Cost-efective NAS

Posted on 2006-06-30
Last Modified: 2010-05-18
We have a Dell server PE 2850 and need to get some extra space (NAS). I am looking for cost-effective solution.
somethign around 2 TB. How are Dell's Power Vault? something like that but cheaper

Also someone can explain briefly difference in storage type? USB 2.0, Firewire SATA SCSI which is the best option and why
and what is NAS server?
 why is it better to have external storage RAID then adding drives on a server
Question by:zeusindc
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LVL 18

Accepted Solution

simsjrg earned 25 total points
ID: 17017124
I am not going to go too crazy but here is some info regarding SCSI vs. SATA:

SATA storage is much more cost effective and in my opinion a little less reliable then SCSI. If you are looking for a NAS then I see no reason why you cannot use SATA drives. SCSI would provide you with faster seek times, better overall performance but for sheer storage SATA is your answer.

Currently the largest SCSI drive is 300GB @ 10,000RPM / Starting at about $600 per drive
The largest/fastest SCSI drive is 146GB @ 15,000RPM / Starting at about $800 per drive

These drives would out perform their SATA equivalent and probably also outlive them as well.

I will leave the remaining questions up to some other good people around here.

Author Comment

ID: 17017309
okay here is the thing, I need to recommend something and these are some links someone send me. We have a Dell PE 2850 that this device would go on. Now I am not sure how Dell Power Vault works, cause I believe it has a processor and all, does it has an OS and need not to be connected to any server? how would these devices go with or without any server?
LVL 18

Expert Comment

ID: 17017491

This is a nice one and being that you already have a rack mount server chassis this would fit well in the rack as well. This device is managed via a web interface which is convenient.

The power vault on the other hand is more or a SAN then a NAS (at least the 220 anyway) and requires a connection to the server via SCSI and the SCSI Raid controller in the server manages the disks on the PV.
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Expert Comment

ID: 17018208
There are really only a couple of "Cost-effective" NAS solutions.

These are consumer grade devices, not enterprise level.
They are in the 4 digit expense level where as enterprise solution will be in the 5 digit range.
These will do RAID 5 in software as opposed to hardware so they are a little(or a lot) slower than more expensive enterprise level solutions.
The other limitation with these is AD integration, they don't do it well.
I would consider these near-line storage for files that you need access to once in a while.
They will be way too slow to run applications or databases off of, but are a great place to put old files that you want to get off the file server, but don't want to have the hasstle of taking off-line.
They are cheap, easy to set up, and slow.


Author Comment

ID: 17031384
What I am trying to figure out is how this NAS really works?
What is the difference between adding disk arrays to a server?
or using a Dell PowerVault for example or that means the same thing....does powervault requires a server or it has its own OS and everything?
some of the links i fwd. had USB as controller type..I know PowerVault or adding disk arrays they are all SCSI connection.
How is USB connector type any good for NAS storage? What other connection type are there?


Assisted Solution

gbirkemeier earned 25 total points
ID: 17031498
A NAS is a self-contained file server. It is essentially a SAMBA server in a box.
If you have room in the server, just add drives, it will cost less.

If you absolutly can't take ther server down, or don't have room in the server, add a NAS.

I usually use NAS drives for on-line backups.

Cheap NAS boxes will not be as easy to configure for AD integration.

A true NAS will use ethernet, a USB drive is just an external drive enclosure.
The Dell PowerVault  stuff is good NAS equipment, it will basically just plug into your network.  It runs MS Storage Server, so it will integrate well with AD with minimal configuration.

Most NAS (including the Dell stuff) includes RAID, so it has built in faul tolerance if you enable it.

Author Comment

ID: 17052927
can someone recommend a external device which will connect to a server using SCSI or anything faster than USB. something like the dell power vault.
I need a direct storage device. SCSI will be expensive so a SATA capable unit that can be attached via SCSI to windows server

Author Comment

ID: 17057892
actually i found something called vtark....looks good anyone with working exp. on these?

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