Do you have any opinions about network-attached storage? Is it too painfully slow to be worth it?
“Do I have any opinions about…”
Hi, I’m TJ, have we met?
Network Attached Storage depends on what you’re going to use it for and how it is going to be connected.
For example: If you have a 700 GB iPhoto library but your computer only has a 250 GB hard drive, you could try to use that over the network, but I bet it would be awful.
OTOH, if you had 700 GB worth of music, and wanted to listen to it over the network, that would probably work just fine. The same is probably true about video too. If you’re mostly going to “reading” from the Network Attached Storage, it can work acceptably well.
If, on the other hand, you are trying to do something interactive over Network Attached Storage, it’s probably going to be awful.
So it really depends on your use-case. What sort of files are you expecting to be using over the NAS?
I tried using NAS for Time Machine, and just could not stand how slow it was, even on an “802.11n/5 Ghz only” network.
(And if you’re going to use a NAS for anything, I would recommend setting your network up like that, if at all possible.)
For my home setup, I have an iMac with a 500 GB drive and a metric fuck ton of attached storage, including video. When we want to watch something (usually DVDs which have been ripped and stored on the iMac) on the TV which is connected to my old MacBook, I will Screen Share to the MacBook and FTP the files from the iMac to the MacBook. Then as we watch things on the MacBook, I delete them. (Because they are only copies of what is on the iMac.) Generally I copy over the first episode, and then we start watching it and I transfer the rest in the background while we’re waiting.
That gives me all of my big media files in one central location (the iMac) but allows me to access those files from anywhere in the house. Using this method plus a Dropbox Pro account means that neither old MacBook nor my MacBook Air have any “unique” files on them. They are basically installations of OS X plus Dropbox caches, so if one of them died or was lost/stolen, I wouldn’t lose any files. (At least theoretically.)