Iomega has introduced the NAS 100d network-attached storage (NAS) box to help small businesses solve their storage problems cost-effectively and flexibly.
The product can slot into just about any environment. It has a 10/100Mbps Lan port, USB connectivity and 802.11g wireless capabilities, making it just about the easiest way to connect 250Gbytes of immediately accessible storage capacity to your working network; a 160Gbyte version is also available.
If you have a DHCP-enabled Lan, simply powering the NAS up within 100 metres of your wireless AP is all that is needed to deploy the Iomega 100d. In fact, the NAS 100d also acts as a WLan AP itself, providing not only disc capacity, but a full 802.11 solution to extend an existing, wired Lan.
Configuration comes through a web browser. There is support for all the standard Lan and WLan settings, as well as WEP encryption and authentication for data security purposes. The 100d runs on Linux with 64Mbytes of DDR SDRAM, and a 266MHz Intel XScale CPU is incorporated into the unit.
Performance is not blistering, but appears to be optimised for the maximum throughput of 802.11g WLan connections. Connecting to the unit this way gives transfer speeds of around 1,200Kbps in both reading and writing operations. Using the 100Mbps Lan connection pushes this figure up to just 1,600Kbps in writing operations, while read speeds increase to 3,900Kbps.
These figures might not sound astonishing, considering the 100d is a 7,200rpm drive with 8Mbytes of cache inside, but it is sufficient to provide a central data store for an office of up to 10 people at adequate speed. It even provides an automated critical data back-up for keeping the data on your network safe, and easily restores systems in the case of a hard-disc failure.
The performance means that no additional costs to improve the speed of your network will crop up once the NAS solution is in place. The unit operates at a low enough throughput to ensure that your backbone still has performance headroom to deliver more mission-critical information.
This 100d is Iomega's smallest and cheapest NAS solution. Simple, elegant, flexible and easy to deploy, it is an excellent all-round storage solution for smaller office environments.
Russell Bennett writes for Computing