SAN and NAS Storage | How they work?

Storage Area Network (SAN)

The term SAN in PC networking most ordinarily refers to Storage area networking. A storage area network is a sort of local area network (LAN) designed to deal with extensive information exchanges and mass stockpiling of advanced data. A SAN commonly bolsters information stockpiling, recovery and replication on business networks utilizing top of the line servers, different circle exhibits and interconnect innovation.


Storage networks work uniquely in contrast to mainstream client-server networks due to the exceptional idea of their workloads. For instance, home networks typically highlight clients perusing the Internet, which include moderately little of measures of information activated at different circumstances, and can resend a few solicitations in the event that they happen to get lost. Storage networks, by examination, must deal with a lot of information created in mass demands and can’t bear to lose any of the information. A system area network is a cluster of superior PCs utilized for appropriated handling applications requiring quick local network execution to help facilitated calculation and yield to outside clients.

Before we go further we need to know the basic technology supporting NAS and SAN.

Fibre Channel & iSCSI


The two prevailing correspondence innovations for storage networks – Fibre Channel and Internet Small Computer Systems Interface (iSCSI) – have both been broadly utilized as a part of SANs and competed with each other for a long time.

Fiber Channel (FC) became the main decision for SAN networking amid the mid-1990s. Traditional Fibre Channel networks contain exceptional reason equipment called Fibre Channel switches that interface the capacity to the SAN plus Fibre Channel HBAs (Host Bus Adapters) that associate these changes to server PCs. FC network provide data rates between 1 Gbps and 16 Gbps.

iSCSI was made as a lower cost, bring down execution contrasting option to Fiber Channel and began developing in prevalence amid the mid-2000s. iSCSI works with Ethernet switches and physical connections instead of particular equipment assembled particularly for capacity workloads. It gives information rates of 10 Gbps and higher.

iSCSI advances particularly to littler organizations who normally don’t have staff prepared in the organization of Fiber Channel innovation. Then again, associations effectively experienced in Fiber Channel from history may not feel constrained to bring iSCSI into their environment. An elective type of FC called Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) was created to bring down the cost of FC arrangements by dispensing with the need to buy HBA equipment. Not all Ethernet switches bolster FCoE, be that as it may.

Well-known makers of storage area network equipment include EMC, HP, IBM, and Brocade. Vendors selling Fiber Channel switches and HBAs, also sell storage bays and rack enclosures where the physical disk media is placed.  The cost of SAN equipment ranges from a few hundred up to thousands of dollars.

SAN and NAS Usage

The overseer of a home or independent venture network can interface one NAS gadget to their local territory organize. The NAS keeps up its own IP address comparable to PCs and other TCP/IP gadgets. Utilizing a product program that is given the NAS equipment, the system head can set up programmed or manual reinforcements and document duplicates between the NAS and the various associated gadgets.

The NAS holds numerous gigabytes or terabytes of information. Executives can add extra storage ability to their system by introducing extra NAS gadgets, albeit every na works freely. Directors of large enterprise networks may require numerous terabytes of brought together document storage or to a great degree rapid record exchange operations. Where introducing a multitude of numerous NAS gadgets isn’t a pragmatic alternative, heads can rather introduce a SAN containing a superior circle cluster to give the required versatility and execution.

As web advancements like ​TCP/IP and Ethernet have multiplied around the world, some SAN items are influencing the progress from Fiber To channel to a similar IP-based approach NAS employments. Likewise, with the quick enhancements in circle storage innovation, the present NAS gadgets now offer limits and execution that used to be just conceivable with SAN. These two industry factors have prompted an incomplete joining of NAS and SAN ways to deal with organize storage.

Network-Attached Storage (NAS)

Network attached storage (NAS) is a sort of record storage device that gives LAN nodes a file based shared storage with the assistance of a standard Ethernet based association.

NAS gadgets, which normally don’t have a console or show, are designed and dealt with a program based utility program. Every one dwells on the LAN as an independent network node and has its own IP address.An critical advantage of NAS is its capacity to furnish different customers on the network with access to similar records. Preceding NAS, ventures regularly had hundreds or even a huge number of discrete file servers that must be independently designed and kept up. When more storage capacity is required in less cost then NAS boxes can basically be furnished with bigger plates or clustered together to give both vertical scalability and horizontal scalability. Many NAS merchants accomplice with cloud storage providers to furnish clients with an additional layer of repetition for moving down records.

