I’ve been persuaded by the experience of a friend to upgrade my NAS for a third time! Yes I know, I’ve tried three “domestic” NAS’ before and been unhappy with the performance of all of them from a transfer perspective. I have indicated in the past that I’d not bother with anything less than $1000 for my next one. However the feedback on this one is that it’s what I’d expect for the price ($400)! Previous NAS have left a bad taste in my mouth with fairly pathetic network transfer speeds, no better than USB 2, and sometimes not even that good. Given that they’ve been touted as having gigabit network connectivity, you’d expect better. But in real life they’ve all been disappointing. So this time I’ve higher hopes. I’ve lashed out for the fourth drive and slapped 4 x 2tb WD Red into a WD My Cloud EX4.
Given that I’ve dumped all Movie and TV video files now, since my decision to basically not engage with the industry much anymore, I’ve got no need to bother with streaming to the TV etc, so that service is turned off. I’ve not been really sold on the iTunes library idea on NAS yet either, so that too is turned off for the meantime.
I’ll be mainly using this NAS for storage without the “frills”. Photos will need to be stored in another place so that I’ve got backups on it too. I’ve got Time Machine backups running on another NAS, which I’m keeping, for the moment. I want to do some more research on the Time Machine backups on NAS over RAID 5 to see if they’re any issues. If not, then I may move those backups over, or start second backup for the iMac.
Certainly early experience is already much better since’s it’s not going to take a day to format the RAID array like the last. It seems to have managed that in a bit less than 15 mins for the RAID 5 array. It did make some weird and wonderful noises at the finalisation of the RAID array, presumably configuring for the parity. Anyway, initial tests with one drive as a single no RAID partition were encouraging with transfer speeds equivalent to USB 3 or THUNDERBOLT. I’ll be content with that for the price. It’s also got NIC aggregation, which may or may not help, but given that it’s rarely going to be under heavy NETWORK load, I’m curious but not desperate to check that out. Interestingly this is aimed at small business or SOHO as it’s got redundant power and NIC. Since it’s on a UPS, I’m going to take my time with another PSU, a spare drive is probably more important just now.
As it stands, its copying it’s first 200gig onboard at approx 55MB/s which is blinding compared to the previous 20MB/s or less of before.