Network Attached Storage
Network attached storage is a storage device which is connected to a network and provides file access services. Network attached storage is often abbreviated to NAS. Although the term NAS refers originally to such a storage device, when the term is used in the context of explaining and comparing storage network architectures it sometimes refers to a storage network architecture in which NAS devices are mainly implemented.
A NAS device is basically comprised of disk drives which store files and controllers which export access services to the files. A file sever which runs network file system (NFS) and/or common internet file system (CIFS) to export file sharing services is a type of NAS implementation, but recent NAS products are sometimes implemented using dedicated hardware and software to increase reliability and performance. A diskless NAS device which contains only controllers is sometimes referred to as a NAS gateway or a NAS head. A NAS...