Seagate's first network-attached (NAS) device, the Seagate BlackArmor NAS 440 (ST360005SHA10G-RK), offers the ability to encrypt volumes, easily manage RAID arrays and administer users. However, it's not without its flaws.
Seagate BlackArmor NAS 440: Performance
By default, the Seagate BlackArmor NAS 440 aligns all four 1.5TB drives in a RAID 5 array, providing 4.5TB of storage with one drive redundancy. We tested the NAS device's performance using this setup as well as both four-drive and two-drive RAID 0 configurations in order to place it on a level playing ground with competitors.
The Seagate BlackArmor NAS 440 was tested in the labs at PC World Australia.
We test all NAS devices connected through a Gigabit Ethernet network to a testbed PC with a 300GB Western Digital Velociraptor hard drive. We run Intel's NAS Performance Toolkit, which determines how the NAS device performs when streaming 720p high-definition media from the device as well as the ability to record the same video while performing backup operations.
We also run two file transfer tests to see how the NAS device performs in the real word. One file transfer test uses 3000 1MB files; this is intensive for both the hard drives and the embedded processor, and a good indication of how it will perform when backing up your computer. In addition, we transfer 20GB worth of 3-4GB files, a faster test that is similar to dealing with large videos, disk images or database files.
The Seagate BlackArmor NAS 440's default RAID 5 configuration naturally lags behind some of the other NAS devices we've tested, since it has to account for redundancy when writing data and performing simultaneous tasks. However, changing to a RAID 0 array - in both two- and four-disk configurations - didn't make a huge difference in performance. You'll get speedier results when writing large files, but overall the NAS device's ability to read data and stream content to other devices is on par with lower-powered devices like Synology's Disk Station DS409.
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