Time To Get NASty

| October 15, 2010 | 2 Comments

All homes that have a network should have a Network Attached Storage device (NAS). A NAS is an enclosure with one or more hard drives that resides somewhere on your network. A NAS is a great backup solution and can be configured to automatically backup files, can have multiple drives in a RAID configuration to provide redundancy, and they can contain massive amounts of storage space required by today’s multimedia needs. You can use them to store music, movies,pictures and other data that can be shared with every computer in the house. They can even often be configured to allow you to access this data from outside the home.

network attached storage recommendations

So why don’t you have one yet? The cases are cheap and the hard drives are even cheaper. Now is the perfect time to buy. We’ll show you a few examples, so you can decide which solution is best for you.

Network Attached Storage Drives

You’ll want to get a model from a well-known manufacturer, with reliable hard drives you trust to run for a very long time. We like the Western Digital Cavalier Black hard drives, but you can use any make and model your trust. The NAS might already have a drive installed, or you can buy cases that are empty, which allow you to add and swap out drives on the fly. If you have nothing and are one a budget, you might want to start with the self-contained NAS with a single drive. If you have a business or if your home network has data you simply cannot lose, you should invest in a multiple-bay NAS case and configure it for RAID. All of these backup solutions come with detailed instructions on how to set them up. The best part is, these devices are not Operating System specific. Your Mac and Windows computers will have no issue finding and saving data to the NAS device.

Single NAS Drives

western digital NASWestern Digital My Book World Edition 1 TB Network Attached Storage

The Western Digital My Book World Edition 1 TB NAS is an affordable, single-drive solution that is very easy to setup. Plug it into your existing network and instantly have an additional 1TB of storage for the computers in your home. It comes with software, to assist you in backing-up, but we don’t like it. Use something like SyncToy to automatically backup your data.

Read more about the Western Digital My Book World Edition 1 TB NAS here.

seagate NAS

Seagate BlackArmor NAS 110 1 TB Network Attached Storage

If you prefer Seagate drives, this Seagate NAS is a great Network Attacked Storage device you can integrate with your home or office network. It also has FTP capabilities and backup software that allows you to save and share your data with anyone on the network.

Read more about the Seagate BlackArmor NAS here.

Multiple Bay NAS

d-link NAS

D-Link DNS-323 2-Bay Network Attached Storage Enclosure

The D-link DNS-323 is a very affordable 2-bay case that allows you to quickly add and remove hard drives. It has all of the advantages of the drives above, but you can setup Raid 1, which provides data redundancy. If one drive fails, you do not lose any data. Simply add a new drive and continue backing up to both drives at once. Again, you’ll need to buy hard drives for this, as it is only the case.

Read more about the D-Link DNS-323 2-Bay NAS here.

drobo NAS

Drobo FS 5-bay Gbe Storage Array

Drobo is an industry leader in NAS devices. While it’s a little more expensive than the others, it does have a 5-bay storage array that provides file sharing for the home or office. Drobo FS features automated data protection, dual-drive redundancy, self healing technology. How cool is that? Two drives can fail and you will not lose any data. Just put two new drives back in and your back to normal.

Read more about the Drobo FS 5-bay Gbe Storage Array here.

No matter what backup solution you choose, you need to make sure it provides the proper backup solution for you. We like the multiple bay NAS devices, as they will grow with you, and provide data redundancy that’s important for the computers on your network. Let us know what you use or recommend for a NAS if you’re already running one.

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Category: Networking

Dave

About the Author ()

Dave has been providing free computer repair and tech support advice online since 2002. Join us on our forums and be sure to subscribe to our newsletter for weekly tips and other helpful computer articles. Connect with me on: Google+

Comments (2)

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  1. jetfreak2000 says:

    Great information. Thanks for sharing…. God speed.

  2. Monte says:

    If you can’t afford one of those pre manufactured devices you could always build your own NAS from an old computer.

    And if there are less than ten other users on your network you can use an older version of Windows that came installed on the computer (Windows client – i.e.: 2000, XP, Vista, & 7 only allow for ten consecutive connections, any more and you will need a Server OS).

    I have a couple of pages about NAS and UPS on my site, may be a cheaper alternative and you are already familiar with the Operating System.

    A thougt about NAS…

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