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post #1 of 52 Old 12-24-2019, 07:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Bluray movie storage

I have about 3000 movies and would like to digitally store them with full surround sound and play them when I want.

1. Is there a system that will do this that i can buy? Or a guide to build my own? Website I need to read?
2. What is the best copier/ripper that i can use to digitize the videos with surround sound?
3. What amount of storage would I need to not corrupt the quality of the video and audio for each BR?
4. What is the best movie Archiving program that may allow me to scan movies by sorts and then pick and play?
5. Once the movies are digitized how do you play them? Is it an HDMI cable from a computer to the receiver?
6. Is there a special computer that is needed for accessing the storage and sending the data to the receiver?
7. Where is the best place to buy hardware at a good price?

Thanks to everyone for help
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post #2 of 52 Old 12-24-2019, 08:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abruscim View Post
I have about 3000 movies and would like to digitally store them with full surround sound and play them when I want.
...
3. What amount of storage would I need to not corrupt the quality of the video and audio for each BR?
...
5. Once the movies are digitized how do you play them? Is it an HDMI cable from a computer to the receiver?
6. Is there a special computer that is needed for accessing the storage and sending the data to the receiver?
...
abruscim,

rdgrimes said (in 2012)

"Even with movie-only ripping you're still going to need 30-40 TB of storage space. So that's probably where you should start. An NAS system is the best route for the storage, and playback devices at each location with wired network. Any media box that supports HD audio and video in MKV or M2TS files will suffice for each location. SMB/NFS support for connecting to the NAS is standard in these media boxes.

Obviously you also need a networked PC with a BD drive or two for ripping, and appropriate software. Plan on 30-45 min per disc for ripping."

His advice still seems relevant.
If you want menus or UHD movies,
it's more demanding.

Carl
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post #3 of 52 Old 12-24-2019, 11:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abruscim View Post
I have about 3000 movies and would like to digitally store them with full surround sound and play them when I want.

2. What is the best copier/ripper that i can use to digitize the videos with surround sound?
3. What amount of storage would I need to not corrupt the quality of the video and audio for each BR?

5. Once the movies are digitized how do you play them? Is it an HDMI cable from a computer to the receiver?
2. MakeMKV is a good ripper that will do a 1:1 rip and preserve the original fidelity of both audio and video. There are other rippers, but with any ripper it is not a mindless process and requires some understanding and skill. There are threads here devoted to the process.

3. You did not specify the format of your movies. DVD movies are generally 6-8 GB/title. BluRay rips vary greatly in size (18-40GB) but I find a general rule of thumb is ~33 rips/TB of disk storage. That is for the main title video, the HD audio track and the English subtitle track.

5. A networked media player that will read the AV data from your storage and play it through your AVR to your HDTV. nVidia Shield Pro is probably the top one on the market.

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post #4 of 52 Old 12-24-2019, 11:24 AM
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Bluray movie storage

Quote:
Originally Posted by abruscim View Post
I have about 3000 movies and would like to digitally store them with full surround sound and play them when I want.

1. Is there a ... Website I need to read?
abruscim,

AVS is a good place.

I use a simple method: MakeMKV, a NAS, and a media player. The thread "RIPPING BLU-RAYS II" covers details of many methods. (This is its most recent post. Pointing at the first post didn't work.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonkennethrose View Post
Blu-Ray Ripper ....


Carl

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post #5 of 52 Old 12-24-2019, 11:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kelson View Post
2. MakeMKV is a good ripper that will do a 1:1 rip and preserve the original fidelity of both audio and video. There are other rippers, but with any ripper it is not a mindless process and requires some understanding and skill. There are threads here devoted to the process...
makemkv does NOT yield a 1:1 rip ever! It completely changes the internal structure of the disk. The only way to yield a 1:1 copy is an .iso container. Creating an .iso file is very easy and is a one button process.
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post #6 of 52 Old 12-24-2019, 06:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mlknez View Post
makemkv does NOT yield a 1:1 rip ever! It completely changes the internal structure of the disk. The only way to yield a 1:1 copy is an .iso container. Creating an .iso file is very easy and is a one button process.
While there is no question that an .iso rip yields a 1:1 rip of the entire disk, the term 1:1 is also commonly used to refer to the rip of a main title with no re-encoding of the video or audio. The AV data, not necessarily the file structure, is exactly the same as on the disk. That is the common usage I used.
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post #7 of 52 Old 12-25-2019, 04:59 AM
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MakeMKV allows you to rip just the main movie (or any other video file you specify) as well as whatever audio tracks or subtitles you wish to keep and simply ignores everything else. Ripping a disk to an iso image retains everything that was on the original disk including all of the extras and menus. Needless to say, ripping to an iso image requires more storage space than just ripping the main movie. The difference may not be all that much, but if you're talking about 3000 disks then the difference in storage requirements could be considerable. I rarely go back and look at any of the extra files on a disk so not having them along with the main movie is irrelevant to me. It's just a matter of personal preference.

