My job is getting rid of the shared network drive and moving everything to the cloud but I operate a museum database and want to keep running it on a network drive. The cloud version of my program has an annual cost of around $2000+ and the computer/network-based program has no annual cost.
I am thinking of getting a 2-bay NAS station, such as Amazon.com: Synology 2 bay NAS DiskStation DS220j (Diskless), 2-bay; 512MB DDR4 : Electronics. The database and files are well under a TB, I think more like 500 GB. I believe it is better to hook it up to the router/modem itself, but our IT is finicky about that. So, can I run a NAS hard drive through a desktop? If through a desktop, will I have access to the drive if the computer is off? Also, are there any special considerations I need in choosing my NAS drive for a database? I will be using Past Perfect museum software.
Our IT department doesn't want to take responsibility for maintaining a separate hard drive. Is it especially tedious to maintain? What would I need to do besides monthly backups?
Thanks for your help,
Synology or QNAP are good choices for an NAS. Just a basic 2-Bay unit that supports RAID 1 would be the way to go here. Mirror the drives, if one dies, you just swap in a replacement and rebuild the array. Shouldn't be any maintenance required besides backups. Your purpose is pretty simple, hosting a database file for your software.
If you connect it to your PC, the PC would need to be on. Also, keep in mind if you're connecting it to your PC and accessing from other systems the file sharing is going to be a little more complex, assuming you're using USB. You'll need a login for that PC to access the file share.
Edit: Wanted to add some additional information since we're specifically talking about about NAS drives. Connecting it to a PC via USB, we've crosses over to DAS instead of NAS. Hence, needing a PC login and your basically just setting up a local file share at that point. I wouldn't count on NAS having USB DAS as an option. This would typically be a USB Type-B connection on the device. They'll have USB support, but generally it's Type-A and meant for storage devices you're backing up or copying off data to.
Thank you very much for this, it is extremely helpful. I don't know what my options are and all the information I've received so far has been from Google searches.
What are the other options besides NAS drives? Are there other types of drives you would recommend? Additionally, are any of them accessible without needing the PC to be logged in to an account? Or is that required across the board?
If you want to access it when the PC on, something standalone like an NAS is the easiest option overall. Regarding logging in, you shouldn't need to be logged in, but the PC would need to be on.
Submit photos and a description of your PC to our build showcase
See other custom PC builds and get some ideas for what can be done
Services starting at $149.99