11 Replies Latest reply on Jul 20, 2013 8:36 PM by UlfLaursen

    iSCSI as shared media storage?

    UlfLaursen Level 2

      I was wondering if anybody here had some thoughts on using iSCSI as shared storage for media.

       

      I would be using it via ethernet on my ready nas pro with two Gbit connections teamed to one IP.

       

      I know of the obvious limitations in bandwith over ethernet and I know of the corruption data risk when sharing, but I will only use the same media on one PC at a time, so I guess it will not be that much of a problem.

       

      Any other recommendations on the idea of shared storage would be very muc appreciated too.

       

      Thanks. :)

       

      Ulf

        • 1. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
          ECBowen Most Valuable Participant

          iSCSI is ideal for that workflow. There are faster options now that are affordable versus Gbit and iSCSI units that have expansions slots that support 10Gbit Ethernet. The Intel 10Gbit Ethernet cards are $380 for single port cards and the Thecus 8 and 16bay units support some of the Intel 10Gbit cards. Netgear has 10Gbit Ethernet switches for $900. If that is not an option now then 2port NAS/SAN unit will be fine. Just dont expect much more then 75 to 100MB/s even with load balancing. 10Gbit would also lower the access latency. Gbit will have a delay if trying to edit directly from the shared storage.

           

          Eric

          ADK

          • 2. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
            UlfLaursen Level 2

            Thanks a lot, Eric - I'll try it out and then maybe upgrade to 10 Gb when the price comes down :)

             

            Ulf

            • 3. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
              Alex - DV411 Level 2

              Just to avoid confusion, perhaps we should call that "networked storage" but not "shared"? iSCSI, like any block storage that doesn't have a file system of its own, is not "shared" in any way.

              • 4. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
                ECBowen Most Valuable Participant

                Direct Attached iSCSI storage can still be shared out at the software protocol level like any volume. It just has to be shared from the host system.


                Eric

                ADK

                • 5. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
                  UlfLaursen Level 2

                  You can get some extra software to use, when you want to share, where you have 'read only' rights as default, and then have a user login to get 'write rights' as well.

                   

                  I am just myself, so I don't need software to give access, atm I have the same iSCSI drive on two different PC's and it seems to work ok for now

                   

                  Ulf

                  • 6. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
                    ECBowen Most Valuable Participant

                    Yes an iSCSI volume can be shared and you don't need software beyond the OS to do it. It's simply configuring that volume like any other direct storage as a file sharing volume on the host system. The only difference with iSCSI is you cant use that protocol to share the same volume unless you have a Virtualization software that handles that.

                     

                    Eric

                    ADK

                    • 7. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
                      UlfLaursen Level 2

                      Thanks Eric - just want to make sure:

                       

                      I have connected to the same iSCSI volume on my NAS via the iSCSI initiator in the controll pannel on both machines.

                       

                      On the first machine I had to partition the volume and format it. On the second machine the drive would just turn up, as there already was a volume present.

                       

                      It was like mounting a new haddrive in the firstvPC, partion and format it and then "connect"  it to thecother PC too.

                       

                      This would be correct, right?

                       

                      Thanks Eric - apreciate your help on this one :)

                       

                      Ulf

                      • 8. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
                        ECBowen Most Valuable Participant

                        That is something new to the Microsoft utility then or a feature of the NAS with built in virtualization. In the past you had to file share out the volume on the second system. Microsoft may have added that component built into the initiator. If the volume size is the same then yes that would be the correct way. Make sure you can access a file on the other system that was put there by the host system.


                        Eric

                        ADK

                        • 9. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
                          UlfLaursen Level 2

                          Thanks again Eric - apreciate all the valuable knowledge you share on this forum :)

                           

                          Ulf

                          • 10. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
                            JChasen

                            Hello - I would double-check that one of the machines you are accessing the storage with is not reporting corrupted files. With iSCSI there is nothing to prevent you from connecting to the same volume simultaneously from multiple machines, but as others have pointed out, unless you use a shared file system (NTFS is not a shared file system), neither machine has any knowldge that there is another machine's data on that shared volume and data is going to get corrupted as one machine unknowingly overwrites the other machine's data. I work in the storage industry and I have seen this happen with my customers many times.

                            1 person found this helpful
                            • 11. Re: iSCSI as shared media storage?
                              UlfLaursen Level 2

                              Thanks JChasen

                               

                              When I startup windows on one machine after having accessed the shared drive on another, it ask whether I would like to scan / fix the drive.

                               

                              I am still in the test phase, so no "live" data yet

                               

                              Ulf