Qsan TrioNAS U221 review

£4080
Price when reviewed

Anti-virus features have been improved greatly as the price includes a 3-year subscription to McAfee for on-appliance scanning. Previously, you had to use a separate ICAP server but local scheduled scans can be set up from the web interface and QCentral.

For performance testing we popped in a triplet of WD’s latest 2TB Enterprise SE SATA 3 drives and created a single RAID-5 storage pool.

Using a Dell PowerEdge R515 loaded with Windows Server 2008 R2, we found NAS speeds over Gigabit to be good with Iometer reporting raw read and write rates of 107MB/sec for a mapped share. Real world speeds are good, with a 2.52GB video clip copy averaging 106MB/sec, and general backup operations are equally speedy – our 22.4GB mix of 10,500 small files copied at an average of 70MB/sec.

Qsan TrioNAS U221

Moving to 10GbE testing, we installed an Emulex OCE11102-NM adapter in the Dell server and connected it directly to the appliance’s dual-port 10GbE card over fibre. With jumbo frames enabled, Iometer reported fast iSCSI raw read and write rates of around 1010MB/sec which equates to a speedy 7.9Gbits/sec. This translates to fast backup speeds over 10GbE with our video clip copy averaging 450MB/sec and our small file folder achieving 150MB/sec.

We’ve previously found ZFS based appliances to deliver modest deduplication ratios and the U221 is no exception. We used the Binary Testing deduplication test suite with CA’s [HREF=”http://www.pcpro.co.uk/reviews/software/373744/ca-arcserve-backup-r16″]ARCserve r16[/A] and recorded a data reduction ratio of only 3.02:1 for a one month simulated backup period.

The TrioNAS U221 is a direct competitor to Netgear’s ZFS–based ReadyDATA 5200. The U221 loses ground due to its lack of external expansion, but has the overall edge on the Netgear – it’s faster over 10GbE, matches its rival for backup and data protection features, and, crucially, it’s significantly cheaper.

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