Western Digital intros 4TB NAS for home users

By on June 24, 2009, 1:55 PM
Western Digital already bumped its My Book Studio Edition II hard drive to 4TB earlier this month, and now the company is doing the same for its networked storage line. The My Book World Edition II NAS is based on two Caviar Green drives in 1TB or 2TB sizes, for a total of 2TB or 4TB respectively, which can be configured in a mirrored RAID 1 array for an extra level of protection or RAID 0 if capacity and speed over redundancy is required.


As one would expect, the drive attaches to home networks using a Gigabit Ethernet connection, and is compatible with both PC and Mac systems. Bundled with automatic backup software and streaming media utilities, the new and improved My Book World Edition II can act as an iTunes server or a DLNA-compatible device, streaming content to Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 consoles and some digital TVs. Users can also securely access their files from anywhere in the world using the free MioNet remote access service included.

Itís not as robust and feature-rich as the Synology Disk Station DS-409+ NAS, which we recently reviewed, but then again WD is targeting home users here rather than small-and-medium businesses. As such, it also comes with more affordable price tags of $400 for a 2TB version and $700 for the 4TB one.




User Comments: 15

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LinkedKube LinkedKube, TechSpot Project Baby, said:

I guess its convenient. Expensive though. I'm sure someone can use it.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Yeah, it does seem excessively pricey. You can buy a 1TB external for $90 these days. Hard to see how that equates to $700 for a 4 TB NAS.

tengeta tengeta said:

700 bucks could build me a basic server with 4 1.5TB Drives...

More space, actual server. I think I'd take that!

LinkedKube LinkedKube, TechSpot Project Baby, said:

yeah, my thoughts exactly. xeon home server with 4 TB of space for about 650.

Staff
Rick Rick, TechSpot Staff, said:

As usual, no one bothers to make a fair comparison before they start whining about price:

This only has two bays and it is an external drive

The only way to get 4TB using 2 drives is with 2 x 2TB drives. The drives alone cost nearly $500 together... They aren't talking about throwing together a 'ghetto' 4 x RAID 0 system at $80 bucks a disk (like everyone here is). Heh.

While I'm sure the markup is substantial, people pay a premium for storage density. More capacity in a smaller space = $$$. Think about that before you compare a "server" with 4 drives that offers no reasonable portability and serves a completely different purpose.

Guest said:

I've been a fan of WD for decades, however I am not a fan of these NAS systems for one specific reason...Mionet. If you plan on hooking any of these My Book World Editions to your network thinking you'll be able to access it from work or while you're away from your home network...think again. Mionet is a subscription service you have to pay for, they don't tell you that. Mionet is not a very popular service either, there are more complaints about it than good reviews, google it if you don't believe me. Otherwise, if you do not care for remote access (which is a key point of having a NAS), you should be fine.

There are other alternatives to get a 4GB NAS, and I'm not talking about building your own server, that's not the point of a NAS...the point of a NAS is to share/store/transfer files WITHOUT having a 'server' PC running 24/7. After doing some investigating, I found DLink makes a really good 2-Bay NAS DNS-323 (same specs as this one and it supports 2TB SATA drives) for about $160 WITHOUT the hard drives. Add a couple 2TB WD HDDs from newegg at $225 each and you get a better NAS than this for about $100 cheaper. The plus side of going this route is that it also has built in FTP and HTTP access meaning you can access it from ANY PC with an internet connection without having to go through and pay for Mionet.

Guest said:

Forgot to mention Mionet IS NOT FREE like the article says. They give you a free 30 day demo with the WD NAS, then it's $7.99 a month or $79.99 a year....author should edit this article.

Wendig0 Wendig0, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Rick said:

As usual, no one bothers to make a fair comparison before they start whining about price:

This only has two bays and it is an external drive

The only way to get 4TB using 2 drives is with 2 x 2TB drives. The drives alone cost nearly $500 together... They aren't talking about throwing together a 'ghetto' 4 x RAID 0 system at $80 bucks a disk (like everyone here is). Heh.

While I'm sure the markup is substantial, people pay a premium for storage density. More capacity in a smaller space = $$$. Think about that before you compare a "server" with 4 drives that offers no reasonable portability and serves a completely different purpose.

