Iomega NAS 200d Series 320GB with REV review

Price when reviewed

This latest Iomega storage product brings together an interesting amalgamation of NAS appliance and the company’s popular REV technology, with a view to offering a small business backup package. The NAS 200d family comprises three models, but only the entry-level 320GB version gets this treatment: Iomega includes two 164GB hard disks and slips an internal SATA REV drive in the spare bay. It then partners the drive with a copy of CA’s BrightStor ARCserve Backup r11.1.

Iomega NAS 200d Series 320GB with REV review

Note that the ARCserve version is a single-server licence and doesn’t come with client agents, so you can’t use the software to automate workstation backup to the appliance unless you’re prepared to upgrade. Iomega’s Automatic Backup Pro software is used to secure workstation data to the appliance, which can then be secured by ARCserve to REV disks at scheduled intervals. ARCserve isn’t preinstalled, but can be loaded on the appliance by running the remote install routine from another workstation. It offers a far greater feature set than the standard Windows backup tool and the price includes CA’s disaster-recovery (DR) option. Iomega includes a recovery DVD, although you’ll need your own USB DVD drive. You boot from the supplied disk to restore the system to its factory-fresh status, reinstall ARCserve and restore all your user data from the latest backup REV media.

With Windows Storage Server 2003 (WSS 2003) behind the scenes, there’s a good range of NAS features, and the management interface is easy to use. Installing ARCserve adds a new tab to the interface, which fires up a Remote Desktop connection to the appliance. Backup is a simple three-step process, where you select source drives and directories, pick your target REV device and decide how you want your backups run. At 35GB, the REV disk capacity is on a par with DAT72, although performance is far superior. DAT72 offers a poor 3MB/sec transfer rate, but a test backup of 1.8GB of data on the appliance to the REV drive returned a speed of 20.5MB/sec.

Installation is helped along by the Discovery utility, which searches the network for appliances. This displays a list of discovered devices and allows you to modify basic features such as their IP addresses and fire up a remote browser-management interface. General NAS features are far better than most Linux-powered appliances at this level, and extensive client support includes Windows, Unix, Linux, Macintosh and NetWare, plus you can activate only those you require. Access controls to network shares are good, since you can use local or domain users and groups and Active Directory. Quotas may be defined to limit usage at the directory level, and Iomega’s implementation of WSS 2003 includes the storage-reporting and file-screening tools.

We expected the appliance to come with two 250GB SATA drives and most will probably use Iomega’s DR routine rather than the ARCserve option. Even so, this compact appliance offers an effective approach to backup and storage, which provides good data security and performance.

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