NAS with thunderbolt?

Nimrad

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jul 28, 2010
309
909
I have been looking all over for a new NAS that I want. Since I'm buying a new one I'd like one that's future proof. I will be using the NAS for mainly 3 things:
1. Backing up via Time Machine.
2. Storing videos, movies and tv-shows for streaming to my TV and also bittorrent downloading.
3. Storing my aperture library.

The third one is the one making troubles for me. I need to store my Aperture library elsewhere now as I'm moving from a Mac Pro to an rMBP with limited capacity. But, imaging needs to be fast. My perfect NAS would have a gigabit ethernet port, space for at least 4 disks and a thunderbolt that connects my rMBP to the NAS. I don't really know if that is possible, but I have to ask.
 

GoreVidal

macrumors 6502a
Jun 19, 2011
597
0
I don't see the point. There are gigabit NAS's out there, why would you need one with an interface speed (5Gb on TB) that the infrastructure (1 Gb on Cat5/6) can't support? You should just get a TB hard drive and leave it plugged into a Mac with sharing on.
 

Nimrad

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jul 28, 2010
309
909
I don't see the point. There are gigabit NAS's out there, why would you need one with an interface speed (5Gb on TB) that the infrastructure (1 Gb on Cat5/6) can't support? You should just get a TB hard drive and leave it plugged into a Mac with sharing on.
A TB drive plugged into a MacBook is not what I want for backup of other machines and streaming to my TV. That requires my MacBook to be in my room where the TB-drive is.
 

brentsg

macrumors 68040
Oct 15, 2008
3,499
870
I don't think anyone will produce this. You'll either have to get a TB DAS or a GigE NAS. I don't see why anyone would produce one with both.
 

mmomega

macrumors 68040
Dec 30, 2009
3,568
1,735
DFW, TX
A Thunderbolt NAS wouldn't make any sense unless you had faster than Gigabit ethernet because a NAS is Network Attached Storage, so ethernet.

It would completely negate the TB speed, throttled down to 125MB/s which is the theoretical max of gigabit. Or (another car analogy, buying a Kia with a Ferrari engine governed to 65mph)

I haven't seen many NAS that have more than a USB2 or FW800 additional port on them, I'm sure they may be out there but definitely no TB NAS atm.
I'd suggest a Synology or Drobo NAS. Set it up, hide it and forget about it.
 

theSeb

macrumors 604
Aug 10, 2010
6,963
91
Poole, England
I have been looking all over for a new NAS that I want. Since I'm buying a new one I'd like one that's future proof. I will be using the NAS for mainly 3 things:
1. Backing up via Time Machine.
2. Storing videos, movies and tv-shows for streaming to my TV and also bittorrent downloading.
3. Storing my aperture library.

The third one is the one making troubles for me. I need to store my Aperture library elsewhere now as I'm moving from a Mac Pro to an rMBP with limited capacity. But, imaging needs to be fast. My perfect NAS would have a gigabit ethernet port, space for at least 4 disks and a thunderbolt that connects my rMBP to the NAS. I don't really know if that is possible, but I have to ask.
What you're asking for does not exist and never will. You do not connect a NAS directly via USB or TB. You connect it via Ethernet. The USB or eSATA ports on a NAS are for connecting other drives to it, not other computers.

What you're asking for is a DAS (direct attached storage), such as a Promise Pegasus, but TB speeds are not necessary based on your requirements.
 

zhenya

macrumors 604
Jan 6, 2005
6,703
3,316
agreed, I don't think you are going to find this in one device, and don't think you should. Buy a NAS for centralization of backups. Buy a fast DAS for Aperture and back it up to the NAS.
 

flynz4

macrumors 68040
Aug 9, 2009
3,134
38
Portland, OR
agreed, I don't think you are going to find this in one device, and don't think you should. Buy a NAS for centralization of backups. Buy a fast DAS for Aperture and back it up to the NAS.
+1

NAS is great as a backup target (especially with laptops)... and ideal as a central media hub.

DAS is ideal for your Aperture library. Personally, I would not put Aperture libraries on a NAS for performance reasons.

/Jim
 

nbthrux

macrumors newbie
May 3, 2014
2
0
What you're asking for does not exist and never will. You do not connect a NAS directly via USB or TB. You connect it via Ethernet. The USB or eSATA ports on a NAS are for connecting other drives to it, not other computers.

