Don't post much in computers but have a computer question...

Discussion in 'Computers, Hardware, and Operating Systems' started by VE3GZB, Nov 16, 2021.

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  1. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    If you want to play with different servers, You can play for about $5.00 a month.

    You get a dedicated IP address.
  2. VE3GZB

    VE3GZB Ham Member QRZ Page

    I don’t have much trust in cloud stuff. Who really knows who is accessing your things there, at any company?

    I’ll keep it local.

  3. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    It is more just to play and see what works for your needs.

    Then you can implement what works best for you on your own server.
    VE3GZB likes this.
  4. N1EN

    N1EN Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I don't know that Windows server would get you anything in particular, beyond perhaps the ability to have multiple users active on the machine.

    Now, in addition to the Synology box I mentioned earlier in the thread, I do have a low-end Windows PC on the network. It's primarily there to host a DX cluster node, but I do have it handling various automated maintenance tasks, and available for screen-sharing on the living room TV.

    I use Windows ## Pro on all of my PCs, primarily to get the ability to use Remote Desktop (although I have since moved to using AnyDesk to connect from one PC to another). Windows Pro will let you share directories/drives...although I do find that within my home network, I do have to have a script that runs at login to disconnect/reconnect all shared directories that I've mapped to drive letters, to stave off lost connections. (For some reason, this doesn't seem to be an issue on my work PC, however.)

    I suspect that Windows Home would be sufficient for such functionality.

    P.S. you may want to reconsider RAID if you have hardware that can support it. If you're using physical hard drives (as opposed to solid-state), it's relatively cheap protection for when a drive eventually fails. Maybe it's less of a concern if you have offsite backups (always a good idea), and/or mirror files among machines, and I probably wouldn't worry about it if the drive in question was only hosting transitory data. But there have been a couple of times that having a RAID array has spared me having a very bad day.
    VE3GZB likes this.
  5. KV6O

    KV6O Ham Member QRZ Page

    Don't just rely on local, you need an offsite plan to protect your data. And if you're talking hobby pictures, they are priceless to you, and mostly worthless to anyone else. I spent 20 years in a previous life doing Systems Engineering for a software/services companies, providing data protection strategies & solutions for Fortune 1000 companies. I take lots of pictures as well, and here's what I do.

    I have 2 different types of local backups, on different media, as well as 2 different offsite backups for my pictures.
    • I have a copy of all my files (pictures and videos included) on my local NAS, which is a Synology system. If you're adept at getting a freeware solution running, good for you. I have run FreeNAS in the past on an old machine, but it drew probably 160W and was running all the time, I went with a lower power 4 bay Synology NAS that has been rock solid for years.
    • In addition to the file level backups, I backup my local machines using Acronis True Image for local, image backups that are quick to restore. These go both to my NAS, and a local 8TB USB3 drive attached to my main system.
    • My main system runs Backblaze, and it backs up to "the cloud". Everything that leaves my machine is encrypted and stored on Backblaze's servers. You can't just access the files without the credentials, and even if you could, it's stored encrypted.
    • Lastly, my pictures are also archived using Amazon Glacier, also encrypted using CloudBerry. The pictures don't change, so storing them in a permanent storage system makes sense. The storage costs are very low, retrieval costs are high.
    Everything but the Glacier archive is an automatic process. If I loose a file, I have file level backups. If I loose a drive, I have drive level backups. If I lose my house, or get attacked by really good/bad ransomware, I have offsite backups and archives.

    Offsite backup is cheap (Backblaze is about $7/mo.), and can serve as your only line of defense if you're looking to save money. You'll spend more than $7 a month in electricity running a full sized PC for local backups.
    VE3GZB and N1EN like this.
  6. KV6O

    KV6O Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'll add one other point. Hackers don't care about your pictures, or even your tax returns. YOU care about them. How they exploit this is via ransomware. By encrypting your data locally, they deny you access to your data, and hold it ransom. You pay them to get it back. They don't care about what it is, only that it's worth something to you. That's what they are exploiting. IF you have something of public value - naked pictures of celebrities, scandalous private emails from politicians, etc., then you might be a direct target. Most of us don't.

