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QNAP TVS-863+ 8-Bay NAS Review

Sequential Data Transfer by Size

In the coming weeks we will detail our extensive testing process and share how we configure systems. In today's review we're comparing the QNAP TVS-863+ to two other products on the market. We are also testing the QNAP TVS-863+ with and without SSD cache-enabled.

Without SSD cache, the TVS-863+ uses eight Seagate NAS hard-disk drives and 10GbE connectivity back to the network. For the SSD cache test we used a SanDisk Extreme PRO 240GB SSD as the cache device and seven Seagate NAS hard disk drives. We configured the SSD cache with the default settings that omit sequential reads and writes but accelerate random data. All QNAP tests were run with the EXT4 file system and RAID 6 for dual redundancy.

For comparison products, we chose the ASUSTOR AS5108T, an 8-bay solution without 10GbE. This system uses the EXT4 file system. The 10GbE comparison product is the Netgear ReadyNAS 716X with six drive bays and the BTRFS (B-tree File System). Both the AS5108T and ReadyNAS 716X were tested in RAID 6 to match the QNAP TVS-863+.

To start the testing portion of the review, we swept sequential block sizes from small to large to see the throughput scaling and find peak QD1 performance. This test also shows us that with the default settings, the QNAP cache algorithm doesn't waste time with sequential data. Users can uncheck a box in the setup procedure to cache sequential data, but most users will not run the system that way.

Here we perform the same type of test-writing data instead of reading it. Again, the cache-enabled test doesn't show a difference, as expected. The QNAP TVS-863+ does show a dip in the performance curve at 128KB, the standard measurement block size for sequential data. In our testing we also show sequential performance with 1MB block sizes as well, so the dip will only affect half of our sequential tests.

  • basroil
    If it wasn't for the price (expensive, though justifiable) I would snap one up, seems to be a great option for photo/video storage and playback, and if you have a 10gigE network, even photo editing from it is going to feel snappy!
    Reply
  • CRamseyer
    I have a few disk drive reviews coming out soon and the iSCSI performance from this system is actually faster than a local disk.
    Reply
  • "iSCSI is an amazing technology that allows users to mount a volume to a host computer and have it control the volume as a local drive. You can even set the computer up to boot from the iSCSI share, just like a SAN."

    A massive over-simplification which is almost up there with "I want to buy an internet for my PC". It's not a technology, it's a protocol which runs over dead-basic Ethernet connectivity. The technology is "Ethernet", not iSCSI.

    You can't boot ALL computers from an iSCSI mounted volume unless you NIC supports it - and most integrated NICs don't.

    The "Con" of only having a single 10GbE interface isn't really a con for this type of device - if you need dual 10GbE then it's more likely to be for path diversity than performance, in which case you'll be wanting multiple switches and you're then into the realms of enterprise requirements, and if that's the case you wouldn't buy one of these in any case.
    Reply
  • basroil
    "It's not a technology, it's a protocol which runs over dead-basic Ethernet connectivity. The technology is "Ethernet", not iSCSI."

    iSCSI is technology, bridging two different protocols, and it doesn't need to be done over ethernet (though most commonly done over ethernet). Sure it's not "network technology" in the sense of low level protocols and physical devices, but it's still just as much a separate technology as TCP/IP, TLS, etc. (i.e. not all technology even has to have the same purpose or independent from others)

    "You can't boot ALL computers from an iSCSI mounted volume unless you NIC supports it - and most integrated NICs don't."
    Pretty sure all newer vPro systems support it, and definitely anything with PRO series NIC from Intel (and of course server grade NICs). Considering this device is 10gigE, I don't think they meant consumer grade computers booting over it!

    As for single 10gigE not being an issue, the only case in which I think people would see it as an issue is in the case of a legacy network still running gigE, in which case two teamed adapters running gigE would certainly still have a benefit. Other than legacy networks, you're right on the ball there.
    Reply
  • Marko Ravnjak
    "With HGST's new He8 drives with 8GB density, users can easily store up to 64GB of data."

    That's not really that much... ;)
    Reply
  • CRamseyer
    The comments really show just how far NAS system have come. You can do so much with them. I wouldn't go as far as to say one size fits all (not even close) but a small inexpensive system like this can easily serve 20 office systems over VDI.

    Dual 10gbE is nice for redundancy in a large network but I'm referring to performance increases against cost. A dual port 10GbE NIC has a very small price premium over a single port 10GbE NIC. QNAP sells both dual and single port 10GbE NICs but only offers the TVS-863+ with a single port.
    Reply
  • nekromobo
    Did you test the cache with 1 or 2 SSD's? Because with only 1 SSD you can only have read accelerated and need 2 SSD's to get read/write benefits.
    Reply
  • willgart
    "With HGST's new He8 drives with 8GB density, users can easily store up to 64GB of data. After RAID 6 overhead, that comes out to about 48GB of usable space with dual disk failure redundancy. "

    pretty small ;-)
    I prefer the other solutions where we talk about TB not GB... ;-)
    Reply
  • VfiftyV
    The 8GB DRAM model cost $1,399, while the 16GB model was $100 higher, at $1,400. Because math.
    Reply
  • SirGCal
    "The TVS-863+ with eight drive bays is a little too large for most home theater installations"

    WHAT? I currently have two 8-drive setups running RAID 6. A 12TB and a 24TB setup (2G and 4G drives respectively). And I'm almost full (89%). I have a large movie collection (all legal and no, you can't get any... ;-) and I also use about 8TB of that for (fake) work data storage. So I'm up to 28TB of movie and music storage that is just about full. I'd happily retire them for a single 48TB solution.

    Although building them myself is far cheaper, it's not as small. This is the first unit I'd actually consider buying that I've seen thus far. I'd for sure be excited to test it and see if it'll do everything else I need also (seems like it should).
    Reply