QNAP TS-101 Turbo Station: Features and Setup
The QNAP 9-in-1 NAS Server TS-101 Turbo Station has an all aluminum enclosure that is both lightweight and stylish. As its name implies, the 9-in-1 NAS Server offers a total of 9 separate services as we've summarized below, and will cover in deeper detail in the pages ahead:
- Multimedia Station - Share images over the web
- Download Station - BitTorrent support independent of a PC
- Mirror Station - Allows the TS-101's hard drive to be mirrored via USB or eSATA connections through Q-RAID 1
- Disaster Recovery - Backup/Restore needs
- Web Server - For personal web page authoring with support for PHP and SQLite
- Print Server - Drives a USB printer and makes it networkable
- FTP Server - Share files using FTP
- Backup Server - Automatic backup of server settings
- File Server - Secure centralized file management.
Driving the QNAP 9-in-1 NAS Server TS-101 Turbo Station is an embedded SoC processor backed by 64MB of DRAM and 16MB of Flash Memory. The unit has room for one 3.5" SATA I/II hard drive up to 750GB in size. The QNAP TS-101 supports a broad range of hard drives, including Seagate's Barracuda, Hitachi's Deskstar, Maxtor's Grizzly/DiamondMax and Western Digital's Caviar drives. The maximum size supported is 750GB which should be more that adequate in the majority of usage scenarios. Especially considering you can buy a larger, single desktop HD at the moment.
The front and rear consoles are clean, well organized and clearly labelled in a manner that makes the system very easy to use right out of the box. The front bezel sports a series of status lights along with a USB 2.0 input. The main indicator lights consist of Status, Hard Drive, eSata, Power and LAN indicators. At the top of the unit is a One Touch Copy Button that works in conjunction with the front USB port to automatically copy the contents of a connected device, such as USB drive, digital camera, or USB card reader, to a specified location on the TS-101's hard drive.
The rear of the TS-101 sports two more USB 2.0 ports for controlling additional devices, such as a USB printer, as the TS-101 has print server capabilities integrated. The eSATA port can be used to connect an eSATA ready drive for backup purposes and can even be configured in a Q-RAID 1 setup which can mirror the TS-101's internal hard drive. Below the eSATA port is a Gigabit LAN port for 1000Mbps connectivity. The integrated Ethernet controller supports Jumbo Frame Setting for connecting devices that support this as well. By default, the MTU is set for 1500 bytes, but can be increased to 4074 and 7418 bytes respectively for improved transfer rates between supported devices. A reset button is provided to reset the log in and network settings to their factory defaults, a handy option if connectivity issues arise or you simply forget the password. What the reset does not do is reset the entire system to factory defaults, so any custom folders, user profiles or other configuration options will not be lost. Below the reset button is the standard power connector that marries up with the included power adapter.
As far as installing the drive, it doesn't get much simpler. By removing two screws from the rear of the TS-101, the shell slides apart into two halves, exposing the hard drive frame. Simply slide the drive into place, ensuring the SATA data and power ports fit securely to the drive, then secure with the four mounting screws provided in the package. Next, slide the cover back on and reinstall the two screws at the rear of the case and the assembly is complete. The next step is to power up the unit and insert the installation CD for final configuration of network settings, hard drive initialization and other options.