Posts by Olga:
Thecus NAS products are at the front of the competition and now fully support Seagate Barracuda XT ST4000DX000 4TB hard drives.
As the world’s storage demands increase, consumers look for cheaper and more efficient ways to expand their storage capacities. Thecus has just announced that the following models support 4TB drives: 1U4200XXX, N5200XXX, N8200XXX, N8900, N12000, N16000, the V Series, and the N4200 Series. (More models will be added after the compatibility test.)
To use these high capacity HDDs and enjoy even more storage, Thecus users need to upgrade to the latest firmware on Thecus’ website. Now backup, storage, shared use of NAS is even easier and more enjoyable as you don’t have to worry about space for a while!
For more information about the HDD compatibility list of Thecus NAS, go to:
When we talk about NAS, rarely do we mention one of the most important potential categories of users – creative professionals, who include writers, photographers, vector illustrators, graphics and product designers, video editors, and animators among others. These people deal with massive amounts of highly valuable data on day-to-day basis and according to research they have various concerns related to data storage and management. According to iView Multimedia, 51% of professional photographers say file management is the greatest challenge associated with digital photography. In particular, effective and efficient file storage and retrieval; the lack of an industry standard file format enabling consistent capture and population of metadata fields; the learning curve associated with learning a new photo management software; and the time spent at the computer rather than taking pictures. One of the participants of this interview said this about his problems: “Storage is a problem because most basic drive mirroring software and backup software create errors, forgotten files, duplicates, or they simply crash due to the volume of files. This means that even with separate drives for redundancy, there is no guarantee of an accurate image on the backup disk. Basically, half my disk space is wasted on bad backups.”
However, many of them don’t know much (or at all) about network-attached storage (NAS). Thecus gives some recommendations in this and further articles covering such issues as storage needs of creative professionals; features they look for in choosing the right storage; available storage options; differences between creative professionals and how it determines their storage choice.
Why creatives need a NAS
In order to better understand the needs creative professionals have when it comes to storage, I have conducted interviews with several photographers, graphic designers, and video editors and asked them such questions as what files they work with, how much data they store, their current storage solutions, problems and concerns associated with storage etc. As a result, here is a list of major characteristics, which create their profile, as well as requirements related to them.
1. Store large files
They store, distribute, and edit big files (raw, .mov, .avi, psd, .ai., mp4, .zip) on daily basis. The file size is constantly growing due to technological improvements. For example, the resolution of cameras increased from the 1.3 megapixel first-generation device to the 24 MP device that exist today. Naturally, one file alone can easily weight 70 MB.
Given big size of files and speed of camera today, their accumulation happens at exponential rate, thus making it necessary to constantly think of methods to expand their storage space. Instead of measuring storage needs in Gigabytes like some time ago, they now count in Terabytes. And it’s not just them! Weather being a regular picture taker or a wedding photographer you will agree that there is never enough space to store your pictures… For example, the interviewed people mentioned that they currently use external HDDs (500GB x 3) with Apple’s Time Machine for backup. Their storage need varies from 1TB to 5TB.
2. Store valuable data
They work with memories and often times with significant monetary value! (It’s especially true for photographers), therefore they really know what backup means. All of the people interviewed had a story to tell. For example, one of them accidentally erased 3,000 pictures from his computer and iDisk of another one lost some of important project data because of the problem with synchronization between laptop and desktop computer. The next article will discuss possible options to store, backup and archive data.
3. Use multiple devices in different places
Creative professionals are quite mobile since they work from different locations, including home, office, coffee shops etc. That implies that use different devices for creating, editing, sharing and accessing their files. People who participated in the interviews admitted that they use two desktop computers (one at work and another at home) and a laptop, which they bring around. They also said that because of that one of the problems they have was sharing, distribution, and remote access to files. When they were asked what they use currently for these purposes, they names these solutions: Dropbox, FTP, email, MobileMe (iCloud), Google Docs, Firestorage, or bring external drives.
4. Require versatility
Due to the nature of files they deal with, they require flexible solutions allowing them to conveniently show and view themselves music, photos, and videos on devices other than computer. The ideal situation is when those files are viewed directly from where they are stored. For example, if all your files are stored and backed up to a NAS, then by using DLNA protocol you can easily stream your media files directly from your NAS to devices like TV, PS3, XBOX 360 etc.
5. Require simplicity
Creative professionals, unlike IT administrators, don’t know how or/and don’t want to deal with technical issues when it comes to setting up a device. They want to concentrate on creating things instead of spending several hours figuring out how to set up backup.
6. Require affordable solution
Creative professionals often times work as freelancers and therefore don’t have as much resources as companies to spend on s suitable storage solution. Therefore, they are looking for something more affordable.
So, when considering perfect solution for yourself, creative professionals should remember to look for easy to use, expandable, reliable and fast, affordable and accessible from different devices, and easy to back up storage device. Of course, the choice of a specific device would vary depending on particular needs. Thecus has various devices to offer different types of creatives, depending on storage needs and specific applications used on daily basis. Exploring Thecus website www.thecus.com can help in making a decision on what’s best for you!
Check this out! In May 2011, Amazon offered Lady Gaga’s whole album for 99 cents in addition to 20GBs of online storage space for a year, useable for music, documents and photos. You might think that online storage must be cheap. Many companies and individuals choose to use cloud storage as a way to reduce costs. However, while many assume that online storage is inexpensive, the price may surprise you, especially when you store terabytes of data.
Such misunderstanding might come from various reasons. People see the price per GB, they don’t automatically see the final number. For example, Amazon charges $0.125 per gigabyte per month. If you want to store 5TB of data within the next 3 years, you will have to pay $11,563! And Amazon is among the least expensive providers too! Besides charging for basic storage, they also charge for data transfer (usually about $0.10 per GB). Add it all up and it isn’t cheap at all! Aside from per GB charge, another billing option is the one offered by Dropbox. They offer a certain amount of space and charge you per month or per year. For example, 1TB will cost $795 per year. Now, if you want to store your same 5TB over 3 years you will pay no less than $11, 925!
Here is a table with some of the cloud backup companies and their fees:
|50GB a year||N/A||Not found||$77||About $100 ||$99||$199
|100GB a year||$149.99||Not found ||$130||About $180||$199||N/A
|1TB a year||N/A||$256||$850||About $1800||$795||$450|
The price of storage changes dramatically once its moved to the cloud. Before HDD crisis caused by flooding in Thailand a standard 1TB hard disk cost was about $80. To store 5TB of data over 3 years you will only need $400! So, once we moved 5TB into the cloud its cost grew by 30 times!
Why is it so expensive?
One reason why online storage costs so much is that there are many different costs which a cloud storage company has to carry. They include the cost of thousands of hard drives (and they fail sometimes); cost of providing power and cooling; backup of a backup of a backup; human resources such as a software team, management team, maintenance team; a secure building that’s designed to house data with good power access, network infrastructure (routers, switches, bandwidth, firewalls etc.); software; marketing; customer support etc.
Besides overhead, there is another reason – the value of secure information to people and the cost, which occurs when that information is gone. Just imagine loosing important files of your clients or pictures you took while traveling for a year! In this case you might think investment is worth it.
To provide more flexibility to users, Thecus now offers a new service for its NAS: cloud backup. The way it works is that your important data stored on the NAS can be synchronized with a folder stored in the cloud, thus providing a backup of a backup. Dropbox has been directly embedded by the Thecus developers Team, so you can be sure to enjoy maximum speeds.If you think that having all of your data backed up in the cloud is too expensive, you can choose to secure only the most important files which you can’t afford to have stolen or lost.