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Reviews - Featured Reviews: Network
Written by Bruce Normann   
Monday, 28 November 2011
Table of Contents: Page Index
IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE Network Storage Device
Closer Look: IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE
Insider Details: IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE
IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE Features
IOCELL NDAS Software Features
IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE Specifications
NAS Testing Methodology
Basic-Disk Test Results
Non-Traditional NAS Test Results
NAS Server Final Thoughts
IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE Conclusion

Non-Traditional NAS Test Results

In addition to measuring simple timed transfers, to determine how fast it will read and write contiguous blocks of data, Benchmark Reviews was also able to measures NDAS performance using some tests that are traditionally used for internal drives. Because the IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE is treated like a local drive, courtesy of the NDAS software and driver package, most of our favorite HDD/SSD benchmarking tools worked just fine. Most NAS products don't work too well with this type of test program; even though they may have the ability to map the NAS device to a drive letter, they're still not treated like local drives by the Operating System. So, let's look at some results...

ATTO Disk Benchmark Results

The ATTO Disk Benchmark program is free, and offers a comprehensive set of test variables to work with. In terms of disk performance, it measures interface transfer rates at various intervals for a user-specified length and then reports read and write speeds for these spot-tests. There are some minor improvements made to the 2.46 version of the program that allow for test lengths up to 2GB, but all of our benchmarks are conducted with 256MB total length. ATTO Disk Benchmark requires that an active partition be set on the drive being tested. Please consider the results displayed by this benchmark to be basic bandwidth speed performance indicators.

The NetDISK 351UNE turned in a stellar performance on ATTO, reaching a peak Read speed of 65.8 MB/s and a peak Write speed of 76.6 MB/s. It's good to keep in mind that these tests are not always indicative of real-world performance. I never saw R/W speeds this high in actual use; the highest I saw were in the high 50s / low 60s for Read and Write. Still, I'm definitely impressed with these results.

IOCELL_Networks_NetDISK_351UNE_NDAS_ATTO_Results.png

HD Tach Benchmark Results

HD Tach is a software program for Microsoft Windows that tests the sequential read, random access and interface burst speeds of the attached storage device. HD Tach allows write-bandwidth tests only if no partition is present. The graphical user interface (GUI) of the Windows-based benchmark tool HD Tach is very convenient and allows the test product to be compared against others collected on your system or those registered into the Simpli Software database. The important numbers used for comparison are the sustained read and write bandwidth speeds, which indicate an approximate performance level of the product.

The IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE and the Western Digital Caviar Black WD7501AALS 750GB 7200 RPM w/32MB Cache performed at an average Read speed of 52.5 MBps. This is close to the range of performance I experienced during timed transfers of 1GiB and 10GiB files. Don't worry about the glitch in the middle; it was a Windows notification that caused all the data to go into a buffer. The read speed during that period looks a lot like the max speed in the ATTO test, though.....

IOCELL_Networks_NetDISK_351UNE_NDAS_HDTach_Results.png

PCMark Vantage Results

PCMark Vantage is an objective hardware performance benchmark tool for PCs running 32- and 64-bit versions of Microsoft Windows Vista or Windows 7. PCMark Vantage is well suited for benchmarking any type of Microsoft Windows Vista/7 PC: from multimedia home entertainment systems and laptops, to dedicated workstations and high-end gaming rigs. Benchmark Reviews uses the HDD Test Suite to demonstrate simulated real-world storage drive performance in many of our Storage articles. PCMark Vantage runs eight drive tests, each with a specific purpose.

Once the benchmarking tests are complete, the results are given a PCMark score while the detailed result show actual transaction speeds. Results are displayed in the chart below, and if you compare them with the recent test of the Seagate Barracuda 3TB Hard Drive (ST3000DM001) here on Benchmark Reviews, you'll see that it achieves about 60-75% of the performance of that SOTA drive. The exception is on images and video, where it lags much further behind.

IOCELL_Networks_NetDISK_351UNE_NDAS_PCMark_HDD_Suite.png

CrystalDiskMark Results

CrystalDiskMark 3.0 is a file transfer and operational bandwidth benchmark tool from Crystal Dew World that offers performance transfer speed results using sequential, 512KB random, and 4KB random samples. For our test results chart below, the 4KB 32-Queue Depth read and write performance was measured using a 1000MB space. CrystalDiskMark requires that an active partition be set on the drive being tested, and all drives are formatted with NTFS for our tests. Benchmark Reviews uses CrystalDiskMark to illustrate operational IOPS performance with multiple threads. In addition to our other tests, this benchmark allows us to determine operational bandwidth under heavy load.

Although the combination of the IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE and the Western Digital Caviar Black WD7501AALS 750GB 7200 RPM w/32MB Cache can't compare to the Seagate Barracuda 3TB Hard Drive - ST3000DM001 that was tested earlier this month, it still pulls a respectable 61 MB/s on both sequential Read and Write tests.

IOCELL_Networks_NetDISK_351UNE_NDAS_CrystalDiskMark_NDAS.png

All in all, these are a respectable set of results for direct-attached-storage. Sure, they're a bit lower than a true local drive connection, directly into the SATA controller on the motherboard. But, for a NAS device mimicking a local HDD, they stand head and shoulders above the competition at the price point.



 

Comments 

 
# RE: IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE Network Storage DeviceMack 2011-12-01 20:38
Pretty cool device. Its good to see some creativity out there.
Thanks for the review!
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# AgreedBruce 2011-12-02 07:33
Yeah, I was sorta caught off-guard by this product. I wasn't really expecting something this unique and this good. There's so many me-too products out there, and it can be tough to spot the stand-outs.
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# RE: IOCELL NetDISK 351UNE Network Storage DeviceAthlonite 2011-12-05 23:20
Me likes I've been looking at getting a small NAS to plonk on the GB switch but I seriously wasn't interested paying 2~300 bucks for the ability.... This product is just what the disk space shortage ordered
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# Look for the bargains.....Bruce 2011-12-07 04:59
"The models with 1TB and 2T drives preinstalled are better bargains now that the Thailand flooding has driven the price of bare HDDs up through the roof."
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# Where have you been all my life.Mergatroid 2011-12-06 17:54
Wow, I sure could have used this a few months ago. I have a NAS with a single drive, not very good but serviceable for file streaming and storage. I have a dual drive NAS in RAID 1 backing up the first NAS, and backing up my system backup drive. I didn't really need a RAID1 for backing up my NAS and system backup, but it added redundancy as you mentioned. One of these network drives (or two) would have been just what I was looking for. I hope they're still around when I need more storage. I really like the transfer rate and the universal nature of the added ports (USB and eSATA). I think this is an amazing value at the price mentioned. Nice review too. Good breakdown on what the drive does and what it doesn't do.
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# It's a great alternative...Bruce 2011-12-06 20:41
It's a great alternative to some of the other solutions out there. There's no doubt that it's the most cost-effective choice for several usage scenarios, where it performs as well as devices that are 5x the cost.
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