titleWhen it comes to storage, there is no question that cloud storage is growing in importance every year. For some this is all that you might need, but if you are like me, you need a lot more than what is available on the cloud. When combined with laptops and multi computer households, adding more storage to just your PC isn’t always the best option. This is where Network Attached Storage comes in: you can have almost endless amounts of storage available in your home. Companies like Thecus have built on that with a collection of features like built in antivirus, Bit-Torrent support, and multimedia support. We are going to take a look at Thecus’s N5550, a 5-bay NAS with USB 3.0.

Product Name: Thecus N5550 NAS with Western Digital Red Drives

Review Sample Provided by: Thecus

Written by: Wes

Pictures: Wes


Specifications

Thecus N5550 Hardware Specifications

Item

Spec

Processor

Intel® Atom™ Processor

System Memory

2GB DDR3

LAN Interface

RJ-45x2: 10/100/1000 BASE-TX Auto MDI/MDI-X
WOL supported

USB Interface

USB 2.0 host port x4 (back x4) 
USB 3.0 host port x1 (front x1)

LCM Module

LCM display
4 buttons (ENTER, ESC, UP, DOWN)

SATA DOM

1GB

HDMI Output

HDMI port (back x1)

VGA Output

VGA port (back x1)

Audio

MIC input, Line input, Audio output

Disk Interface

5 x SATA for internal
1 x eSATA for external

Power Supply

200W Power Supply

USB UPS

Supported

Thermal/Fan control

Thermal sensor on processor temperature
System FAN speed controlled by temperature

System Clock

Battery-backed up system clock

Power Management

Auto power on after shutdown due to power loss

Buzzer

Adjustable frequency alarm

Buttons

Power button
LCM button

Environment

Temperature: 5°C to 40°C
Humidity: 0 ~ 80 % R.H. (Non-condensing)

Chassis

Tower Metal Chassis

Dimensions (HxWxD)

230 x 190 x 240 (mm)

Certificates

CE/FCC/C-Tick/VCCI/BSMI
RoHS
WEEE
VMware, Citrix

N5550 Software Functions

RAID

RAID Modes

RAID 0, 1, 5, 6, 10 and JBOD

Auto-rebuild

Supported

Hot-swap

Supported

Hot Spare

Supported

Online RAID Migration

Supported

Online RAID Expansion

Supported

RAID Volume Encryption

AES256bit

Disk

Power Management

Available spin-down on idle setting

Bad Block Scanning

Supported

SMART Info

Supported

SMART Test

Supported

Disk Roaming

Supports volume-based roaming to other Thecus NAS

Network

Configuration

Fixed IP address, dynamic IP address

Transport Protocols

TCP/IP/AppleTalk

File Protocols

SMB/CIFS, HTTP/HTTPS, FTP, NFS v4, AFP

Link Aggregation

Load balance, Failover, 802.3ad, Balance-XOR, Balance-TLB, Balance-ALB

TCP/IP

IPV6 & IPV4

DDNS

Supported

SSH

Supported

UPnP

Supported

UPnP Port forwarding

Supported

System status

System Monitor

Monitoring CPU, memory, temperature, fan, network utilization and protocols access user count

Syslog Management

Send syslog to assigned location
Act as syslog server to receive log info from other systems

Data Access

Client OS Support

Windows 8/7/Vista/2003/XP/2000
UNIX/Linux 
Mac OS X

FTP

Built-in FTP server with bandwidth control

Secure FTP

Built-in secure FTP server with bandwidth control

TFTP

Users can download and upload files with TFTP programs

Download Manager

BT download (via Transmission module)
NZB download (via NZB module)

Printer Server (IPP)

Supports USB printers
Supports a wide range of IPP printers
Client can manage print tasks  (list/delete) via web user interface

Data Backup

Client Incremental Data Backup

Acronis True Image (OEM version)

Client System Disaster Recovery

Acronis True Image (OEM version)

Client Side Backup Software

Thecus Backup Utility (Windows/Mac OS X)

Data Burn

Create files to ISO image and burn to optical disc
Create files to ISO image
Read ISO image from optical disc and write to NAS

