Looking for storage for your home office? The WD My Cloud Business Series NAS devices could be worth considering.
We've drawn your attention to the benefits of network attached storage, or NAS, several times already, including our basic intro to network attached storage here.
New products keep appearing with varying feature sets, including WD's latest My Cloud Business Series NAS devices aimed at small businesses, especially those that are looking for more advanced capabilities.
Like practically all NAS units, the two-bay My Cloud DL2100 (priced from $650) and four-bay DL4100 (from $1000) can be set up in various RAID configurations so you can either take full advantage of the available capacity or be able to survive the failure of any single drive without losing data. When you do need to install or replace drives, the job can be done very quickly without tools and without having to shut down the My Cloud.
This redundancy extends to other areas to help ensure your business data remains available at all times: there are dual power supply ports (only useful if you have two separate circuits to plug it into), support for an uninterruptible power supply (so the NAS can shut down gracefully before the UPS's batteries run down), and dual Ethernet ports.
My Cloud can be used as a backup destination for Windows PCs or Macs, using WD SmartWare Pro or Time Machine. Data stored on My Cloud can be backed to cloud services including Amazon S3 and Elephant Drive.
In addition to conventional ways of putting data onto a My Cloud, it will import the contents of a USB drive at the touch of a button, and the My Cloud app for iOS and Android can be used to transfer files from Dropbox, OneDrive or Google Drive. The same app provides remote access to data stored on a My Cloud.
Some of the features of My Cloud are on the techie side, but they are good to have, especially for growing or more technically advanced small businesses. This includes Active Directory support to simplify access control and the ability to act as an iSCSI target and initiator for higher performance.
If your business is in the creative media field, WD's new My Cloud EX2100 and EX4100 models may be more appropriate as they offer higher performance and greater maximum capacity. They may also be relevant to well-heeled home users thanks to the inclusion of DLNA and iTunes servers and the ability to run third-party applications such as Icecast (open source media streaming server) and DVBLink (TV recording and streaming server).