NAS with redundancy and good protocol support recommendations?
February 17, 2010 6:29 AM   Subscribe

Can you recommend a NAS device with built-in multi-disk redundancy and support for a variety of network share protocols for a small office?

I've looked at the Drobo with the DroboShare accessory, but it seems like it only supports SMB. Otherwise Drobo's easy redundancy is a very nice feature.

What other products are similar but support other protocols like AFP, FTP and NFS? It would be especially nice if hot-swapping of disks is supported.

I want something stand-alone that doesn't require a server, but I am comfortable with unfriendly interfaces.

posted by odinsdream to Computers & Internet (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
How about NETGEAR ReadyNAS?

We have the Duo here in the office (as a demo unit) and it supports CIFS/SMB, AFP 3.1, NFS v2 / v3, HTTP/S, FTP/S and RSYNC.
posted by mr_silver at 6:59 AM on February 17, 2010

posted by kcm at 7:04 AM on February 17, 2010

Does the ReadyNAS support hot-swapping of the redundancy drive?
posted by odinsdream at 7:16 AM on February 17, 2010

There is a comparison chart here.

Worth noting that the ReadyNAS Duo is designed as an "affordable home media server" so you may want to look at the ReadyNAS Pro for your office - or one of the other products from this page.
posted by mr_silver at 7:35 AM on February 17, 2010

I did the same sort of comparison shopping a year ago & found the Netgear stuff to be the best reviewed solution out there.
posted by MesoFilter at 7:40 AM on February 17, 2010

I have a ReadyNAS 1100 pro and it does all you ask for, but its performance is underwhelming and the web interface on it is just plain slow. You might be better off with a linux server and just configuring it to use software RAID5. It'll be half the price and give you a lot more flexibility. If you want a turn-key solution, they the readynas is good enough.
posted by damn dirty ape at 7:41 AM on February 17, 2010

We use a ReadyNAS NV+, and it has worked pretty well. It is certainly not glitch free (we've had problems with Mac OS permissions, and it took over 24 hours to rebuild when I added bigger drives), but it has generally been a good, hassle free, device for my small office (about 7 users).
posted by baggers at 7:47 AM on February 17, 2010

I also use the ReadyNAS at work, only as a backup share now. Works well for our needs. I will warn that multiple users with heavy file usage can crash it. We used to have about 10 admins using it as an smb share, and it would freeze about once a week. I took all but one off, and it's been fine since.
posted by jmd82 at 8:13 AM on February 17, 2010

If you really want a reasonably-priced, reliable solution, a Debian (linux) box is a ready bet; I just went through the process you're going through now, and elected to use that instead of a ReadyNAS. But then I have Linux admin experience, and you'd have to get hot-swap-capable hardware to run it on.
posted by davejay at 8:28 AM on February 17, 2010

I've been very impressed with drobo devices. You can buy them "bare", which is what I prefer, rather than a pre-stocked unit with overpriced undersized drives. I have a droboPro that I ran with a single 2TB drive for awhile before adding a second, but that's not a true NAS... if I had delayed my purchase a few months, I would have bought a droboElite instead.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 11:25 AM on February 17, 2010

We've deployed two ReadyNAS NVX devices in the past month here - they have been wonderful. They support the hot swapping of drives, in addition to the ability to increase the size of the volume on the fly by adding larger drives (again, through hotswap). The NVX line looks like it offers a performance boost over the older models, so that may help with some of the notes above.

I was looking at a Drobo for myself at home, but decided to go with a ReadyNAS NVX Pioneer based on the fact that a ReadyNAS was simpler than a 4-Bay Drobo with an additional network device, and cheaper than an 8-Bay Drobo. Also, the ReadyNAS has some additional features I didn't see on the Drobo, such as an iTunes server, DLNA server, Time Machine support, and such - although I may have missed them on the Drobo (I have hands-on experience w/ the ReadyNAS, not the Drobo).
posted by GJSchaller at 2:13 PM on February 17, 2010

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