Looking for suggestions on Enterprise NAS Solutions for MAC and PC

Looking for recommendations and experience with NAS solutions for MAC and Windows systems. We have a design team that uses Adobe Creative Suite products, the team is dispersed geographically between a site in Canada and a site in the US. Currently they save their data locally on their PC storage (high risk to company). The team has to share this data with other team members. They have access to Adobe cloud storage but I am not sure that protects the companies property. My goal is to find a NAS solution that ticks off the following boxes...

1. Native file server support for both MAC and Windows OS (I don't want SMB hooks on the MACs)
2. Able to replicate data between 2 or more systems (Canada and US)
3. Able to backup data to off site options, included cloud backup or AWS/Azure storage
4. Options to allow access via cloud storage to designers
5. Minimum 8 TB used space with scalability to add additional capacity (more drives or drive cage/shelf expansion)
6. Enterprise support service offerings (E.G. onsite technical support for break fix)

I am not sure what RAID level I would go with at this time, likely R5 or R6 depending on number of spindles and drive size. If someone has a similar challenge and a proven solution I would like to hear about it.
Mike MontgomeryInfrastructure ManagerAsked:
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Qian BaoDigital Media Specialist and Web DesignerCommented:
Check out the range of NAS provided by Synology. They are one of the leaders in enterprise NAS solutions.


Here is their NAS selector. Put in your requirement and it will look for the best solution.
nociSoftware EngineerCommented:
QNAP has support for NFS, SAMBA & AFP (Apple Filing Protocol)
besides the usual suspects on NAS/SAN units like iscsi, FTP, ... and plugins for all kinds of business.

Small Medium business: https://www.qnap.com/en/product/series/smb
Enterprise: https://www.qnap.com/en/product/series/enterprise
(there are also smaller... units).
nappy_dThere are a 1000 ways to skin the technology cat.Commented:
I am doing exactly this with two clients and their locations in different cities.

Will post more detailed info in a bit.
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nappy_dThere are a 1000 ways to skin the technology cat.Commented:
Following up on this it is very possible to do with either Synology or Qnap devices. In general, 8TB to backup to cloud, you must have "deep pockets" :)

WIth that much data I'd rather backup locally to RDX media and BTW, I would highly suggest with 8TB of data you make backups on either side as restore would be a lot faster for either side of your WAN. CLICK HERE

With the QNAP there is a feature called RTRR which allows you to sync your data in realtime between locations.  Be careful with this as it can take a long time depending on how much data you have .

With RAID, RAID-5 with a hot online spare is rather sufficient for the disk cost of losing another drive to raid parity such in RAID-6 with a hot online spare.

Synology also offers sync of data between NAS devices using rSync, which the QNAP also supports.

QNAP does not offer onsite support and AFAIK neither does Synology.

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Mike MontgomeryInfrastructure ManagerAuthor Commented:
@nappy_d - Thanks for the details, have you decided on a particular solution for your implementation or still in the investigation stage? It seems QNAP or Synology or the two preferred options for this based on replies and some other reading I have done. With the RTRR is the concern with initial sync taking a long time? I assume that syncs afterwards would only be changes to the data - I still need to read up on this.
nappy_dThere are a 1000 ways to skin the technology cat.Commented:
I used this with a QNAP TS-563 and 1TB of data

The smaller the amount of data you have of course, the easier it is to start real-time WAN sync.

HOWEVER in your case it seems not so easy but here is what I did:
  1. Both devices should be shipped to your primary location
  2. Configure device A, created the RAID5 with hot spare volume
  3. Label each slot and drive tray on the NAS
  4. Create your shares
  5. Copy your data to your shares
  6. Do you have AD? if so join the NAs to your AD infratructure for acces to data and shares
  7. Configure AD access to your shares
  8. Setup the second NAS  EXACTLY as the first NAS with RAID, Shares(Do no copy data) and AD
  9. Configure RTRR and sync data from NAS-A to NAS-B
  10. Shutdown NAS-B
  11. Pack up NAS-B and ship to remote location
  12. Connect to LAN and reconfig RTRR
  13. Now, you will only be synchronizing the changed data

If you are interested in expansion modules, QNAP makes this CLICK HERE

LMK if you have any questions and YES, 8TB of data to cloud back ain't pretty, definitely consider something link an RDX device at each site.

Something I have not used yet is this CLICK HERE for multiple RDX media and is much more cost effectie for backing up terabytes of data(I.M.O)....
nociSoftware EngineerCommented:
Syncing can be a minefield. The standard tooling goes from the most safe assumtions. ie. if the file times etc. are equal then verify content...
That might be a tad too much, as it means ALL data is read regularly. With standard tooling the option to ONLY verify date/time/size often isn;t a choice)  it then totaly depends on the backup tool used if syncing is fast or not.  (Esp. with backup tools that emulate tapes with files and append  to existing files until the "tape is full" , aka a certain filesize is reached. )

So you may have to roll your own on the supplied rsync tool with fine tuned options for the behaviour of your backup tool.
Syncing lots of small files is rather easy, syncing few large files is much harder.
Mike MontgomeryInfrastructure ManagerAuthor Commented:
Information provided gave me good guidance in what to look for and consider in a NAS solution to address my challenge.
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