Understanding different storage option DAS, NAS, or SAN

 Planning your network storage devices is not as easy as you think. You need to consider storage capacity, future expanding or the type of storage you going to use. You also have to think through the ways of using your storage. Are you going to keep it for backup, redundancy or speed? You have to decide if you going to use RAID control or not. As well, you don’t have to forget yours or the companies’ budget level . In order to that you have the choice of three different types of storages. DAS( Direct Attached Storage), NAS(Network Attached Storage), and SAN(Storage Area Networks).

DAS (Direct Attached Storage):

Basically all the servers contain more than one internal local disks and they can be configured with different storage options. By default one local disk is required to install the operating system and the applications that are going to run on the server. However, you can always buy an additional disk where you can save your database and backups. In this case this additional disk is going to be your internally attached DAS Storage.

DAS can be implemented in small companies and can be configured with different types of RAID. In order to keep the speed you can use much faster SAS(Serial Attached SCSI)  technologies. There are few benefits with using DAS. It is very inexpensive,  very easy to set up and managing. On the other side, because the RAID controller is install on the server, there can be a failure possibilities.

NAS (Network Attached Storage):

NAS is a storage that is located outside rom your server and attached to your local network. It could be shared simultaneously with different users on the LAN and doesn’t affects the speed of the server. It also have a lower start cost and you can expanded it as much as you want. You can set different types of RAID for redundancy, speed or both together, which will be independent from your server. One of the great features about NAS is that you can use different protocols for file sharing such as NFS for UNIX/Linux or CIF for Windows. Dedicated iSCSI networks can also be configured to maximize the network throughput.




Compared to DAS and SAN which are using block level transfers and very efficient, NAS servers utilize file level transfers. NAS is perfect solution for backup and securing your data.

There are a lot of different ready NAS hardware such  as Sinology, WD, Iomega, Buffalo, Netgear, Qnap which are ready to use and can also act as a cloud storage. Some of them even support surveillance IP cameras or media streaming.  You can also create your own NAS from your old PC by installing Linux based software such as FreeNas or FreeBSD.

SAN (Storage Area Networks):

SAN is mostly used in large companies when you need to have a fast data transfer and redundancy. In other words, SAN is high-speed  network that contains only machines with storage disks for the companies’ data. In order to keep the speed SAN contains its own switches, disk controllers and fiber cables. The main benefits of having SAN-based storage solutions is the ability to share all data with multiple servers over LAN or WAN, which benefits  many end users.  In this storage solution the sever power  focuses only for the daily used business applications by the users and the data contains on the SAN.


On the downside, this type of storage is very expensive and managing is very complicated comparing to DAS or NAS storage solutions.

In conclusion,  I would like to mention again the types of the storage you may consider to use in your environment. For home users or small company the best and less expensive is DAS. For small or mid-range companies NAS or DAS is the solution for your daily needs. Finally, SAN is the way to go if you are running a big company and you need the speed, redundancy and performance of your data.  If you still confused and cannot decide what type of data you want to use or you have any issues with configuring your storage device, please feel free to contact us at any time. We will be always pleased to help you. Please, click on this link if you need us. http://www.amvean.com/support.html

For more details about Amvean can help you with there storage strategy please contact us at info@amvean.com or 212.810.2074.