Storage today has never looked better. The days of loud rackmount servers and complicated operating systems is nearly gone. Today’s storage is compact and inviting and the hardware has shifted to smaller systems that house tons of storage. The operating systems have transitioned from expensive name brand products or complicated command line administration to simple web-based administration that nearly anyone can use. To keep the market transformation alive, manufacturers need to satisfy our data demand as well as our need for quick and easy administration. ASUSTOR thinks they can deliver on both fronts with the AS-608T, their newest 8 bay NAS with an intuitive IOS-like administration.
The AS-608T has all the bells and whistles. It has a Dual-Core Intel Atom CPU @ 2.13GHz, 1GB DDR3 (expandable to 3GB), 2 x USB 3.0, 4 x USB 2.0, 2 x eSATA, 2 x 10/100/1000 Ethernet ports (supports link aggregation), an HDMI port, 2 x 120mm cooling fans, and an LCD panel for information and system configuration. ASUSTOR claims that the AS-608T is eco-friendly consuming only 46W during operation, 32.3W during disk hibernation, and only 1.4W while the unit is in sleep mode. The NAS measures 215.5mm x 293mm x 230mm and weighs in at only 13.67 lbs.
- Complete iSCSI and NFS support. VMware, Citrix and Hyper-V ready.
- Support for Windows Active Directory
- Outfitted with SuperSpeed USB 3.0 and SATA III ports
- Support for RAID 0,1,5,6,10 and hard drive hot swapping
- Windows + Mac + Linux cross-platform file sharing
- Military grade AES 256-bit encryption for individual shared folders
The front of the NAS is home to one of the USB 3.0 ports with one touch backup button, Power and Activity LEDs, LAN connectivity LEDs, the LCD screen, four buttons for direct administration, and intake for cooling. The LCD screen can be used to administer your system through a system of menus, but you are better off using the web UI. If you look closely, just above the 8 drive bays, there is room for what could be two more additional drive bays. Internally, cutouts for SATA and power connections already exist. Perhaps ASUSTOR will be using this chassis and these components for a 10 bay version.
The AS-608T features 8 quick release drive trays, each having its own LED indicator for activity/error. The drive trays are made from high quality materials and have a strong spring for release. The push button release could benefit from an optional key lock to keep accidental release to a minimum, and I wouldn’t mind an indicator for drive sequence. I couldn’t tell if the drive numbers ran from top to bottom or left to right, however, it was easy enough to figure out, just load some drives and pull one to see which drive number disappears. Keep in mind, drive sequence only matters to the OCD (COD/OCD) like me… you can install drives randomly in these units. If a drive fails, the drive tray will indicate which it is.
Around back, you have the dual cooling fans, the power supply, the other USB 3.0 port, the 2 x eSATA ports, 4 x USB 2.0 ports, dual Ethernet connections, and the HDMI port. The HDMI port allows direct connection to a TV for audio / video playback.
Aside from the front of the NAS, the unit looks extremely similar to any of the QNAP NAS. They both feature the same side ventilation holes, a similar brushed finish to the chassis shell, and the back has an identical layout.