A SPOTLIGHT ON…
DAS, NAS and SAN - what are the differences?
A number of storage solution options are available and it’s vital that you select the one that best suits the needs of your school. When selecting a storage solution, many factors need to be considered including, flexibility, reliability, scalability, performance, total cost of ownership and ease of management.
DAS (Direct Attached Storage) DAS physically connects a storage device to the server, and at first sight, appears to offer a low-cost, simple solution. But DAS solutions are inflexible – storage cannot be shared with other devices on the network, and managing your ICT infrastructure can become difficult if there are multiple DAS devices on a network. For these reasons, DAS is not recommended as a storage solution for schools.
NAS (Network Attached Storage) NAS aims to overcome the issues of using DAS, in that storage can be shared by multiple devices on a network. NAS is also scalable, so it’s relatively simple to add extra storage capacity to a network. However, NAS only offers file level transfer and its performance depends on your network’s bandwidth. If heavy demands are made on a NAS box, then data bottlenecks can occur. A more flexible and efficient storage solution is a SAN.
SAN (Storage Area Network) A SAN is a centralised pool of disk storage which connects to multiple servers. SANs offer numerous benefits, including block level transfer. They can also share storage more efficiently, and storage can be allocated more flexibly. SANs are also highly scalable, and a well designed SAN solution will include a high level of redundancy to ensure high availability. By centralising storage, network management becomes much easier. SANs tend to be the most expensive storage solutions to deploy, but the improvements you gain in performance, efficiency, flexibility, availability and reliability, mean you can soon get payback on your initial investment.
NAS Network Network
Network SAN Fabric Disk Disk storage Disk storage
storage Disk storage Disk storage
| Page 2
| Page 3
| Page 4
| Page 5
| Page 6
| Page 7
| Page 8
| Page 9
| Page 10
| Page 11
| Page 12
| Page 13