Getting a NAS - what do I need to think about?

Discussion in 'iPad General Discussions' started by Laban, Apr 25, 2011.

  1. JJK

    JJK
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    Have looknas well to the Dlink DNS-323. It is a two-bay NAS

    6 years ago it was an impulsive buynfrom my side. The thing is still running. Got +100k Itunes songs and 10k photo's for Aperture on it. It is also not the fastest around, but so far it is doing his job.

    Soon I plan to upgrade to a 4 or 6 bay NAS and the Dlink will be used elsewhere in the house.

    Sent from my iPad using iPF
     
  2. RAC

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    I have MBWE too. It uses very little power (it certainly produces no heat) and is always ready for action and works well with FileBrowser, iFiles etc.
     
  3. donka

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    Yip, great NAS provided you don't have top end power user requirements. Streams 1080p content perfectly to my WD TV Live. I even customised the downloader applet to allow batch downloading overnight while my laptop is off. I would quite happily buy another of these.
     
  4. Laban

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    I'm thinking about the Qnap TS-412. It's a bit expensive but having 4 disks is tempting when it comes to RAID.

    A less expensive model would be D-Link DNS-320.

    Anyone using the Qnap or Dlink (or maybe a similar Synology)?
     
  5. Biggysmallz

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    This question may not be connected to this thread but while reading it, something crossed my mind: Is it possible to have itunes in a cloud?
     
  6. donka

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    Unfortunately no. Many NAS devices offer an iTunes server function but that is only to serve up the media library, you still need a Mac or PC to run the iTunes client software.
     
  7. Biggysmallz

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    Thanks for your response.
     
  8. JJK

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    Not only that. The 4 drives give you also a lot of storage. The QNap comes good out of the reviews. They also have an active forum. You could go there to have a look.

    The Dlink is a lower end model, but still a good choice. As I mentioned before. i have been happy with mine for many years.

    Sent from my iPad using iPF
     
  9. Lagranger

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    Media streaming

    Although a few posts have touched on this, I thought I'd highlight media streaming from a NAS (if that is even a consideration for you).

    If you want to stream Apple DRM'ed media (protected content you bought via iTunes, basically) then you really can't stream directly from the NAS without a Mac/PC running iTunes, as noted previously.

    On the other hand, if you're planning to play your own movies stored on the NAS that you've already transcoded into iOS-compatible .mp4 files, then you want to look for a unit that supports the streaming protocol you decide to use. Currently the two most popular choices are UPnP/DLNA and SMB/CIFs shares.

    For UPnP/DLNA you'll need a compatible player such as BUZZ Player HD or MLPlayer. (As an aside, XBMC is a great and free multitplatform UPnP/DLNA player for desktop machines)

    Another option is that some player apps will allow streaming over SMB/CIFS shares, so you need an app that supports streaming over this type of fileshare. The tricky thing is that to properly support actual streaming (i.e. allowing your video to start playing immediately w/o having to download the entire movie file to the iPad first, scrubbing, etc) the embedded SMB server in the NAS must support it. How can you tell? It can be difficult, since not all NAS units reveal that type of info. One approach is to research the various media player apps and see if they list compatible NAS devices. Another way is to get the NAS first then just start trying a bunch of apps to see which ones work.

    Anyway, hope this helps. I keep a bunch of the family's movies on a homebuilt NAS/media-server and it saves a huge amount space in not having to sync them onto the iPad just to watch.
     
  10. RAC

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    As an example, the Western Digital MWBE NAS a built in Twonky Media Server. I don't understand its capabilities and haven't really explored just what it can do but I think that it is a good illustration of what to look for. This actually supports iTunes but (sigh) only via an online PC I think.

    Also, FileBrowser, iFiles etc will play pictures and media. I am not sure this counts as streaming. You certainly don't explicitly load the files onto the iPad but they may be temporarily downloaded.
     

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