What you're asking for is a DAS (direct attached storage), such as a Promise Pegasus, but TB speeds are not necessary based on your requirements.
Older thread but just as a note, may be more helpful to see why people are looking for the devices they are, rather than telling what they need or what will "never" be created, especially when it is:

http://www.areca.com.tw/products/thunderbolt5026.htm

I was looking for a similar solution, so I could have a DAS solution to connect my laptop I use for video editing where I was concerned about being able to have highest possible read/write speeds when editing 1080 footage, and a NAS for streaming my videos and music to the htpc's and roku's around the house.
 

theSeb

macrumors 604
Aug 10, 2010
6,963
91
Poole, England
Older thread but just as a note, may be more helpful to see why people are looking for the devices they are, rather than telling what they need or what will "never" be created, especially when it is:

http://www.areca.com.tw/products/thunderbolt5026.htm

I was looking for a similar solution, so I could have a DAS solution to connect my laptop I use for video editing where I was concerned about being able to have highest possible read/write speeds when editing 1080 footage, and a NAS for streaming my videos and music to the htpc's and roku's around the house.
That is a DAS with USB 3 and Thunderbolt. It is not unusual for a DAS to have multiple interfaces. It is still not a NAS. Did you read this thread properly?
 

nbthrux

macrumors newbie
May 3, 2014
2
0
Well I actually looked beyond reading a title and saw the back of the machine at that very nice RJ45 jack that has allowed me to set this up nicely. They have versions with 8 bays and another with thunderbolt 2 ports, all with gigabit Ethernet ports. So apparently I not only read the thread but found 3 products, and use 1 that won't ever be built. But then again what do I know.
 

theSeb

macrumors 604
Aug 10, 2010
6,963
91
Poole, England
Well I actually looked beyond reading a title and saw the back of the machine at that very nice RJ45 jack that has allowed me to set this up nicely. They have versions with 8 bays and another with thunderbolt 2 ports, all with gigabit Ethernet ports. So apparently I not only read the thread but found 3 products, and use 1 that won't ever be built. But then again what do I know.
The RJ45 jack on these devices is usually for setup/management, not for data transfer so it's not a NAS.

Code:
Firmware-embedded Browser-based RAID manager,
SMTP manager, SNMP agent and Telnet function via Ethernet port
I am not sure what you're trying to achieve here.
 

zhenya

macrumors 604
Jan 6, 2005
6,703
3,316
Well I actually looked beyond reading a title and saw the back of the machine at that very nice RJ45 jack that has allowed me to set this up nicely. They have versions with 8 bays and another with thunderbolt 2 ports, all with gigabit Ethernet ports. So apparently I not only read the thread but found 3 products, and use 1 that won't ever be built. But then again what do I know.

It's still a DAS, not a NAS, so I don't know what you are going on about?

It's not at all what the original post was asking for.
 

MrX8503

macrumors 68020
Sep 19, 2010
2,280
1,585
My perfect NAS would have a gigabit ethernet port, space for at least 4 disks and a thunderbolt that connects my rMBP to the NAS. I don't really know if that is possible, but I have to ask.
I'm not sure if that exists and it's also something I want. I've considered getting a mac mini and a thunderbolt DAS connected to the mac mini. This will allow you to retrieve your data via thunderbolt, which is much much faster than gigabit ethernet.

Even though gigabit is 100MB/s, you won't see anywhere close to those speeds if you have a lot of small files. Gigabit is really slow at handling these files.
 

sirio76

macrumors 6502
Mar 28, 2013
353
109
I'm not sure if that exists and it's also something I want. I've considered getting a mac mini and a thunderbolt DAS connected to the mac mini. This will allow you to retrieve your data via thunderbolt, which is much much faster than gigabit ethernet.

Even though gigabit is 100MB/s, you won't see anywhere close to those speeds if you have a lot of small files. Gigabit is really slow at handling these files.
http://www.areca.com.tw/products/thunderbolt.htm
I think there's also a 4 drive version.
 

Outrigger

macrumors 68000
Dec 22, 2008
1,760
94
Well I actually looked beyond reading a title and saw the back of the machine at that very nice RJ45 jack that has allowed me to set this up nicely. They have versions with 8 bays and another with thunderbolt 2 ports, all with gigabit Ethernet ports. So apparently I not only read the thread but found 3 products, and use 1 that won't ever be built. But then again what do I know.
As others have said, this is a DAS. a DAS/NAS combo doesn't exist as they're mutually exclusive by definition. Just because it has a RJ45 jack, doesn't make it a NAS.
 

Philip Stancil

macrumors newbie
Nov 21, 2014
3
0
A DAS and NAS should coexist. I don't know why so many of you are saying they should not. I want one central place where ALL my files are kept. I'm a web developer and videographer, and my wife's a photographer. We create a ton of content.

Reasons for NAS:
  • Stream movies to living room
  • Need to have access to archived files when I'm sitting in a coffee shop, just in case. I should always be able to access all my files no matter where I am.