The advantage of using MakeMKV vs ripping to iso images is that it doesn't require expensive software for playback or the use of a decrypting software for playback. MakeMKV strips out the encryption and allows the file to be played back on a multitude of apps and it doesn't cost you anything. However, keep in mind that MakeMKV is free only as long as it is still in beta release (it's been in beta release for years with no indication that it will change anytime soon). If you plan to use it a lot then I highly recommend purchasing a permanent key from the author to support the app. It's well worth the cost and still cheaper than buying a copy of both PowerDVD and AnyDVD HD.

I tried playing my disks in iso format years ago using PowerDVD and had nothing but problems. I tried MakeMKV and never looked back. There are a multitude of apps that can play mkv files, including Windows Media Center. Kodi is very popular as well as JRiver Media Center. Kodi is free whereas JRMC requires a paid license. Both apps will organize your media into libraries with cover art and descriptions. Emby is another popular choice, but I've never tried it so I can't say much about it. You can also use MPC-HC, MPC-BE, VLC Media Player, and DVD Fab and probably many others.

An NAS is the easiest solution for storage, but can be fairly expensive and limited in the amount of disks you can install in it. With the number of disks you plan to rip I would highly recommend getting a standalone server You can build one using any old desktop PC and then expand it as your storage needs increase. You can buy used turnkey Supermicro 24-bay server racks on ebay for about $400 shipped, give or take. There's a long thread here that talks about servers (look for the one that discusses the Norco alternative rack). There are various software server apps available including unRAID, SnapRAID, FlexRAID, and Windows Server. I've been using unRAID for over 10 years and I love it, but it does require a paid license. SnapRAID is free. FlexRAID was very popular but the author seems to have abandoned the project. Windows Server is like any other Microsoft product. I prefer unRAID because it runs from a flash drive and has its own operating system. The others require installing an OS, usually Windows or Linux, and running the app on them. The disadvantage is that you tie up an SATA port that could be used for a data drive plus you have another OS to maintain. There are pros and cons to all of them and you can search for threads that compare them as well as google them on the internet to see how they match up to your needs.

The advantage to having a server is that you can access it from any PC or device on your network. I have the Plex Docker installed on my unRAID server so I can access the media using Plex on any of my streaming boxes like the Nvidia Shield or Roku. The number of apps and plug-ins you can install are huge and the number increases all the time.
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post #8 of 52 Old 12-25-2019, 09:36 AM
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1. Purchase an 8-bay Network Attached Storage (NAS) device (currently 14TB drives are on sale for $200 at best buy)
2. Add 2 or 3 UHD friendly Blu-ray drives to your pc (number of drives = number of discs that can copy at once)
2a. You may have to purchase the DVDFab Drive Tool to get your drive able to properly use UHD discs
3. Add an Nvidia graphics card to your pc that is 1060 or better
4. Purchase and use AnyDVD HD and use it on your pc to copy your discs to the NAS as .iso files
5. Purchase and use DVDFab Media Player on your pc to play the files. It also has a built in library feature.

The above will get you able to save and play all of your videos in full resolution with none of the material gone at all.

Your computer will need to be wired to a network switch along with the NAS. The NAS can (and should) be in separate room so that the noise of the drives will not bother you when watching your movies. Your computer will be connected by HDMI to your Audio/Video Receiver or Preamp/Processor. Building your computer is relatively simple or you could just purchase one with the above additions that I mentioned. Hardware can be purchased at Microcenter, Frys, Best Buy, Newegg or any other outlet that sells computer parts.

Each blue ray takes about 40 minutes to copy and each UHD takes about 75 minutes

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post #9 of 52 Old 12-25-2019, 10:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abruscim View Post
I have about 3000 movies and would like to digitally store them with full surround sound and play them when I want.

1. Is there a system that will do this that i can buy? Or a guide to build my own? Website I need to read?
2. What is the best copier/ripper that i can use to digitize the videos with surround sound?
3. What amount of storage would I need to not corrupt the quality of the video and audio for each BR?
4. What is the best movie Archiving program that may allow me to scan movies by sorts and then pick and play?
5. Once the movies are digitized how do you play them? Is it an HDMI cable from a computer to the receiver?
6. Is there a special computer that is needed for accessing the storage and sending the data to the receiver?
7. Where is the best place to buy hardware at a good price?

