I needed a NAS that fulfilled the following objectives in the following order of priority:

1.        The most important thing to me is security.  Not only from the internet but from a physical perspective.  If the NAS was ever stolen or the hard driver were ever stolen I want the volumes fully encrypted as my business data, and the privacy thereof, is the most important to me.

2.       I need data reliability through raid and replication.

3.       I need the NAS to be quiet as it is actually in my office and not in some data closet somewhere in the office.  I need it to work in silence or near silence during the day as to not disturb me or my clients.

4.       I need great performance.  I need the NAS to be as fast as possible so that it is like the remote drive is as fast as my local hard drive.

5.       I need expandability through more drives.

6.       I need to be able to run applications on it that are business oriented.

Why I chose the QNAP TS-470

1.        The two NAS platforms I was considering were the QNAP and SYNOLOGY.  Being that encryption is my number one goal I wanted a NAS that had full volume encryption.  I wanted no part of the hard drive unencrypted.  QNAP can do that.  The last time I check Synology only allows you to encrypt parts of the hard drive but not the whole volume, therefore for the most important criteria on my list QNAP has the edge.  After working with the QNAP I can confirm the QNAP it is true full volume encryption.  The interesting part is that the “default shares” which are created when you create your first volume get encrypted too.  That means when you boot the NAS, if you choose like I have, that the volumes do not decrypt themselves but wait for a password to be entered that has just sits there waiting for the password.  If you wait long enough you get an error in the log saying “could not mount <x, y, z> default shares>.  As soon as you put in the password the QNAP NAS mounts the shares and starts any services that were dependent on those shares.  Case in point, I installed the Vtiger crm software using the Mysql database that came with the QNAP NAS.  If you browse to the Vtiger web page on the NAS before putting in the password for the encrypted volume where the SQL databases as well as the Vtiger files are located you get nothing.  Once you enter in the password the MySQL and Vtiger services start.  The point is, QNAP understands that the whole NAS may be encrypted and they have made allowances for it, put in the password and all of the services are started properly.  Whereas, my impression of Synology is that some volumes cannot be encrypted that it relies upon during the boot process.  QNAP has designed the NAS with security in mind and it works well.

2.       QNAP has all of the RAID options available and you can buy a chassis whether desktop or rack mount with several bays and if that is not enough you can expand to more external chassis.  I opted for mirrored volumes because my data requirements are SMALL.  My whole office data files are stored in about 15 gigs of data.  Doesn’t sound like a lot but when you consider most of that is word and excel files,15 gigs of word and excel is a lot data.  Since my data requirements are small I went for the fastest, quietest drives I could buy which leads into my number 3 requirement.

3.       Next I needed real time replication between my offices so that if fire, flood, theft occurs I have a full offsite backup at my second office.  QNAP has several options between rsync and real time replication.

4.       To keep the NAS as cool as possible to keep the fan turning at the lowest speed and to keep the noise down I opted for SSD drives.  I bought Kingston Digital 480 GB SSDNow KC300 SATA 3 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive, and I bought them on amazon here:  since I only needed 15 gigs of space, 480gigs will give me plenty of room for growth.  Additionally, since I am only mirroring two drives I have two slots left for more growth in the future.

5.       In addition of the Kingston drives running cool which keeps the heat down, they are the fastest drives you can put in a NAS.  The NAS itself allows you to install a SSD as a cache drive to increase performance to your Hard Disk drives, but if you install them as the actual data drives you get blazing write speeds.

6.       The TS-470 had 4 slots, I only needed two to do a mirrored pair so I have expandability plus it has e-sata ports, USB3 ports and USB2 ports and finally you can put an expansion card in to talk to more external chassis.  If I ever need to expand I have lots of choices.

7.       The main app I currently need beyond file sharing is a shared contact database.  QNAP doesn’t have just a contact database they have full CRM solutions where I am only using 1/50th of the software by using the contacts portion but it works well and is free.



              GO TO: You can read about my goals here.

                GO TO:    Why did I upgrade?

          GOTO:       You can see the testing I did before I did the upgrade here.

          GOTO:      You can see how I upgraded the TS-470 from the basic model to what some have dubbed the Ultimate model, however I would argue more like the “best for security and performance“ model.

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