Using External Device As A Share Drive Or Backup Drive For Your QNAP Server

In the video right after the break, I talk about how to use an external device as a share drive or a backup drive for your QNAP server.  On a side note, I think this is a great way to enable USB 3.0 capability for a computer that doesn’t have the motherboard that can support the USB 3.0 adapter.  Keep in mind, if you have a QNAP server that supports USB 3.0 ports, it’s like you have USB 3.0 capability on your local computer.  Basically, you can always tap into the QNAP server’s share drive and tell it to behave as if it’s just another external hard drive on your computer.  Obviously this share drive which is connecting to your QNAP server is using USB 3.0 port, and hence this is why you can enable USB 3.0 capability for your local computer.  This is a stupid reason for you to just go out and buy QNAP server and external hard drive that support USB 3.0 ports, because you can just buy another computer which supports USB 3.0 ports.  Nonetheless, you can definitely take advantage of this beneficial side effect of having a QNAP server as a network attached storage server.  Same story with eSATA capability if your QNAP server supports eSATA ports.  Enjoy the video!!!

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How To Check The Health of System Data and Hard Disk

The video right after the break shows you how to check the health of system data and hard disk on Windows 8.  If you don’t already know how to do this for free, then check out the video and you won’t be disappointed.  Enjoy!!!

We Need Google Fiber Sort Of Broadband Service Providers In Town To Boost Business Opportunities And Customer Experiences

Backup Backup Backup - And Test Restores

Backup Backup Backup – And Test Restores (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today, broadband upload speed is nowhere near the speed that is desirable for people to backup their digital contents to third party backup service providers or I should say doing backups to the cloud.  I’m using Crashplan backup service provider, and it seems that it took me ages to backup my Windows 8 PC — containing 500 GB worth of data — to Crashplan’s cloud with AT&T U-verse 3 Megabit per second upload speed.  On the sort-of opposite spectrum of doing backups to the cloud is doing backups to a local network’s backup device or devices, and it turns out Crashplan software is doing so much better, like way better, when it backups the 500 GB worth of Windows 8 PC data to a NAS (network attached storage) and external hard drives.  Basically, at the moment, I see that Crashplan shows that it’s 97.2% done with a backup for Windows 8 PC to a NAS, 54.1% done with a backup for Windows 8 PC to an external hard drive, and 10.2% done with a backup for Windows 8 PC to Crashplan’s cloud.  So, I think you get the gist why doing backups to the cloud is super tedious and slow.  It really does take ages.

If one day Google Fiber ever comes to my town, I will definitely see doing backups to the cloud as a positive thing.  For now though, 3 Megabit per second upload speed is definitely too slow for me to do a backup from a local network to the cloud for 500 Gigabyte worths of data.  Imagine people who have like Terabytes worth of data, I wonder how would they feel if they have to do backups to the cloud.  With faster broadband such as Google Fiber, I believe the cloud with become even more popular.  If the cloud is not too expensive for people to store Terabytes worth of data and Google Fiber type of service is readily available, I don’t see how people would not find this combination a super delicious one.  Yummy bandwidth and data redundancy if we care not about the possibility of data leak from a possibility of weak computer security in the cloud.  Of course, don’t forget to encrypt whatever data when such data are to be stored in the cloud, yo?

I’m just talking about doing backups of data only, but obviously any faster broadband which is in the league with Google Fiber offers more than just the upload essential, because Google Fiber type of download speed (i.e., Gigabit per second bandwidth) can also bring more opportunities to people and businesses alike.  Just imagine the possibility of having Google Fiber type of broadband connection… more households may be able to enjoy playing games, streaming movies, listening to music, surfing the web, watching Internet TV, video chatting over the Internet, shopping online with enhance experience (e.g., interactive media shopping experience which allows people to use video chat and 3D interactive contents), and a lot more at the same time.

With such amazing possibilities — that I had mentioned — float to the surface of the pool when faster broadband gets deploy, we can definitely see modern businesses that rely on the Internet for revenues will see faster broadband a positive thing and a must thing to have.  For the people who are the consumers of all Internet and digital things, they  might be even more addicted to the Internet since they can do more all at once.  Imagine the fantastic feeling of a big size family when Google Fiber sort of broadband service provider is coming to town, the family will definitely not have to take turns to consume all Internet and digital things.

Tips To Protect Your Photos For A Very Long Time To Come

If you want to keep your photos for a very long time to come, you definitely need to take measures in protecting your precious photos.  Something as hard drive failure to accidental deletion can definitely erase the awesome picture moments that you had captured.  Of course, you don’t really have to be a fanatic with photography for you to take extreme measures to protect your photos, because protecting photos isn’t that hard as long you are willing to take some steps in giving you the chance to recover the lost photos.  Within the video right after the break, I give some tips that might be helpful to you in regarding to protecting your photos for a very long time to come.  Please enjoy it!