Thanks to everyone for help
1. Yes, many of us use our Windows PC. Guides are abundant including the link in my signature.

2. Imo, the "best" would be the most versatile and not limited. DVDFab is one of the most popular.

3. You have about 3000 titles. A DVD rip might be about 5GB. An HD title might be about 45GB. A UHD title might be around 85GB. You would have to do your own math but start with largest HDD's you can afford. Like a tool box, buy more than you think you need. It will always fill up.

4. This is called a front end. Software to catalog and access your rips. Many enthusiasts enjoy Kodi with external players which covers anything and everything you could possibly throw at it.

5. For example: We browse our front end library and press enter on the title we select. The title plays. When finished, the front end returns ready for navigation to our next desire. Yes, modern setups using HDMI are usually video card to AVR to display.

6. No. Your storage is the HDD's you add at your pace to your PC. You can share this data so other devices can access if you want. A separate NAS storage is not necessary.

7. While most retail stores you visit price match and have some things in stock, most online stores have competitive pricing already and as good or better selections than walk in brick and mortar's. This is why many have went belly up and more are slated to close such as Fry's imo. Online stores are abundant. A simple search will reveal many popular trustworthy businesses.

You've asked some very subjective questions. You will get many different opinions. Some to help you objectively, and others to help you empty your wallet unnecessarily. Try to make wise decisions from the beginning so you don't find yourself entering a rabbit hole instead of enjoying your home theatre experience.

Happy holidays!

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post #10 of 52 Old 12-25-2019, 10:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mlknez View Post
1. Purchase an 8-bay Network Attached Storage (NAS) device (currently 14TB drives are on sale for $200 at best buy)
2. Add 2 or 3 UHD friendly Blu-ray drives to your pc (number of drives = number of discs that can copy at once)
2a. You may have to purchase the DVDFab Drive Tool to get your drive able to properly use UHD discs
3. Add an Nvidia graphics card to your pc that is 1060 or better
4. Purchase and use AnyDVD HD and use it on your pc to copy your discs to the NAS as .iso files
5. Purchase and use DVDFab Media Player on your pc to play the files. It also has a built in library feature.

The above will get you able to save and play all of your videos in full resolution with none of the material gone at all.

Your computer will need to be wired to a network switch along with the NAS. The NAS can (and should) be in separate room so that the noise of the drives will not bother you when watching your movies. Your computer will be connected by HDMI to your Audio/Video Receiver or Preamp/Processor. Building your computer is relatively simple or you could just purchase one with the above additions that I mentioned. Hardware can be purchased at Microcenter, Frys, Best Buy, Newegg or any other outlet that sells computer parts.

Each blue ray takes about 40 minutes to copy and each UHD takes about 75 minutes
1. An 8-bay NAS can easily run you $1,000 or more.
2. The Pioneer UHD drive for a PC is about $150
2a. I don't have any knowledge of this so I can't respond
3. Only needed if the PC is connected to your 4K HDTV or monitor
4. No need to buy AnyDVD HD if you use MakeMKV
5. No need to buy DVDFab Media Player if you use MakeMKV

The items identified by mlknez will most definitely allow you to save and play your videos in full resolution without missing any of the materials, but at an extremely high cost. You'll have to decide if having the extra fluff on a disc is worth the extra cost to you. You can still rip to iso files, but I would not recommend the NAS as they are extremely overpriced considering the alternatives.

A used 24-bay Supermicro server rack will cost between $400-450 on ebay, shipped. The ones I saw most recently have just one 8-port SAS controller but you can buy more as your needs arise. Running parity on a 14 TB drive can easily take you about four days or more. I currently have 30 drives in my array (28 data and 2 parity) using unRAID Pro with the maximum drive size at 8TB. My server currently has a capacity of 155TB and counting. I actually have a 24-bay rack and an 8-bay rack connected in tandem. The extra two bays are used for a cache drive and for performing a pre-clear on any new drives.
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post #11 of 52 Old 12-25-2019, 11:30 AM
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I will agree that @mlknez, @brazen1, and @captain_video have all given you solid advise. Only thing I would add is that you need not go out and buy everything at once. Storing 3000 movies is no small feat.


I started collecting DVD's a long time ago (before bluray) and before I knew it had over 2300 dvd's and storing all those cases started to become a problem in an apt. I ended up selling all those, just to start again, this time ended with 2400 dvd's. I figured out if I wanted to watch these again, I would need to figure out a way to save them. Went through many programs to rip the dvd to a smaller size to fit on the smaller hard drives at the time. The containers were all avi. I knew my computer could hold many files with adding hard drives but then the computer cases were getting larger to handle all those drives.


