NAS shoot-out: Netgear ReadyNAS Pro 6

The ReadyNAS scores with simple setup, easy management, and the best hardware in its class

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The next option is Netgear's ReadyNAS Vault, a cloud-based backup solution powered by provider VaultServices. ReadyNAS Vault is as straightforward to set up and use as ReadyNAS Replicate, but the data is backed up (in an encrypted format) in the cloud. You pay a monthly or annual fee based on how much storage you need. If you don't want to support a second ReadyNAS box at a second site, then the ReadyNAS Vault might be a good solution for you. However, I'd prefer to deploy a second NAS box instead of paying a monthly or annual fee.

Finally, Netgear also bundles a cloud-based storage and file sharing service in partnership with Egnyte. The Egnyte Cloud File Server (see review) syncs with shares on the NAS, giving you the ability to access your files from the Internet wherever you are. You might use Egnyte to share data with off-site employees, different office branches, or business partners. The Egnyte software is well done, and you can easily manage and monitor the data being accessed. Still, with free solutions available from other NAS vendors, as well as services such as Dropbox and SugarSync, I struggle to see the point in paying between $30 and $125 per month for Egnyte.

Netgear ReadyNAS Pro 6: Performance
In my performance testing, the Netgear ReadyNAS was middle of the pack. That is not a bad thing. The performance never jumped around with the different protocols that I was using, nor did I ever feel that the box was struggling. By default, the ReadyNAS uses Netgear's own custom RAID setup called X-RAID2, which is designed to automatically expand your volume capacity whenever you add more hard drives. Given this convenience, I have no doubt that 99 percent of Netgear customers will use this format out of the box. From my testing, I could see that Netgear has tweaked the performance of the ReadyNAS when using X-RAID2 versus RAID10. In every test, X-RAID2 proved considerably faster than RAID10.

For the results of my performance tests, see the mainbar, "NAS shoot-out: 5 storage servers battle for business." For the reviews of the competing products, follow these links: Iomega StorCenter px6-300dQNAP TS-659 Pro II Turbo NAS | Synology DiskStation DS1511+ | Thecus N5200XXX.

Netgear ReadyNAS Pro 6

Drives tested 6 x Six Seagate Constellation ES (model ST32000644NS). Specs: 2TB, 7,200 rpm, 64MB cache, SATA 3.0Gbps interface
Pricing 18TB, $4,999.99; 12TB, $3,799.99 (as tested); 6TB, $2,799.99; 3TB, $1,799.99

This article, "NAS shoot-out: Netgear ReadyNAS Pro 6," originally appeared at Follow the latest developments in storage at For the latest business technology news, follow on Twitter.


Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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