Extra Storage best practices

I’ve got a WD My Book Essential 3TB connected via USB to my WD LiveHub and it works great - can access content via Network share on PC and other WD Live, can add new content via USB 3.0 from my PC.  I am planning to buy another 3tb HDD for my ever-expanding media collection, but am torn between getting a USB drive or a Network drive.  I like the idea of the network drive being constantly connected/accessible and auto-syncs, but I much, much prefer the speed of USB for adding content (I add about 60GB every week).

Which to get?  I’m inclined to go for another external USB 3.0 HDD (probably the WD My Book Essential again) unless there are big advtantages to getting a NAS drive.

As I see it, pros/cons for NAS vs. USB drives are:

PROS - NAS Drive

  • Auto-data sync

  • Constant connectivity

  • ?

CONS - NAS Drive

  • Slow transfer speeds (max 12mb/sec)

  • Can’t connect direct to PC

PROS - USB 3.0 Drive

  • Fast transfer speeds (avg 80 mb/sec)

  • Can connect direct to PC

  • Portability (most devices have a USB port)

  • When connected to WD Live Hub, can access via Network share

CONS - USB 3.0 Drive

  • Needs a WD Live or WD Live Hub (etc.) to connect via Network share



After debating the same question I decided to go with the NAS - the WD Live drives. I have a couple of 2TB and one 3TB. For me, the faster transfer rate from the PC to the NAS was the deciding factor.  I record network TV shows using a Hauppauge HD PVR. Transferring a one hour video file to the NAS is much faster than moving it to the Hub or a USB drive attached to the Hub.

By the way, I have a gigabit wired network and get much faster transfers than 12 mb/sec to the NAS.

I agree with the NAS I have a Nas with 7 1 TB hardrives attached via usb I get better transfer rate to nas plus I have a backup computer that is off site that I send all my movies to which are internal Satas when they get full I just pull them offline and store them in a safe lots of money but I could withstand a disaster and still have my media. The time that I have spent setting alll this up has been crazy.

The reason I went with 1 TB hard drives is that if I do loose a drive not alot to get back to square 1 as soon as hardrives speeds increase I will go to bigger drives as of now it takes about 7 to 8 hours to do a TB over my network

Good luck keep us posted

Thanks gents.  Good advice.

I have a wired connection from my Hub to my router, but my PC is wireless.  Can’t remember if my router is megabit or gigabit (think the latter but not sure…).  If so, might invest in another WD AV Powerline kit and go for NAS drive.

I’ve got a 3-way system for backup:

  1.  On the Live Hub’s Internal Drive (WD Livewire to Gigabit router)

  2.  On the PC (wired to Gigabit router)

  3.  On a WD MyBookLive 1TB NAS (wired to Gigabit router)

…which will obviously fall apart when my storage needs exceed 1TB but for now I’ve got a way to go.  :)

Anything downloaded or encoded on the PC gets a permanent home on a dedicated 1TB internal HDD.  I copy new media to the NAS, which transfers fast at around 30-40MB/sec.

I then copy to the WD Live Hub, which is significantly slower at around 2-4MB/sec.  

Not using the Live Hub’s network sync yet… spent a while manually transferring everything over and it’s down to a trickle now that’s easily managed.

The PC and NAS are on a UPS, so should be safe from any electrical surge / outage nonsense.  The Live Hub is on a surge protected strip that is itself plugged into an AVR / power inverter  (I’ve got a mixture of US and UK components in my home theater).  I’d prefer to have my AV components on their own UPS but that’ll have to wait.