I started to research a NAS and Synology and Unraid topped my list. I ended up building a small Unraid server that would hold 5 drives for about 200 dollars. I used the hard drives I had in my computer in the Unraid. Never had run a NAS so this small server was a good test subject. Needless to say, it performed excellent. I used this until I started to run out of space. At this point I was figuring out my next Unraid server that would be expandable but also capable of doing more. This new build is what I am still running now for over 9 years. I have 15 data drives with 2 parity drives at 150TB worth of storage. With Unraid the beauty of it is that you can mix hard drives. This server started with all 2TB drives but expanded as I needed more space. All my drives now are at 10TB and I am using over 55% of the storage. With my old drives that can out, I have set up a second server with 80TB storage that I am using for my limited UHD movies.


Start small and work your way up. This isn't a race. Once you have a handle on what you are doing, your home theater experience will be so much more enjoyable with just a click of the remote.


This is my current server of over 9 years now. It resides in my attic.
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post #12 of 52 Old 12-25-2019, 05:02 PM
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I will agree that @mlknez, @brazen1, and @captain_video have all given you solid advise. Only thing I would add is that you need not go out and buy everything at once. Storing 3000 movies is no small feat.

I started collecting DVD's a long time ago (before bluray) and before I knew it had over 2300 dvd's and storing all those cases started to become a problem in an apt. I ended up selling all those, just to start again, this time ended with 2400 dvd's. I figured out if I wanted to watch these again, I would need to figure out a way to save them. Went through many programs to rip the dvd to a smaller size to fit on the smaller hard drives at the time. The containers were all avi. I knew my computer could hold many files with adding hard drives but then the computer cases were getting larger to handle all those drives.

I started to research a NAS and Synology and Unraid topped my list. I ended up building a small Unraid server that would hold 5 drives for about 200 dollars. I used the hard drives I had in my computer in the Unraid. Never had run a NAS so this small server was a good test subject. Needless to say, it performed excellent. I used this until I started to run out of space. At this point I was figuring out my next Unraid server that would be expandable but also capable of doing more. This new build is what I am still running now for over 9 years. I have 15 data drives with 2 parity drives at 150TB worth of storage. With Unraid the beauty of it is that you can mix hard drives. This server started with all 2TB drives but expanded as I needed more space. All my drives now are at 10TB and I am using over 55% of the storage. With my old drives that can out, I have set up a second server with 80TB storage that I am using for my limited UHD movies.


Start small and work your way up. This isn't a race. Once you have a handle on what you are doing, your home theater experience will be so much more enjoyable with just a click of the remote.
I basically did the same thing. I started off with just a few drives and added more and upgraded my unRAID license as needed to increase storage. I started with a spare computer case and an old motherboard and associated parts that I had on hand and built my first server. I loved that I could mix and match hard drives of not only varying sizes but also IDE and SATA drives as well. I added various drive cages that could hold more drives and used several external drive bays to hold the extra drives. Then I discovered this thread and got myself a 24-bay server rack on ebay. It came with everything I needed to run a server. I already had unRAID so all I had to do was install my hard drives and plug in the USB drive that contained unRAID. I have since upgraded the drives multiple times and added an 8-bay rack to the array that I modified so it interfaced with the motherboard in the 24-bay rack. I have also replaced the internal hardware several times to upgrade it.

Every time I see someone recommend a NAS I just shake my head. They're extremely convenient and easy to set up but ridiculously overpriced for what you get. You can buy yourself an old PC on ebay for next to nothing that will essentially do the same thing as an expensive NAS. I would rather save the money and put it to better use, such as buying the hard drives to put into the server or paying for an unRAID Pro license.
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post #13 of 52 Old 12-26-2019, 08:21 AM
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This is the original posters first post on this forum ever! They do not seem to be technical at all. I was offering the easiest solution optimizing for functionality, not cost.

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post #14 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 05:43 AM
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This is the original posters first post on this forum ever! They do not seem to be technical at all. I was offering the easiest solution optimizing for functionality, not cost.
I see that, but putting together an unRAID server is quite simple. You can buy a pre-configured flash drive from Lime Technology and plug it into the server or PC. All you have to do is set it up to boot from the flash drive and you're good to go. The UI is easy to use and the only thing the OP would have to do is assign the drives in the array and start it up. You can access the unRAID manual right from the web GUI. I was offering a simple solution at a fraction of the cost of an expensive NAS. I have no idea what kind of community support there is for Synology or other NAS boxes, but unRAID has a huge support system with lots of tech savvy people willing to help. A NAS may be a fairly simple solution, but I'm sure it still requires some setup. I'm just trying to offer the OP a more cost effective solution that allows for greater flexibility than a NAS box.