Mac OS X Time Machine

Supported

Data Guard

Remote Backup/Local Backup

Block Level Access

iSCSI Target/Initiator

Supports Microsoft/Mac OS X/Linux initiators and Thecus NAS targets

iSCSI Thin Provisioning

Supported

MPIO

Supported

MCS

Supported

Clustering

Supported

SCSI3 Persistent Group Reservation

Supported

Power Management

Scheduled Power On/Off

Supported

Volume Management

Multiple RAID

Supported

Multiple File System Selectable

EXT3/EXT4/XFS

Multimedia Support

iTunes Server

Supports AAC, MP3 w/ID3 tag and WAV

Piczza!™ Photo Server (via module)

Supports GIF, JPG (JPEG), BMP and PNG 
Supports EXIF display
Supports slide shows

Media Server

Supports uPnP AV streaming protocol (via Twonkymedia module)

User Authentication

Local User

Supports built-in user accounts

Local Group

Supports built-in user groups

Windows ADS

Supported

LDAP

Supported

Access Guard

Supports Black & White list/IP Filter

Cloud Backup

DropBox

Supported (via module) 

ElephantDriver

Supported (via module) 

Amazon S3

Supported

File System

Type

Journaling File System  

Language Support

Unicode Support

Authorization (ACL)

“Read”, “write”, or “deny” privileges to individual users or groups in folders and sub-folders

User Quota

Supported

Administration

User Interface

Web-based user interface supports English, Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Japanese, Korean, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Polish, Portuguese, Turkish and Czech.

Utility Program

MS Windows Setup Wizard
Supports Windows 8/7/Vista/2003/XP/2000
Mac OS X Setup Wizard

Email Notifications

Sends system messages via email to the system administrator

SNMP Trap

System information trap out

Mobile Applications (iOS/Android)

Thecus Dashboard

Mobile monitoring and administration (via module)

T-OnTheGo™ (iOS)

Upload, download and stream multimedia

Data Security

Virus Scan

Supports McAfee® (via module)

Capacity Expansion

Stackable

Can extend for 5 additional iSCSI volumes from other Thecus NAS

Others

Recycle Bin

Supported

Web Disk

Supported (via module)

Web Server

Supported (via module)

ISO Mount

Supported

IP Cam Surveillance

Supports up to 5 IP cameras (via module)

Auto Module Installation

Thecus’ module server automatically provides the latest modules and updates through the user interface.

Local Display

X-Window via HDMI output

Western Digital Red 1TB Hard Drives

Model number

WD10EFRX

Interface

SATA 6 Gb/s

Formatted capacity

1,000,204 MB

User sectors per drive

1,953,525,168

Advanced Format (AF)

Yes

SATA latching connector

Yes

Form factor

3.5-inch

RoHS compliant

Yes

Performance

Data transfer rate

Buffer to host (max)

Host to/from drive (typical)

6 Gb/s

150 MB/s

Cache (MB)

64

Rotational speed (RPM)

IntelliPower

Reliability/Data Integrity

Load/unload cycles

600,000

Non-recoverable read errors per bits read

 

MTBF (hours)

1,000,000

Limited warranty (years)

3

Power Management

12VDC (A, peak)

1.20

Average power requirements (W)

Read/write

Idle

Standby

Sleep

3.7

3.2

0.6

0.6

Environmental Specifications

Temperature (°C, on the base casting)

Operating

Non-operating

0 to 70

-40 to 70

Shock (Gs)

Operating (2 ms, read/write)

Operating (2 ms, read)

Non-operating (1 ms)

30

65

350

Average acoustics (dBA)

Idle mode

Seek mode

21

22

Physical Dimensions

Height (in./mm, max)

1.028/26.1

Length (in./mm, max)

5.787/147

Width (in./mm, ± .01 in.)

4/101.6

Weight (lb./kg, ± 10%)

0.99/0.45


Posted: 2 years 4 weeks ago by Arxon #28498
Arxon's Avatar
Been debating on getting a NAS. Are they worth getting?
Posted: 2 years 4 weeks ago by garfi3ld #28497
garfi3ld's Avatar
I also should have mentioned that the Atom CPU used in the N5550 is faster than what is used in most other NAS, that is why it was a pro. On top of the low power usage.
Posted: 2 years 4 weeks ago by garfi3ld #28496
garfi3ld's Avatar
L0rdG1gabyt3 wrote:
On the Pros/Cons, you list the Atom processor and 2GB of ram as Pro's.

