QNAP TS-431P

Cheap but ca­pa­ble.

APC Australia - - Software -

The new player at the low end of QNAP’s range, the TS-431P, is an ARM-pow­ered NAS with a neat de­sign and a ton of fea­tures. It’s a nice step up from the older ARM mod­els like the TS-412, yet re­tails at a very af­ford­able price. It comes in the QNAP white case, with easy slidein in­stal­la­tion.

As you might ex­pect at this price range, it’s hardly a pow­er­house. A 1.7GHz dual-core ARM pro­ces­sor and 1GB of RAM def­i­nitely place it at the low end of the per­for­mance scale, and it’s not the kind of de­vice you can ask too much from. It did well enough for disk ac­cess, how­ever, ri­valling the con­sid­er­ably more ex­pen­sive Net­gear (left). It also has twin Eth­er­net ports for load bal­anc­ing.

It boasts the lat­est ver­sion of QNAP’s QTS op­er­at­ing sys­tem, but we think the com­pany has been go­ing back­wards with its re­cent OS re­leases, with its some­times scat­ter­shot ap­proach to both NAS and mo­bile ap­pli­ca­tions. The re­moval of the Twonky Me­dia DLNA server was a big blow (the QNAP DLNA server is bug-rid­dled and in­fe­rior, in our view). There’s no ques­tion, how­ever, that QNAP has the largest range of first party tools avail­able for the NAS and a third-party toolset to ri­val any other.

It’s the only ARM-based NAS we’ve seen that sup­ports Docker and LXC, which al­low the sim­ple in­stal­la­tion of nearly any Linux app. It’s still ARM, and the ar­ray of third-party Linux apps com­piled for the plat­form is still much more lim­ited than an x86 NAS.

It’s still a good NAS for cheap. If you’re look­ing for just-the-ba­sics file ser­vices, it’s hard to beat.

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