The Network Attached Storage, commonly known as NAS is a hardware attached storage device. Since it doesn't have a processor and other essential computer devices, it’s not defined as a computer but rather a network peripheral used to store large amounts of data. The Network Attached Storage is mainly used to archive data in one location rather than spread over a number of computers or drives throughout the network.
There are a number of things that one needs during installation of Network Attached Storage, this includes: computer network, secure location for the Network Attached Storage, appropriate cables for the NAS and software to administer the NAS.
The first thing is determining a secure location for the device probably a room or a phone. This is because the Network Attached Storage is the size of a tower computer although the data in the NAS can be secured by the use of passwords and encryption, this does not protect it from being stolen or cables being disconnected. Then, connect the Network Attached Storage to a network. This might be via Ethernet, Fiber channel or SCSI and also ensure that the unit is plugged into an industrial-strength surge protector.
Install any configuration software onto the master computer you plan to configure and control the Network Attached Storage, NAS normally requires Windows or UNIX Operating systems though Mac OS and Linux can access it as well as other computers of virtually every platform. Archive the software and save it as you may require reconfiguring your NAS device later.
Install the software on the master computer that controls the Network Attached Software; recovery and backup software, anti-virus software and cataloging software. The master computer can be used in partitioning the drives, updating the drivers, software or firmware and other NAS maintenance. Use the master computer to administer all user access, permissions and passwords.
Mount the Network Attached Storage unit on the computers that are required to access it by mapping it as a network drive and once the unit is up and running it will be visible in the network just like any other shared computer device. Depending on the Network Attached Software application it might be used as a common file server that all users can access or as a storage or weekly backup with access restricted to the IT department.
There are a number of things that should be put into caution for the well being of the users and smooth running of Network Attached Storage. First confirm that all unauthorized users are unable to access the NAS from their computers and always use the Uninterrupted Power Supply for your NAS.
It should also be noted that Network Attached Storage devices take far much longer to boot up and be visible on the network than standard computers and drives take. Configuring an NAS device is hard than it first appears so consider hiring an IT consultant if need arises. Lastly, some Microsoft services such as Exchange Server do not support Network attached storage and so it’s important to do a thorough research before buying anything.