Free Video Tutorial: Utilising Local Storage - Apple Mac, iPad & iPhone Tutorials from ScreenCastsOnline

Tutorial Topics

Search for Tutorials Show All Tutorials Pricing About Us

Tutorial Description

With so much discussion about cloud storage, one area that gets overlooked is local storage, and this week's show sets out to put that right!

I've recently been revamping my local storage, so in this week's show, I take you through the various devices I use to manage all my data locally. From a simple USB2 external drive through to an 8 drive monster. If you're looking to upgrade or replace your current local storage, you may find something that fits your needs in this overview.

Starting off with some simple units, I also take a look at some heavy duty storage kit, but not so heavy duty that they are out of scope of pro users, small businesses or even enthusiastic amateurs - the Drobo 5D and the Synology DS1813+. Each unit has a different use case so it's not really fair to compare them, the Drobo 5D is perfect for accessing large amounts of storage at incredible speed, whereas the NAS based Synology is perfect for sharing storage across your network, along with some other features you may not have realised it's capable of.

The full tutorial covers:

  • USB 2 External Drive
  • USB 3 Drive Enclosures
  • Portable Thunderbolt Drive
  • Expandable Drive Storage
  • Drobo 5D Overview
  • Synology DS1813+ Overview
  • Example Service - Plex

Video Tutorial Comments

(12 comments posted)

Thomas W Crosby jr

Hi Don
I was very interested in this show as I am planning to move from my MAC PRO to a new machine and will be required to have external storage no matter which new MAC I purchase.

One question that you did not address that I would like to know. That is can I add present drives i have in my MAC Pro, 2GB Seagate in a Mirrored Pair to the Drobo. As I remember their clams this seem possible. I am not sure what the Synolohy unit's claims. I understand I would lose the data but I have backups so that is not my concern but reusing good drives to same some money would be nice.


Hi Thomas, Definitely not in the Drobo. Any additional drives you add are wiped and reformatted in the BeyondRaid format. So all the drives in the Drobo are accessible as a single pool of storage that you can create volumes with. As far as I know, you have a better chance of inserting them in the Synology and managing them separately but I couldn't guarantee that 100%.

David Price

I'm downloading this now as I speak. I've been waiting for this show, Don! Thank you.

Hi Don,

Quick question on worst problem day. Say your on Holiday and a drive in your D5 or Diskstation dies. The system will rebuild and your still be online. When you get back your see a red light on the system. If a second drive fails during the time a new drive is in the post will the drobo or disk station rebuild again and run from 3 drives? The above presumes Dual disk redundancy is not enabled.


Hi Chris, The system wouldn't rebuild, it would just cope with the disk loss. If dual disk redundancy is not enabled and a second disk goes down, I think you have a problem. The data would not be accessible or recoverable.

Robert Staflin

Great show, as always!

Two things hit me when I watched it:
1. The "turn table" used for showing the Drobo 5D and the Synology 1813+, where can I find something like that?
2. Do you think you'll ever put together something about 3D printing? Comparing different 3D printers would be very interesting (I bought a MakerBot Replicator 2 a couple of months back - great stuff), and there's so many new printers showing up. Also - even more interesting would be different ways of making 3D models, such as 3D scanning and software for taking multiple photos and making it a 3D model etc.


That turntable was a "lazy susan". You should be able to pick one up from a kitchen store ;-) Although I've not yet got into 3D printers, I'm sure one is in my not too distant future!

Pal Anders Dramstad

Great show, Don. I would love to see a whole show the Synology in future. There's so much potential for use that I previously havn't thought about. Keep up the good work

Paul Holloway

Hi, Don,
One question occurred to me as I was watching this episode. Now that larger capacity thumb drives are becoming available, could one be used as an attached drive? For example, could I use a 128 gigabyte thumb drive to back up my 100 gigabyte MacBook Pro?
Thanks very much and I look forward to future episodes.


Hi Paul, Absolutely, and if it's a USB 3.0 thumb drive, you'll get stellar speeds too!

Rally Barnard

Don, am I correct in understanding that the Drobo 5 cannot be configured to have individual volumes? (That is what will be necessary with the new Mac Pro, since we must put those disks currently inside the Pro into an external enclosure).


Hi Rally, Not physical volumes. All the drives in the Drobo get pooled into a single storage pool that you can then divided into logical volumes or partitions. You can't insert a drive from another machine without it being formatted an added to the pool. If you wanted a thunderbolt drive bay that allowed you to mount as JBOD - Just a bunch of drives - you'd need to take a look at the Pegasus drives

Posting comments is restricted to ScreenCastsOnline members only.

Sign Up

ScreenCastsONLINE Monthly Magazine

Ember & Pixa - Organise Your Images tutorial is also available to watch in Issue 13 of the ScreenCastsOnline Monthly As a Premium member, this back issue may be available to you for free, or if published before you became a member, is available for individual purchase as a back issue in the ScreenCastsOnline Monthly Mag application.

Available on the App Store