I looked into 8-bay NAS boxes and they can run anywhere from about $900 up to about $2500. The 24-bay Supermicro server chassis I recommended runs about $450 and has three times the number of drive bays. The only extras the OP would have to purchase are possibly some extra 8-port SAS controllers at a cost of about $40 each on ebay plus a breakout cable for each controller to plug into the backplane. The one thing that I dislike about pre-configured PCs or NAS devices is that they can sometimes be difficult to upgrade. About the only thing you can upgrade is the hard drives. You can certainly add larger hard drives to the box to increase storage, but there's a catch. I just ran a parity check on my 28-disk, dual 8 TB parity disk setup and it took about 54 hours to complete. Imagine how long that would take with 14 TB drives. The good news is that unRAID still allows you to access the data while it's running a parity check. However, when you replace a drive and rebuild the data from parity you do not have that same access and will have to wait until the rebuild is complete. The good news is that rebuilding the data on a new drive from parity takes less than half the time of running a full parity check with dual parity drives. You would probably only need a single parity drive with an 8-disk array so a parity check would run a lot faster in that configuration.

I'm not trying to bash NAS devices because they do what they're designed to do. But like most anything, you pay a premium price for convenience. I prefer the flexibility to modify my computers or servers the way I like and not be stuck with a fixed configuration. If I can have that flexibility at a lower cost then it's a win-win for me. It's why I will always prefer a desktop PC over a laptop or a HTPC vs a Tivo. If all you want is a plug and play solution and money is no object, then by all means get yourself a NAS.
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post #15 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 09:01 AM
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I have 11 SATA ports on my MB. Each has a HDD attached. Everything is local. I have no SMB or NFS nightmares. When I run out of data storage, I acquire a large external drive. I remove the smallest drive out of my HTPC and swap it with the new larger shucked external drive. Then I USB attach the old smaller external drive and use it for backup. I plug the power supplies of the external drive(s) into daisy chained power strips so that they are only powered and in use when I need to back something up. These backup drives equal the data drives in the HTPC. I just copy and paste as needed for perfect 1:1 preserved data. If any drive goes south, I simply copy and paste back what was lost. No big deal.

I don't need a separate server, NAS, or anything else to hold all this data or back it up. I already have the HTPC I built which is nothing more than a PC with the bells and whistles I require. It's all I maintain. It doesn't break and if it did I just replace a part. Upgrading is a breeze too. I don't need built in backup PSU's or CPU's, etc. I don't require uninterrupted repairs after all, I'm not serving a corporation of workers here at home. Why would I need or want another PC/NAS/Server to do a job the HTPC already does? To me, it's a waste of time, money, space, electricity and maintenance. I don't need any RAID arrays whether it's free or costly. I don't need parity drive(s) and their wasted cost and space. Instead they're able to be put to use. If I want to serve clients, I simply share the data using built in Windows settings designed to do exactly that. All the security and ability is already part of Windows. I also use all of this as my one and only workstation to compute as well as serve HTPC duties. I don't think anything else is as cost effective, reliable, or simplistic either.

We're all passionate how we do things. I'm pretty happy with mine. There is no right or wrong ways. I think those wanting to dabble in things they don't fully understand (like perhaps the OP and lurkers) are often pointed to so many alternatives, it just becomes more confusing to them, often following the majority. I usually don't follow the herd. Much of it is marketed just to gain access to wallets imo. I think they should know there is more than one way to skin a cat (sorry cat lovers)

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post #16 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 09:03 AM
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I have 11 SATA ports on my MB. Each has a HDD attached. Everything is local. I have no SMB or NFS nightmares. When I run out of data storage, I acquire a large external drive. I remove the smallest drive out of my HTPC and swap it with the new larger shucked external drive. Then I USB attach the old smaller external drive and use it for backup. I plug the power supplies of the external drive(s) into daisy chained power strips so that they are only powered and in use when I need to back something up. These backup drives equal the data drives in the HTPC. I just copy and paste as needed for perfect 1:1 preserved data. If any drive goes south, I simply copy and paste back what was lost. No big deal.

I don't need a separate server, NAS, or anything else to hold all this data or back it up. I already have the HTPC I built which is nothing more than a PC with the bells and whistles I require. It's all I maintain. It doesn't break and if it did I just replace a part. Upgrading is a breeze too. I don't need built in backup PSU's or CPU's, etc. I don't require uninterrupted repairs after all, I'm not serving a corporation of workers here at home. Why would I need or want another PC/NAS/Server to do a job the HTPC already does? To me, it's a waste of time, money, space, electricity and maintenance. I don't need any RAID arrays whether it's free or costly. I don't need parity drive(s) and their wasted cost and space. Instead they're able to be put to use. If I want to serve clients, I simply share the data using built in Windows settings designed to do exactly that. All the security and ability is already part of Windows. I also use all of this as my one and only workstation to compute as well as serve HTPC duties. I don't think anything else is as cost effective, reliable, or simplistic either.

