How Do We Cope With The Growing Amount Of Data

How Do We Cope With The Growing Amount Of Data

Today, almost any smartphone can take high-resolution photos and record 4K videos, so the space on your PC, laptop, or mobile gadgets is running out even faster than before. Of course, you can buy an external hard drive to store and backup data from your PC or phone.

But in this case, the drive should always be at hand. What to do if you need work files on a business trip but don’t have them on your laptop? Or do you want to show your new friends on vacation photos from your last trip? You can upload the necessary folder to the cloud, but the volume is limited even there. And there is no guarantee of complete data protection. Are there more straightforward, modern, and convenient data storage options?

This is where NAS drives (Network Attached Storage) come in. Ten years ago, they could be found only in the corporate environment, but today, they are conquering home networks. Besides the primary task of storage and access to data, modern NAS can do much more:

  • They will help you set up a backup of valuable information from computers, laptops, and gadgets.
  • Allow you to conveniently organize music, photos, and videos in a multimedia library so that each device receives content in the optimal format.
  • Provide a private and secure cloud so work files are always at your fingertips from anywhere and on any device.
  • Help you deploy a home video surveillance system without breaking the bank.

But how do you choose a NAS that will serve faithfully for many years? As in the case of various computer peripherals, the choice of NAS depends on what functions are required. Therefore, you should first decide what features you need and then choose the right NAS by characteristics.

What Can NAS Do?

The primary function of a NAS is to store and access files. There are no pitfalls here: you need to select the desired disk array and create a volume, and then you can add network folders. Accessing folders and files on NAS often uses the familiar Windows standard (SMB), but other protocols are also supported.

NAS supports users and groups, which allows you to restrict access to folders to certain users only. It is also possible to set access, for example, to read access. Quotas are supported to limit the available space for a particular user.

With NAS, you can share a selected network folder over the Internet, for example, with friends to share photos from a past vacation. Or give away project work files to coworkers.

The advantage of storing files on NAS is also their centralized backup. The NAS administrator can set a schedule to create backups or snapshots. Saving multiple versions of files is also supported. So, if any erroneous changes are made to a document, you can revert to the previous version.

Application Packages – Expanding NAS Capabilities

Today, NASs have become home servers that perform many tasks. As with Windows PCs, the installed applications determine the set of capabilities. In the case of NAS, they are called packages. And if you need to add this or that function to the NAS, you must install the required package.

Modern NASes can also stream video to network-connected TVs, tablets, smartphones, and other gadgets. But remember that the devices can only play supported formats and codecs. Therefore, NAS also transcends multimedia into a format that supports the playback device. Thus, on the NAS side, you can optimize the video for playback on different devices, considering bandwidth or format limitations when 1:1 streaming is impossible. When transcoding, the stream size can be adapted to the channel’s bandwidth, albeit at the expense of picture quality. Offline video transcoding is also supported, i.e., files are transcoded on NAS in advance for broadcasting with a smaller stream.