    When have you heard that Aunt Sally's pictures of porcelain figurines were hacked from Google/Apple/Amazon/wherever and posted for all to see?
    VE3GZB likes this.
  7. N1EN

    N1EN Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    If we're comparing backup strategies.... FWIW, here's what mine looks like:

    There are four PCs on my network. File synchronization is used to replicate at least some files among those PCs. My primary PC additionally has two data drives configured in a RAID1 array.

    The synchronized files are also sync'd with my Synology NAS. The PCs all also do automated backups of non-sync'd data and some config files to the NAS. The Synology NAS also hosts archival files (e.g. family photos and videos), and is configured with two very large hard drives also in a RAID1 array.

    Additionally, the Synology NAS mirrors whatever is stored in my and my wife's Google and Office365 accounts with an automated daily job. We generally don't keep anything secure on Google/O365, but they come in handy for sharing files with others, etc. I don't know that there's a "need" to back up the accounts...but it's easy, so I do it.

    The Synology NAS uses Synology's Hyperbackup tool to create an offsite backup with a cloud storage provider (Backblaze currently), with the job running automatically once a week. (The wife complained about streaming video quality in the middle of the night when I was doing daily backup jobs. :( ) Data is encrypted before transfer to the cloud, with the key stored in a few places, with an eye towards maximizing the odds that it will survive disaster. Since the encryption occurs on my side, I'm not concerned about the security of sensitive data, at least not until quantum computing starts appearing in the wild.

    Every 9 months or so, I do a limited restore from the offsite backup, just to confirm that it still works and that I know how to do it.

    It might seem like overkill, but I got burned on data loss many years ago...and I kind of liked the mental exercise in setting all this up. (There's a reason I enjoy my job in the risk management side of the insurance business.)

    I'll also mention that this sounds more complex than it actually is in practice. One of the reasons I mentioned the Synology earlier in the thread is that at the basic level, it Just Works, and the GUI is pretty easy to work with (and there are plenty of guides online if you need help on setting up various functionality). That they can be expanded to do other useful/geeky things is just a bonus.
    VE3GZB and KV6O like this.
  8. K6CLS

    K6CLS Ham Member QRZ Page

    That is very wise! untested equals broken.

    Oh gosh, the stories I know about broken backups and restores... Quite a number of firms went out of business...
    VE3GZB likes this.
  9. KD0KZE

    KD0KZE Ham Member QRZ Page

    No need for RAID here, I haven't had a hard drive go bad in 18-20 years. My secret is that I generally buy a new one with each Debian upgrade or about 2-3 years. They're cheap. HDD drives are much more reliable than they used to be. Also, Linux and its file systems tend to be far less "chatty" than Windows, and less prone to fragmentation issues. I've noticed far more hard drive activity with my former Windows PC's. A bunch of bloat often spinning the drive for no great reason, whereas it's awfully quiet under a Linux install. Fewer spinning = longer lifespan.

    As for online backups, I assume that most every closed-source and service-provider encryption has backdoors and the potential for insider and other threats. My data is monetarily worthless, I don't have a whole bunch of patents, engineering designs, award winning novels, or insider investment advice. But I don't want to lose it either, and there's too much (high school hockey and lacrosse footage, family photos, etc.) to realistically upload to some server/s around the world.

    73, KD0KZE / Paul
    VE3GZB likes this.
  10. KC3TEC

    KC3TEC Ham Member QRZ Page

    Raid setups are numerous in both speed and redundancy.
    It depends highly on what you want to accomplish.
    Striped array offers high speed throughput but should 1 drive fail the data on all the drives is useless.
    Mirrored drives offer great error correction and data safety.
    Spanning the drives appears as a single large volume.
    But a raid setup on a single machines while faster is still vulnerable to damage of major surges.
    Nas storage can use raid configuration as well as individual multiple hdd's
    It's benefit is off machine storage.
    (And a good word of advice, network your Nas in different place than your main system.
    Preferably in a different building. )

    Linux command line is a little more complex than dos but infinitely more powerful,
    And yes there is substantial learning curve to it.

    It's not impossible to use but like morse it does require some practice.
    VE3GZB likes this.

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