NAS Server

NAS servers are a popular storage solution for organizations large and small. A NAS server can support a wide variety of contemporary workloads including file sharing, web content storage, email archiving, and storage of virtual machine images. The appeal of network attached storage (NAS) can be seen by comparing it to the two main alternative storage solutions: direct attached storage (DAS) and dedicated storage area network (SAN).

NAS Server vs DAS

Direct attached storage, as the name suggests, is storage that is directly attached to and utilized by only one computer – a desktop PC or a server machine. A NAS server provides two key advantages over direct attached storage:

  • NAS storage provides better storage capacity utilization within an organization with multiple users than DAS. In an environment with multiple “silos” of direct attached storage, capacity planning and optimization is difficult, as some DAS silos are bound to be under-utilized while others are pressed to their limits. With a NAS server, storage capacity is pooled and shared across users and applications, reducing waste and boosting agility.
  • A centralized NAS server is easier to maintain than multiple DAS systems. Security, backup, upgrade, and other maintenance tasks are simplified by working with one central NAS system rather than multiple dispersed silos of direct attached storage.

NAS Server vs SAN

Along with NAS, the other option for a networked storage system is a SAN. While SANs are valued for their unmatched performance for use cases such as high-volume transaction systems, a NAS server is preferred to SAN in many contexts because:

  • NAS costs less than SAN systems. For example, whereas a SAN is a specialized, dedicated storage network, a NAS server lets you leverage your existing ethernet and TCP/IP infrastructure, and your team’s existing networking expertise.
  • For some of the same reasons that make them less costly, NAS systems are simpler to deploy and manage than SAN systems.

NAS Server Solutions from Thinkmate

Thinkmate is a custom systems builder whose clients include some of the world’s leading corporations and academic institutions. We have the experience, expertise, and technologies to help you maximize your return on your NAS server investment. For customers who have acquired NAS software (whether open source or proprietary) and are looking for a powerhouse hardware foundation on which to run the software, we offer best-of-breed hardware platforms optimized for bulk storage, available in a range of configurations. For those who want to support SAN protocols as well as NAS protocols, we offer pre-installed NexentaStor™ solutions that provide NAS and SAN storage in a unified system. For all of our storage solutions we deliver industry-best customer service and warranty terms.

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