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Old 20-10-2013, 11:37   #1
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Media Server

Have made a lot of progress ripping my large music and video collection, and the resulting collection is now approaching 2tb.

Now there's the question of how to store it all. I already lost a good bit of it when a portable hard drive failed and I don't want to repeat that, as all the ripping is quite laborious. Besides that, some of the blueray disks are borrowed and can't be easily re-ripped.

I have tried to spread the fiches around various computers around the house so everything is stored in at least two places, but I have just about used up all the free space.

I start to think about building some kind of media server with a failsafe RAID array.

Anyone been through this, any tips?

I've now collected enough material that I won't easily getvthrough even in a number of years. So I will be well equipped for long ocean passages and long periods away from civilization, if I can manage to tear myself away.
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Old 20-10-2013, 12:18   #2
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Re: Media Server

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
I've now collected enough material that I won't easily getvthrough even in a number of years. So I will be well equipped for long ocean passages.
I am the wrong person to ask because I dont watch movies (professional courtesy? LOLOL) but you will find many cruisers have TB's more than your TB's. In fact whatever you have others have more! Some cruisers take a lifetime to watch all their TBs and thats on fast forward!!!!


But beware of people like me saying things like: 'why don't you just jook out the boat?'


Dang! That happened outside while I was watchin' TV???
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Old 20-10-2013, 14:16   #3
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Originally Posted by MarkJ

I am the wrong person to ask because I dont watch movies (professional courtesy? LOLOL) but you will find many cruisers have TB's more than your TB's. In fact whatever you have others have more! Some cruisers take a lifetime to watch all their TBs and thats on fast forward!!!!

But beware of people like me saying things like: 'why don't you just jook out the boat?'

Dang! That happened outside while I was watchin' TV???
Yeah, yeah, well - fair enough. I actually have ever watched television since childhood; my 3 year old has never seen one and doesn't even know the word. I love the cinema and in real (non-cruising) life have no time for it; Im lucky to see a movie a month. So it turns out the boat is the only place where I get any significant chance to enjoy a little kino. Which doesn't mean I do it at the expense of watching dolphins
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Old 20-10-2013, 14:39   #4
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Re: Media Server

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Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
I start to think about building some kind of media server with a failsafe RAID array.

Anyone been through this, any tips?
Look for a cheap NAS or network drive container. (Sorry in a hurry so no link)

They can be had for under a $100, then you add the hard drives. You can configure as RAID 2 which is 100% redundancy. So if you had a RAID2 array of two 3TB drives you'd have an effective drive size of 3 TB, but if one of the drives fail, you still have all the data.
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Old 20-10-2013, 14:57   #5
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Re: Media Server

Terabytes? see root word terra firma: land (I know 1000 to the 4th actually) and bites: to suck, poor outcome As in: living on terra firma bites

but on a serious note glad you are almost finished with the ripping. Now ask yourself, "Self, how many of these movies am I ever going to watch again?"

Then take the 10 Christmas movies, 3 or 4 other seasonal movies, 50 guy movies, 30 chick flicks and delete the others. It will free up tons of space to download the Multiple Seasons of your favorite TV Shows.

Then ask yourself, "Self, how many of these TV Shows am I going to Watch again?"

Then keep the 3 series you may watch again and delete the rest. This way you will have tons of space for all the music you want.

Then ask yourself, "Self, Why am I downloading the stuff they play on the radio? You then stop downloading all the crap and you have about 100 movies, 3 tv series, and all the music you listened too while in high school.

Then ask yourself, "Self, Is this really all the hell I actually care about? Why have I been downloading and ripping all this crap? I mean seriously, I could read a book (insert line above asking self why you downloaded all the books you are not going to read), or go sailing."

Now ask yourself, "Self, how did I get so much free time to enjoy life?"

W
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Old 20-10-2013, 15:10   #6
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Re: Media Server

The way to do this is just like any big serverfarm would do it...
Find a raid 5 with spare drives ie: 5 ea 4tb drives with 2 online spares that automaticaly spare over in case of failure...
And to be sure of your back up, an offsite storage backup that is done daily...
Otherwise, take the time and do blueray backups. Lots of disks and takes time but worth it in the long run... jmo
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Old 20-10-2013, 15:13   #7
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Re: Media Server

Ignoring the.... why have films/media in the first place, argument, here's what I did.

