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Ask HN: Where do you store your media files?
3 points by dhackner 1410 days ago | hide | past | web | 8 comments | favorite
I'm upgrading machines and doing some housecleaning. My code goes in Github, my files go into Dropbox... but how about my music/movies/pictures? I don't have a huge library; on the scale of 100-200gb. What is everyone's preferred storage method? I was just about to setup a NAS drive or time capsule but then started to consider whether I'm not just better off with just a bigger Dropbox account or Google Drive, etc. Do people find it worth it to store everything on a cloud server? Thanks!



For big files, I separate it into "important" (photos/video I've taken), highly-categorized medium stuff, and unimportant.

Important is backed up on 2 colo servers, CrashPlan, spinning storage at home, and some USB drives kept offline (at home and in storage). Flickr also has most of my photos, except for anything sensitive, and I'm transitioning to Facebook, Flickr, 500px combined.

Medium stuff is all mp3s, and is on a few drives and iTunes Match. Or games, at Steam or EA Origin.

Unimportant (TV shows, movies, etc.) I just keep on the seedbox and on a mac on the home theater system. I have maybe 2-3TB of storage total for those, so I periodically delete stuff I've watched or I don't care about.

I'm buying a Synology 1812+ and 8x3TB drives for a RAID6 NAS; probably 10TB will be random media library, and some will be backups, working space for audio/video/photo editing, etc. It would be nice to have a content library for visitors, girlfriend, etc. to use.


Hard drive. USB2. Cheaper per gigabyte, you own it rather than rent it, no internet connection necessary.

Consider how long it will simply take to upload all your stuff. Assume 2.3MBit upload (ADSL2+ with Annex M). You have 200GBytes = 204,800MBytes = 209,715,200KBytes = 1,717,986,918,400 bits to upload. At 2,300,000 bits/sec, that will take 746,950 seconds = 12,449 minutes = 207 hours = 8.6 days. Even with fibre broadband (10Mbit/sec?) it will take you two or three days. Or, you can expect ~250Mbit/sec write from any old USB2 hard drive you buy, so you'll be done in an hour or two.

Of course, if you have access to a decent internet connection, and there's no problem your using it for personal stuff, or you're just more patient than me, online storage has much to commend it.


Very convincing argument. Any advice for painless ways to set it up as a network drive (after the initial data transfer via USB)?


I'm afraid not - I just use a USB2 hub. I've got no need for more, as I only use one computer.


Dropbox is roughly $1/Gb per year... So you would be looking at $100-$200/year going that route. If you are paying that much for your content storage, understand you are paying a premium for the convenience of cloud storage.

If you don't need web access to your content you are certainly better off financially simply buying a 1TB external hardrive. They can be had for $50 these days.

Is price or the convenience of the cloud more important to you? I personally have opted for the external route.


Convenience would be nice so that I don't need to carry movies on my laptop and could stream them, but perhaps that is a bit move work than necessary.

I was considering buying and partitioning a time capsule to use as both external storage for media and as a time machine backup. The wireless setup is nice since it becomes more transparent.


I uploaded all my photographs (some 100 gb) to Google Drive. They're way cheaper than Dropbox at the moment. For a moment I considered setting up a server for file storage in the basement, but I calculated energy bill would be more than what I pay for the cloud.


Box.net has 50GB for free. don't remember when I got this but it's the cheapest I'v found




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