We're all passionate how we do things. I'm pretty happy with mine. There is no right or wrong ways. I think those wanting to dabble in things they don't fully understand (like perhaps the OP and lurkers) are often pointed to so many alternatives, it just becomes more confusing to them, often following the majority. I usually don't follow the herd. Much of it is marketed just to gain access to wallets imo. I think they should know there is more than one way to skin a cat (sorry cat lovers)
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post #17 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 10:22 AM
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So having duplicate drives for every drive you have is somehow cost effective when a single parity drive will provide security and restore any lost data? Having a NAS or a standalone server tucked away probably takes up a lot less space than an array of external drives.

FYI - using drives in external enclosures that do not have their own cooling fans will most definitely shorten the lifespan of the drive. Why do you think the warranties on external drives are less than their desktop counterparts? I don't know how your setup is configured other than you shuck the drives and put them in your PC. You didn't mention if you swapped out the drive from your PC with the shucked drive and then installed the old drive back into the external enclosure.

Using a separate server or NAS allows you to keep the size of your PC and the associated clutter of having all of those enclosures to a minimum.
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post #18 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 11:48 AM
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After many years of trying/using virtually every solution I have come to a few conclusions.

  • Never attach your data to a client - much nicer to have it available 24/7 to all clients on a low power "server"
  • Forget RAID storage - often it will introduce more issues than it solves
  • If you want a backup the only real backup is offline storage
  • Automate backup with tools such as rsync

My media server (which will flood my network) uses less than 5 watts under load plus each drive (roughly 2 watts idling while the drives sleep) It runs various other tasks 24/7 such as Pi-hole, MySql Server, Print Server, Plex Media Server and so on. Requires zero maintenance and an if issue should arise I can restore the entire OS configuration onto the eMMC card (or SD card). Stored safely away (often from dumb user errors) in an electronic closet I can't count of number to times the data would be offline from configuring and or reconfiguring this or that.

For less than $100 and virtually nothing to run 24/7 I left all of the other options long behind.

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post #19 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Charles R View Post
After many years of trying/using virtually every solution I have come to a few conclusions.

  • Never attach your data to a client - much nicer to have it available 24/7 to all clients on a low power "server"
  • Forget RAID storage - often it will introduce more issues than it solves
  • If you want a backup the only real backup is offline storage
  • Automate backup with tools such as rsync

My media server (which will flood my network) uses less than 5 watts under load plus each drive (roughly 2 watts idling while the drives sleep) It runs various other tasks 24/7 such as Pi-hole, MySql Server, Print Server, Plex Media Server and so on. Requires zero maintenance and an if issue should arise I can restore the entire OS configuration onto the eMMC card (or SD card). Stored safely away (often from dumb user errors) in an electronic closet I can't count of number to times the data would be offline from configuring and or reconfiguring this or that.

For less than $100 and virtually nothing to run 24/7 I left all of the other options long behind.
There are many variations of RAID storage so you can't really make a blanket statement like that. My unRAID server runs 24/7 and is virtually trouble-free unless a drive fails which is going to happen to all drives at some point. A media server is not really meant as a backup but rather a device for convenient distribution of media to all clients from a central location. If you have sensitive data that you can't afford to lose then that's a totally different topic for discussion and doesn't apply here. The OP is looking for a way to store and distribute Blu-Ray rips. The original discs are his backup so there's no need for the level of security you're describing. Your setup is also far too complex for the average user here and beyond the scope of this discussion. You never described how you store your media and I sincerely doubt that $100 will pay for the amount of storage the OP requires.
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post #20 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 06:01 PM
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There are many variations of RAID storage so you can't really make a blanket statement like that.
I just did... after using virtually every one of them.
Quote:
A media server is not really meant as a backup but rather a device for convenient distribution of media to all clients from a central location. If you have sensitive data that you can't afford to lose then that's a totally different topic for discussion and doesn't apply here.
There is absolutely no reason a media server can't backup any level of data.

Quote:
The original discs are his backup so there's no need for the level of security you're describing.
I wouldn't consider his original discs backup rather source data.

Quote:
Your setup is also far too complex for the average user here and beyond the scope of this discussion.
If you consider dedicating a half day or so too complex... sure.