Reasons for DAS:
  • Fast, immediate access to all working files. Acts like a regular hard drive, and performs nearly as well.

Of course these two worlds should collide. Otherwise I am living in a fragmented world with some files on the DAS, some on the NAS, and that's a waste of resources and decreases productivity.

I feel more comfortable storing all working files on the NDAS (my hypothetical unicorn), so that if anything happens to my laptop, everything's still current on the NDAS, up-to-the-minute, and I can go borrow my wife's laptop and keep working.

I liked what nbthrux was saying about the Areca, but then theSeb did make a point in saying that having an ethernet port doesn't necessarily make it a NAS, which made sense to me, as the Areca site mentions no such NAS functionality. I want a beautiful ecosystem, similar to Seagate Central's system (which I currently use). That system has an iOS app that lets me cast movies to my Chromecast from my Seagate Central in the office. It's perfect for my needs in that regard, and the iOS app is post-iOS7, so it looks great. Also, it has a website I can go to that gives me access to all my files from my NAS on my desk at home. But I wish when I was sitting at my desk that I could plug my 2011 MB Pro into the Seagate Central via my first-gen Thunderbolt port and transfer files infinitely faster than over wifi or an ethernet cable (which I always plug in when sitting at the desk).

I'm also a pianist, and storing virtual piano samples takes up a ton of space PER sample. Ivory II takes 77GB by itself, and that's just for three pianos. So even with a 500GB SSD, after OS, software, and samples, I don't have much room left! And that is something I have to keep on the laptop itself so I have access to those samples when performing with MainStage 3. So every GB of work stuff being on my NDAS is necessary.

And I also agree with nbthrux that some of you guys need to just chill out and quit telling people why their ideas are stupid, and instead try to be a bit more understanding. :mad::eek:;):):cool::apple:

But that's just me.
 
Last edited:

zettabyte

macrumors regular
Jun 6, 2015
105
18
OP, we're on the same boat. For when I'm at home, your reasons are the same as mine except I back up my Adobe Lightroom library. You should find my post to check out my current set up.

Anyhow, despite what a lot are saying about TB NAS drives...here's what I do at times when my network is busy.

I plug in my Ethernet cable from my NAS directly to my [Thunderbolt -> Gigabit Ethernet] Adapter, connected to my rMBP and it works flawlessly.

You're not going to get crazy speeds, but it's fast enough to get the job done. Simple as that.

Out of curiosity, what's your budget? Because there are a lot of options and some are definitely better than the other.
 

zettabyte

macrumors regular
Jun 6, 2015
105
18
A DAS and NAS should coexist. I don't know why so many of you are saying they should not. I want one central place where ALL my files are kept. I'm a web developer and videographer, and my wife's a photographer. We create a ton of content.

Reasons for NAS:
  • Stream movies to living room
  • Need to have access to archived files when I'm sitting in a coffee shop, just in case. I should always be able to access all my files no matter where I am.

Reasons for DAS:
  • Fast, immediate access to all working files. Acts like a regular hard drive, and performs nearly as well.

Of course these two worlds should collide. Otherwise I am living in a fragmented world with some files on the DAS, some on the NAS, and that's a waste of resources and decreases productivity.

I feel more comfortable storing all working files on the NDAS (my hypothetical unicorn), so that if anything happens to my laptop, everything's still current on the NDAS, up-to-the-minute, and I can go borrow my wife's laptop and keep working.

I liked what nbthrux was saying about the Areca, but then theSeb did make a point in saying that having an ethernet port doesn't necessarily make it a NAS, which made sense to me, as the Areca site mentions no such NAS functionality. I want a beautiful ecosystem, similar to Seagate Central's system (which I currently use). That system has an iOS app that lets me cast movies to my Chromecast from my Seagate Central in the office. It's perfect for my needs in that regard, and the iOS app is post-iOS7, so it looks great. Also, it has a website I can go to that gives me access to all my files from my NAS on my desk at home. But I wish when I was sitting at my desk that I could plug my 2011 MB Pro into the Seagate Central via my first-gen Thunderbolt port and transfer files infinitely faster than over wifi or an ethernet cable (which I always plug in when sitting at the desk).

I'm also a pianist, and storing virtual piano samples takes up a ton of space PER sample. Ivory II takes 77GB by itself, and that's just for three pianos. So even with a 500GB SSD, after OS, software, and samples, I don't have much room left! And that is something I have to keep on the laptop itself so I have access to those samples when performing with MainStage 3. So every GB of work stuff being on my NDAS is necessary.

