The Thecus W5000 is a five-bay unit designed to bring Windows Storage Server features down to an affordable price.
The W5000 is nearly identical to Thecus' N5550 NAS in both hardware specifications and design. Of course, the W5000 moves away from the Thecus OS based on Linux and moves to Windows Storage Server 2012 R2 Essentials on a dedicated hard disk.
The heart of the system is an Intel D2550 Atom processor running at 1.86GHz. Backing the SoC is 2GB of DDR3-1600 memory, just like you'd find on the N5550 Linux-based system. Microsoft's WSS license allows for up to 4GB, and it'd be easy enough for you to add another 2GB DDR3-1600 module to augment Thecus' factory configuration.
At Computex 2015, Thecus released a new W5000-series model that coexists with the W5000 we're testing today. The W5000+ does, in fact, ship with 4GB of system memory, and shares all of the same features. We think the additional 2GB is necessary, given that the W5000 runs with up to 80 percent of its capacity utilized before adding additional software features.
The primary system I/O comes from two gigabit Ethernet ports that can be teamed in the WSS operating system. Easy NIC Teaming is a primary feature in Windows Server 2012 R2, and the technology trickles down to the lower-cost WSS operating systems as well. Expansion comes from four USB 2.0 ports on the back of the NAS, along with a single eSATA port. USB 3.0 is only on the front of the NAS, letting you charge mobile devices and back-up external storage products easily.
The W5000 ships with a 500GB Seagate SSHD that hosts the Windows operating system. The drive is partitioned into two sections: one 32GB chunk for the OS and the other in which to build a non-redundant storage volume. Redundant storage comes from the five hot-swappable drive bays on the system's front. Add drives as you need them, but WSS requires at least three disks for redundant storage. RAID 0, RAID 5, RAID 6 and RAID 10 are all supported, though we'd expect most folks to tap RAID 5 with three to five drives installed.