Seagate Business Storage 8-Bay Rackmount NAS review
Seagate’s first foray into the world of rack-mountable NAS, the Business Storage 8-Bay Rackmount, is something special. Not only does it cram eight 3.5in hard disks into a 1U chassis, but it’s also great value – the 32TB model on review costs far less than the competition.
Seagate has achieved this high storage density by opting for an Asus micro-ATX motherboard – a choice that leaves room in the front of the chassis for two rows of four LFF SATA drives.
Installing and replacing drives is simple: the drive bay cover pops off easily, and you fit a carrier by flicking back the locking button, dropping it into a free bay, sliding it towards the combined SATA/power connector and pushing down the lock.
The Seagate is powered by a dual-core 2.3GHz Celeron G1610T CPU, and equipped with 4GB of DDR3 RAM. The motherboard’s four embedded SATA II and two SATA III ports provide six of the disk interfaces, while the other two are handled by a dual-port SATA II card fitted in a riser card.
At the rear, the pair of Gigabit ports can be teamed together, and there are three USB 2 ports for external devices. However, there are no USB 3 ports. Power redundancy is provided by a pair of 250W hotplug PSUs. Seagate also bundles sliding rack rails and a cable management arm.
Installation starts by pointing a web browser at the appliance and following a quick-start wizard. This loads the latest firmware, asks for a system name and admin password and sets up a base set of shares. The installation process creates a SimplyRAID array, which allows you to mix drives of different sizes in the same array and provides single-drive redundancy. If necessary, you can delete this array and opt for SimplyRAID with dual redundancy, or create standard mirrors, stripes, RAID5 or RAID6 arrays instead.
The appliance’s web interface provides a clear status overview of all services. Shares are simple to create, and access can be controlled with local user and group lists, or by joining a Windows domain. Support covers SMB, NFS, AFP and FTP/SFTP access, and a useful feature is the ability to enable each service on specific network ports. Multimedia features comprise an iTunes server and support for media streaming to UPnP/DLNA devices.
|Dimensions||43.5 x 772 x 17.5mm (WDH)|
|Software supplied||Seagate Constellation ES.3|