Network Attached Storage (NAS) Overview

Now that my new office is starting to come together, I have begun research into ways of storing all my files in a central location on the network. This has several advantages: they can be used from every device that is connected to my home network and I only have to backup one device.

What I want is a NAS, or Network Attached Storage device. There are literally hundreds of devices available and if you’re not convinced by that choice yet, you can just build your own machine and put a Linux distro on it or go the Windows Home Server route. Tom’s guide has a nice overview if you want to add RAID.

One thing that I worry about, is the power consumption of such a device. It will be on 24/7, but I will probably only use it for a small part of that time. I couldn’t find much information about it, but I think this is where a dedicated device could shine. So here are some interesting links about devices built to be NASes:

Feel free to share your suggestions and tips in the comments.

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  • What did you buy in the end?

  • To be honest, I haven't bought one yet. I'm currently using a fairly cheap LaCie external harddrive for manual backups. It's a little more work, but it's a very cheap solution.
    I've also backed of a bit from the NAS idea, I'm now looking at low powered PCs for media playback. They'd be on 24/7 so could double as a NAS. The Mac Mini is very low power, but seems a bit expensive. The Dell Inspiron Zino HD looks very promising. You can get one with almost maxed out specs for <€700 (that's with a 1TB drive) and it consumes in the range 25 to 90 watts (…)