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How to Choose the Best NAS System for your enterprise?

The best NAS system for your company depends on the needs of your business. For certain organizations, the best NAS storage solution is one that provides the most efficient performance. In other cases, it may be the one that packs the highest storage capacity and takes the smallest space. For others, it may come down to the price per gigabyte or availability or security. This guide will show you how you can choose the best NAS system that will be a good fit for your business.

How to choose your NAS storage?

Three main factors should drive your decision, namely:

High availability: This can be achieved by using multiple network interface controllers (NICs), multiple CPUs, redundant storage controllers, power supplies, hot-swap drive trays, and fault tolerance techniques such as RAID and mirroring.

Performance: This can be achieved by using fast processor chips with multiple cores per CPU chip, solid-state drives (SSDs), high-performance network interface cards (NICs) with multiple ports to increase throughput, and advanced caching techniques.

Security: This can be achieved by implementing access control lists (ACLs), system event logs that record information about user actions for auditing purposes, encryption of data at rest using industry-standard encryption algorithms such as AES 256-bit encryption, Immutable delta-based snapshots, Write-Once Read-Many (WORM) volumes, and Sync/async multi-appliance/multi-site replication.

What factors to consider before buying?

How much capacity do you need?

How much information will you need to save? You’ll have to take into consideration both your current and future requirements. Consider the ease with which the solution can be scaled and also the expected lifetime of the hardware.

Check your performance requirements.

How much throughput do you require, and what kind of latency is acceptable to you? The answer to this question will determine whether you select a Network Attached Storage device with slower HDDs or more powerful solid-state drives (SSDs).

Modern applications such as HD video editing, machine learning, and big data analytics need high-performance SSD flash-based drives with a large cache. If, however, you are looking for a Network Attached Storage server to support a branch office, an affordable HDD-based NAS will be far more adequate.

Considerations for Networking

Unlike SAN devices which create an entirely separate storage network, NAS devices become part of your network. This means that you’ll have to ensure the device you choose has the appropriate kinds of ports and that it supports the protocols for networking used within your network. Most NAS storage devices use SMB and CFS protocols.

Reliability and accessibility

Some NAS storage integrates features such as RAID redundancy to boost availability. Some offer automatic data synchronization and automated failover. Decide which features will best suit you.

A variety of NAS devices also offer capabilities that minimize how much space is used by the data. If you calculate your total costs, it is essential to be aware of these features. If your device can compress data, this drastically changes your price per gigabyte.

What kind of security features do you want in your enterprise NAS?

The best NAS systems usually come with anti-malware and encryption capabilities built-in to secure your data. One good example is StoneFly’s NAS appliances that come with AES 256-bit encryption and Anti-virus and anti-ransomware. If your business holds sensitive customer data, these features are a necessity.

Bottom Line

Hopefully, this post will enable you to make an educated decision to select the best NAS system for your data center. If you are interested, read our other articles on NAS storage to get a better idea of what you can expect with this technology.

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