Looking for any suggestions/recommendations for Windows based OS NAS devices for small business usage. Would like to have:
– RAID 5 capabilities
– Windows AD integration for user rights management
– 3-4 bays
– fast performance for both disk read/writes and network
– WSS OS preferable
– use is basic file storage and archiving of data within our own IT workgroup that we don’t want on/doesn’t need to be on our main network servers
Googling seems to show 1. the Synology devices have really good ratings but they seem to be linux based OS. Not opposed to that if they have a proven record in terms of easily being added to Windows AD and using AD to manage user rights to the shares. 2. Not many WSS based devices in our price point other than a couple of Buffalo devices.
There are not many options out there for a Windows based NAS. There are Thecus and Buffalo. Qnap and Synology will let you set up a domain controller, but it is nothing like Windows server configuration. Setting up user rights will be limited to the basic level. Also, if you have Windows based office, it just makes sense to have the server of the same operating system. You will get way more advanced configuration options, so you can set things up exactly how you need it.
With Windows storage server you can create a pool, set up a RAID (including RAID1, RAID5, and RAID6) and create volumes. This will enable a server to run even though there will be one or two drives broken at some point. All data will be safe and network users happy accessing their precious files.
You can set up an active directory for user rights management. Also, share the drive you created during RAID configuration as well as other devices. All this managed from one central point which is the main idea of WSS NAS.
For faster performance, you should look at WSS with dual LAN ports if not 10GbE (hard to find). Having more than one LAN port opens a possibility of load balancing or link aggregation. This potentially can double your network bandwidth.
If you prefer to have 10GbE, then you can consider TS-453Be (with added 10g card) or ds1817 (built in 10G) or DS1517 (4 LAN ports) which has domain controller but is not WSS NAS.
Otherwise, I do recommend getting Buffalo WS5400 or Thecus W4810. Unlimited users and actual windows server software license included. Free replacement service too for peace of mind. Even if you had experienced issues with Buffalo non-WSS NAS- that was due to the fact that Domain controller was on Linux system not on a Windows. Getting WSS NAS will eliminate the chance of different operating system not working properly with Widows.
Select Server Roles – Windows Server
Creating Storage Pool – Windows Server
Setting up RAID – Windows Server
Select provisioning type – Windows Server
Creating Volume – Windows Server
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