QNAP TS-230 review

QNAP trumps the Synology DS220j specification with its simple, elegant and affordable TS-230. A great value NAS drive for many people QNAP is one of a handful of NAS builders that has consistently countered the dominance of this sector by Synology over the past few years. From relatively humble beginnings, its QTS operating system is now matured and offers an impressive selection of applications.

What is QNAP TS-230?

Unlike other NAS builders that started their careers as manufacturer-specific machines, QNAP has evolved into a general-purpose company aiming to meet the needs of customers around the world. The company’s name refers to its capability to create both hardware and software solutions. The company’s first success lay in the design and implementation of the world’s first 3D-to-core computer system — the ARDACenter. The ARDACenter was followed by the successful introduction of its SDK, which represents the foundation of the business operations and functionality of the enterprise. QNAP’s success is mainly due to several factors: An ability to design and build inexpensive, ruggedized hardware — coupled with an ability to integrate highly detailed and complicated software — has made the company a household name around the world. Strong management team with proven track records — led by founder and CEO Samit Jain. A dedicated and loyal customer base — in need of high-quality hardware and software solutions.

Why buy a NAS drive from QNAP?

One of the most important factors in any business acquisition is the access list. The access list is the documentation that explains the capabilities and limitations of the hardware and the software. How do you start an opportunity like this? You approach a manufacturer that has been in business for a long time, who has been proven successful with their products, and who has a dedicated customer base. These manufacturers provide the access list to the new company. For example, if Seagate were to decide to sell their brand-new Blue and White NFS product line to a customer, it would likely go through a reverse engineering process that would uncover a code that could be used to replace the NFS hardware in the box. In many cases, the manufacturer will provide a complete access list, including documentation and user guides, to the new company. At the same time, however, the customers of the two companies would not necessarily need the same documentation. The customers of Blue and White could have perhaps purchased the latest version of their software and been satisfied with its capabilities.

Simple, elegant, and affordable NAS drive

The main advantage of using a standard drive like a Western Digital WD MyKey or Samsung SMART video drive as the basis for your NAS drive is the ease of customization. You can personalize the drive to your specifications, add programs and functionality to it, and even adjust the price. Most Western Digital drives come with a built-in customization tool, which allows you to create your very own drive image. You can then load that image into the drive’s management software to be Magento-based store management software. Alternatively, you can run the same software on your Mac or Windows computer, or on a server that you’re managing remotely.

Highly customizable NAS drive

In addition to its ease of customization and price, the largest appeal of a standard drive is the speed at which you can add features and programs. Even the smallest changes can add significant value, such as adding camcorder feature or allowing you to Livestream your activities from the drive. Most built-in programs and features in a standard drive are skinned with third-party software. You can often create your own customizations with these programs, though you should be aware that building your own program is not a trivial feat.

A plus: support for UPnP and iSCSI

As the main method of storage for your production and/or distribution systems, both physical and virtual, UPnP and iSCSI are essential to any business. If you are using a traditional hard drive, you will likely be unable to access your data from a remote computer, due to the physical distance between the computer and the NAS server. With a UPnP server, you can connect your drive to the network and the Remote Access Management software will manage the connection between the drive and the server. If you want to access your data remotely, you will likely want to use an on-site server. To access data from a remote computer, you can connect to the server through an internet connection, or with a virtual private network (VPN). Virtual private networks are a robust method of moving data across networks and can be used to connect a computer to a VPN server. To connect to a remote server through a VPN, you will likely need a VPN client.


Like any business, you will likely look into the development of new hardware and software as part of your purchasing process. When using a specific manufacturer, you will usually have access to the company’s development literature, which contains detailed instructions on how to build the hardware and program support for your products. However, you should be mindful of avoiding purchasing products that don’t come with documentation or that don’t support third-party software. These can often contain design decisions that are not in tune with the needs of your business. To sum up, the QNAP TS-230 offers great value for everyone in the business network space. It offers a complete line of hardware and software solutions at an affordable price, making it an ideal option for people who want to buy a low-cost NAS drive but also want support for third-party software.

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