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Thread: NAS Hardware Advice Needed - Considering Thecus N2100

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    NAS Hardware Advice Needed - Considering Thecus N2100

    Hi

    I need some help!!!

    I’m looking for a NAS device suitable for my home network (my network has a Billion 7402VGP Wireless ADSL Modem / Router at its centre). Unfortunately, the products I have found either don’t do what I want, or I can’t work it out from the documentation, or both… (I’m not too crash hot on networks & other file systems, etc)

    I need help to find out if any products exist which do what I need… I’ve made a wish list of features I want below:

    Essential Feature I need help with:

    I need the NAS device I get to use a non-proprietary or standard file system / formatting. My main requirement is to be able to directly access the information contained on the NAS device’s disks via other means (Internal SATA Connector, or External USB HDD Case). This is either in case the NAS device breaks down (I’m in a remote area, and couldn’t wait for a new replacement NAS device to be able to access my data), or if I go on holidays and want to take my data with my (in an external USB HDD Case).

    Other Essential Features (which are fairly easy to work out):

    • Contains 2x SATA HDD Bays which will accept any capacity HDD
    • Automatic RAID or Mirroring Capability for Data Backup
    • Will function with only 1 HDD installed
    • Supports Windows, Mac & Linux
    • Uses standard networking protocols
    • Small / Minimalist Case


    Desired Features:

    Other things are desirable, but not essential, and include things like Print Server Capability, Power Management, Security Features & USB Sockets for Direct USB Drive Backup.

    Products Considered So Far:

    Netgear SC101 - When I first saw the Netgear SC101, it looked promising… Unfortunately, it uses its own proprietary formatting, so the data on it is completely inaccessible without the SC101 device itself. I’ve also heard that there are quite a few other problems with it since then, so am giving it a very wide berth.

    Thecus N2100 – The Thecus N2100 looks VERY promising. It has most of the things I’ve listed above, as well as a built-in iTunes server!! Unfortunately, the Thecus website lists the N2100 as having a “Journaling File System”. Unfortunately, I have no idea what this means about accessing the accessing the data without the N2100… Would I be able to take one of the discs out and access the data from a Windows, Mac and or Linux computer (via a SATA connection or USB HDD Case)??
    (N2100 Specs - http://www.thecus.com/products_spec.php?cid=1&pid=1)

    Other than these, I’ve had a quick look at products from Buffalo, Linksys, etc, but the N2100 seems to b closest to what I want.

    Does anyone know whether the N2100’s files would be directly accessible without the N2100 itself (& if it’s easy), or if there’s a similar product which does allow direct access, as well as most of the other things I want?

    Thanks!

    Mark (Chooky78)

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    Does he need a reason? Funkstar's Avatar
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    Most NAS boxes use a version of Linux for the OS, so the file system is likely to be EXT2 or similar

    Some will let you format in FAT32, but you are then compromising the reliability of the file system (FAT32 is rubish, hence why most use a journaling file system). You do get Win2K/XP drivers for the common linux file systems though.

    The most likely part of a NAS to fail is the drive itself as opposed to the NAS unit.

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    You might want to move this to the networking forum - may get more replies.

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    Thanks Funkstar!

    Everything I've read agrees with you, and it sounds like ext2 and ext3 are one of the most reliable and accessible file systems. I've found one or two programs to access ext3 file systems from my Windows XP SP2 box already!

    I still want to be able to access the drives without the NAS unit (holidays, emergency, etc), so just need to find out if the Thecus N2100 definitely has an ext3 file system that's accessible by other means... I'm a bit worried that it has some weird or proprietary sort of file system, as the specs (linked to on my initial post) don't actually say anything more than "Journaling File System".

    Does anyone own a Thecus N2100 and know what file system it uses? Or have they tried to access their files without the N2100?

    Ta!

    Mark (Chooky78)

    P.S. If this thread would work better forum, as DavidStone28 suggests, could they move it for me please?

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    Post a new thread over in the Scan forum, one of the Scan guys will find out for you i'm sure.


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    I got the ReadyNAS - kind of expensive, but you get what you pay for. I also know people with the BuffaloNAS which is supposed to be OK, but not as fast.

    It sounds like what you're after isn't really a NAS, but some mass USB storage device. A proper NAS will not be something you'd want to move around. Assuming you're just after sharing files, you could get a large USB device and use Windows sharing?

    Tom

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    Beware thecus support.

    Thecus 2100 might be good. I heard it was linux (busybox) with compressed loope filesystem.

    Thecus provides NO support whatsoever, so beware of that.

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