MicroNet Rack-Mount Storage Delivers Up to 16TB

Monday Dec 21st 2009 by Jamie Bsales
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MicroNet has expanded its SMB-focused MaxNAS storage family. One of the two new rack-mountable options can store up to 8TB of data — the other tops out at 16TB.

Businesses can never have enough hard drive capacity, and two new offerings from NAS (network attached storage) expert MicroNet Technology help ensure that even a fast-growing organization has plenty of storage headroom.

The new MaxNAS 4R and MaxNAS 8R are the first products in the company’s MaxNAS line to be available in rack-mount enclosures, rather than standalone tower chassis, making them ideal for space-constrained businesses that prefer servers and other network equipment in a standard rack.

The MaxNAS products are targeted at companies with 30 to 150 employees, according to Adi Antariksa, director of sales at MicroNet. “We understand what our small business customers want,” said Antariksa. “Most of them are growing and have infrastructure demands that come along with that. They need a solution that installs easily, can be deployed quickly and that’s easily managed.”

The MaxNAS 4R is in a 1u chassis that can accommodate up to four SATA (Serial ATA) drives and can be configured with either 1TB or 2TB drives installed, for a total of up to 8TB of storage. The MaxNAS 8R is a 2u product that houses up to eight drives, for either 8TB or 16TB of storage out of the box.

Both MaxNAS appliances are also stackable, allowing up to six devices to be connected in a rack and managed as a single volume. That, said Antariksa, makes capacity expansion quick and easy, and it gives administrators the ability to manage a whopping 96TB as a single, high-density network storage pool.

Thanks to the built-in iSCSI support, MaxNAS-resident drives can be used as an affordable IP SAN (storage area network) alternative. In such a configuration, administrators can set up the company’s servers to treat the MaxNAS drives as direct-attached storage over a LAN or the Internet to centrally deploy and manage storage for their entire network, instead of having standalone SAN devices distributed around the organization.

Both products are designed to deliver redundancy and other features that promote always-on availability, including hot-swappable and redundant drives, cooling fans and power supplies. Both appliances support multiple RAID levels, including RAID-6, ensuring continued access and data integrity even in the unlikely case of dual drive failures.

In addition, Antariksa reports that the new MaxNAS models are suitable storage platforms for IP-based video surveillance applications. Leveraging dual Gigabit Ethernet connections with link aggregation, the MaxNAS 4R and 8R deliver the bandwidth to handle IP video feeds from up to 20 cameras.

 “With a MaxNAS, an IT administrator can add a few surveillance cameras to the network and dedicate a couple of terabytes as video storage,” said Antariksa. This saves a small business the hassle and added expense of sourcing a dedicated video surveillance storage server.

The MaxNAS R4 and R8 appliances support Microsoft Windows, Apple Macintosh, Linux and other network environments. The included Nsync remote data backup application enables the automatic upload of files to an external storage device at a designated time.  Files can be automatically backed up from field offices to a central office site or replicated to a remote site for disaster recovery purposes.

The MaxNAS R4 has a starting price of $1,679 for a 4TB configuration. The MaxNAS R8 tops out at $5,195 for a 16TB configuration. The products are distributed through Ingram Micro and available through the Ingram partner channel.

Jamie Bsales is an award-winning technology writer and editor with nearly 14 years of experience covering the latest hardware, software and Internet products and services.

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