[kwlug-disc] Offline/offsite archival data storage

Digimer lists at alteeve.ca
Wed Oct 16 12:37:51 EDT 2013

How you solve this depends a lot on what resources you have available to

Personally, I do the following;

At the office and at home I have a couple home-build storage boxes
(low-power computer with oodles of hard drive space).

Each night, I run a simple backup script on my laptop (really just a
pile of rsync calls) to push the data to either box. I've got free
bandwidth after 2am, so I generally schedule these backups to run then.
This gets my data backed up locally (for quick access) and remotely (for
disaster recovery).

I also have some servers out there, so both storage boxes also call out
each night and rsync down the server data as well. So within 24h, all my
data is in at least three places (source, home storage, office storage).

When I travel, when bandwidth is restricted, I keep a USB drive in my
hotel room that I backup my laptop to each night. When actually
travelling, I keep this drive in a separate bag from my laptop. Not
ideal "offsite", but it does the job while on the road.

If you can't run a server at your work, then an alternate setup I've
seen is to have three(+) USB drives. Leave the unused ones at a
bank/friends house and whenever you can, take the oldest one to the
remote location and bring the next one home. With three drives, you will
never have to have all three copies in the same place at the same time.

Hope this helps.


On 16/10/13 12:20, Colin Mackay wrote:
> Good afternoon, KWLuggers!
> I have been giving off-site data storage a once over again.  Google
> searches keep pointing me to spending $$$ to upload data to 'the cloud',
> but I really don't want to throw all my family photos and whatnot into
> the cloud and hope something doesn't shut down due to financial or
> government issues (MegaUpload).  Perhaps I'm too much of a control freak
> to hand my precious data to 'the cloud'.
> I don't want to resort to online and want to avoid monthly fees, however
> a small initial investment is alright.  I'm looking at around 200 GB of
> data.  127GB are family pictures and videos.  Damn DSLR' images and
> 1080p videos take up a lot. :D
> So my question to you folks, is what options are there for an offline /
> offsite data store?
> A few thoughts I had were to copy contents to an external HDD, then
> place it somewhere secure, like a safety deposit box (which I already
> have), but how long can I expect the data to last?  USB sticks?  SSD's? 
> LTO tapes?  How often are replacements required?
> Another thought just sprung to mind while writing this...  A local WLAN
> (mesh?) network.  You store your stuff, encrypted, at one or more
> friends house over the air.  I wonder if a system like that exists?
> I'd appreciate suggestions, comments, etc...
> P.S. and FYI:
> Currently I have a RAID 1 storage volume (2GB) that rsyncs nightly to an
> external 2GB.  But it's all sitting in my basement.
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