Backups, redux

Following on my trials and tribulations of getting backup routine going for my NAS, I’m pleased to announce I’m more-or-less there!

Kingwin EZ-Dock EZD-2535

Based on the price-comparisons I did I decided on a Kingwin EZ-Dock EZD-2535 and a couple Western Digital Blue Caviar 320GB SATA2 drives. As soon as these arrived in the mail I set the un-opened box aside, played with my kids, made dinner, went for a walk, bathed the kids, put them to bed, had desert with my wife and watched a of TV. Then the next day instead of TV I opened the box and headed down to the office to play with my new toys!!!

There’s two things that you must absolutely know:

  1. When backing up over USB you should enable Fast USB Writes (or whatever your system calls it). This allows asynchronous access to the USB drive and makes an incredibly huge improvement in speed – just don’t forget to un-mount your drive before disconnecting to make sure all the buffers are cleared and your data has completed writing. And;
  2. SATA connectors have a pull rating of about 50 cycles!

Taken from the Western Digital Interface Guide:

This is an important feature since eSATA cables and connectors are designed for 5000 insertion and removal cycles while internal SATA cables and connectors are designed for only 50 insertion and removal cycles.

So on a monthly rotation schedule my drives should last about 50 / 12 = 4 years before the SATA connector gives out.

I’m also going to look into getting a case or protective cover for the drives since the front is nicely protected but the backside exposes the circuit board and a ribbon connector.

Cross-posted on Cameron-Schultz at Backups, redux.