What is NAS Data Storage?

Updated 3/25/2011 by SuperMediaStore Staff

What is NAS Data Storage?

A network-attached storage (NAS) device is a server that is dedicated to file sharing or “static” data storage. Unlike a server in a serve-centric system, a NAS does not provide for activities such as e-mail, authentication, or file management. However, it can support the servers that do provide such activities by allowing additional disk storage space without shutting the server down for maintenance and upgrades. In other words, in a storage-centric LAN, the server handles the processing of data and NAS device delivers the data to the user.

 

Potential Usage of a NAS system?

In general, whenever someone in your organization has a need to park additional data or files, that’s an opportunity for NAS.

  • NAS systems can provide additional storage space for end users.
  • It is an ideal file sharing devise for central repositories for both workgroups and departmental entities.
  • Additional working / exploring space for IT staff (especially when staging servers for backup purposes)
  • Low cost! The cost per TB of NAS storage is so low that it competes with tape on price but has the advantage of being faster and more practical.

Do I need Network Attach Storage (NAS)?

Virtually every workstation and server is configured with a limited storage capacity. No matter how big the capacity is, most of us will eventually find a way to use up this resource. For a handful of workstations, deleting files or adding larger drives may sound like a logical solution. However, the overloads will spread to other workstations when this simple quick fix will not be sufficient.

Likewise, when a server fills up, deleting files or offloading to tape are options. Again, limitations will be the maximum limit to what it can hold. Also your servers are probably required to perform a wide variety of tasks and are geared for managing volatile data.

When you have a need to store less frequently used data that still needs to be online and accessible, NAS Servers are the ideal choice. They are economical means to quickly add large amounts of storage capacity. What’s even better is that since a NAS device does not need to be located within the server but can exist anywhere in a LAN and can be made up of multiple networked NAS devices; it can be accessed by anyone on the network.