I'm in the process of setting up some remote storage for my PC. I have a 2TB "Archive" drive that contains old photos, videos, etc. that I want to have backed up at an offsite location 80 miles away. All I need to happen is for the remote device to make an identical copy of the main drive, plus archive deleted files for a certain amount of time.
I've thought of using a small PC, but for a drive that is at best a last-resort measure, it's a waste of energy to have it running 24/7. I've looked at NAS devices, but they all seem extremely expensive for what I need to do. I've also checked out external hard drives with network connectivity, but I see tales of the device breaking down over time or running extremely slow. My plan would be to pre-load most of the files, so a slow network connection would not be a deal-breaker since after the initial backup the incremental changes will be small.
I've also thought it hooking up something like a Raspberry Pi to an external hard drive (when they are more available). Is there a better option or something I have missed?
One option: Cheap PC + Wake-on-Lan support where you can wake up the PC prior to the backup, do the backup, and then put it back into low-power sleep mode. As a reference point, I have an Atom box that I use for online network storage over multiple gigabit links and it is plenty fast for that purpose.
On the software side, I am assuming you are using something like rsync or another backup solution that uses incremental to do the backups in a sane way? You could setup a cron job that wakes up the server, does the backup, and then puts the server back to sleep to keep the power usage reasonable.