Starter network attached storage (NAS) recommendations (in 2022!)

Continuing the discussion from 654: Data Storage in 2022:

Welcome @James1 !

You’re looking for a NAS (pronounced naz, rhymes with snaz) (I have been corrected that this is pronounced ‘nass’, rhyming with ‘sass’ in enterprise environments), Network Attached Storage.
There are tons of options depending on your skill level, amount you want to spend, etc.

Cheap (US$100), moderately technical

Cheap, technical

Cheap (US$120+), least technical

  • A used Mac Mini with a drive attached or installed, such as from OWC Sales. Turn on File Sharing and you’re basically done.

Inexpensive (US$180), probably not technical

  • Something like a Western Digital personal cloud setup. But for my money, I’d go with a Synology over any of the drive manufacturer’s offerings.

Most of these options can do more than just provide backup space, such as serving video to devices, etc. but that’s a whole other can of worms to get into.

General advice: these are your backups, stick with brands that you see mentioned here and in other forums, and brands that people complain about the least.

From the suggestions above (and there are other intro systems), things get more expensive, and/or more technical.


A lot more information on these suggestions can be found in this TidBITS article by Ivan Drucker. Network Time Machine Backups: Moving on from the Time Capsule - TidBITS

Noting that if somebody is doing the NAS thing with a Mac Mini, AutoMounter is a lifesaver. :slight_smile:

Also, I use a Mini as a NAS, but that Mini has a DAS (“Direct Attached Storage”). Basically it’s a QNAP RAID array that the Mini uses, so the Mini does the computing and the QNAP does the storage. Kind of convoluted, but works well for me. :slight_smile:

Thank you all for your suggestions - appreciate it!

I am also looking at a NAS as a remote backup solution for a laptop (I’ve previously asked about it on this very site).

One thing I’ve learned about Synology that may or may not be useful for James: you can have one Synology back up to another on a different network. Basically, you can have your at-home backups, and have those back themselves up to a different location, which solves a big problem (although at some expense, since you’d be buying two Synologies).

I don’t know if this is also applicable to other NAS solutions.

1 Like