How to Set Up Network Attached Storage (NAS)- Complete Beginners Guide

How to set up your own network attached storage (NAS) to enable remote access to information

You want to get remote access to your documents, is there a better way other than making a set up of your own Network-attached storage (NAS)?

One of the best thoughts most people have is creating a file server that will link multiple devices. As a result, they manage to link the various TVs and store information. Having a centralized server is nice because you can save photos, videos, and other content on the server.

A considerable percentage of people want to learn how to set their own NAS. We have come up with a practical guide that will help you to do the setup quickly. We will also learn a few things that regard the NAS and the server.

What is Network attached storage (NAS)?

It is not automatic that you know what NAS is. NAS is a way design and a method that allows you to attach a hard drive to the network you use. By doing so, you will have many devices getting access to the network allowing for content sharing.

This method allows you to make backups that will allow for quick information access. A remote file server is one thing that will make it quite simple for you to access information. You have an option to access any information from any point you want so long as there is an internet connection.

The NAS enables you to access the content online. It is also an excellent way to ensure you move with your documents without the need of carrying any storage devices.

Things you need to set up network attached storage (NAS)

You need to have a specific thought about the things you need for making network-attached storage set up. Some are software, but some of them are hardware. Below are the fundamental and specific requirements that will conveniently work for you.

Home theater PC

HTPC is the first and essential thing you will need for the connection. A front-end HTPC is an excellent thing because it does not make it necessary to keep the media files or even tuners. However, you may have to build a media server yourself if you have to use the back-end applications.

A DIY media server can do all the heavy tasks and comes at a cost-friendly price. If you chose to use the Windows 10 HTPC server, you are safer because it is practical and straightforward to use. It has remarkable compatibility that allows you to do various tasks such as streaming. Its beauty is in using it from all your rooms.

Network-attached storage

NAS is another essential you will need as it allows you to store and access the files. The server is good because it allows you to share content via several platforms and portable devices. Now reliable backups have to work in such cases because one access point may fail.

NAS is effective because it allows you to share the content between various computers and devices. You can change the HDD without necessarily touching the Network-attached Storage server so long as you have the backups. Having some preparation that will work with the server is essential as it will allow you to make various changes.

Digital media receiver

Another essential thing is the digital media receiver. The work of the receiver is to allow for sharing within various rooms. It will also help in the management of the various apps such as apple and amazon TV.

When you have secondary devices operating in rooms such as online streamers, you will quickly and conveniently connect them using the media servers. Some are affordable, while some are slightly costly. There are various modules that you can buy within specific timelines.

Gigabit internet

Another essential you will need is the gigabit internet. You need wired ports to connect as they prove to be very effective when you have to share files. They also make the quality of the video and images stand out as also the speed of sharing content remains high.

You need a gigabit router with high speeds of at least 1Gbps as it can make the dimension slightly different.  The best ethernet cable is the cat6, as it allows for quick connection to the HTPC. It is effective as it will help in delivering high transfer speeds.

You will need to get access to the router remotely. What is a better way than having a gig connection?

Router

The best router is one that has built-in drivers. It makes an excellent option because it allows you to use dedicated NAS devices. Unfortunately, such routers will come at the high end making many people unable to acquire them.

The good news is that some models come at a friendlier price and will deliver outstanding performances. Apple users will also have an easy time using routers that have storages that conveniently work with NAS. You will also get other models that deliver excellently with most of your devices.

A good NAS router for this task should always have a USB port. It enables you to connect the various devices, especially those that use USB connections. Sharing content between sources becomes a simple task when you have such connections. Multiple devices will also have the chance to use the NAS.

Dedicated NAS Devices

Another convenient and pocket-friendly method is to get dedicated NAS devices. These devices come ready for use, and you will connect them up to start their use. You will get the devices in various stores both online and physically.

These options offer a less complicated, all-in-one solution. You will not waste time doing specific connections as they are a plug and play models.

Network Attached Storage (NAS) set up process

After getting all the requirements to set up the network-attached storage (NAS), the next thing will involve the actual setup process. This is how it goes.

Start with the NAS

You need to start by getting the NAS as there are many devices that you can always use. Due to the variation of speeds, you will need a device that will deliver the highest speeds. One challenge you will experience is the similar devices that are available in the market.

