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External Hardrive Recommendations

I'm looking for a few external hardrives that connect via USB to be used for backup purposes.  The problem I run into is a lot of hardrives come bloated with their own software and sometimes even creating an additional cd-rom drive.  

The external hardrives would be used to backup a SBS 2008 server.  Total size on server is 275GB.

Also looking for a few external hardrives for our file server.  Its running Windows Storage Server Standard and has a total size of 3TB with less than 500GB used.  

I am open to any and all suggestions that will meet the size requirements we need and that doesnt come with bloated software.

Thanks
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jtrabert
Asked:
jtrabert
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3 Solutions
 
Frederic SuneCEO, IT in MIND inc.Commented:
I used Seagate external hard drive for years without any trouble. I love to use Seagate Backup Plus 3TB USB 3.0 3.5", less than $150 here in Canada. More info here: Backup Plus
It's compatible USB2 & 3 and very easy to setup. I have one of 1Tb running 24h since 3 years now without any trouble but, keep in mind that HD are not equal and failed, it's just question of time...
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netballiCommented:
Personally i wouldn't recommend a USB external drive for your server storage. but if you are willing to take the risk, then any drive would be ok.

If you are worried about bloat ware just perform a full format of the external disk before using it.
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jtrabertAuthor Commented:
@itinmind - I was hoping to get one that does come with its own power cord, plus there seems to be issues of using the drive with server backup software.

@netballi - SBS 2008 doesn't support tape drives, I would be open to something different that is supported.  Whatever it is must be able to be taken offsite for storage.  As for doing a full format, 9 out of 10 times that wont work I've tried.  WD Passport drives even after a full format does not get rid of the bloatware.  It lives on a hidden UDF partition.  Whenever you format or repartition it doesn't touch the UDF partition thus still having the bloatware on the drive.
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Frederic SuneCEO, IT in MIND inc.Commented:
The Backup Plus 3TB come with is power adapter and 2 years of warranty. You can find the spec here.
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jtrabertAuthor Commented:
Whoops, I ment to say "does not" come with a power cord.  Meaning its self powered through USB.  I also cant find any info on whether the software that comes with it can be permanently removed nor that its supported by SBS 2008.
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Frederic SuneCEO, IT in MIND inc.Commented:
Oh, I see! :) But, a 3,5" HD powered by USB port need a specific USB port which is able to give you all the power you need for it. Maybe, look for a solution with a 2.5" HD which required less power.
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Scott CSenior Systems EnginerCommented:
Look on www.newegg.com under their hard drive section.

You will see what is out there and can look at the reviews to see which has the best reputation.
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wewhittCommented:
I personally love this list....

External Backups

There is no messing around when trying to figure out if something will work – although USB and backups in general have always had challenges. I have had - the 2 TB issue - the SBS wizard issue - NTFS formatting weirdness, and the 512 byte sector issue on larger drives ... these have given me some gray hair for sure.

USB backups are tricky to do!! I think this is what netballi was trying to indicate.

I have found that backing up only necessary folders ... no shadow copies or anything cool like that ... on a schedule ... on a NTFS - drive letter assigned - formatted USB hard drive ... has been the easiest way to back up my server using these devices. That way if your running the SBS wizard you can select backing up on a drive "volume" - not on "ext backup drive" say. I do this so I can still use the USB Hard Drive for a temporary file dump ... instead of having SBS take the whole drive over as a "backup" drive.

I use:
BlacX EXT Enclosure Thermal Take / N0029USU-R … Newegg Part Number 17-153-066
HDD 2TB Western Digital WD20EARX … Newegg Part Number 22-136-891

No bloat ware what so ever on the hard drive, I can detach it and walk away with it for off sight storage, BlacX has an on/off switch, and BlacX has it's own power supply.

Full backups can be done on a commercial level using a company like Storagecraft. I personally don’t need this kind of backup – we are a small company – it’s been our policy to always have multiple copies of files in different areas … our NAS, local USB backups, and Offsite backup of my server files. The system can be recovered slowly if needed, but it would be nice to spend $2500 on a backup like these companies offer – to be up and running with an exact copy of the server where it left off in 15 minutes … pretty sweet if you have that kind of budget.

This is my 2 cents worth – hope it helps

Bill
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pgm554Commented:
Is this windows 2008 or above?
Are you going to use the built in back up ?

If so, you are limited to non-4k sector (512n,not 512e) drives.

Basically anything over 2TB will NOT work.


Server 2012 built in backup will work with the larger format drives,but not Server 2008 or SBS 2011.


You got two choices:

1.Find USB drives that still support 512byte(no green drives)
2.Go with a 3rd party (Acronis,Storagecraft,Symantec)

See:

http://gadgets.itwriting.com/998-why-your-new-2tb-or-3tb-drive-will-not-work-with-windows-backup.html

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/1780.external-backup-drives-compatibility-list.aspx
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wewhittCommented:
A true backup is what pgm554 suggested - since mine is basically a work around BTW. As my server grows - I am going to build in our budget a solution like Storagecraft.
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pgm554Commented:
I've answered this same question at least 5 or 10 times in the past couple of months.
The 4k M$ drive backup is a fiasco on many levels.

I never liked it from the beginning,as my first encounter was an issue involving it erring out because the entire drive to be backed up had to be NTFS.

Just so happens,a lot of Dell servers come with a maintenance partition that is fat16.
Guess what?
The backup would not run unless I converted that partition to NTFS.
Not something they bothered to mention.

What a miserable piece of code!
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Think about a NAS device which is more effective than external drives. Ich you still want to stick with external drives then get a docking station and use it to connect normal internal drives as external. This is much more effective imho. As backup software i recommend you paragon drive backup 11 server www.drive-backup.com very effective.
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jtrabertAuthor Commented:
Wow thanks for all the recommendations guys.  We currently are just using the built in backup that comes with SBS 2008.

Recently we purchased a license from StorageCraft for their Shadow Protect SBS software but haven't implemented it yet.  

@noxcho - Ive actually never considered doing something like that but that's a pretty good idea using a HDD docking station.

Is anyone familiar with these drives (Buffalo MiniStation Stealth USB)?:  

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00822GHEQ/ref=cm_sw_em_r_am_ip_am_us?ie=UTF8

Someone recommended them to me over the weekend.

I was away over the weekend so Im going to read up on everything tonight and assign points tomorrow.  

Thanks again everyone.
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noxchoGlobal Support CoordinatorCommented:
Buffalo makes good drives so this drive isok to me.
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