Question about connecting a NAS...

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by mikeymike88, Jan 11, 2012.

  1. mikeymike88 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    #1
    So I know this might sound like a dumb question, but it's something I've thought about and couldn't find the answer to. Is it possible to connect a NAS with a gigabit port directly to your computer's (MBP) ethernet port and use it like a basic external hard drive?

    I know this would mean that others wouldn't be able to access it, but as of now I only have one mbp that I would like to connect to it and my router is in another room, so attaching it to the network doesn't seem like the best way to set this up for my situation. I'm considering buying a NAS (leaning towards a Synoloy DS411J) and connecting it to my network in the future, but for now this is the way I would like to ideally use it.

    Also, if this did work, would i still be able to connect to my router wirelessly for internet like I do now?

    Thanks!
     
  2. mfram macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2010
    Location:
    San Diego, CA USA
    #2
    Is it theoretically possible? Yes. You would need a cross-over ethernet cable and you would probably need to configure your Mac and NAS network settings manually. Maybe not if the NAS does zero-conf like the Mac will. Easiest thing to do is to get the cross-over cable, plug it in to both sides, and see if the NAS shows up under the network drives section. I've never owned that NAS, so I don't know if you have to configure it first or not. Wireless should still work at the same time. A standard ethernet cable won't work. If you plug it in and don't get a signal light, you have the wrong type of cable. Or you can buy a small ethernet switch and plug both things into the switch with standard ethernet cables.
     
  3. drsox macrumors 65816

    drsox

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Location:
    Xhystos
    #3
    Yes.
    Most modern NAS units have the ability to auto-sense ethernet connections so a direct connection is probably OK.
    The issue will be how to get the NAS on the same network as the Mac and all the other stuff.
    Most NAS units can also function as a DHCP server so could also handle the network setups.

    A better way however would be to connect the NAS and the Mac to a simple switch with the rest of the network also connected to the switch, then most of the problems would also be solved.
     
  4. mikeymike88 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2007
    #4
    Thanks guys! I'll probably just connect it directly to the mac for the time being and then later connect it to my router when I wire my house with Cat 5.

    Do you know of any NAS units that can use either gigabit ethernet or something like esata to connect to a computer? Something like this could possibly give me faster speeds when connected directly to a computer, right?
     
  5. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #5
    Stick with Synology. The eSATA is not for connecting to your PC but to an external HDD. Not much wiring needed as the NAS can be located beside the router.

    If your router is not gigabit update it, also dual band will help. A netgear WNDR4000 would be a good choice.

    No "j" Synology has eSATA only the more expensive ones do.
     
  6. drsox macrumors 65816

    drsox

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Location:
    Xhystos
    #6
    I use the Netgear ReadyNAS range. The new ones have dual GB NICs and USB3.
    Don't use eSATA for a NAS connection, go for GB LAN.

    PS If you are going to be installing a wired LAN, don't use CAT5, go for CAT5e (better for GB connections) or if you have the right switches and sockets, use CAT6. CAT6 is no big deal to install - just a bit fiddlier.
    I replaced my CAT5e with CAT6 last year.
     

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