Access security is present and correct as the appliance maintains a local user and group database and you can specify an NT domain or AD server for user authentication. Read and write access restrictions can be applied to each folder and quotas can be used on specific users to limit the amount of storage they can consume. Client support is particularly good as the 150d can handle CIFS/SMB, NFS and AFP protocols so will work happily with Windows, Linux and Mac systems.
Backup features don’t disappoint as the appliance can run scheduled full and incremental jobs that secure selected folders to a USB device or to another StorCenter over the network. For PC backup you get a five user copy of EMC’s Retrospect Express which offers plenty of wizard-driven assistance making backup and restoration tasks simple. You can create a schedule to run backups regularly but once the first one has completed all subsequent jobs will only copy new and changed files.
If you plan to upgrade the appliance’s firmware we recommend extreme caution. The process is handled by a separate Windows only utility and after updating the appliance we found it had been set back to factory defaults. Fortunately, the data was still there but we had to reconfigure the workgroup name, recreate users and re-establish our share access – something a small business will find unacceptable. Iomega advised us this is a known issue with the 150d, which it is expecting to fix later this year.
General performance over Gigabit Ethernet was on a par with Netgear and Buffalo. Copying a 690MB test file from a Supermicro Pentium D 3.2GHz PC to the appliance and back again returned 13.5MB/sec and 15.3MB/sec write and read rates respectively. FTP speeds were marginally faster with Put and Get operations from the Window FTP command line utility delivering average write and read speeds of 17.9MB/sec and 19.3 MB/sec.
A well constructed NAS appliance with plenty of storage capacity for the price and a fair turn of speed. A good choice for general office file sharing and PC backup, but it is noisy and when compared with similar appliances from Netgear and Buffalo, it comes up short on features.