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Old February 20th, 2014, 07:13 AM   #16
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

Julian

A managed switch has a web interface that allows you to set all the parameters for the switch. These are relatively easy to configure and the Netgear stuff has good explanations about each setting on the page you are working on at the time.

The computers would probably be better all connected to the switch and also connect the router/modem into the switch. You will want to set up a fixed IP address for the switch and have it outside the range you will use for the computers and wireless devices. e.g.:

192.168.0.XXX /24 Network IP Address Assignments (/24 means 254 useable addresses in the range)

Useable addresses: 192.168.0.1 - 192.168.0.254

Preferred Router/Gateway/DHCP Server address: 192.168.0.254

Subnet Mask: 255.255.255.0

Range for DCHCP assigned devices : 192.168.0.1 - 192.168.0.50 (you can allocate more here if needed)
Range for fixed IP address computing devices: 192.168.0.101 - 192.168.0.150
Range for fixed IP other devices (printers, etc.): 192.168.0.201 - 192.168.0.220
Range for fixed IP address servers (if needed) and switches: 192.168.0.241 - 192.168.0.250

This should give good separation of device types and allow you to recognise what sort of device it is if you get issues relating to IP addresses. Be sure to have all this recorded in case of needs like troubleshooting. A good network diagram is also a valuable tool.

Manage devices like a good HP switch will be a Layer Three device. Some of the cheaper stuff like Netgear and D-Link can be more Layer Two and not allow for good management. This is getting a bit technical now, but the OSI Network Layer Model is a generalised representation of the way networks work. Layer one is the Physical layer (copper, optical fibre), Layer two is the data layer and layer three is the network layer.

In easy to understand terms, a hub is a layer two device and a switch is a layer three device. A hub will get a packet in on one port and send it through to all other ports. A switch will get a packet in on one port and read the header and send the packet only on through the port that the device that the packet is addressed to disconnected to. This reduces significantly the amount of traffic that is on the network. This is why a layer three switch is important in your network design.

This may be more information than you need right now, but when you have questions you can PM me.
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Old March 4th, 2014, 10:03 PM   #17
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

Thank you for all your advice. I'm attracted to the solution of having an ethernet network on a switch then connecting that to a router that will have a printer and possibly a timemachine backup solution connected to it. One PC will serve as a media server hosting the catalogue of video / other files we use and then doing individual editing on each computer. My boss has been quite busy so I haven't had a chance to propose any ideas but I'm writing things down now.

Again thank you so much for your ideas. I'll likely need help configuring the subnet / static IP if this goes through :P

julian
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Old March 4th, 2014, 10:16 PM   #18
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

I am in the middle of "ICT546 LAN Design and Implementation" for my masters, so it will be good practice.
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Old March 5th, 2014, 12:07 AM   #19
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

Progress! My boss is excited to move ahead with both the network / storage solutions. Let me know what you think:

For the network, I am thinking to buy the Netgear (R7000) router and plug it in to a managed (smart) switch that i can configure with a bit of research (and help, Tim?? :P). I'm not sure what model to get. Having the computers communicating as fast as possible over the network will substantially speed up our workflow.

From there, we need a primary and backup storage solution. We will use either a NAS, direct storage device, or server computer. I calculated that we have 8 TB of data we need to access daily, so 15TB primary and 15TB backup are good target ranges. Backup can be slow, and the primary storage only needs to be fast enough to stream a 1080 video file to any of our PC / Mac machines.

We will buy a new mac pro for primary video editing.

Questions:
- Does this look like a sounds solution overall?
- Does the router / switch solution look good?
- What models for the switch would you recommend?
- Should I make a PC server as the primary storage and get a NAS for backup? Or...?

Thanks!
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Old March 18th, 2014, 12:05 AM   #20
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

Hi guys,

Just wanted to give you an update on how this is going.

We will hold off on buying a mac pro for another year since it seems to be taking forever to get them out here in korea, and we'd rather have the 2nd revision anyway.

I got a cisco sg300 switch and synology 1513+ with 5 Seagate NAS 4TB drives in Raid 5. The NAS is up and running well; I am in the process of setting up the switch which came in this morning. We're also getting a new netgear router to act as the gateway / printer server / wifi point.

We'll get a thunderbolt storage solution then, too. For now, the synology is our primary storage device and we will use external drives to backup once a month.

