The Network Storage System

May 13th, 2014 by Rossy Guide

What is a Network Storage System?

A network storage system provides a centralized repository for digital data that can be accessed by many users, and they use high-speed connections to provide fast performance. It is designed to back up files, databases and data to a central location that can be easily accessed by standard network protocols and tools. Network Storage System can include improved performance, reliability and availability.


Basic Description:

A network storage system allows computers to share large volumes of data across high-speed LAN connections. The two standard types of network storage are,

1. Storage Area Network (SAN)
2. Network Attached Storage (NAS)

Storage Area Network:

A Storage Area Network (SAN) links together multiple storage devices and provides block-level storage that can be accessed by servers. It is also used on business networks. It utilizes high capacity disk arrays and Fibre Channel interconnection technology.  San technology also supports important storage features, including disk mirroring, controllers, data backup/restoration, networking gear like routers, switches, bridges and gateways, data archiving/retrieval and data migration.

A storage area network is using three principle components:

o Cabling
o Host bus adapters (HBA)
o Switches

SANs can use a variety of communication protocols, including Fibre Channel, iSCSI, ATA over Ethernet (AoE), Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE), ESCON over Fibre Channel, HyperSCSI and others.

Network Attached Storage:

Network Attached Storage (NAS) is a hard disk storage device that is set up with own network address and provides file-based data storage services to the network. NAS units usually do not have a keyboard or display, controlled, configured over the network, often using a browser. A NAS typically makes Ethernet and TCP/IP connections. NAS is a home or small business network. The NAS holds many gigabytes to few terabytes of data.

A NAS can store any data in the form of files, such as email boxes, Web content, remote system backups. NAS software can usually handle a number of network protocols, including Microsoft’s Internetwork Packet Exchange, NetBEUI, Novell’s Netware Internetwork Packet Exchange, and Sun Microsystems’ Network File System.

The two protocols are mainly used NAS such us,

o Sun Network File System (NFS)
o Common Internet File System (CIFS)

Both NFS and CIFS operate in client/server fashion. Both predate the modern NAS by many years. NAS systems also support Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP).

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