Suggestion for long term valuable data storage

I'm currently using a 2x 2tb Blackarmor NAS in a raid 1. However, I'm not too happy with the w/r speed of this thing and Seagate's reliability hasn't really been the best in recent years. My 1st unit was DOA and this one has been running ok for the last year.

I use this to store thousand of family photos and documents.They're worth more than most things money can buy. I'm looking for a reliability option to move all the photos to and future proof if I need additional space.

What I'm looking for

1. redundancy
2. speed
3. expandability
4. cost effective

Some options I've looked at is

1. Esata/USB 3.0 4 bay enclosure setup a raid using my PC, probably the cheapest option but when I run out of space, do I keep on adding additional ecnlsoure?

2. Get a 4 Bay NAS? More expensive then again, what do I do when I use up the space?

3. Build a WHS, I have plenty of old computer parts, perhaps a decent tower? Can i keep on expanding my raid as I run out of space or do I have to swap out the HDD? like adding additional SATA controllers?

what raid should I be using for each of the option?
4 answers Last reply
More about suggestion long term valuable data storage
  1. Raid1 only protects aganst a single HDD failure. For protecton -
    - Using HDDs requires two seperate HDD (s) one for usage and one that is "stored"
    - Use M class DVDs for archive (stored). this is probably your best option. HOWEVER, Not all DVD writers can write to M-DVDs
    SEE: http://www.extremetech.com/computing/92286-m-disc-is-a-dvd-made-out-of-stone-that-lasts-1000-years

    DO not recommend consummer grade DVDs for archive purposes.
  2. Raid 1 is a mirrored, why wouldn't it protect from HDD failure?
  3. It does, As I stated "Raid1 only protects aganst a single HDD failure"; However there are many more failure modes that it offers NO protection against such as: a Voltage spike that wipes out both, A PSU problem - ie +12 or +5 V goes to extreme and before PSU shuts done both drives become toast, then there is virus's that can make both drives unreadable.
  4. To repeat what RetiredChief said, RAID != backup. If your data means anything at all to you, then you should have a separate offline storage for your priceless data.

    If you are actually looking for an expandable online storage with hardware redundancy (again, not backup) then option 3 offers the most flexibility. However, that flexibility comes with more work. You will need to plan how you want to grow your raid array before you start the build. This option will allow you to increase space base on the number of available [SP]ATA ports and drive bays you have available.

    With options 1 and 2, you can increase the available space by replace all the disks in the enclosures with larger models (if allowed by the enclosure manufacturer). This can get pricey for 4 bay enclosures.
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