I went through the whole RAID / NAS setup, and while yes, it was very nice having access to "everything" at once it was a power hog, expensive, and really doesn't want to live on a moving boat. It's designed to live in a cool, calm, place so don't go down that road, it'll just break, a lot.

I now just use WD My Passport 2TB USB drives. They are USB powered- no power adaptors. Mobile drives- so designed to be tougher moving around. Fast - USB 3.0. Small - Take up no room what soever. And Cheap.

I just get them in pairs as my media grows. A "main" drive I keep with me. And a "mirror" copy of this I store somewhere else as backup.

Job done.
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Old 20-10-2013, 15:13   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gemini Dreams
Terabytes? see root word terra firma: land (I know 1000 to the 4th actually) and bites: to suck, poor outcome As in: living on terra firma bites

but on a serious note glad you are almost finished with the ripping. Now ask yourself, "Self, how many of these movies am I ever going to watch again?"

Then take the 10 Christmas movies, 3 or 4 other seasonal movies, 50 guy movies, 30 chick flicks and delete the others. It will free up tons of space to download the Multiple Seasons of your favorite TV Shows.

Then ask yourself, "Self, how many of these TV Shows am I going to Watch again?"

Then keep the 3 series you may watch again and delete the rest. This way you will have tons of space for all the music you want.

Then ask yourself, "Self, Why am I downloading the stuff they play on the radio? You then stop downloading all the crap and you have about 100 movies, 3 tv series, and all the music you listened too while in high school.

Then ask yourself, "Self, Is this really all the hell I actually care about? Why have I been downloading and ripping all this crap? I mean seriously, I could read a book (insert line above asking self why you downloaded all the books you are not going to read), or go sailing."

Now ask yourself, "Self, how did I get so much free time to enjoy life?"

W
Another lesson on life, rather than technical help. Sigh.

To each his own, of course, but far from civilization and with - at last - some free time, a big video library is a great joy, for me. Not that I expect to see all of it, or even 5% of it, heavens no. But when at anchor, the after dinner flick is a treasured ritual on our boat. It's nice to have a wide choice of what to see. Despite a lifetime of loving Kurosawa, for example, I've only managed to see five or six in all these years. Well, today I ripped a dozen more - maybe I'll see a couple more on board next summer. Or maybe I'll just see Ran one more time . In any case, I've got the choice. But good storage is needed to provide the technical means for having this choice
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Old 20-10-2013, 15:18   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simonpickard
Ignoring the.... why have films/media in the first place, argument, here's what I did.

I went through the whole RAID / NAS setup, and while yes, it was very nice having access to "everything" at once it was a power hog, expensive, and really doesn't want to live on a moving boat. It's designed to live in a cool, calm, place so don't go down that road, it'll just break, a lot.

I now just use WD My Passport 2TB USB drives. They are USB powered- no power adaptors. Mobile drives- so designed to be tougher moving around. Fast - USB 3.0. Small - Take up no room what soever. And Cheap.

I just get them in pairs as my media grows. A "main" drive I keep with me. And a "mirror" copy of this I store somewhere else as backup.

Job done.
Thanks, good advice. I was actually thinking about the NAS for master storage at home (also all the music, all the photo archives!). I have been using a WD Passport 1tb and just ordered one of the 2tb ones to supplement/back up the other one. That way if one goes, there will be something left on the other one, and everything is master stored (raid 5) at home anyway.
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Old 20-10-2013, 15:28   #10
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Re: Media Server

We've been doing work and family backups on Toshiba portable hard drives for years, they work just fine on the boat, too.
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Old 20-10-2013, 15:35   #11
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Re: Media Server

Back from our walk. Ok here's a 2-bay NAS similar to ours. Ideal on a home network; could be OK on a boat, and not a power-hog if you only fire it up on movie night. But your USB drive idea is probably more flexible, and lower power consumption.
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Old 20-10-2013, 15:46   #12
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Re: Media Server

We used raid 0 on the first two drives in the server and raid 5 on the last 5.
Our real backup was the EMC and NET APPS disk filers along with the power requirements and cooling. The power was stabilized with a 50kw UPS at the site... this probably puts this above the average sailing budget for backups... and the offsite was on a different continent... fyi
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Old 20-10-2013, 15:53   #13
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Re: Media Server