You can choose to buy one model and then continue with the process of upgrading much later. Models such as sinology deliver outstanding service as they also come with backup software. You can choose to use it with windows without experiencing data loss comfortably.

A good model will ensure that it will not shut off without backing the whole information up. Both the internal and the external factors should deliver the best outcomes. If the drivers come separately, then you will be in a better position. Provision to add some more hard drives in the future makes an ideal option.

Install hard drives

The other thing that you need to do is to install the hard drives. Most people get confused at this stage, especially when it comes to the selection of hard drives. NAS servers rarely come with drivers hence making it suitable to get some for yourself.

Getting two hard drives that have more than 1TB is the best option. Some are even as large as 6TB. Both of them should mirror data simultaneously. WD hard drives come in the blue or red color, which makes them quite reliable to use.

Using the options is okay, but if you get the red one, then you are better. It is more reliable than the WD green drive as it also has an extra warranty. The green ones are also under discontinuation, and also the larger you get, the more costly it is.

The importance of having an extra drive is that you will have a more reliable backup for your data. The installation process is simple as you will open the screws, connect the cables each in place, and then screw it back. Both the power and the SATA cables should connect in place.

Manage the storage

After you connect the drivers, you have now to manage each storage space. During the management process, you will do the mapping using sinology as it is easy. If you are a beginner, you will get the sinology software and then do the various management tasks on the drivers.

You will manage the hard disks, expand the storage and create the data capacities. Work on the internal and the external hard drives so that you have a backup. If you don’t do so, you expose yourself to data loss as there is no recovery disk.

A redundant array of independent disks operation helps in ensuring the disks work together. The outcome is that the information allows in the NAS gets to the disks simultaneously. You will set the raid levels depending on the number of disks you intend to use, as each disk will get the service differently.

Types of raids

There are 3 common types of RAIDs as follows;

RAID 0, which allows the maximum storage and will not provide a backup when one of the HDDs fails.  A good example comes when you have a 4TB drive, as it will allow the storage to maintain at 3.72TB.

RAID 1, on the other hand, provides storage of the two HDDs, and if one fails, the other one remains functioning. The storage for each is equal, meaning that you will not have adequate storage space if the two are small.

RAID 5 uses 3HDDs and makes the common HDD because it has enhanced performance. This one works even after the two arrays stop functioning. It is a better choice because it is safe too.

Create the media structure

The creation of a media structure is another thing you have to do. Once you have formatted the storage volume, it is good to set the access rights on the folder so that it is not anyone who can access it. The structure will have all the music staying together, videos, and other file formats together.

You also have an option to add things such as document and computer folder backups. What will happen is that the additional websites will allow you to store all kinds of data. After arrangement, you will have the NAS server presenting them in an order that allows you to manage the tasks and enjoy the various backups.

During the process, you will pick the content and then export it to the server. It works for images, videos, and music. An app such as the photo sync works better as you will enable the WebDAV option, which gives you room for the whole installation process.

On the app, you will visit the menu option and set the various parameters. You can then log in to make the various changes, after which you will click done.

The next thing is selecting the destination folder for the NAS and then changing the settings to meet your needs.  Immediately you complete, you will press the sync button to have the whole information getting synchronized.

Do the configuration

The last thing you do is the configuration between the NAS and the Media center. You will do the process after you have copied the files to the NAS drive. Some of the media centers you can use are windows media, Kodi, and the media portals.

You can use three major protocols to stream content from NAS. They include the Network file system, server message block, and universal plug and play. Each one comes with features that make it work differently and independently.

For most HTPC devices, the network file system proves to work best. It is common not to realize differences when using the NFS and the SMB. However, the NSF still proves to be the most effective and fast.

For the configuration process to be effective, there are procedures you must follow.  When using the NSF sharing, the following process works.

Visit the control panel, and then the NSF service, then click enable NSF. Then go to the shared folders under the control panel to pick the folder you want to work on and select NSF privileges. Now click create and then use the hostname to set a privilege as read-only.

You can use the same process for all the folders and content. Other forms of media will use the same or a slightly different method to do the same activity.

Conclusion

The big question here is if your files are safe in the event of data loss. It calls for having a reliable backup. NAS is here to solve your challenge. We have developed a solution for the storage challenge and a complete guide to help you achieve the mission. You can now use the step-by-step guide to set up your network-attached storage without getting technical help.

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