Storage Wars NAS Roundup: Thecus, QNAP, Netgear
There are benefits for small and medium businesses (SMBs) too. Many of today's NAS boxes are loaded with IT friendly features that make it easy to access data and backup devices from remote locations. NAS boxes offer redundant protection without the risk of third-party cloud services, and in fact can be thought of as your own personal cloud, one that you're in complete control of. As your business grows, so can your storage architecture.
Convincing yourself you need or could benefit from a NAS box is the easy part. The hard part is in sifting through the seemingly million-and-one options out there and picking the best one for your needs. To help you do that, we reached out to a number of NAS vendors and asked them to send us their recommended NAS device for a 3-5 bay shootout. Three were willing to play ball.
Finally, QNAP sent us its TS-569 Pro device. Like the other two, this one has a dual-core Atom processor tucked inside, but it's the only one of the three to bring five drive bays to this particular NAS party. Sans storage, a naked TS-569 Pro streets in the neighborhood of $1,000. Even though it's billed as a "high-performance 5-bay NAS server for SMBs," the product's price tag puts it within reach of high-end SOHO consumers looking for a compact centralized storage solution without having to roll their own machine.
On the following pages, we'll be taking a close look at each one's overall feature-set, ease of setup, backup routine, and performance. To help us do that, Western Digital provided us with four WD Red 3TB hard drives designed specifically for NAS applications. That's a lot of storage, but if we're going to do this thing, we want to do it right. Brace yourself folks, it's about to get NASty up in here.