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Article: Better Power Management for your NAS

Article: Better Power Management for your NAS

Having a NAS for your business or your home means that you have around the clock access to your data.  The drawbacks to this constant availability of data is consumption.  Do you really need your NAS running at non critical times? Managing your NAS more effectively can reduce your consumption and increase your sense of environmental sustainability.  Whether you have a model manufactured by Thecus, Synology, QNAP, etc, there are some types of power management functions available to you.

Scheduled on/off

Taking advantage of a power schedule will have the most dramatic effect on your consumption. Most organizations have normal business hours and most homes are asleep at certain times.  If you really think about it, whether you are a business or a home users, your NAS goes unused for approximately 2/3′s of the day.  Having your NAS powered on and running is a complete waste of electricity and can increase failure rate of essential components (ever heard of MTBF – Mean time before failure?).  Setting the power schedule can power down the NAS during these non essential times then power up your device to be ready for your data needs, thereby reducing your consumption and leveling sustainability.

If you are worried about a sudden need for data during periods you have the device scheduled to be powered off, you can utilize the wake on LAN (WOL) feature that most NAS incorporate.  This will allow you to send a “magic packet” to your NAS to initiate a power on.

Spinning Down Disks / Disk Standby

While your NAS is running, there are periods of inactivity; it is inevitable.  During these periods, configuring your device to spin down the disks or place them in standby can drop your power consumption by as much as half in many cases.  While using this feature you may experience some delay if you try to access the NAS as it spins the drives back up from standby, but the time it takes is negligible compared to the cost savings you may realize.  Periods of inactivity are what determines when the NAS places an HDD into standby mode and most are configurable for times between minutes and hours.

Implementing these two simple things can impact the amount of power your devices consume.  The more devices you have, the greater the savings.  Look for these settings in your device and start saving… money as well as resources.

QNAP

  • Enable disk standby: System Administration –> Hardware –> Enable hard disk standby mode if no access within the specific time period
  • Scheduled Power on/off: System Administration –> Power Management –> Enable schedule

Thecus

  • Enable disk standby: Storage –> Disk Information –> Disk Power Management
  • Scheduled Power on/off: System Management–> Scheduled On/Off –> Enable Scheduled On/Off

About Joe DiFiglia

I have always had a passion for everything computing. In early 2000, I decided to take my passion to the web. Thus, C.O.D. was born. Through the years we have made many great friends at C.O.D. and hope to continue our journey for years to come.