://www.wiebetech.com/products/RTX220-QR.php

 

or you can build your own for about £70

 

Then archive the bare drives. I have about 60GB of backups.

 

Advantages are it's cheap enough to keep two copies of everything, and flexible.

 

Be careful not to touch the electronics on the bare drives with your fingers (or you risk zapping them with static).

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CrashPlan is a great offsite alternative. We have 1 terabyte backed up on there and it's very inexpensive compared to the others. Software and support has been pleasant as well.

Edited by etown

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My method is a removable drive bay (FW800, eSATA etc), and bare 2GB SATA drives

 

e.g. http://www.wiebetech.com/products/RTX220-QR.php

 

or you can build your own for about £70

 

Then archive the bare drives. I have about 60GB of backups.

 

Advantages are it's cheap enough to keep two copies of everything, and flexible.

 

Be careful not to touch the electronics on the bare drives with your fingers (or you risk zapping them with static).

 

bare 2GB drives? Those aren't very big....

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My vote:

 

http://www.drobo.com/products/professionals/drobo-5d/index.php

 

I used to buy external drives all the time (why not, they're so cheap!) but eventually after years of work, messing with them got to be a major hassle so I use Drobos now. No need to back up, you can work right off this thing and it IS the back up. I've had drives go down in them, and it works just like they say: pop in a new drive and keep working. Much better than screwing around with RAIDs (I have those too, good luck if a drive goes down).

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My vote:

 

http://www.drobo.com/products/professionals/drobo-5d/index.php

 

I used to buy external drives all the time (why not, they're so cheap!) but eventually after years of work, messing with them got to be a major hassle so I use Drobos now. No need to back up, you can work right off this thing and it IS the back up. I've had drives go down in them, and it works just like they say: pop in a new drive and keep working. Much better than screwing around with RAIDs (I have those too, good luck if a drive goes down).

maybe things have changed, but i found DROBO's slow, unreliable POS's, but thats just me

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I'm currently using a Drobo FS. It's only connected via network so it's pretty slow, especially for large file transfers.

 

As far as ease of use though, it's almost plug and play.

 

Granted since it's working for me fairly well, I haven't looked into any of the other solutions offered here yet.

Edited by xiaoali

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maybe things have changed, but i found DROBO's slow, unreliable POS's, but thats just me

You're not gonna edit native 4k on these things, but I've had 2-3 guys running 1080 AIC edits from a Drobo Pro at the same time. I've heard the 5D thunderbolt version is much fast than the Pro.

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I have a NewerTech dock which uses e-Sata, FW400/800, USB2/3, etc. I drop 2TB drives in there when I want to do a backup using SyncBack SE (great utility, by the way). Then I keep one in the fire safe at my home office, one in my safe deposit box at my bank. CyberGuys sells nice anti-static plastic caddies for transporting and storing the drives safely.

 

Cf

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maybe things have changed, but i found DROBO's slow, unreliable POS's, but thats just me

 

I'm not a fan of drobo either. Its not some magical new raid alternative, as they try to sell themselves on. Its still raid, but a proprietary version. Its like JBOD-able raid 5, which scares the dickens out of me.

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one in my safe deposit box at my bank.

 

If you are freelancer working from home this is a great idea. When I had a home office also did this with safety deposit box.

 

Right now we have a QNAP NAS in raid 10 that get's backed up nightly to a lacie 4 bay raid, weekly we back up to 4TB bare drives that I bring home so we have an offsite backup.

 

Two weeks ago we had a drive in the QNAP die and we were able to keep working off of it, hotswap in a new drive and have it rebuild itself without a perceptible slowdown in work or need to reboot the NAS. If you have enough drive bays raid 10 with an additional offsite backup is a pretty solid way to go, and had nothing but good experiences so far with the QNAP.

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Right now we have a QNAP NAS in raid 10 that get's backed up nightly to a lacie 4 bay raid, weekly we back up to 4TB bare drives that I bring home so we have an offsite backup.

Two weeks ago we had a drive in the QNAP die and we were able to keep working off of it, hotswap in a new drive and have it rebuild itself without a perceptible slowdown in work or need to reboot the NAS. If you have enough drive bays raid 10 with an additional offsite backup is a pretty solid way to go, and had nothing but good experiences so far with the QNAP.

 

Same exact setup here (TS-870U-RP), including the 4 bay raid 5 nightly backup. Thats our working drive though, not for archival. Especially nice with 10gbe connections to your primary workstations.

 

QNAP is awesome if your are going to go NAS. Just be sure you stay in the High-end SMB category to get speeds you can work off of, especially with multiple users.

 

A NAS to work from is a bit off topic though. I just have to +1 a vote for QNAP when its brought up.

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A NAS to work from is a bit off topic though.

 

Yeah I just meant that even if you are freelancer working on your own getting something that has enough bays so that you can work in raid ten is a great way to constantly have a perfect backup without thinking about it.

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RAID 10 is a great way to reduce downtime in cases of hardware failure, but never, ever rely on it as your only "backup".

 

Yep, thats why we both do nightly backups to a separate raid 5.

 

But raids in any form aren't bullet proof for long-term archival, unless you have 2 clones in 2 places.

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