Network/Cloud Storage setup query

Posted on 2015-01-15
Last Modified: 2016-09-14

I have a question regarding the best way to maintain storage within my home network. Scenario is thus:

Office 365 account with 5 licences,
5 Users in the family (self, wife, 3 kids) each with their own MS Account and each have their own netbook with 500Gb Hard Drive and have downloaded one of each of the 5 O365 licences.
Each user also has 1Tb of OneDrive storage which currently doesn't get used.
On the home network we also have a 3Tb NAS (Seagate Central) on which I have created 5 user profiles plus Public.
Each netbook has a mapped drive to the specific user profile on the NAS.
All users have access to Public drive on NAS where family/shared stuff is stored; photos, music etc.

So, general question is on how to make the most of this storage for accessibility and backup purposes.

Slight complication; the users aren't always at home when wanting to access their files. To access the NAS they can do it via the web through

1) Use local hard drive and sync with OneDrive for storage and then have the NAS configured as backup. I have had issues getting the Seagate Backup software to recognise the NAS drive. How do I do that?
2) Store on the mapped NAS drive and sync the mapped drive to the OneDrive account. Is that possible? Would sync/copy on OneDrive be sufficient as backup.
3) Other options???

Whichever solution I go with has to be very simple and maintenance free (within reason). I am often away with work and my wife is a technophobe so won't be able to do any maintenance. Oldest of kids is 15 and is fairly tech savvy but don't want to give admin rights with passwords etc, temptations of a 15 year old boy to abuse admin rights to overcome security protocols, eg Family Safety; also if I get something wrong and muck things up, its my wallet that will have to pay for the repairs, his pocket money wouldn't cover it and he shouldn't have to have that responsibility.

All suggestions greatly appreciated.

Rob H
Question by:Rob Henson
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
  • 4
  • 3

Expert Comment

by:Brent Arnold
ID: 40551138
If I was you I'd go with Option 1, however, I'd scratch the Seagate software and use Windows Backup. This way you get a full backup (system & user) every night (or weekend if you prefer.) This would provide quick LAN backups, and you could still put all of your documents and files that aren't too large on your Cloud and sync them over to the local HDD. Now, once your system backs up using Windows Backup to your NAS, you'll have your cloud storage backed up as well. This is the way I have it set up at my home. Another option is to just set up PPTP VPN on your router if it supports it and use FTP (DDNS/Domain pointed towards your home IP would make things simpler for the user.)
LVL 33

Author Comment

by:Rob Henson
ID: 40551190
Hi Brent,

Thanks for quick response; making use of option 1 as you describe makes sense to me. Backup each weekend would be viable as the rest of the family is often away from home during the week so would be good if backup occurred on return to base at weekends. I guess this would have to be configured on each device.

The PPTP VPN option is double dutch to me!!

Where would we put shared files, photos etc? If they are stored on the NAS they wouldn't get a backup created. Storage on my netbook would sync with my OneDrive but would use up a fair chunk of the 500Gb storage, last time I looked I had 320Gb of photos, music and documents etc. I do also have a desktop PC (Windows Vista home premium) with an additional separate hard drive of 1Tb so it would be possible to store such files on this drive. However, this desktop doesn't get used particularly often; convenience of using netbooks with better performance and more recent software versions etc. The desktop does get used probably once a month as I use this for doing my monthly accounts so not beyond reason to have this backed up once a month but how would other users access shared files if this PC is not switched on.

Would electricity consumption be extortionate if I left this PC switched on, I guess not? If so who would it be logged in as?
A couple What ifs?
- PC reboots after automagic updates, wouldn't auto logon as required.
- power outage while all away from home so PC wouldn't reboot. How much are UPS devices these days?

Rob H

Accepted Solution

Brent Arnold earned 500 total points
ID: 40551210
If you have an Office 365 with 5 users, I'd use the Team Site feature for all files that everyone likes to access. The Team Site function is just OneDrive for all users, the same idea as your 'Public' drive. If you stored things here that others needed to access you wouldn't need to have the PC on. Also, you could 'share' certain files with other users through OneDrive.

Concerning the backup of your NAS, I'd say your most viable solution would be to back up your NAS once a month to either Amazon S3 or Glacier. There are lots of guides on the net on how to do this, I'm sure you can find one for your specific NAS model.

You are definitely in need of a UPS if you don't have one just for easy sleep. I pick up solid APC UPS' at BB for around $75.00.
Edgartown IT Case Study

Learn about Edgartown's quest to ensure the safety and security of the entire town's employee and citizen data. Read the case study!


Expert Comment

by:Brent Arnold
ID: 40552738
And as far as the PC which doesn't have much storage, once you have things on the Team Site/OneDrive you can only sync the folders that you want. So, if you know you won't be needing a large archive of music on your 500GB PC, then you don't need to sync the music folder.
LVL 33

Author Comment

by:Rob Henson
ID: 40557413
Hi Brent,

Haven't had chance to try out your suggestion yet and also waiting to see if any one else contributes with other ideas.

Rob H
LVL 33

Author Comment

by:Rob Henson
ID: 41564455
I am pleasantly surprised that EE mods haven't marked this as abandoned as it is over a year since I last commented.

Situations have changed in the meantime.

Moved house so we are now all under one roof 24/7 with less time of me being away from home.

I guess I need to revisit the Windows Backup options with the introduction of Windows 10; all netbooks have now been upgraded and replacement for desktop has Windows 10 (and a 3Tb hard drive!!) but still doesn't get left on all the time.

As a consequence of the house move, the remote access is no longer an issue; all devices are now in one location. So I guess that now just leaves the issue of accessible storage and backup.
LVL 33

Author Closing Comment

by:Rob Henson
ID: 41798097
I will investigate the Team Site feature.

Featured Post

Manage your data center from practically anywhere

The KN8164V features HD resolution of 1920 x 1200, FIPS 140-2 with level 1 security standards and virtual media transmissions at twice the speed. Built for reliability, the KN series provides local console and remote over IP access, ensuring 24/7 availability to all servers.

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Suggested Solutions

Title # Comments Views Activity
VMware lost connectivity to datastore 15 1,083
Resource timeout across a VPN 9 60
EqualLogic PS3000 Switch Port Setup 1 60
How to transfer long file names 5 103
#Citrix #Citrix Netscaler #HTTP Compression #Load Balance
Many businesses neglect disaster recovery and treat it as an after-thought. I can tell you first hand that data will be lost, hard drives die, servers will be hacked, and careless (or malicious) employees can ruin your data.
This video teaches viewers how to encrypt an external drive that requires a password to read and edit the drive. All tasks are done in Disk Utility. Plug in the external drive you wish to encrypt: Make sure all previous data on the drive has been …
This Micro Tutorial will teach you how to reformat your flash drive. Sometimes your flash drive may have issues carrying files so this will completely restore it to manufacturing settings. Make sure to backup all files before reformatting. This w…

740 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question