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Network attached storage (NAS)- more suitable than SANs?Sponsored Links
What is network attached storage (NAS)?
Network-attached storage (NAS) are essentially controlled common storage that are accessed over the local area network.
Typically,network attached storage (NAS) will consist of RAID disk arrays
that consolidate the storage needs of the department or organization.
NAS is an alternative to a specialized storage area network (SAN), where devices communicate using the block-based SCSI protocol over dedicated Fibre Channel or Internet Protocol (IP) network. NAS devices are often connected to a shared general purpose local area network, reducing cost overhead, while also reducing access speed. The protocol used with NAS is a file based protocol such as Network File System (NFS) or Microsoft's Common Internet File System (CIFS).
Advantages of Network attached storage systems (NAS)
- Network attached storage (NAS) allows very fast access speeds to storage since the data is typically stored in Raid arrays within the corporate LAN
- Network attached storage (NAS) involves low cost logical storage since the RAIDs or multiple hard disks are stored within the LAN itself
- Network attached storage (NAS) have the easiest installation process, a typical NAS installation may take less than thirty minutes using the dumbest network engineer!
Who should use network attached storage (NAS)
Network attached storage (NAS) is the ideal solution for SMEs(small medium enterprises) and mid sized corporate departments
The reasons why network attached storage (NAS) is ideal for SME storage environments :
- Network attached storage(NAS) is easy to install,administer and manage making them ideal for the small networking team in SMEs
- Network attached storage(NAS) offer the cheapest access to administered storage
- Network attached storage ensures that access to storage is faster due to the RAID disk arrays being part of the LAN.
Comparisons of Network attached storage (NAS) and Storage Area Networks (SAN)
- Technology used in NAS and SAN:
Most SAN systems (Storage area networks) use the iSCI or the Fibre Channel technologies that typically send SCSI commands and transfer SCSI packets one at a time.Storage area networks (SAN) using iSCI are the most popular these days and iSCI uses the internet protocol (IP) to transfer data
NAS (network attached storage) uses file based protocols such as Network File System (NFS) and Microsoft's Common Internet File System (CIFS).
- Cost considerations using NAS and SAN:
NAS (Network attached storage) systems are generally much cheaper than SANs(storage area networks)
NAS (network attached storage) typically offers such a low cost of ownership compared to SAN(storage area networks) that IT departments of large organizations are beginning to wonder whether SANs are really an overkill
- Target market of NAS and SAN:
NAS (Network attached storage) systems are usually found in SME storage environments while SANs (storage area networks) are usually found in large corporates and large corporate departments
NAS (network attached storage) vendors
Auspex was the pioneer in the NAS (network attached storage) space,but subsequently, NAS is offered by all the major vendors of the data storage industry.
Dell PowerVault 775N is probably the most highly regarded network attached storage (NAS) system in the enterprise data storage market today.