Development of NAS

After some time, the benchmark usefulness of NAS gadgets has widened to support virtualization. Top of the line NAS items may likewise support data deduplication, flash storage, multiprotocol get to and replication. To battle NAS sprawl, merchants are offering clustered NAS systems. A bunched NAS framework is a dispersed record framework that runs simultaneously on different NAS hubs. Bunching gives access to all documents from any of the grouped hubs paying little respect to the physical area of the record.

nasA few NAS gadgets run a standard working framework (OS) such as Microsoft Windows, while others may run the vendor’s proprietary operating framework. Despite the fact that the Internet Protocol (IP) is the most well-known information transport protocol, some mid-showcase NAS items may bolster the Network File System (NFS), Internetwork Packet Exchange (IPX), NetBIOS Extended User Interface (NetBEUI) or Common Internet File System (CIFS) protocols. High-end NAS items may bolster Gigabit Ethernet (GigE) for considerably speedier information exchange over the network.

NAS Usage

In the home, NASes are regularly utilized for putting away and serving sight and sound records and for automated reinforcements. NAS boxes are used by many smart homes to provide centralized storage for smart TVs, security frameworks and other Internet of Things (IoT) segments in the home.

In the venture, a NAS array can be utilized as a reinforcement target for archiving and disaster recovery. If a NAS gadget has a server mode, it can likewise work as an email, sight and sound, database or print server for a private company. Some higher-end NAS items can hold enough circles to support RAID, a storage innovation that turns multiple hard disks into one intelligent unit keeping in mind the end goal to give better execution times, high availability and redundancy.

In a conventional network-attached storage organization, the NAS head – which is the equipment that plays out the NAS control capacities – gives access to back-end storage through an Internet association. Scale-out NAS basically implies that the storage overseer has introduced bigger heads and extra hard plates to boost storage limit.

Type of NAS Boxes

NAS gadgets are gathered in three general classes in light of the quantity of drives, drive bolster, drive limit and scalability.

Enterprise NAS: The high end of the market is driven by organizations that need to store enormous measures of records, including virtual machine (VM) pictures. Top of the line NAS gives quick access and NAS clustering capabilities.

Midmarket NAS: This end of the market can accommodate organizations that require a few hundred terabytes of information. Midmarket NAS gadgets can’t be grouped, notwithstanding, which can make document framework siloes when various NAS gadgets are required.

Low-end or desktop NAS: The low end of the market is gone for private ventures and home clients who require local shared storage. Progressively, this market is moving toward a cloud NAS model.


Direct-attached storage (DAS) is storage on a dedicated server or storage gadget that isn’t networked. Keeping in mind the end goal to get to records put away on coordinate attached storage, the end client must have physical access to the gadget where the documents are stored. The favorable position of DAS is that it can give end clients preferred execution over NAS, which is critical for compute-intensive software programs. The disservice of DAS is that it requires the storage on every gadget to be overseen independently, which can confuse the way records are overseen and shared.


Storage Area Networks (SANs) and Network Attached Storage (NAS) both give organized capacity arrangements. A NAS is a solitary stockpiling gadget that works on information records, while a SAN is a neighborhood system of numerous gadgets.

The contrasts amongst NAS and SAN can be seen when looking at their cabling and how they’re associated with the framework, and also how correspondence to the gadget happens.

A NAS unit incorporates a committed equipment gadget that interfaces with a local zone arrange, more often than not through an Ethernet connection. This NAS server validates customers and oversees record operations in much an indistinguishable way from conventional document servers, through settled system conventions.

To lessen the costs that happen with customary document servers, NAS gadgets by and large run an embedded operating system on streamlined equipment and lack peripherals like a screen or console.

A SAN ordinarily utilizes Fibre Channel interconnects and interfaces an arrangement of capacity gadgets that can impart information to each other.

Combination of SAN and NAS

SAN nas

Up to this point, technical boundaries have kept the document and block storage universes discrete, each in its own particular administration area and each with its own particular qualities and shortcomings. Numerous storage chiefs see square storage as five star and document storage as economy class. Given the pervasiveness of business-basic databases housed on storage region networks (SANs).

Today, merchants are looking to enhance substantial scale record storage by drawing these two universes together with a half and half SAN/NAS arrangement that enables organizations to solidify square and document construct information in light of a similar storage exhibits. Organizations that are hoping to consolidate SAN and NAS operations have an occasionally dazing number of decisions, including standalone NAS passages, SAN arrangements with incorporated NAS usefulness and NAS gadgets that permit piece I/O and filer I/O to keep running inside a similar set of switches.

Arabindo Biswas

Arabindo is a owner of this website and a server admin by profession. He has deep interest in all technology topics whatsoever.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.