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New NAS

By Deland01
Mar 12, 2009
  1. I’m looking to invest in a good fast NAS for my network. I currently run a Western Digitals My Book World Edition II. It’s a 1TB box (2x 500GB disks) which I have RAID 1 enabled which means I only have 500BG of storage. The NAS will be used primarily for storage & backup.

    The problem I have with my current NAS is the LAN port is advertised as Gigabit speed, this was great I thought. However when I actually bought one I soon realised (after the 30 day return period) Although the actual hardware is a Gigabit network card due to the small processor or badly designed system software / OS the LAN speed is more like 10 base.

    As a comparison If I run back up image of a drive which is 120GB and back this up to an external USB2 drive it will take around 5 hours, if I run the same task and back up to the NAS the time is more like 17 hours!!!!

    Apparently this is a known problem with this drive and has caused many annoyances for quite a few people. The only way to speed it up is to tweak the OS which validates the warranty & could potentially mess the RAID up which is something I don’t want to do. You also have to know how to use Linux reasonably well.

    So the question is can anyone suggest any thing else out there which would suite my needs? The requirements I need are:

    • Storage - 1TB upwards after RAID 1 is enabled
    • Backup - RAID 1
    • LAN - Gigabit Lan (must perform well in practise)
    • Disk Speed – Doesn’t have to be lightening fast but not too slow either
    • Cost – As low as possible although I realise you have to pay a bit for 1TB plus
     
  2. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    I have tried a number of these things for myself and for my clients. I am not happy with anything from Freecom as they underperform and the front end is clumsy.
    LaCie support is excellent here in the UK - in fact they seem to break the rules to help even if something is outside warranty if they can. I have a 1 Tb drive from them which is RAID0 (striped) which runs at something in excess of 100bit and which is used for backup of client files.
    Some of the plug and go kit is worth looking at too - there is no doubt that the more expensive equipment works far better and quicker. I also have a Buffalo Linkstation Pro 2 Tb for my own network which proves the point but was 2 1/2 times the price of anything comparable at the time - a bit cheaper now.
    Hope this is helpful - as I don't know where you are I cannot help with where to get this kit!
     
  3. nazartp

    nazartp TS Enthusiast Posts: 178   +12

    Honestly, unless you want to invest in a pro-grade stand-alone NAS, build a simple computer and run Linux Samba server on it. By far the cheapest, scalable and reliable solution. Better yet, if you have a computer due for an upgrade, use the old parts for the server. Even a pretty aged machine will be faster than a dedicated consumer-grade dedicated NAS.
     
  4. gguerra

    gguerra TS Maniac Posts: 317

    We use a set of 2 Buffalo 500gb Linkstation Pro N.A.S. boxes here at work. I have 4 servers which do daily backups and 35+ workstations which do weekly backups using Acronis software. I can personally say that we are very satisfied with performance of these devices. They are gigabit compatible although our switches are 100base. I would say they are every bit as fast as a regular file server and have noticed no degradation over our LAN. I use one per week and swap them out on Monday mornings and place the one not in use in our fire proof safe. They are configured exaclty the same with the same IP and device name so that I do not have to reconfigure any settings on the PC's. I simply just swap them. They were also very reasonably priced in the $300 range (this was about 2 years ago). They should have gone down in price. I did a quick search on newegg and they have the 1TB model for $229.99 here http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822165075 I can't say enough good things about them.
     
  5. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,315   +618

    Think that one over again --
    System to System via ethernet can not be better than System to NAS as the commonality is the ethernet itself,
    unless the NAS itself is just junk.

    gguerra citation of Buffalo 500gb Linkstation Pro N.A.S. is on the mark.
     
  6. nazartp

    nazartp TS Enthusiast Posts: 178   +12

    If you read his original post it appears that his original NAS is junk, and I can vouch that similar thing, unfortunately, happened to me, for a low grade NAS bottleneck quite often is the processor/software and not the Ethernet.

    Can't say anything regarding Buffalo Linkstation and ready to take your word for it. I had an old AMD based computer and converting it into NAS cost me just a couple of new hard drives and couple of hours installing Ubuntu and configuring SAMBA. Scalable and reliable. On the other hand I did not pay much interest to dedicated NAS prices lately. Seems that those went down a lot so my original advice loses its relevance.
     
  7. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    ... and not all of us have the Linux skills to contemplate installing this Samba thing - I thought it was a saucy dance!
     
  8. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,315   +618

    Actually, the SAMBA config is not that difficult, but an example is frequently helpfull;

    see this sample
     
  9. Deland01

    Deland01 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Looks like the Buffalo's on the money then. I need the NAS for my studio so it needs to be pretty quiet. Its not good trying to produce tracks with 10 fans buzzing away in the background.

    What's the sound level like on the fans?

    I also like the look of the LaCie, they do really quality hardware & the support sounds spot on, what the volume like on this one?
     
  10. AlbertLionheart

    AlbertLionheart TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,026

    The noise level is so much an individual tolerance level that it is difficult to say how noisy any specific external drive is going to be! They all have fans - the LaCie I have appears to be thermo controlled although it was not advertised as such. You can hear the drives spinning up as well.
     
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