PC Pro - PowerNAS Rackmount 2U
Published by Matthew Caffery on 13th Oct 2016
Check out our New Review in the PC PRO Magazine and online this month
An affordable and well specified Windows-powered storage server with tonnes of room to grow
UK storage specialist PowerNAS is something of a newcomer, having been established just 18 months ago – but with the
Rackmount 2U it’s throwing down the gauntlet to the establishment.
It’s an enterprise-class solution at a small-business price, with a big starting capacity and huge expansion potential that means it can grow easily
The package comprises a slick partnership of Supermicro hardware
and the Standard edition of Microsoft’s Windows Storage Server
2012 R2 (WSS).
There’s plenty of power on tap to keep things running smoothly: the appliance sports a formidable 3GHz E3-1220 v5 Xeon CPU, with 16GB of fast DDR4 memory (upgradable to 64GB).
The chassis offers 12 front-facing hot-swap bays for your drives, with the OS loaded on a mirrored pair of 120GB SSDs in hot-swap SFF bays at
For storage you can use your own SATA drives, or purchase a unit from PowerNAS pre-populated with a choice of WD Red drives.
The main hard disk backplane is serviced by an LSI PCI Express RAID Card: this doesn't manage the RAID arrays itself, but rather presents the drives to
the OS, so you can use the operating system’s software-based Storage Spaces. An external port supports additional PowerNAS JBOD shelves
for over a petabyte of total capacity.Configuration is a doddle – if you can use Windows Server 2012 R2, you can use the Rackmount 2U.
From the Server Manager console, we easily combined the four 4TB drives provided into a single Storage Space.
This can be expanded on demand by selecting new drives, regardless of size, and adding them to the pool.
The OS also supports IP SAN operations and block-level deduplication; there are no user or capacity limits, and the Hyper-V role
is available too, with base support for two VMs. The appliance can join an existing Active Directory domain, and to use the clustering/failover features
simply add the necessary hardware.Thin provisioning works directly with storage pools, so it applies equally to NAS shares and iSCSI
targets within them.
Virtual drives (VDs) are created within the pool and can be striped, or have mirrored or parity (RAID5) resiliency applied. In
our experience parity VDs can hit write performance, but our tests showed that the Rackmount 2U has the power to keep things speedy. We
were able to copy a 25GB test file from an HPE ProLiant DL380 Gen9 rack server to a share on a parity VD at sustained read and write speeds of
112MB/sec and 105MB/sec. Running the same test on a mirrored VD yielded the same read rate, while write speed increased only slightly to 109MB/sec.
The difference between parity and mirrored VDs became conspicuous in our backup test. Our 22.5GB folder containing
10,500 small files was copied to a share on a parity VD at an average of 57MB/sec; this improved
significantly to 81MB/sec for a mirrored VD. You can gain a speed boost by using striped VDs, but these are effectively a RAID0 arrangement that doesn’t
provide any resilience. Another way to improve I/O performance is to fit some SSDs in the main bays and use WSS data tiering. To set this up,
simply specify the SSD and HDD arrays to be included and WSS will automatically move hot data to the SSD tier.
The Rackmount 2U is a persuasive proposition for storage-hungry businesses.
It’s a powerful and affordable appliance with all the features and power of Windows Storage Server 2012 R2, and decent expansion potential makes it a solid long-term investment.
Raising Money for Cancer Research UK
Published by Richard Beckett on 10th Oct 2016
ONE OF OUR STAFF MEMBERS IS RAISING MONEY FOR CANCER RESEARCH UK
Richard Beckett from our Orders Team is undertaking a challenge to run the equivalent
distance from Lands End to John O'Groats, which is a total of approx 838.5 Miles
Starting today, he will be running 7km every single day until April 22nd 2017, then
on April 23rd he will be finishing with a Marathon distance of 26.2 Miles
You can track Richards progress on My Virtual Mission by clicking here
and you can Donate towards Cancer Research UK on Just Giving by clicking here
Thank You all for your support!
The Server Case UK Team
Published by Richard Beckett on 7th Oct 2016
Cisco is the world leader in helping companies capitalize on future opportunities by proving encouraging that amazing things can happen when you connect. At Cisco they are always putting customers first and consider them an integral part of their business make-up. They believe that creating a long-lasting customer partnership, working with them to meet their needs and providing solutions will support their success.
Ciscosvision, is for solutions to be driven toward address-specific customer challenges, and has been since it was established. Husband and wife Len Bosack and Sandy Lerner, who both work for Stanford University, wanted to email each other from their offices (located in different buildings), but were unable to do so due to a technological shortfall. A new technology had to be specifically invented to deal with disparate local area protocols; and through solving their challenge - they created the multi-protocol router.
This is just one of hundreds of Products and Services offered by Cisco, including:
• Optical Networking
• Interfaces and Modules
And many more…..
For information on all of the Cisco Products and Services that we offer click here
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Published by Richard Beckett on 5th Oct 2016
In-Win was established in 1985 and is a manufacturer of professional chassis, PSUs, and IPC products, and is also a leading supplier of enclosure solutions worldwide.
The companies headquarters are in Taiwan, however, they have branches in various other international locations including China, U.S.A and Europe
In-Win believe in developing quality products, and strive for functional perfection but also encompass creative visual aesthetics so that every user gets to experience.
They key to In-Wins success lies in the design, research, and manufacturing. Following brainstorming, each new product has a 3D model created and is designed in detail before the manufacturing process begins. After which, they go through a series of rigorous quality control tests to ensure a consistent end-user experience
PowerNAS Rackmount 2U
Published by Richard Beckett on 3rd Oct 2016
Following on from our PowerNAS Rackmount 2U Blog a few weeks ago, we take a slightly more in-depth look at this Chassis. This is an enterprise-class Server and Storage solution but available in the small-business price bracket and, although its entry-level capacity is huge, it features extensive potential for expansion.
Along with a SuperMicro Motherboard and Microsofts WindowsStorage Server 2012 R2, the Chassis houses 12 Front-Facing Hot-Swap Drive Bays, along with Mirrored 120Gb SSDs for the OS. HDDs are standard SATA for your own drives, or PowerNAS can supply these Chassis fully populated with WD Red Drives.
Set-up and configuration here is very simple, especially if you are already familiar with Windows Server 2012 R2, as It comes with Server Management Console software, which can easily be used to combine drives into a single storage space. This can be expanded with new drives, no matter what size, simply by adding them to any of the existing combined drives.
For full information on this Chassis or any from the full range of PowerNAS, click here
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Call: 0800 652 1649
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