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Raid recommendtions

  
 
Trakl
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p.5 #1 · p.5 #1 · Raid recommendtions


Hello I am pleased to find this conversation in progress since I have a related question and I'd welcome your advice.

I have about 2.5TB of raw files on a 4TB external HDD. I keep my Lightroom catalog on the internal SSD of my iMac. The external HDD of images is backed up to two identical Time Machine drives (both 4TB HDD). And the HDD of images is also backed up to Backblaze.

The HDD of images is coming up on six years old and I'd rather replace it now than risk having it fail.

I don't need NAS because I only work on one computer.

I don't really see why I need RAID if my data is already being backed up to two separate HDD via Time Machine and to Backblaze, but maybe I'm missing something.

I'm thinking that maybe all I need to do is get a replacement HDD. That's certainly the cheapest and simplest option, though I suppose possibly a wasteful one insofar as I'll wind up discarding the old HDD.

Would I see any performance improvements in Lightroom if I replaced the existing HDD with a SSD? 4TB SSDs are actually not so very expensive right now. But isn't it the case that almost all the I/O involved in Lightroom editing takes place in the catalog file, which is already on my computer's internal SSD?

Just looking for a simple solution; I'm not editing video for Pixar over here.

Thanks!



Aug 05, 2022 at 05:00 PM
15Bit
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p.5 #2 · p.5 #2 · Raid recommendtions


Trakl wrote:
I don't really see why I need RAID if my data is already being backed up to two separate HDD via Time Machine and to Backblaze, but maybe I'm missing something.


You are missing nothing - RAID is an uptime solution, not a backup solution. The primary role of a RAID setup is to allow you to retain access to your primary storage in the event of a disk failure. Once upon a time it also gave performance benefits, but with high speed SSDs that is pretty much irrelevant now. A RAID also allows creation of a single "storage place" with greater capacity than any individual disk could have.

One comment to your backup strategy though - if you are syncing your files between disks then corrupted files on your primary storage will propagate to backups. Same for accidental deletions and overwrites that you didn't notice you performed. So you are protecting yourself in the event of a disk failure, but not really for anything else.

Unfortunately robustness scales with complexity. So the more reliable you want your backup to be, the more work you will need to put in.

My personal sense is that the best balance is to combine an SSD on the editing PC and an array for storage that includes snapshotting. The array inherently gives redundancy for a drive failure, and the snapshotting means that you are protected against accidental deletions etc.



Aug 06, 2022 at 11:01 AM
Trakl
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p.5 #3 · p.5 #3 · Raid recommendtions


Sincere thanks for the favor of your reply. I appreciate the clarification regarding the function of RAID. That makes sense.

I believe Time Machine does provide snapshots of prior backups to a point, yes?

"Robustness scales with complexity" is a good quotable quote. Sounds like something my father in law, an engineer, would say.

Thanks again for taking the time to respond.



Aug 06, 2022 at 01:51 PM
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p.5 #4 · p.5 #4 · Raid recommendtions


I don't really know much about Time Machine i'm afraid, not being an Apple user. I personally use ZFS on a home-built linux server. That is a rather more geeky solution than most folk are interested in trying to support though. You can get commercial NAS boxes which use ZFS i believe.

I would further comment - do not underestimate the value of write-once backups such as Blu-Ray.



Aug 08, 2022 at 12:46 PM
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