Is it possible to make any external HD network capable? (like Time Capsule)
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  1. #1
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    Default Is it possible to make any external HD network capable? (like Time Capsule)

    So computer is rarely sitting in my room long enough for it to back up. I'd like to be able to take an external HD and setup it as networked drive that would appear as soon as i'm on my home network. Is it possible to do this without your external hd being specifically designed for it, like a Time Capsule?

  2. #2
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    Depends on your OS, and I am not familiar with Time Capsule, but it sounds possible.

  3. #3
    Tech Mentor sparkbro's Avatar
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    Would be pretty easy to hack a little app together to search for a certain drive on a network if its set up properly... But i think there would be issues in regards to how long a backup would take and the overall logistics in the backup...

    I'm sure theres an app already out there for this kind of thing
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    This might be overkill but have you considered a drobo? http://www.drobo.com/products/profes...robo/index.php

    PS: on a mac it will automatically reconnect to the mounted volume as needed (similar to how a timecapsule works)
    Last edited by GeekGod; 06-04-2012 at 10:59 AM.

  5. #5
    Tech Guru space monkey's Avatar
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    Doesn't Western Digital have an external HD that hook directly into your router? Sorry i can't be fussed to find it but can later tonight when im home from work

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    Tech Guru mostapha's Avatar
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    Yes and no.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Network-attached_storage

    There are devices to do that with any hard drive you want, but there's not a "SATA to ethernet" adapter or anything like that.

  7. #7

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    Not sure if you'd look into this but here

    http://www.hypershop.com/CloudFTP-p/cftp-black.htm

    Let's you make any external a wireless storage device.

  8. #8
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    actually after a bit of digging I found this is quite easy for OS X. You just plug in your external drive on another computer (iMac) enable file sharing on that computer and add the external drive to accessible folders. Then when you connect to that computer you can select that networked drive as a time machine back up. Mind you it is slow as hell (showing 18 days to back up 779 GB) to do the initial backup wirelessly so it might be a good idea to do the back up on a wired connection first then turn it into a networked backup.

  9. #9
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    It is slow because you are sending the data over the network, and even a wired connection is not going to be super fast, probably just 2x faster for 100mbit (9 days) and 20x faster for gigabit-- still a full day, and slow for future incremental update.

    It would probably be best to write a cron script, RT work queue or an onload script for the hardware to just check the existence of a specific network or network computer and perform the backup if any files have changed or been added. I work with Linux on a daily basis so this seems easy for me but I am not sure about your technical background. Some of the details depend on your network, the hardware being used, etc.

    If you connect the hard drive directly to the computer you are trying to backup data from, it will be much faster. This is a consideration you need to make: how often will data be added/changed? How much data will that be and how long will those ongoing backups take? Is that amount of time ok?

    In short the answer to your initial question is: definitely, yes. The question is: How difficult will it be and is that requirement a deal-breaker for you? If you're happy with the solution you found, it will probably be significantly less complicated to setup, but very slow.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by binary View Post
    It would probably be best to write a cron script, RT work queue or an onload script for the hardware to just check the existence of a specific network or network computer and perform the backup if any files have changed or been added.
    That's what Time Machine does. It's basically a front-end for rsync and creates a hard link on the backup drive instead of copying the file again if it's unchanged.

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