Storage area networks (SANs) and network attached storage (NAS) both provide networked storage solutions. A NAS is a single storage device that operates on data files, while a SAN is a local network of multiple devices. The differences between NAS and SAN can be seen when comparing their cabling and how they’re connected to the system, as well as how other devices communicate with them. However, the two are sometimes used together to form what’s known as a unified SAN.
A NAS unit includes a dedicated hardware device that connects to a local area network, usually through an Ethernet connection. This NAS server authenticates clients and manages file operations in much the same manner as traditional file servers, through well-established network protocols.
To reduce the costs that occur with traditional file servers, NAS devices generally run an embedded operating system on simplified hardware and lack peripherals like a monitor or keyboard and are instead managed through a browser tool.
A SAN commonly utilizes Fiber Channel interconnects and connects a set of storage devices that are able to share data with one another.
As internet technologies like TCP/IP and Ethernet proliferate worldwide, some SAN products are making the transition from Fibre Channel to the same IP-based approach NAS uses. Also, with the rapid improvements in disk storage technology, today’s NAS devices now offer capacities and performance that once were only possible with SAN.
These two industry factors have led to a partial convergence of NAS and SAN approaches to network storage, effectively creating high-speed, high-capacity, centrally located network devices. When SAN and NAS are joined together into one device in this way, it’s sometimes referred to as “unified SAN,” and it’s often the case that the device is a NAS device that simply utilizes the same technology behind SAN.
We at Aarkay provide NAS & SAN’s of top Brands like Storegrid, seagate, WD, Qnap, Buffalo, HP, Dell. Emerson.