home network


Recommendation and instructions on personal data storage setup and backup.

Prerequisites:

  1. A dedicated laptop, desktop, or server.

  2. A lifetime pCloud account + server side encryption.

  3. A lifetime plex pass account.

  4. A 2 tb external hard drive.

  5. Two 4 tb external hard drives.

  6. An Uninterrupted Power Supply

Setup:


Internet is connected to a router in the home which connects devices to the internet.

Connect the laptop, desktop or server to the router via cat6e cable.

Plug the router and the laptop into the Uninterrupted Power Supply.


Accessing the router: (reserve static ip, rename SSID, port forwarding, etc)

  1. open CMD

  2. type ipconfig /all

  3. look for default gateway: (eg. 192.168.0.1, 192.168.254.254, 172.16.0.1)

  4. type the default gateway address into a web browser: http://192.168.0.1


Plug all three external hard drives into the laptop, desktop, or server.


Setup the 2 tb external hard drive as a pCloud backup.

Install pCloud, and synch each folder with the external drive.

This creates a physical backup of your drive.


Setup one 4 tb external hard drive as your media storage.

Setup the other 4 tb external hard drive as your media storage backup.


Install Plex and map drives to the 4 tb external media storage.


Utilize 3rd part software such as Acronis True Image to sync/clone the 4 tb media storage drive to the secondary 4 tb drive. or Use the built in Windows Sync Center (open control panel and type "sync center") and select "set up new synch partnership).


Turn on remote access.

Open control panel, select system and security, click System, Allow Remote Access.


Turn on sharing.

Open file explorer, right click and select give access to > "advanced sharing".


Optional: Setup Google remote desktop for access when not at home.


What his accomplishes:


All files stored in your pCloud are accessible anywhere you have internet and are backed up to a physical drive in real time which can be accessed without internet. All media files are accessible anywhere you have internet and are backed up to a secondary physical drive to use once the primary fails. All files and media are always synced and accessible on any device which can be accessed via Plex, Plex Amp, and pCloud.


Websites:


pCloud includes a public folder for hosting and sharing.

You can buy a domain and forward it to the folder for a no added cost low bandwidth website.


Personal website recommendation is: Google sites.

Professional website recommendation is: Square

You can associate a domain with either.


Smart Home Devies:


Wyze offers a good variety of smart home devices including security cameras for good rates.

They also offer annual notification alert and remote viewing subscriptions for around $20 a camera.

On the go Office:


Microsoft offers free office online including cloud storage which I suggest everyone signing up for to try out.

I personally prefer to utilize Google instead for all personal office needs including document, spreadsheet, calendar, and contacts.


Utilize pCloud crypto to store sensitive files securely.

This is also an excellent place to store password lists as no one other than you has access to the file.

The same is not true for files stored on other cloud providers such as MS one drive or google drive.


passwords:


Turn on two factor authentication for your accounts whenever possible but especially for Microsoft and Google.


Storage options: mental, physical (under lock and key), or digital on server side encrypted storage in locations with strong data privacy laws (not United States servers).


Best practice: use a different password for each account and change/update them all periodically. Never repeat/reuse a password.

A plea to those who don't follow best practices: At the very least, use separate passwords for different account types to isolate potential risk should one become compromised.


For example:


Password1 = Personal device

Password2 = Streaming

Password3 = Professional or School

Password4 = Social media

Password5 = Games

Password6 = Online Shop

Password7 = Bank Account