Consolidating My Data

Over the years I've had a couple hard drives and ssds. I've accumulated lots of random files and documents and media. Everything is a completely unorganized patchwork of folders, but that changes this summer. I got two 3TB Seagate drives to store this stuff. I'm ready to get my storage in order. The drives are in raid 0 atm so I could have enough space to fit them all, but this is temporary. Once I sift through and organize them I need to create a backup solution. I also have two 120gb ssds in raid 0 for OS and gta/witcher 3. I want to have the ssds backed up weekly at the very least. RAID is not a backup solution, I know.
So I'm here to ask: What would be the best configuration of these drives to ensure adequate backup? Is RAID 1 good enough for my purposes, or should I backup the SSDs to one 3TB and then backup that 3TB to the other using file history or something else?

The first question would be, how much data are you backing up. Putting any type of important files on a RAID 0 with mechanical hard drives is basically asking for a disaster, even if it is temporary.

When I setup a server, generally the OS gets loaded on a mirrored SSD. Every night, the OS drive gets a bare metal backup sent to a separate stand alone hard drive. My data gets setup on mirrored drives with a hot spare. I don't even bother with RAID5 due to all the headaches involved with recovering data from multiple failed drives. That data drive gets a differential backup every night to another separate drive. The data drive also gets backed up to the cloud with versioning.

  1. Get any files you don't want to lose off of RAID 0 (RAID 0 is slightly safer with SSDs simply due to SSDs being safer.)
  2. Mirror the 3TB drives and put your data on that
  3. Buy an additional 3TB drive and do nightly backups of your mirror to that. (Get an enterprise grade drive for this. Sometimes you can get away with a low powered drive like a WD Green, and enable the Turn off this hard drive when not in use function to keep wear and tear down.) Make sure you do Differential backups to keep from constantly writing all the data to the disk. Only backing up the files that have changed since the last backup will help improve the life of the drive as well.
  4. If you can afford and additional 3TB, set it up as a hot spare.
  5. If you can afford it, upload that stuff to the cloud.

I have about 3-3.5TB of data right now on the RAID 0 HDDs. That will condense as I sift through and delete things. I can't fit a third 3.5" drive in the case that I'm moving into, so I'm just looking to use what I have right now. The files aren't drastically important; just my music, movie, and game collections along with some computer troubleshooting stuff so I'm not looking for massive backups with cloud services and such. I'll set up nightly backups of the SSDs raid 0, and make sure they are differential. Since I only have the two 3TB to work with does that change your answer? Is mirroring them preferable or is there a better alternative that only requires the two drives?

Just mirror them to start. If you have a Blu Ray, burner burn some stuff off for safe keeping.

if you are gonna consolidate, start by just deleting the game library. you can download it again. that will probably get you under the 3TB marker so you can store them on a mirrored array

If you haven't opened those 3TB Seagates I'd return them as they aren't exactly the most reliable drives on sale.

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I've already installed them. I listened to the tek and Wendell mentioned it. That's the reason why I've decided to organize this data now. I'll remove the games and set em up in RAID 1.

Did you buy them from Amazon? You may be able to poke a return out of them citing 'extreme design faults' or something to that effect (if you bought them in the last month).

Anyway I'd get an external HDD to backup your important stuff on to if you don't already.

It's definitely been more than 90 days. Do you guys know where I can verify if I bought the faulty hard drives? Are specific models of the 3TB drive the only ones who fail?

download crystal disk mark and keep an eye on them. Just keep checking them every week or so. preferable twice a week for the first few months. then fornightly after that.