How is an Atom processor a pro in any evaluation?

Low power usage yet still more than enough power to handle everything I did with the box. The D2550 Atom processor used in this NAS was only recently introduced. It is dual core and also includes hyperthreading with a clock speed of 1.86 GHz. This isn't the same Atom processor that you have used in the past, but this also isn't an extremely demanding application. You want your NAS to use very little power as well. Thats where the 10 watt TDP for the CPU comes in handy.
Wingless92 wrote:
Not sure, I know when I had my laptop the Atom CPU was a pile of garbage. Then again it was cheap as hell, lol. Kinda get what you pay from. It was a couple of years ago and CPU's have improved but still. I wouldn't say its a pro.

Cool that you can upgrade the memory. It just seems that it's trying to be a full windows server box and a NAS at the same time. I would much rather have it be just a NAS and be done with it.

As for other NAS boxes, people love Drobo's cause they are built like a tank and they have been proven over the years to be great at data redundancy. I would like to know what would happen with this NAS if, lets say, you had all of the drives populated, started copying stuff over to one drive and then yanked it out and stuck another drive in. I know my machine would crash and burn, lol. Would this do the same? I'm guessing so, just wondering.

I have looked at the WD Red's before I built my current WHS box but the read writes are much slower than what I wanted, but that's me.

Also Wingless, have you had a NAS box? These are features that almost all of the companys offer in their NAS's anymore (modules and whatnot). The main thing that stands out between this and what I have seen in the past is the variety of modules that are available. You don't have to run any of the modules if you don't want to and it will still perform fine as a NAS as it sits. I'm not sure why you would be upset that a NAS has more features

This NAS and the Drobo would handle that situation the same as any other device. Pulling a drive out mid data transfer is any situation is going to end badly.
Posted: 2 years 4 weeks ago by Wingless92 #28495
Wingless92's Avatar
Not sure, I know when I had my laptop the Atom CPU was a pile of garbage. Then again it was cheap as hell, lol. Kinda get what you pay from. It was a couple of years ago and CPU's have improved but still. I wouldn't say its a pro.

Cool that you can upgrade the memory. It just seems that it's trying to be a full windows server box and a NAS at the same time. I would much rather have it be just a NAS and be done with it.

As for other NAS boxes, people love Drobo's cause they are built like a tank and they have been proven over the years to be great at data redundancy. I would like to know what would happen with this NAS if, lets say, you had all of the drives populated, started copying stuff over to one drive and then yanked it out and stuck another drive in. I know my machine would crash and burn, lol. Would this do the same? I'm guessing so, just wondering.

I have looked at the WD Red's before I built my current WHS box but the read writes are much slower than what I wanted, but that's me.
Posted: 2 years 4 weeks ago by L0rdG1gabyt3 #28494
L0rdG1gabyt3's Avatar
On the Pros/Cons, you list the Atom processor and 2GB of ram as Pro's.

How is an Atom processor a pro in any evaluation?
Posted: 2 years 4 weeks ago by Wingless92 #28493
Wingless92's Avatar
Didn't see the Minecraft item. I wasn't saying let the server back it up to the cloud just that you should have a 3 backup system. One local, offsite and in the cloud.
Posted: 2 years 4 weeks ago by garfi3ld #28492
garfi3ld's Avatar
It does support 4tb drives and there are people running minecraft servers on them as mentioned in the review :)

It also supports backing up to the cloud via Amazone S3 (and other options when using after market modules)

The price is actually less than other 5 bay devices.
www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?...sNodeId=1&name=5-Bay

I also found it available for $360

www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home...&Q=&is=REG&A=details
Posted: 2 years 4 weeks ago by Wingless92 #28491
Wingless92's Avatar
o
Posted: 2 years 4 weeks ago by garfi3ld #28490
garfi3ld's Avatar
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