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UPS Delivered My UPS

Posted on Wednesday, November 18th, 2020

Dave!I bought a NAS (Network Attached Storage) in order to access my work files from anywhere and store all my media. It's been working (mostly) flawlessly and has been a real convenience. But over the last couple weeks I've been having power brown-outs which cause my NAS to go down. And every time that happens I have to rebuild everything and run a file integrity check. It's a real pain because my files are inaccessible for hours.

My power has gone out maybe twice in the five years I've lived here. I don't know what's changed that suddenly it's been so unreliable, but I decided to buy a UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) for my NAS. That way the battery in the UPS can power my NAS through a brownout. And if the power goes out, the UPS is smart enough to talk to my NAS and tell it to shut down safely before it runs out of battery.

I ordered a CyberPower 800VA/450W unit for $85 because it was more than enough for my needs. It was also small enough to mount behind my media center. Or was it?

NO! NO IT WAS NOT!

I didn't have enough solid material on the media center to mount something so heavy. So I claimed the draw next to my NAS Drawer and made it into a UPS Drawer...

My Uninteruptable Power Supply in a drawer with a mess of power cables.

My NAS, Internet Router, and Smart Home Hub are on battery backup on the left. Other devices are surge-protected but not backed up on the right. Now during a brownout or blackout, my NAS files will be safe and I'll still have internet (assuming the power outage doesn't take out my fiber). Nice!

Every time I want to change the electronics on my media center, I end up ripping everything out and cleaning up the wires on the back. Believe it or not, this mess is half the wires I used to have before I merged some devices, got rid of satellite television, and left my Nintendo Switch as my sole video game...

Mess of wires behind my entertainment center.

Something I thought would take me an hour ended up taking just over three hours. But it was worth it because after plugging in a USB cable from my NAS to my UPS it was recognized right away...

UPS Recognized Dialog Box Message.

According to the NAS control panel, I have over an hour of battery backup power available. My guess is that the addition of an internet router and smart home hub will knock that down to about 45 minutes. Which is plenty of time to survive any brownout and most blackouts...

UPS Status Box... Everything Okay!

$85 plus tax was certainly more than I wanted to spend on this thing... but it's a huge weight off my mind to know that my NAS files will be safe when there are power problems.

Here's hoping that everything is working correctly. I'm sure I plugged in something wrong somewhere.

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Comments

  1. martymankins says:

    I’ve been using UPSs for years at home after experiencing their reliability on servers in data centers. $85 is a great deal. I have Cyberpower 1500VA that powers my Drobo 5c (USB C attached), my 27-inch iMac and my Google WiFi router. Elsewhere, I have a small APC that powers the cable modem (it’s in a different part of the house). Once every 6 weeks or so, I do a test by unplugging the Cyberpower and letting it beep while it runs my stuff for 10-15 mins.

    • Dave2 says:

      I have an iMac, but rarely use it. Since my MacBook Pro is on battery anyway, I figured I didn’t need a massive supply. Just enough to keep my NAS data safe if the power fluctuates or goes out for too long so it can shut down properly. I think the hour of battery I’ll get is perfect for that… but admit that having a larger one which I can plug more devices into would be nice. Maybe someday.

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