We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Disk tools/Optimisation software Reviews
15,670 Reviews

Intel NAS Performance Toolkit review

FREE

Manufacturer: Intel

Our Rating: We rate this 4 out of 5

The Intel NAS Performance Toolkit (NASPT), is a simple, easy to use file system exerciser that measures NAS performance.

The Intel NAS Performance Toolkit (NASPT), is a simple, easy to use file system exerciser that measures NAS performance.

Iometer and IOzone are great tools for testing storage devices, but they have one significant drawback: they dive deep into the minutiae of the block storage and file systems they measure and, thus, yield results that might as well be written in Greek (apologies to Greek people) if you're not a hard disk engineer.

The Intel NAS Performance Toolkit (NASPT), a file system exerciser designed for the direct comparison of NAS performance, is much simpler and easier to use. While Iometer and IOzone work deep within the operating system to directly measure iochannels, disks, controllers, and such, NASPT zeroes in on what the ordinary user might experience when they set up the storage system.

Intel's NASPT solves some of the "forest from the trees" issues in file system testing. Instead of examining each subsystem in isolation, the Intel toolkit looks at how the NAS works overall. In the real world, both the user space applications for mounting the NAS and the network used to access the NAS have an effect on the user experience. NASPT takes these factors into account.

What NASPT does is play back traces of typical traffic that SOHO and SMB users might be tossing onto some sort of shared storage. For instance, the 2x HD Playback option mimics someone fast-forwarding (at 2X speed) an HD-quality video. The Office Productivity option represents the tiny little reads and writes produced as Word, Excel, and PowerPoint document editing takes place. A really cool feature is the ability to record a trace from any (32-bit) Windows application to create additional tests.

NASPT has limitations. It runs only on 32-bit Windows XP and only on workstations with Intel CPUs. You must have a drive mounted (i.e., a drive letter); the use of Universal Naming Convention (i.e., \\server\share) is not supported. NASPT is also limited to measuring performance from a single workstation; there's no ability to correlate data gathered across multiple workstations - at least not yet. NASPT is only five months old.

We're also pretty excited that the Intel NASPT is a free download. After all, good science demands that results be challenged and experiments be repeated. "Free" means you can repeat my experiments on your own NAS in your own environment. Just use some common sense in when and how you run any sort of performance test.

Throwing several gigabytes of test patterns across a production network when the accounting department is trying to post its month-end numbers is not going to make you popular. Instead, either test on an isolated network or do a bit of maths first. Add up those file transfer sizes and see if running it on a production network is a reasonable thing to do.

The Intel NAS Performance Toolkit is free, it's easy, and it's reasonable to run. Don't believe those glossy brochures the storage vendors toss at you; it's in your best interest to confirm those numbers. If your findings do match the vendor's, we'll be surprised. Vendors always publish the best results they can get, meaning they were typically created in a lab under ideal conditions.

Infoworld.com

Intel NAS Performance Toolkit Expert Verdict »
Intel Pentium 4 processor or later
1GB DRAM
Microsoft Windows XP SP2
1GB on client PC
80GB on NAS target
  • Overall: We give this item 8 of 10 overall

Intel NAS Performance Toolkit is a NAS test tool that doesn't take a hard drive engineer to understand and use. Because it actually plays back various types of file actions, this tool is much more "real world" than similar offerings. It even allows you to "record" and play back file actions to more closely simulate your production environment.

There are currently no price comparisons for this product.
  • QNAP Turbo NAS TS-419U review

    QNAP Turbo NAS TS-419U

    With a multitude of software options and strong support for VMware and Hyper-V, the QNAP Turbo NAS TS-419U appliance can play many roles in a growing small business.

  • QNAP TS-639 Pro Turbo review

    QNAP TS-639 Pro Turbo

    The QNAP TS-639 Pro Turbo iSCSI-enabled NAS solution is a perfect match for the growing small office, especially one expanding beyond the internal storage of a VMware or Windows Hyper-V virtualization server.

  • Synology DiskStation DS509+ review

    Synology DiskStation DS509+

    Synology's DiskStation DS509+ is a great value network-attached storage (NAS) device with five drive bays - letting you store up to 10 terabytes of data, though you'll have to supply your own drives.

  • Netgear ReadyNAS NVX review

    Netgear ReadyNAS NVX

    The Netgear ReadyNAS NVX makes network-attached storage (NAS) simple; all you have to do is plug it in. It's a four-bay NAS device that provides up to 4TB of storage.

  • Seagate BlackArmor NAS 440 review

    Seagate BlackArmor NAS 440

    Seagate's first network-attached (NAS) device, the Seagate BlackArmor NAS 440, offers the ability to encrypt volumes, easily manage RAID arrays and administer users. However, it's not without its flaws.


IDG UK Sites

Where to buy iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in the UK: Launch day price, deals and contracts

IDG UK Sites

Is Apple losing confidence in itself?

IDG UK Sites

Professional photo and video techniques for perfect colours

IDG UK Sites

How (and where) to buy an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus in the UK. Plus: What to do if you pre-ordered...