Quote:
You never described how you store your media and I sincerely doubt that $100 will pay for the amount of storage the OP requires.
I purposely left out defining my solution as I'm not selling it... rather a few concepts I've learned over the years.

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post #21 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 08:10 PM
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I have about 3000 movies and would like to digitally store them with full surround sound and play them when I want.

1. Is there a system that will do this that i can buy? Or a guide to build my own? Website I need to read?
As you have read, hopefully, there are many choices.
What is your budget?

2. What is the best copier/ripper that i can use to digitize the videos with surround sound?
There is no "best" but most that are available work well though some may require more user input/adeptness??

3. What amount of storage would I need to not corrupt the quality of the video and audio for each BR?
You won't "corrupt" the quality of the video/audio based on storage "size".

4. What is the best movie Archiving program that may allow me to scan movies by sorts and then pick and play?
Again there is no "best".

5. Once the movies are digitized how do you play them? Is it an HDMI cable from a computer to the receiver?
You can play them directly via cable or wifi.

6. Is there a special computer that is needed for accessing the storage and sending the data to the receiver?
You don't need a "special" computer but you would probably want a dedicated computer if going this route.

7. Where is the best place to buy hardware at a good price?
Shop around.


I'm relatively new, a bit over one year of this fun, and wanted a simple system to have immediate access to movies rather than having to pop in a disk...oh the agony of looking for a disk, starting the disk drive, etc etc etc.
I use MakeMKV after reading a lot on ease of use, etc. on this forum. I've never had a problem with it and it does a great job digitally storing a BD movie file on a hard drive.
I store the movies on a Western Digital Easy Store portable hard drive.
I initially just plugged the usb hdd to my TV and used the TV's gui to access the movies. It worked ok but the gui was meh.

As I got more enthusiastic about this method I wound up digitally backing up nearly all my disks and I have only 8TB at this point.
I wanted a better gui, graphic user interface, and decided on a media player. After doing a lot of reading on the forums I went with a Zidoo Z9S. It is an inexpensive device with 4 usb ports and a sata port. I only use the usb at this time. It has a very good gui and works quite well. I've never had a problem with it.
I don't use a digital copy when watching my favorite movies. I prefer the disk. I have no explanation but that is just me.

Were I you I'd start with downloading MakeMKV and buy a good hard drive. You will need a BD disk burner...my laptop doesn't have a disk drive and I use a LG BD BP50NB40 external disk drive which I bought at Best Buy, can't remember the cost.
Whether you go with a portable easy store type or a larger drive is your choice but as has been said you can get a good drive for not a lot of money at Best Buy. Back up some of your most favorite movies to the drive, connect it to your TV or a device that will play a usb drive with movies, my avr doesn't, and try it out.
As you become familiar with the process you can decide on how much you want to spend, how much of a device...NAS, HTPC, media player, etc...you want to go in for.
You can also try using Plex and leave the hard drive connected to your computer and access Plex via wifi/hardwired direct from your computer. Plex has a very nice user interface.

Hope all this info doesn't have you sitting in a dark corner with your knees under your chin lol.
These people have all offered great info and lots of suggestions.
Read, learn and apply...then enjoy.
Good luck and keep us informed.

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post #22 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 08:44 PM
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I just did... after using virtually every one of them.
There are lots of folks at the unRAID forum that would tend to disagree with your assessment, myself included.

Quote:
There is absolutely no reason a media server can't backup any level of data.
True, but it may not have the same level of security as a server configured to store personal data.

Quote:
I wouldn't consider his original discs backup rather source data.
Why not? If the data on the server becomes corrupt then the original source data acts as his backup so he can recover it. It's just semantics.

Quote:
If you consider dedicating a half day or so too complex... sure.
I can set up an unRAID server in less than 30 minutes. I can only assume your setup is too complex for a novice since you tend to go beyond what the average user here would get involved with. Your level of technical expertise is clearly higher than any novice here.

Quote:
I purposely left out defining my solution as I'm not selling it... rather a few concepts I've learned over the years.
In other words you are declining to back up your statement. I'm not trying to start any sort of flame war here. Just trying to determine where you're coming up with a storage solution that inexpensive. I fail to see how you can back up and store 3000 Blu-Ray discs for only $100.
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post #23 of 52 Old 12-27-2019, 08:48 PM
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You will need a BD disk burner...
You don't need a BD burner for ripping movies. It will work but a BD ROM is all that is required.
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post #24 of 52 Old 12-28-2019, 07:01 AM
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There are lots of folks at the unRAID forum that would tend to disagree with your assessment, myself included.
Sure many people are happy that doesn't mean it's a good solution (based on any number of parameters).

