building and making a personal cloud

bstranger

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Sep 26, 2012
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I was thinking about building and making a personal cloud with Linux. I have seen linux and used it once or twice. We need a place to dump photos from our camera and our phones. Is there any recommendations? Should I not build and just buy? Any other thoughts? I have built about 5 computers and helped with others. My knowledge is limited but I will learn and do it the right way.
 

grimfox

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I've considered this as well. A cheap NAS (sub ~300USD) will fulfill the purpose you want. I have a WD 4bay NAS that works well as a photo/file/backup repository. You can find an even cheaper 2bay model (raid 1) and it would work just as well. The primary benefit is that it's well integrated and you can install the app on your phone and it will automatically sync with your NAS (YMMV)

If you want to use your NAS for something more, like a SOHO server or PLEX server then you need to look at a more powerful option. In this case the cost difference between a capable prebuilt NAS and a custom PC are greatly reduced. I think that in terms of long term maintenance and reliability the prebuilt NAS will be better. You might also lose some of the ease of use. A home built system might not have a seamless way to sync those files. There could be some 3rd party options that I'm not familiar with that could fill those gaps but you're adding layers on complexity. The more complex your system becomes the more upkeep and maintenance required.
 

bstranger

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Ya, that is the up front debate. I would love to be able to dump everything every week and have all the space on my phone available and still have access to the photos everywhere I travel. I also really like to build and to learn while I build because I don't get to do it at work. I have been reading a lot about some of the pre built clouds and the ones that are cheap seem to get horrible reviews. I wondered if anyone had any experience buying a program. I heard someone mention veeam. If I could find a dumpster fire sale around black friday, buy a huge hard drive and buy a program I would imagine I would be all set.
 

USAFRet

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2 yrs ago, I went through this same process.
I had a small Windows PC for this function, wanting to upgrade it.

I ended up with a 4 bay Qnap TS-453a.
Far less hassle, and has been rock solid since Feb 2017. 24/7 ops.

Hosts all of the house movies, music, backups from all the PC's, long term photo storage, etc, etc, etc.

Basically, it comes down to if you want something solid, or something to learn on.
You could build something yourself with Linux, FreeNAS, or Windows. But really, its just another PC.
Or, a prebuilt NAS box.

People giving a Qnap or Synology "bad reviews" either don't know what they're doing, or bought the wrong thing.

Rock solid. I can count the number of times it has "crashed" on one hand, with 5 fingers left over.
 

bstranger

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Is there an easy way to just add storage to my current computer and just leave it on all the time running a cloud based program?
 

USAFRet

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Sure.
Don't even need any "cloud based program".

Simple File and Folder sharing in Windows.
Network Discovery ON.
Share out a particular folder on an external drive, maybe.

All the other PC's should be able to see that. And map a drive letter to that shared resource.
 

bstranger

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Might as well just do this for now and see if its something we can all use and like until i drop 500 bucks. My wife is all nagging me because I am making huge truck payments and we just had a kid.... psh. Thanks I will try this until black friday to see if its something we can use. I currently have a 480 sd, ordered a smaller one for my games and have a 2 TB for photos and whatnots. I should be able to make something happen there.
 

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