And I also agree with nbthrux that some of you guys need to just chill out and quit telling people why their ideas are stupid, and instead try to be a bit more understanding. :mad::eek:;):):cool::apple:

But that's just me.
This World does exist....at least for me :D

I am able to achieve the best of both words of a NAS and DAS with my WD My Cloud 4-Bay 24TB (DL4100) NAS. Granted it does have a Dual Core Intel 1.7GHz w/ 2GB of RAM which can be upgraded to 6GB. You can set up a iSCSI, which then allows you to see a folder on your computer as if it was a local drive. Drag and Drop.

You can also build your own set up, however, having done both (I have FreeNAS set up at my office and the WD at home) I am actually very pleased with the well polished "everything," the WD provides. Now do keep in mind that not all WD NAS will give you a smooth operation. I would only recommend going with the EX4100 and up as a starting point. The baseline, econo WD NAS (white case ones) are all complete rubbish and not worth the money. I guess you can say the same for most brands that offer NAS...
 

theSeb

macrumors 604
Aug 10, 2010
6,963
91
Poole, England
I am able to achieve the best of both words of a NAS and DAS with my WD My Cloud 4-Bay 24TB (DL4100) NAS. Granted it does have a Dual Core Intel 1.7GHz w/ 2GB of RAM which can be upgraded to 6GB. You can set up a iSCSI, which then allows you to see a folder on your computer as if it was a local drive. Drag and Drop.
You can do this with any NAS. It does not make it a DAS. You don't even need to use iSCSI to do it either.
 

theSeb

macrumors 604
Aug 10, 2010
6,963
91
Poole, England
A DAS and NAS should coexist. I don't know why so many of you are saying they should not. I want one central place where ALL my files are kept. I'm a web developer and videographer, and my wife's a photographer. We create a ton of content.

Reasons for NAS:
  • Stream movies to living room
  • Need to have access to archived files when I'm sitting in a coffee shop, just in case. I should always be able to access all my files no matter where I am.

Reasons for DAS:
  • Fast, immediate access to all working files. Acts like a regular hard drive, and performs nearly as well.

Of course these two worlds should collide. Otherwise I am living in a fragmented world with some files on the DAS, some on the NAS, and that's a waste of resources and decreases productivity.

I feel more comfortable storing all working files on the NDAS (my hypothetical unicorn), so that if anything happens to my laptop, everything's still current on the NDAS, up-to-the-minute, and I can go borrow my wife's laptop and keep working.

I liked what nbthrux was saying about the Areca, but then theSeb did make a point in saying that having an ethernet port doesn't necessarily make it a NAS, which made sense to me, as the Areca site mentions no such NAS functionality. I want a beautiful ecosystem, similar to Seagate Central's system (which I currently use). That system has an iOS app that lets me cast movies to my Chromecast from my Seagate Central in the office. It's perfect for my needs in that regard, and the iOS app is post-iOS7, so it looks great. Also, it has a website I can go to that gives me access to all my files from my NAS on my desk at home. But I wish when I was sitting at my desk that I could plug my 2011 MB Pro into the Seagate Central via my first-gen Thunderbolt port and transfer files infinitely faster than over wifi or an ethernet cable (which I always plug in when sitting at the desk).

I'm also a pianist, and storing virtual piano samples takes up a ton of space PER sample. Ivory II takes 77GB by itself, and that's just for three pianos. So even with a 500GB SSD, after OS, software, and samples, I don't have much room left! And that is something I have to keep on the laptop itself so I have access to those samples when performing with MainStage 3. So every GB of work stuff being on my NDAS is necessary.

And I also agree with nbthrux that some of you guys need to just chill out and quit telling people why their ideas are stupid, and instead try to be a bit more understanding. :mad::eek:;):):cool::apple:

But that's just me.
You could connect a DAS to a computer and run the software that gives you "NAS functionality". At the end of the day, that is exactly what a NAS is, but just in one convenient package.
 

theSeb

macrumors 604
Aug 10, 2010
6,963
91
Poole, England
That's pretty cool, but it's a pity that it does not exist yet and there is no indication when it will be available. I have a 5 disk Synology and even connected via a 1 Gbit wired connection, tasks like browsing the files and folders in Finder are painfully slow. It was ok at first, but now I have about 7 TBs of stuff on it. Browsing the files and folders using the web admin is smooth and fast though, but obviously not as convenient as Finder, since you have to download a file to look at it.

I wonder how exactly this works. I would imagine it must be similar to Thunderbolt target disk mode when you connect two Macs with a TB cable. It will be interesting to see the performance, since the last reviews I have seen of TB TDM showed that it is significant slower than a TB external disk attached directly to a computer.
 
Last edited:
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.