In my house (when I had one) I had a Netgear ReadyNAS Duo that was fabulous. It was extremely power efficient, had two drive bays, and came with a bunch of very useful software. For example, Firefly lets you dump your whole iTunes collection on it and it will stream to any authorized device. Also had a torrent app, so you could download torrents right to the network drives. It talked to my UPS so when the power went out it would shutdown gracefully, then come back up automatically when the power came back on. The drives were hot swappable, so when I upgraded the drive size I would just put one of the larger drives in, it would copy everything over, then swap the second drive and it would mirror it. I served movies to my Boxee Box, music to my SONOS system, and never seemed wanting for speed. You're much better off just buying a NAS than trying to build one yourself. And that comes from someone who's always built their own computers. There are lots of good ones on the market now, just check the reviews at NEWEGG. Hell, even an older model off eBay would be great.

On the water, I think portable pocket drives are it. There is probably a RAID utility so if you plugged in two at once it would synch them to you always had two copies.
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Old 21-10-2013, 00:10   #14
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We used raid 0 on the first two drives in the server and raid 5 on the last 5. Our real backup was the EMC and NET APPS disk filers along with the power requirements and cooling. The power was stabilized with a 50kw UPS at the site... this probably puts this above the average sailing budget for backups... and the offsite was on a different continent... fyi
Spinning platter drives are very efficient at turning electricity into heat, noise, and frustration. Doubly so on a boat. RAID is just more of them. Heck, it's even in the name :-)

Like the broom (rather than vacuum) we need to sweep up all the dropped buzzwords quoted above, simpler is better. I second the idea of optical media someone mentioned earlier in the thread. BluRay or DVD, there are pros and cons to both we can discuss if interested.

Optical media are cheap, easy to store, easy to duplicate, light, have no moving parts (themselves), and most importantly, are easy for me to borrow. If they get wet with salt water they can just be rinsed off. If the optical drive implodes it doesn't affect the data integrity of the media (usually). It's easy to carry a spare drive, and they're pretty ubiquitous if the spare dumps. The most failed component in a computer is the hard drive (two is the power supply). If I double down on hard drives, I'm doubling down on my failure rate.

It may be too late, but you didn't mention what parameters you ripped with, or what compression you're using. This probably isn't being viewed on a super awesome display, so it would make storage much more efficient to crank down the resolution and up the compression. I can live with a mediocre picture. We do our travel watching on a netbook, so I end up with smaller files because I don't need the bitrate.

How did you do your encoding and is there any chance to increase efficiency that way?

JRM
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Old 21-10-2013, 00:45   #15
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Re: Media Server

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Originally Posted by JRM View Post
Spinning platter drives are very efficient at turning electricity into heat, noise, and frustration. Doubly so on a boat. RAID is just more of them. Heck, it's even in the name :-)

Like the broom (rather than vacuum) we need to sweep up all the dropped buzzwords quoted above, simpler is better. I second the idea of optical media someone mentioned earlier in the thread. BluRay or DVD, there are pros and cons to both we can discuss if interested.

Optical media are cheap, easy to store, easy to duplicate, light, have no moving parts (themselves), and most importantly, are easy for me to borrow. If they get wet with salt water they can just be rinsed off. If the optical drive implodes it doesn't affect the data integrity of the media (usually). It's easy to carry a spare drive, and they're pretty ubiquitous if the spare dumps. The most failed component in a computer is the hard drive (two is the power supply). If I double down on hard drives, I'm doubling down on my failure rate.

It may be too late, but you didn't mention what parameters you ripped with, or what compression you're using. This probably isn't being viewed on a super awesome display, so it would make storage much more efficient to crank down the resolution and up the compression. I can live with a mediocre picture. We do our travel watching on a netbook, so I end up with smaller files because I don't need the bitrate.

How did you do your encoding and is there any chance to increase efficiency that way?

JRM
My first impulse on reading this was to dismiss it out of hand - how many years did I wait to stop futzing with removable media, starting with 5.25" floppies? Get rid of all the DVDs littering the boat? Then I see that Bluray disks now hold 128 gigabytes, which is big enough to make a dent.

My bluray movies typically rip to 8 - 10 gigabytes if 720p, or somewhat bigger if 1080. DVDs from 1.5g or bigger, depending on what's on them. A set of DVDs (Alfred Brendel playing all Schubert piano works with video, for example) might cone to 35 gigs. A modest pile of 128g bluray disks would hold a lot.

I have a 32" HD monitor, so it's not like watching on a net book, so radical compression is not the answer.

Thanks, food for thought.
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