Make backups!

For 15 years I’ve been streaming, for 15 years I’ve been collecting music on my NAS, for 15 years I’ve regularly made weekly backups from my NAS to external disks. And I’ve replaced NAS drives successively approximately every 5 years. And I never encountered any problems. Till Thursday:

Then, while replacing one failing disk in the RAID5, another disk gave up the ghost during resync. So two disks in the RAID5 were unusable and the volume was lost forever.

Now I had to recover from my backups, which I never had practiced and something I have been afraid of for 15 years.

And everything went well. Had to reinstall most packages, and recovery took two days, but no music was lost.

So, make backups, because even RAID5s may eventually fail, even if it takes 15 years!

Or migrate to RAID6, which can tolerate two failed disks.


Sorry to hear of your problems :frowning_face:

Cloud backup is the way to go!

Secure storage, plus you can access your entire collection when away from home.

And practice a restore regularly if it’s important data to confirm it’s working as intended.

Well done for actually taking backups seriously - most people dont - Glad it all restored OK

I think there’s a fundamental issue when buying a NAS and Mirroring across 2 drives. The problem is that you probably buy two identical drives, that probably come from the same production batch, and hence the likelihood of them failing close together must be quite high. I’m just investigating getting a NAS, but may decide to get two non-identical drives for that reason - or at least get the same drive but from different suppliers.

I’ve never really liked the idea of Mirroring, and thinking that the 2nd disk might be better as a backup disk that you manually run Daily or weekly, and then have an external backup disk thats run 6monthly

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If you have a 4 bay NAS one mirror plus another mirror as incremental backup, with a third offsite backup makes sense.

We chose to use a 2 bay NAS with cloud backup.

Yes, probably a good idea, but upload speeds are too slow here for several TB music.

If you want to maximise the chances of at least one of the two drives surviving, don’t put them in the same enclosure. There are plenty of things that can go wrong which would take out both drives.

Absolutely. The external disk would be USB drive that I can place else when not in use

From when I last looked that is much more expensive than having a couple of spare hard drives. And recently it is worth being aware of this:

I must admit I like the idea of a NAS that doesn’t connect to the internet. For added precaution, even block it in the router if possible. I believe with Synology it is optional.

If you read that whole thread our cloud and backup strategy was explained.

Our cloud backup is on a schedule, as we want it.

Also if you’re keeping your external hard drives at the same property as your main storage device then you’re not covered against theft or site loss.

Can never understand cost based arguments against cloud. 2TB is like 50 quid a year. How much have you spent on naim (or other brands) hifi kit? How much are people saving for that next cable, switch, plug, tweak…… arrange these words- in, ocean, drop.

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I use a basic Synology NAS for auto backup. This has a server running so if my main NAS fails I can immediately switch to the backup and continue listening.

Now that Naim streamers run their own server a USB drive is arguably just as good, as you can just plug your backup drive into a streamer and use it on any of your networked music players.

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OK I’m going to sound very OCD here. My NAS units are getting quite old, however I have two NAS units both dual drive and both backup to a separate external drive so that’s two lots of three drives. So have a copy of my music collection on each and two separate backups as well. But it doesn’t end there. I also have a copy of my music files on my Roon server and a copy of my Melco unit and just for the hell of it also have a separate disk which also has a copy.

So 7 copies of my music files and other important documents. My initial strategy was to replace the original QNAP NAS and backup with a new one, but decided once newer QNAP NAS was installed to keep the older one as a backup. So far so good, but I did have another old MAC Pro I used as a backup server so shunted a copy over to that as well for good measure. When that died I pulled out the disk with the music files on it, put it in a USB case and called that my emergency backup, backup.

When I purchased a Melco unit several years ago I copied the music files on to it but never did delete them from anywhere else. 18 Months ago I got a separate ROON server and you guessed it, copied the music files on to a separate disk within it.

I’m hoping that will do me for the time being, the only labour intensive aspect is when I download or rip a new album I have to copy the files to 5 places.

I’ve been toying with the idea of getting a QNAP 4 drive NAS with 4TB disks and maybe getting rid of the two dual NAS drives and maybe eventually the Melco.

Over the top or what!!


My backup strategy uses two external drives. One of the drives receives backups for 4 weeks, the other is stored in the office. And after 4 weeks I swap them, so I lose at most 1 month of music, in case a real disaster happens at home.

Apparently, that strategy has worked this time. Let’s wait for the next crash in another 15 years.

Although my comment about Cloud storage was triggered by your post, and you may have approached it with awareness, the caution is relevant for anyone using such services, with that other thread worth reading. As for cost, last time I looked I think it was rather more than that, but having an inherent dislike of subscription services that I’ve not been inclined to look further.

Indeed, disk failure/rebuild in a RAID is a critical time; restoring data to a new drive creates a lot of stress on the other drives. Increases the risk of yet another drive failing.
So RAID is most often good at keeping continued service during a disk failure; but it isn’t a backup for multiple reasons (RAID system malfunction, accidental deletion, ransomeware coming along, …) - always have data elsewhere es well. (Offline, Cloud…)

As seemingly most people here do. Well done!

You’re right, people need to have a general awareness of how such cloud services work and when data moves around.

As for costs, these are in a downward spiral as storage devices fall in cost and cloud scale grows. Probably less than half what they were three years ago. Annual subscriptions are usually available at a good discount (~20%) compared to monthly too.

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Cloud backups are almost certainly not “the way to go”. Two backups. One on site agd one off. Plus cloud backup if it’s affordable and quick enough. As a main strategy? Never.

Keeping your backups updated must be a nightmare!

Thank you for sharing all that - it made me smile, as I fully understand. Perhaps a little rationalisation is needed, but better over cautious in matters like these.