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QNAP TVS-863+ vNAS Server Review

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Network Storage Server Final Thoughts

My first and solemn duty is to remind everyone that relying on a collection of drives in any RAID configuration for data backup purposes is a huge and potentially costly error. RAID systems provide protection against loss of services, not loss of data. Several examples will illustrate the problem, I hope:

  • the drive controller goes bad and corrupts the data on all the drives in the array
  • the entire storage device is physically or electrically damaged by external forces
  • the entire storage device is lost, stolen, or destroyed
  • a single drive in a RAID 5 cluster dies and during the rebuild process, which puts higher stress on the remaining drives, a second drive fails
  • floods, earthquakes, tornadoes, etc. (AKA El Niño)

All these points lead to the inescapable conclusion that multiple drives in a common system, in a single location do not provide effective and reliable data backup. Occasionally throughout this review I’ve talked about high-availability systems and the QNAP TVS-863+ clearly fits into that category, especially when employed in a RAID 6 configuration. Even with two concurrent drive failures, your data is still available and accessible. The NAS device stays online the entire time while the failed drives are replaced and the array is rebuilt. That’s what RAID systems are designed to do. The inherent redundancy is not meant to serve as a backup file set. Remember, we’re not talking about losing data here, we’re only talking about the ability to keep working uninterrupted, if one or two drives should fail, and Time is Money; always. The side benefit is that you never have to do a recovery from one of your backup sets. OTOH, I recommend you try that process every now and then, just so you can see for yourself how many potholes and pitfalls there are in the typical data restoration plan.

QNAP TVS-863+ Turbo vNAS Server RT_Front_Drawers_01

The QNAP TVS-863+ may not be a product that individual readers of Benchmark Reviews would contemplate purchasing. Maybe you don’t have a real justification for spending the kind of money that it takes to put eight HDD spindles in play, but four, five, or six bays and a strong CPU makes for an interesting proposition. For you, there are smaller versions available in the TVS-x63 product line. As hi-res audio and video become the norm, it makes sense to invest in this level of performance. Also, if you’ve gone “network happy” in your house, have structured wiring to most every room, and have everything running through a 24 port business class switch, then this might be the NAS for you. At the moment, it looks like 10GBASE-T is taking the dominant position in the 10GbE business-class market, but it’s still several years away for the typical home or SOHO user. For the small business owner, this is a slam dunk, IMHO. It’s by far the most cost-effective way to get full volume encryption with usable performance. If your business doesn’t need encryption, and I challenge you to explain why, then enjoy the full transfer speeds available from the TVS-x63 series. Gigabyte read speeds are in your near future!

So, what conclusions can we draw, particularly about this high performance, eight-bay TVS-863+ Turbo vNAS server? Click NEXT to find out, and discuss…


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