The administrative interface opens with a quick start wizard, where you can set the administrative password, time zone, network and workgroup details. Access controls are fairly basic as you can create a list of local users and groups and decide which folders they are allowed to use. Read and write privileges can be determined for each one but quotas are not supported so you can’t limit the amount of storage space each one can use. FTP services are above average as you can publish multiple folders and apply user and group restrictions to each one. For each folder you can limit the number of users that can access it simultaneously and apply bandwidth restrictions for each folder as well.
D-Link goes with the flow for media streaming as the appliance incorporates the ever popular iTunes server. You can select the folder you want your music files to be published from and apply a password restriction. The appliance also offers UPnP media services for streaming to suitable media players. For such a small appliance heat dissipation will be an issue but we found the status display in the browser interface showed it never going over 49ºC. The chassis has a small fan at the rear that’s linked to a thermal sensor. This was quite intrusive as it came on every ten or fifteen minutes and would run for up to five minutes at a time. Usefully, you can power the drives down after so many minutes of idle time.
Performance for the DNS-313 is quite reasonable and certainly above average for a low cost single drive appliance. Using a Supermicro Pentium D 3.2GHz PC we copied a 690MB video file over Gigabit Ethernet and saw read and write speeds of around 19MB/sec and 8MB/sec respectively. FTP performance isn’t so good as uploading and downloading the same file using the FileZilla utility returned only 7.1MB/sec read and 6.4MB/sec write speeds. For general workstation backup you get a single user copy of Memeo AutoBackup. This is a useful tool that supports a good range of backup destinations including the appliance and once a full backup has run it uses a background service that monitors changes and new files in the source directories and secures them in real time.
D-Link delivers a low cost NAS appliance with a fair turn of speed and a reasonable set of features although we do have concerns over compatibility issues with some SATA hard disks.