The AVADirect Custom Small Business Server System that we are looking at today was at one time planned to be a small, low cost, high performance NAS server that would compete with the likes of Thecus and QNAP on price, but deliver superior performance. Somewhere along the line the custom NAS server transformed into a Small Business Server; customization had dramatically changed the face of our NAS and with it the intended customer, usage model and more importantly, the price.
Under normal circumstances I don't write about the server market other than what I am familiar with; NAS servers. Over the last few years NAS servers have evolved. The task of storing data has become elementary; some motherboards allow for as many as 12 hard drives without needing to add a single add-in controller card. With such large storage possible on client machines, NAS servers have evolved and now include web servers, download managers, DHCP services, domain management and many more features. Just look at the laundry list of functions that come in the default QNAP configuration, then add on the additional software packages in the QPKG add-on kits and you will start to see that even the lowest cost SOHO NAS products have grown into small business servers.
Even though NAS servers have gained functionality, their costs have stayed relatively the same. For the most part you can grade a NAS by the number of drive bays it uses. When shopping for a NAS most users determine how many drives they want to have; it is really the first question that needs answered. After that comes additional functionality and finally, price. Once these factors have been considered, the purchasing decision is made.
AVADirect offers several general use servers, enterprise storage systems and even SOHO storage systems. Each can be configured to your needs with drive, memory and software configurations based on your input. If you purchase the NAS or server with the drives from AVADirect they will even install your drives, configure your server with the configuration information you provide and deliver a system that just needs to plug into your network and be provided power.
Today we are looking at one of AVADirect's custom small business servers that uses a Windows operating system and features Seagate's newest SAS 6G 2TB Constellation ES enterprise class hard drives.
Let's take a look at the specifications and see how the server was configured.