How to backup a NAS box???

I'm looking at buying "My Book World Edition II WDH2NC60000 NAS server - 3 TB x2".  This has built in RAID 1.  The price is about $450.  First, any thoughts on if this is a decent product?  Second, how can I backup the NAS to a 3 TB external drive.  I use Acronis home version now for most my clients but I'm not sure this will work on the above NAS.  Thoughts?  My client will never pay $1000 for backup software.  
Thank You.
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John KratzerCommented:
There are several free backup packages that you can use.  Personal I use fbackup for my personal servers.

There are several others you can look into...

There is also quite a few cheap to free on
I'll chime in for CrashPlan, nice simple to use interface with Mac, Windows, Linux/Solaris client/server.

Be careful with the big and slow platters, without knowing how you'll use this device its really hard to say how it fits your purposes.  I'd like to recommend a NAS that has some sort of following, along those lines I can say that Drobos and NetGears ReadyNAS have quite a community going for them.  In the price range you're talking about it may be worth the extra bump.

This Drobo goes for $748.76 w/4 x 1 TB drives to give you a total of 2.72 TB useable, but high speed.

And this Drobo comes with no drives for $367.58
However if you put in 2 x 3TB drives from Hitachi @ $135.00/ea, for a total of $637.58 with a total capacity of 2.72TB but gives you room to expand out to 8TB useable with two free slots.

Another drive that has a huge community and is driven by the incredible amount of plugins the OS runs is the ReadyNAS platform.  These scale all the way from the Desktop to 48TB monsters with 10G ethernet on board.  If you're willing to put the simplicity of the Drobo away this might be a huge win.

The prosumer versions come in a huge range of feature sets listed here.

ReadyNAS 4 diskless starts at 314.37, so one with 2 x 3TB drives would cost you $584.37.  Although, if this will be your primary storage device you may want to make sure you're getting a NAS with as much RAM as you can afford.

Remember if you're looking for speed more smaller drives is the way to go, if you're looking for capacity obviously bigger and slower is the most economical.

Both the Drobo and the ReadyNAS come with built in backup software of varying degress which will help keep your costs down, I believe the ReadyNAS even comes with an interface to their cloud backup environment.

Good luck.

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Thomas RushCommented:
Caution: If you build a RAID system yourself, make sure that the disks used are supported by the RAID unit.   Otherwise, you'll be at far greater risk (say, buy using inexpensive consumer-grade drives) than you think you are.
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  I invite you to please read the following whitepapers/studies:

You will find, what veterans have suspected since the late 90's, there is little difference in failure rates between the different disk technologies and classes.  While the Vendor makes a difference in the types of failures observed.  I recommend the Hitachi drives as far as performance and failure they've been phenomenal for me ever since they were known as IBM DeathStars.

Consumer RAID technologies are actually nearly every bit as sound as enterprise storage array solutions hardware wise which is why everyone is working on the software end of file system and block level snapshot/auto-layout/replication feature sets.
Thomas RushCommented:
Anacreo, single drive failure rates may not be significantly different.   But... there are difference in how einterprise and consumer drives boot, and how they respond to the controller.   Experts Exchange and other similar sites are littered with stories of people who have used consumer-grade disks in RAID environments and found out only when one drive fails, that the others have been having certain errors that had not been discovered until too late.  

This wouldn't be as big a deal, but some people think they don't need to back up their data because it's on RAID 5 (or mirrored, or whatever).   Oooops.
PCGalOfCalAuthor Commented:
Thank you for the info.  I'll have to read it again later today.  BTW, this NAS will be used on a very small network that consist of three workstations.  The main purpose is to store their graphics files.  Currently they have their files scattered over the network on different work stations and nothing is being backed up.  Insane, I know!  Simply looking to centralized and backup everything as cheap as safely possible.  Thanks.
PCGalOfCalAuthor Commented:
Total size of graphics is currently 1.3 gig.  This is way I was thinking 3TB x 2
Well the drobo wins on Sexiness...

For media and graphics definitely check out ReadyNAS plugins and cloud backup features.

Having backups directly on NAS cuts down on failure points and is perfect for a serverless environment.

Plugins such as DLNA will let you pipe images right to handheld and tvs without additional configuration.
You know I hadn't really looked into the ReadyNAS plugins (but now I'm considering one for home, talked myself into it)...

This basically gives you your own Web Photos service, not too shabby looking.!

This and the ReadyDLNA I do see having real world office value add, depending on the type of business.
PCGalOfCalAuthor Commented:
Thanks again everyone.  Lots of info to run with.  :)
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