Tim, thanks for your advice on the network. I'm doing that right now along your specs. I'm just trying to figure out how to use set up DCHCP for a specific range (phones and other wifi devices) and have fixed IPs for the 5 computers, switch, and NAS :)
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Old March 18th, 2014, 04:22 AM   #21
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

Hi Julian

DHCP is usually set with a pool. This is a range of numbers that can be allocated by the DHCP server/service. With the Netgear devices it is it is usually in the LAN Setup section. It will have a check box labelled "Use router as DHCP server? It will then ask you for a starting address and ending address, this is the DHCP pool. Make sure that the fixed IP addresses are not in the DCHP range, or you could get IP address conflicts. Mine is set quite wide from .2 to .248, but yours can be narrower. I have reserved addresses above this for the Time Capsule, Blue Ray Player and the Printer.

HTH
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Old March 18th, 2014, 04:30 AM   #22
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

That is a really great choice of switch by the way. I was just having a look at the specs and it goes way up the wazoo in terms of configurability. It is probably something you will need a professional network engineer to get the most out of over time, but it should give you all you need in the short term too.

I am doing a research subject this semester on networking for video and hope to be able to share it in some form with the forum, perhaps as an article, to allow others to get the most out their networks.
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Old March 18th, 2014, 07:06 AM   #23
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

Everything is working wonderfully. Today was a day off for the studio so I had a chance to unplug the computers and do everything on my own time. PCs & Macs have learned to play like friends, and what's greatest is that I set up a 4-port LAG for the 1513+ and a 2-port LAG for the Mac Pro to the Cisco SG300-20 switch without a hitch. I haven't had a chance to test it in numbers, but streaming 3840 x 720 Prores 444 video off 3 machines off the Synology is smooth. It's insane. Loading 24 MB RAW files with OSX quickview from a networked computer was a pain in the ass before...this will really change the way we work. We were honestly using USB drives before for various reasons. This is so much more 21st century...

Safe to say I've learned more about LANs this week than I have up till now. It's been interesting, and I've encountered some bizarre problems, but with what there is available at a google's search away, nothing I couldn't get solved. Link aggregation was surprisingly the easiest. The Cisco router, as you mentioned Tim, has far more features than I can learn to use, but I trust it based on its reviews and know that if I have issues with throughput later, I can make adjustments. If you have any suggestions to tweak it for video throughput, I'm all ears.

I'm confident that as long as we us proxy media or edit 4k on a small SSD RAID system later, this system will work for our needs for years to come. If anyone has any questions I'd be glad to help. You can see that I'm no networking pro but everything has worked out.

a remaining quandary: How do you get a drive associated with an icon to appear remotely on another computer's desktop? I'd like to share a raid drive on the MacPro with the other computers. Solutions I've found online aren't as nice as something I've seen on another network, but I can't remember how they did it.
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Old March 18th, 2014, 07:53 AM   #24
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

Hi Julian, it is good to hear you sounding so empowered and successful with your new network. These types of switches are the duck's guts when it comes to professional networking. You could do all sorts of fancy stuff on it with variable length subnet masking and inter VLAN routing, but it would only make the design more complicated.

You may wish to try QoS (Quality of Service) on some of the traffic in time, but this will only affect internal traffic on the network, not external connections. I am pleased you have been able to achieve such a personally satisfying result. This also is pleasing for me as it justifies my subject choice for my research project.

I don't do a lot of file sharing, but you should be able to share the raid drive from the system preferences panel on sharing, but remember to turn on Windows sharing as well (SMB = Server Message Blocks).

Where I worked was an all HP switch environment, but all the engineers had CCNA as a minimum qualification (Cisco Certified Network Associate).
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Old March 25th, 2014, 09:49 PM   #25
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

Hey guys,

Everything is still going well. I'll have to do some tuning on the switch for video files, and perhaps someone can help me with that later (Tim?) :P

Having some problems transferring existing storage since a lot of our file names are in Korean and english and there seem to be some encoding issues with long filenames. Slow process but going well!
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Old July 23rd, 2014, 02:15 AM   #26
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Re: Studio storage / networking advice please~

Hey guys,


Just wanted to give an update. The synology system / cisco switch system is working great. Aggregated 4 gigabit ports and two into the Mac Pro is working great. Access while traveling is nice too.

The only problem is that finder access in mavericks just kinda...sucks. I've sent messages and read on the forums about what to do but no great solutions yet. Older OSX versions and Windows runs great, but on Mavericks opening deeper nested folders is really slow. You just sometimes wait for 20-30 seconds waiting for contents to load. It seems a lot of people have that issue.

We use it as I expected; editing / rendering we do on individual machines, but we keep everything we're not using right now on the synology. Streaming 1080 over the network is no problem. We use it more than we anticipated and often have 7 or 8 unique connections and usually you don't notice too badly unless more than two people are simultaneously streaming. Next step is to get the expansion for redundancy.

thanks for the help on here.
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