Thecus N2100 Y.E.S. Box review

For many families the days of owning just one computer are over. The "family computer" is dead, or at least it is in our home! Rather we have several computers, and with five family members all using their own in separate rooms around the house, sharing data effortlessly can become a daunting task.

The Thecus N2100 is a small and simple to use network attached storage device that would allow everyone on the home network to access and share data. However, while simple in design, I quickly learned upon receiving it that it was actually very powerful when it came to sharing data. Features such as dual Gigabit LAN, external USB 2.0 ports, optional wireless and Serial ATA hard drive support make this NAS device one to take under serious consideration.

View: Thecus N2100 Y.E.S. Box review @ TechSpot

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My ReadyNAS NV+ will be delivered today, along with 4x320GB disks. I bought the enclosure and my own drives at NewEgg for just under $950, which saved ~$150 over a pre-populated enclosure. I was looking at Thecus as well, but X-RAID is what sold me on the NV+ because it will allow me to add additional storage in the future if needed without rebuilding the whole array from scratch. The downside to X-RAID is that you can only create one volume (equivalent to a disk/partition), whereas RAID 5 will let you create multiple volumes.

My wife's an authoress, and has written a couple of "Images of America" books for Arcadia. She's working on two others at the moment. She's got almost 60GB in source materials between the four of them, none of which I can get her to backup.

We've also got gigs of digital family pictures, and a number of videos from a digital camcorder. I'm also in the process of ripping our CD (in FLAC format for fidelity) and DVD collections to keep our kids' grubby little hands off of them.

A RAIDed NAS definitely made more sense than adding another disk to our "server", especially after I lost 200GB a few weeks back when one of them died - it lost the partition table three times in as many weeks and didn't report a single data or S.M.A.R.T. failure...

If you want a really cheap 1TB RAID,'s got an Iomega NAS on sale for $499AR this week. You can't replace the drives yourself though. If one dies, you have to send the whole thing to Iomega for disk replacement. Not a good thing in my opinion.

I'm looking for something just like this, but it must be able to hold a minimum of 4x750GB harddrives - and i would want the speed to be significantly better then the N2100 - "working at full speed (13MB/s)"

Apart from that i'd want something pretty similar - both usb ports, and ethernet ports (1000mbit perfered). A nice webui would also be brilliant, although not really needed.

Can anyone suggest any NAS devices to me?

I have been looking at the ReadyNAS NV+. It has 4 harddrive slots and they sell them with various harddrive sizes. You can also buy them without any drives and put your own in. You can choose to run the device in a variety of RAID configurations, which is really cool. You can use RAID 0, 1, 5, and X-RAID (I'm probably missing some). X-RAID is their own propriety RAID configuration that sounds really cool. It's like RAID 5 but you don't need to have the same size drives, so what you could do is swap out one drive at a time for a larger drive when you want to upgrade the size of the device. Oh, did I mention that you can do this while the machine is running and you won't lose any data?

The ReadyNAS runs linux and has a cool little web UI. It also has USB ports for connecting flash drives or USB printers so you can use your ReadyNAS as a print server.

It's seems like a pretty slick little device. Last I checked, the 4x250gb version was about ~$900 USD.

The whole point of something like this is so you don't have to rely on having a PC turned on in order to have your data accessible.

I was seriously considering one of these but I ended up buying a hp mediavault instead, as it already had a HDD included. I'm very happy with it, it has all my TV shows and Music on and I can now access them from my Xbox with XBMC, my main PC (which is where they used to be stored), my laptop and my Media Center, without having to have my Main PC on all the time.

The electricity saving is pretty significant.