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File Storage Options - Was using NAS w/ ISCSI but has been troublesome - Looking for alternatives

Posted on 2014-10-07
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Last Modified: 2015-01-18
Hello Community,

Until recently my preferred go to method for a cost effective solution for extra data or a large backup destination (for Shadow Protect) was to have a NAS and use the ISCSI initiatior to join that storage to the server as an additional drive.

This was an alternative to purchasing another file server to be added to our environment.
A lot of our clientele are small to medium business and they don't have the budget.
Or they have a lot of data that needs to be backed up and USB external drives don't have the capacity or translation speed for Shadow Protect continous incremental backups.

What may have been a bad month, I've become disenchanted with this method. On 3 varying NAS brands and different ISCSI setups.

I've had a QNAP NAS which was being used as ISCSI connection for an ESX Vmware datastore lose it's static IP and drop to DHCP. The server was acting as DHCP so got 169 address

A Netgear NAS have it's ISCSI partition show up as RAW within the operating system. As well multiple disk failures (about 3 in 2 months for a NAS less than 1 year old)

A Buffalo Terastation NAS which was being used as a repository for backups have a disk failure not take 2 new spare HDD as hot swappable (still a work in progress)

They're just some examples of the troubles I've been faced with.
And was wondering if you have any preferred methods you use for your own clientele base.

I'm keen to find another way.

Thanks
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Question by:ITtelligent
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6 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:andyalder
ID: 40368224
Unless you have a need for shared storage the obvious solution is to use a JBOD SAS attached enclosure plus a decent RAID controller with external SAS connectors. Just a few examples - http://www.pc-pitstop.com/sas_cables_enclosures/
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by:ITtelligent
ID: 40372263
Thanks for your response Andy. Looks promising!
Know any brand name providers who offer a decent SAS enclosures? I feel more comfortable having a warranty and known manufacturer behind my hardware.

I've noticed HP do have some
http://www8.hp.com/au/en/products/disk-enclosures/#!view=column&page=2&facet=5-5%20-TB-12-TB-
But they look to be almost as costly as a file server.

I'll continue to research but if you have any that you know and trust I would love to hear it.
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Expert Comment

by:andyalder
ID: 40374531
I didn't suggest HP D2600 because of the price, about $1500 (half what HP's web lists them as costing) from a reseller plus another $500 for the Smart Array controller. What is your current server? Maybe it takes an additional disk cage which is always the cheaper option. Dell MS1200 are similarly expensive, they're similar in price to a whole server because they sell so few when compared to servers making the per-unit design cost much higher.
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Expert Comment

by:GazAdmin
ID: 40435998
I am in a similar situation in that I need a cost-effective solution for storage and direct-to-disk backups.  Our existing infrastructure is EOS and therefore needs to be replaced. The challenge is finding a solution that is cost effective (I work for a small business) while maintaining reliability. Does anyone else have suggestions?
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Accepted Solution

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ITtelligent earned 0 total points
ID: 40548182
It looks like our solution is just to shell out and get proper direct attached storage.  Basic NAS units are not just cutting it for the small to medium business.
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Author Closing Comment

by:ITtelligent
ID: 40555996
we solved the issue in house.
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