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Functionality

NASes have become not unlike desktop PCs in their functionality. Even though they are not as versatile, they are definitely more than just file storage devices. Considering that firmware doesn’t vary much between different NASes from the same manufacturer, we will discuss the extra services in an upcoming review. Today we’ll talk about the basic functionality.

So, the ASUSTOR AS-604T has four bays for HDDs and allows to combine them into JBOD or RAID 0/1/5/6/10 arrays or use them individually. A replacement HDD may be specified. Like other modern NASes, the ASUSTOR AS-604T supports disk volume migration without data loss and capacity expansion via adding new disks (with RAID5) or replacing disks one by one (with RAID1/5/6).

The latest firmware version allows you to remove the first disk volume but all the additional software modules will be removed too since they are stored on the user data partition rather than on the system partition.

An integrated utility for reading S.M.A.R.T. data and scanning HDDs is available for monitoring the health of the HDDs. These operations can be run on schedule. The compatibility list includes a lot of modern HDD models, also with capacities of 3 and 4 TB, so it’s going to be easy to choose HDDs for this NAS.

The ASUSTOR AS-604T supports file-based iSCSI volumes with LUNs located on existing disk volumes. This reminds us of QNAP products again as they do not support block-based access, either.

User access control is based on user names and passwords. Besides a local user database, the ASUSTOR AS-604T supports Windows Active Directory. Users can be combined into groups, assigned quotas for disk volumes, and provided access to additional applications. Admin rights can be given to ordinary users.

Users and user groups may have standard access rights to shared folders: no access, read only, read & write. Additionally you can specify the access mode for anonymous users via FTP or WebDAV. ISO images can be mounted for networked access. A network recycle bin for deleted files can be created on each disk volume. Users can restore deleted files if they have access rights to the corresponding folder. There are no automatic means of controlling the size of the bin.

The NAS provides access to files via CIFS, AFP, NFS, FTP and WebDAV protocols, so every user can have an appropriate type of access irrespective of what OS he has. FTP offers a number of settings. You can change port numbers, enable SSL/TLS and FXP, limit speeds and the number of simultaneous connections. For WebDAV, you can choose a port and enable SSL.

The NAS’s key parameters are specified in the Settings. Besides network addresses, the Ethernet controller options include Jumbo Frames support, IPv6, VLAN and port teaming. Besides the wired ports, the NAS can work with wireless USB adapters but there is no official compatibility list. The security features include an integrated firewall and a system of protection against password guessing.

The Ease of Access features help you set up remote access to the NAS. The first of them is an integrated DDNS client that supports the manufacturer’s exclusive service with third-level domains at myasustor.com. You only need to provide a name for your NAS without even registering a user account.

The second feature is automatic port translation on the router (which has to support UPnP as most modern routers do). You just choose what services you need and publish them on the internet by checking a checkbox.

The third feature is simple remote access from exclusive utilities by specifying the name you’ve given to your NAS. The remote access will only work if the router’s IP address is accessible from the internet.

 
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