Networked Storage For Home, SMBs

By Loyd Case  |  Posted 2005-05-23 Print this article Print

Review: Network attached storage is going mainstream. We look at a high-end solution and an entry-level product. The right one for you depends on your budget and storage needs.

Your Data from Any PC Network attached storage (NAS) is huge in corporate IT functions, but NAS hasnt been on the radar for many home users. Weve touched on home network storage here at ET, including our reviews of the D-Link Central Home Drive and Ximetas NetDisk. And weve also discussed network storage in the context of building your own home servers, such as our Mini-ITX home server using Windows XP and our budget-focused Linux home server. And other devices, like the Mirra Personal Server fills roles as network-attached backup devices. But now were starting to see the first of what will probably be a flood of small devices targeted at homes and small businesses. The D-Link and Ximeta drives were leading indicators, but now companies are coming out with devices that offer more sophisticated features and better performance. Lets take a look at a couple of new entries in the home network storage arena. Each is quite different from the other and fulfills somewhat different needs and budgets.
We used an Athlon 64 system running an nForce4 Ultra chipset, a Netgear gigabit Ethernet hub and CAT6 cabling to test connectivity and performance of these two very different network storage appliances.
Read the full story on Networked Storage in the Home
Loyd Case came to computing by way of physical chemistry. He began modestly on a DEC PDP-11 by learning the intricacies of the TROFF text formatter while working on his master's thesis. After a brief, painful stint as an analytical chemist, he took over a laboratory network at Lockheed in the early 80's and never looked back. His first 'real' computer was an HP 1000 RTE-6/VM system.

In 1988, he figured out that building his own PC was vastly more interesting than buying off-the-shelf systems ad he ditched his aging Compaq portable. The Sony 3.5-inch floppy drive from his first homebrew rig is still running today. Since then, he's done some programming, been a systems engineer for Hewlett-Packard, worked in technical marketing in the workstation biz, and even dabbled in 3-D modeling and Web design during the Web's early years.

Loyd was also bitten by the writing bug at a very early age, and even has dim memories of reading his creative efforts to his third grade class. Later, he wrote for various user group magazines, culminating in a near-career ending incident at his employer when a humor-impaired senior manager took exception at one of his more flippant efforts. In 1994, Loyd took on the task of writing the first roundup of PC graphics cards for Computer Gaming World -- the first ever written specifically for computer gamers. A year later, Mike Weksler, then tech editor at Computer Gaming World, twisted his arm and forced him to start writing CGW's tech column. The gaming world -- and Loyd -- has never quite recovered despite repeated efforts to find a normal job. Now he's busy with the whole fatherhood thing, working hard to turn his two daughters into avid gamers. When he doesn't have his head buried inside a PC, he dabbles in downhill skiing, military history and home theater.

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