I’ve been looking at the RTX220-QR quad interface portable storage device from WiebeTech for the past few weeks. The unit was designed for photography and video storage. They also wanted to build storage for small business servers and professionals in all walks of life that need to protect their data. Let’s start with some basic [...]
In my podcast discussions with Mike Mihalik from LaCie, we discussed LaCie’s external storage options and specifically we spoke about their 2big and 4big Quadra units. I was sent a 2big Quadra, 3TB unit for review. The retail price is about $480 and the street price is a little less. The price includes the hard [...]
For those of you that have followed my online musings, you’ll know I have a bad habit that I’ve talked about in the past. I am not even close to the point of addressing it, in fact, I’m still embellishing it. The bad habit I refer to is my storage addiction. Yes, I have a sever problem controlling my urge to accumulate mass volumes of hard disk space. My Mac Pro is filled full of 1TB disks, my Drobo is filled with 1TB disks, my external FireWire 800 drive has another 1 TB disk in it, and I have another one or two USB drives thrown in for good measure. Then if you sneak a peak on the top shelf of my desk, you’ll find 5 more hard drives in static bags ready to spin up at a moments notice. (I just feel better knowing I have spare drives laying around).
This was all fine and dandy. I could handle this storage “problem” and quit anytime I wanted. After all, I need all this storage for the video and audio production work I do, and I believe in practicing what I preach when it comes to backing up my data. I have backups of my backups. At least I felt this “problem” was under control until this last weekend. I had time to do some personal reflection and I realized that this storage addiction has spilled over into my online life too. My digital life has become very “cloudy”.
Let me explain. It started with my need to backup data to the cloud in order to keep it safe. The idea made sense to me and all the cool kids in the Mac community are doing it. So after much deliberation and some research, I decided to open up an Amazon S3 account. I loved it. Unlimited storage, unlimited bandwidth, you just pay for what you use. My bill has never been over $3 a month for what I’m storing in their amazing cloud. I almost forgot about my Mobile Me account. I have 10 gigs of storage available and really only use a small portion of the 10 gigs for syncing my Macs. Then the fine folks at Carbonite contacted me and wanted me to try out their Cloud storage solution. I installed it on my MacBook Pro and it works like a charm. Between Amazon S3 handling my Mac pro and Carbonite taking care of my MacBook Pro and Mobile Me handling my syncing, what other clouds would I ever need? Glad you asked.
Cloud storage is no different then actual hard drive storage. The same slightly warped theory on hard drives I have which forces me to fill up every available hard drive bay I own, and then to purchase more drives to keep around just in case one crashes, prevails in my online cloud storage. More is better, you never have enough, free is good, it’s like a restaurant buffet, grab it and devour it. The buffet cloud had opened it’s doors to me.
Somehow I had a Microsoft Live account, so I was able to sign up for a free 25 gigs of storage online with Microsoft’s SkyDrive. Then the temptation of Pogoplug’s Internet accessible Network storage device with 4 USB ports and Terabytes of possible storage was too much to pass. My home files were now available from anywhere with a connection. But it didn’t end there. Google Docs allowed me to store all my important documents in the cloud and access them from anywhere, create them from anywhere and share them with anyone. My addiction was getting fed like a buffet at Golden Corral. It started to spin out of control.
I joined Dropbox and received 2 gigs of shareable storage across all my computers for free. I opened an Evernote Pro account and have an unlimited filing cabinet in the cloud that searches all my information and OCRs it too! I downloaded and am trying out Cloudapp. It’s in beta and is still searching for an identity, but I am extremely intrigued with it’s possible uses. While we’re talking about specific cloud applications, don’t forget the unlimited space I have for photos my Smugmug Pro account, or my free Flickr space. Then for video I have an Exposure Room and Vimeo account.
This addiction for storage didn’t just appear with the advent of cloud storage. I traced it roots back many years ago when I bought my first overseas server, (which I still have and use) and several reseller accounts on virtual servers around the world. I may have only 5 and 10 gig storage on these remote boxes, but they still have a purpose, serving up websites and files.
How many Terabytes of storage online and offline do I actual own? I tend not to count it. It’s like asking a cigarette smoker with a bad habit how many packs he smokes a day. 0f you don’t really look, you’ll never have to see the addict you’ve become. Last weekend I looked closely and saw a problem. So will I do anything to fix it? Maybe, one day, but not right now. Maybe next December 31st I’ll make a New Year’s resolution to consolidate my online clouds. Just consolidate mind you, baby steps at first.
Back in early 2009 Cloud Engines unveiled the Pogoplug, a small device that connects external hard drives to the Internet, making personal files instantly shareable and accessible. The Pogoplug was designed for simplicity. Setup takes seconds and requires no networking configuration or installation. Users simply plug the Pogoplug into an electrical outlet, connect the supplied [...]
With the ever increasing sizes of media files, data files, and Time Machine backups, external storage is becoming a necessity for all Mac owners. This year at Macworld I met with the people from G-Technology concerning their G-Safe drives and they were nice enough to loan me one for a little while for a closer look.
The G-Safe is a self enclosed two drive Raid array. Like all G-Technology products, it is built, well, like a Mac. The case is rugged aluminum and the power supply is built-in. The name “G-Safe” is not clever marketing. This thing is built like a tank. No cheap molded plastic here. It includes FireWire 800 and USB 2.0 connectivity. With the right cable, it will work via FireWire 400. It also includes G-Technology’s 3-year warranty.
I have been interested in the Time Capsule since it was announced at Macworld. I backup four computers in my home and 3 of the 4 drives kept at my home are over three years old. So I’ve been thinking it was time to replace a few of them and I’ve also been obsessing over getting my “N” speed hardware operating at “N” speed with a separate router and leaving the old router for the “G” devices on my network. So there I was thinking I’d buy some hard drives and a new router after the new year and Apple shows up with the Time Capsule. It seemed the perfect fit.