Have fun with that. If you consider home servers with 4x RAID 0 systems to be "ghetto", then you obviously have no grasp on reality. The reality is that those 2 x 2TB drive systems are unstable. There are still many many bugs associated with 2TB drives and a home server seems more reasonable from a reliability standpoint as well as price for many people. As a system admin for many years, I would much prefer a home server to a nas drive. There are many portable solutions for home servers . The Acer easystore H340 comes to mind as a fairly portable system.

Ph30nIX Ph30nIX said:

Have fun totally missing the points Rick made....

Wendig0 Wendig0, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Not quite. Rick didn't make any real points to begin with other than he knows how to add 2TB + 2TB= 4TB. When it comes down to, as Rick put it, "More capacity in a smaller space = $$$", I will take the Home Server once again. The price/funtionality ratio is just so much higher. As for a storage solution, the home server I mentioned wins again simply because it is upgradeable while the WD World Edition is not (to the average person).

Ph30nIX Ph30nIX said:

1st Point

The only way to get 4TB using 2 drives is with 2 x 2TB drives.

2nd

While I'm sure the markup is substantial, people pay a premium for storage density. More capacity in a smaller space = $$$.

3rd

Think about that before you compare a "server" with 4 drives that offers no reasonable portability

4th

serves a completely different purpose.

I also have no doubt the performance of said NAS would be better than that of your ghetto server. Is the point not defeated when you claim to be able to build a "better" solution, which is not only bulky and impractical, but also looses the performance which is half the reason you would buy something like a NAS

Staff
Jos Jos said:

Forgot to mention Mionet IS NOT FREE like the article says. They give you a free 30 day demo with the WD NAS, then it's $7.99 a month or $79.99 a year....author should edit this article.

I contacted WD for clarification on this matter and confirmed that the service IS indeed free for those who buy this specific product. Here's what they had to say:

There is no charge for the MioNet remote access to the My Book World Edition II hard drive. There are other MioNet services which do require a fee.

Staff
Rick Rick, TechSpot Staff, said:

I will take the Home Server once again. The price/funtionality ratio is just so much higher.

Just about anyone with technical skill would take the server based upon 'bang for buck' -- I know I would -- but again, that wasn't the point. This was a matter of playing devil's advocate and showing that a 4TB NAS *is* pretty expensive, when it uses two drives. What I said was a counter argument to complaints about price, such as...

You can buy a 1TB external for $90 these days.

Hard to see how that equates to $700 for a 4 TB NAS.

700 bucks could build me a basic server with 4 1.5TB Drives

Sure, there's a markup, but we aren't dealing with 4 x 1TB drives. Once again, increased storage density comes at a premium.

As for other benefits, lower power consumption, an actual USB data port, still much more portable than your Acer box suggestion and far less complexity since there's just a web-based NAS interface with setup software. These things make it pretty good for the average person. Hell, most consumers wouldn't know to do with a server, let alone put one together affordably

Staff
Rick Rick, TechSpot Staff, said:

There are still many many bugs associated with 2TB drives

Well, that's just a wild guess...

The same problems that were introduced with 2TB drives also debuted with 1.5GTB... 1TB... 500GB... I know, your point is older drives have had more time to mature, but are you aware of any *current* problems with WD's 2TB drives? If so, source them, because I'd like to know. They've been around for more than 6 months, which is plenty of time for newer FW and controller revisions which address any problems (I'm not aware of any in WD's 2TB line, anyway). In fact, they've even released a second GP version... I would bet they are pretty good at making these things by now.

a home server seems more reasonable from a reliability standpoint

I disagree. This is most certainly not true for a server in a 4 x 1TB config (as suggested) and most definitely not the case software or hardware wise either.

While I do like the Acer box (and simliar options, like the one I use at home), it's still a home server made from the same consumer-grade crap that's found in every other electronic device. There's no 'increased reliability'. In fact, I'd argue that less can go wrong with the WD NAS (And please, for the record, I don't personally like the 4TB WD NAS at all). There are just fewer hardware components to fail and you don't have to muck around with WHS, which could be the source of *many* issues.

Sure, a home server is more versatile, but that was never my point... and since you're point here is reliability, I'd like to make it clear that is absolutely not true.

Ph30nIX Ph30nIX said:

Well said Rick.

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