Unlike most NASes, RAID enclosures have as simple a featureset as possible. They’re designed to give you robust external storage potential, without breaking the bank. It’s been ages since we last took a look at a RAID enclosure, so to break that dry spell, we’re taking Teratrend’s TS432U for a spin. Let’s see how it fares.
I would like to preface this article by covering the basics of mass storage devices like the one we are looking at today, as well as cover the subject of RAID; what it is, and why you should use it. Luckily for me, there is already a brilliantly-written article right here on Techgage that will tell you all you need to know about RAID, so thanks for that, Brett.
Let’s look at the difference between a NAS and a RAID enclosure. A NAS enclosure in a nutshell is a server, built from the ground up to manage your storage needs, and like the name suggests (Network-Attached Storage), it is accessible to users on your network. You could simply have a computer loaded with HDDs that can accomplish this very thing, but that adds to the cost, power consumption, and space real estate in your home or office, not to mention the headaches of setting up software to do what a NAS comes already programmed to do.
A NAS is a standalone box, purpose-built to handle your storage; they are small, efficient, and loaded with features from remote mobile device access to automatic backups – it’s like having you own personal in-home cloud. Many NASes are also compatible with Apple’s Time Machine backup software.
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