Using Storage Space To Make Data More Resilient On Windows 8

Windows 8 Storage Space is a feature which resembles physical or software RAIDs that many server admins have dealt with on a frequent basis.  Server admins employ RAIDS to make sure data won’t just disappear.  Of course, Storage Space isn’t Enterprise grade, therefore it might not be as reliable or effective as real RAIDs are.  Nonetheless, Storage Space is definitely useful and effective in home computing environment.  An example would be how a person could quickly combine mismatched hard drives (i.e., different sizes and types) together through the usage of Storage Space.  The plus side for using Storage Space is that his or her data will even become more resilient than otherwise.

How would Storage Space work?  Basically, Storage Space feature within Windows 8 allows you to create Storage Pools.  From a Storage Pool, you get to create almost limitless amount of Storage Space.  What had I spewed?  No sweat!  Just imagine a Storage Pool as a computer configuration of multiple hard drives, and it’s indeed just that!  Nonetheless, a Storage Pool alone is rather useless, because it’s only representing a pool of combined hard drives.  You need to create as least one Storage Space out of a Storage Pool to make the Storage Pool useful.  In the context of Storage Space, just imagine it as a virtual disk space or virtual hard drive or virtual storage space.  The important point to keep in mind about Storage Space is that it’s being virtual!

By being virtual, Storage Space is free of physical limitation which many physical RAID configurations are facing.  I think software RAID configurations can pretty much be as flexible as Storage Space.   So, in this way a computer user can use Storage Space feature within Windows 8 to create any size virtual hard drive (Storage Space) from a limited configuration of Storage Pool.  Why Storage Pool is a limited configuration?  When a Windows 8 user creates Storage Space that is much larger than its Storage Pool, there is a possibility that such a Storage Space will overfill the physical configuration of its Storage Pool.  When this happens, Windows 8 will complain that a user must add more physical or network drives to a Storage Pool so there will be more real physical disk space to support the overfilled Storage Pool.

By knowing the differences between the Storage Pool and Storage Space, Windows 8 users can freely add however many and however large Storage Spaces into a Storage Pool quick and easy.  With Windows 8 Storage Space, I can see Windows 8 users will find their data to be rather resilient than usual.  I made a video on Windows 8 Storage Space, and you can watch it right after the break.  This video will go deeper into what I’d written here.  Enjoy!!!

Windows 7 Home Premium And CrashPlan Won’t Support Network Attached Storage As Backup Solution? No Problem! Using FreeNAS ISCSI To Trick Both Into Thinking Network Attached Storage’s Volumes/Partitions As Local Devices So Backup Can Be Done!

FreeNAS

FreeNAS (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I just found out that Windows 7 Home Premium would not support backup to network attached storage.  So, I said fine, CrashPlan could do the job!  To my dismay, CrashPlan too would not support backup destination of network attached storage type.  Well, CrashPlan had a workaround to this problem, but I tried and it refused to work for me.  Luckily, I had one last trick in my sleeve, and it worked perfectly!  Now, I could backup my Windows 7 Home Premium to my FreeNAS box (a software which runs network attached storage server).

How?  It was (and is) all about FreeNAS ISCSI.  I enabled ISCSI and created ISCSI type of volume/partition on FreeNAS box; finally I would connect Windows 7 Home Premium to FreeNAS ISCSI drive (formated it) so CrashPlan would be able to do backups to FreeNAS box (network attached storage server).  Wait, wasn’t CrashPlan would not support network attached storage?  I didn’t lie, but FreeNAS ISCSI (or ISCSI in general) is special!  ISCSI’s job is to trick Windows 7 Home Premium (and other Windows versions) to think that it’s a local partition (i.e., internal hard drive), therefore Windows 7 Home Premium will not be able to figure out that ISCSI is not a local device (i.e., internal hard drive or partition).  The same goes with CrashPlan!

Of course, once you can get ISCSI going between your Windows 7 Home Premium and the network attached storage server, you don’t really have to use CrashPlan to do backups for your Windows 7 Home Premium anymore.  After all, Windows 7 Home Premium (and other Windows versions) has native backup tool.  Nonetheless, in my opinion, CrashPlan is far superior as a backup tool than Windows’ own backup tool.  Anyhow, it’s really up to you to use either Windows’ backup tool or CrashPlan to keep your Windows’ data safe.  Furthermore, you can check out the video right after the break to see how you can set up ISCSI on FreeNAS server and how to connect to FreeNAS ISCSI from Windows 7.  (You won’t be disappointed for using FreeNAS ISCSI solution as a solution for doing backups of Windows 7 Home Premium!)