Quote:
If the data on the server becomes corrupt then the original source data acts as his backup so he can recover it. It's just semantics.
I wouldn't call the untold hours they would spend ripping the data semantics versus flipping on the backup.

Quote:
I can set up an unRAID server in less than 30 minutes.
What would mean you simply aren't taking advantage of its full potential.

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I fail to see how you can back up and store 3000 Blu-Ray discs for only $100.
Not sure where that's coming from. I only referenced media server nothing about actual storage as that would certainly vary per requirements.

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post #25 of 52 Old 12-28-2019, 07:01 AM
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You don't need a BD burner for ripping movies. It will work but a BD ROM is all that is required.
You are correct, I mis-stated, thank you.

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post #26 of 52 Old 12-28-2019, 07:25 AM
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Sure many people are happy that doesn't mean it's a good solution (based on any number of parameters).
While you may not consider it a good solution for your purposes, it's perfectly fine for a media server which happens to fall under the context of discussion for this forum. We were discussing storage solutions for someone that clearly is just getting his feet wet. Whatever setup you have is obviously not for a beginner and is a topic for a more advanced discussion thread.

Quote:
I wouldn't call the untold hours they would spend ripping the data semantics versus flipping on the backup.
I never said it was convenient nor did I make any such implication. The point was that having the original discs acts as a backup so the data can be restored. However, it's a moot point if you're using a parity disc in the array since the data can easily be restored from parity.

Quote:
What would mean you simply aren't taking advantage of its full potential.
That is probably quite true. The potential of an unRAID server is far beyond the level of discussion here. There are a multitude of options as well as apps and docker containers that can be used with it so the potential is enormous. My point was that I can set it up in less than 30 minutes to the configuration that I currently employ, which happens to be a bit more than just a basic server configuration. That includes all drive assignments and setting up of shares as well as inclusions or exclusions for each share. I also run Plex server as a docker and have a pre-clear app that can run in the background to prepare any new drives for inclusion in the array should one of the drives fail. All I have to do is swap out the failed drive with a pre-cleared drive of the same or greater capacity and it automatically rebuilds the data when the array is restarted.

Quote:
Not sure where that's coming from. I only referenced media server nothing about actual storage as that would certainly vary per requirements.
The overall cost of the system was implied from the previous posts. I assume you were just referencing software. Hardware is an important item that was left out of your description. You can't discuss the cost of setting up a server and leave out the meat and potatoes. You never even mentioned how you were storing your data.

I'm not exactly sure what your argument is here since you never revealed anything about your hardware or software setup. You're just bashing any sort of RAID-type server which isn't at all helpful. Your solution no doubt works fine for you but unless you plan on giving us details there's no point in continuing this discussion.

Last edited by captain_video; 12-28-2019 at 07:48 AM.
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post #27 of 52 Old 12-28-2019, 07:28 AM
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Just did some quick checking at the BB site.
A 10gb external hdd will cost roughly $160.00 and he will need at least 90gb so round it up to 100gb - $1600.00
The BD disk reader I use is on sale for $70.00
10 bay NAS on Amazon = $850.00
So he is looking at over $2500.00 to store his disks.

I wonder if you can use a usb hub on a media player like Zidoo, etc? If so considering the Zidoo Z9S has 2 usb 3.0 ports and 2 usb 2.0 ports plus 2 sata ports you have 6 drive capability. If you can use a small usb hub perhaps that would cover 10/10TB drives covering his 3000 disks with a bit of extra storage. But you are still spending $1600 or so just on the drives.

I think I'd start small with a media player -$180, 2-10TB drives-$310, BD disk drive-$60 = $600 total and he can store around 67 BD movies more or less depending on size, I used an average of 30gb per disk. Maybe start with just his favorites...

This is not an easy, simple or inexpensive proposal.

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post #28 of 52 Old 12-28-2019, 06:52 PM
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I wouldn't get too wrapped up in continuing the argument of which way is best.
The OP hasn't logged in since (s)he posted the initial query.
Would be nice to know if what we already wrote has been read.

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post #29 of 52 Old 12-29-2019, 10:53 AM
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I wouldn't get too wrapped up in continuing the argument of which way is best.
The OP hasn't logged in since (s)he posted the initial query.
Would be nice to know if what we already wrote has been read.
I noticed that. Perhaps we scared him away when he realized what he was getting himself into. Debates over various software server platforms have been already done extensively here so there's really no need to rehash it. Everyone has their own personal preferences and setups that suit their needs so there's no one perfect solution for everyone.
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post #30 of 52 Old 12-29-2019, 02:34 PM
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Perhaps we scared him away when he realized what he was getting himself into.
Not unless he's telepathic.
I would think you would have to read something to get scared.

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