Monday, August 27, 2012

When to Replace Servers with Network Attached Storage

SOHO’s (Small Office/Home Offices) traditionally either had client-server or peer-to-peer networking in place to serve office needs.  Client server, the more expensive option, have the benefit of centrally managed network resources.  While peer-to-peer, though less costly and easy to setup, become difficult to manage as the network grows.

With low cost NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices, many SOHO’s can bypass using a centrally managed server and use a simpler configuration for storing data.  Deciding when to use a NAS or when to use a server depends on the office needs.

When to use NAS

NAS devices are a cost effective and simple way to manage user storage.  There are several different NAS manufacturers and models to choose from.  Each model will also have different features, like the number of USB ports, upgradability and printer support.  Network services provided by the NAS, like FTP (File Transfer Protocol), Windows Shares, Workgroups and NFS (Network File Sharing) protocol also vary.