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VIA apparently thinks there is a sizeable DIY NAS market out there and has added a mini server to its ARTiGO Barebone system line. The ARTiGO A2000 Barebone Storage Server is more compact than the MSI Wind PC and has two real 3.5" SATA drive bays, complete with backplane-mounted power and data connectors.

VIA ARTiGO A2000 Barebone Storage Server
CPU VIA 1.5GHz C7-D processor
Motherboard VIA custom w/ VIA VX800 Unified Digital Media IGP chipset
RAM Transcend 1 GB DDR2 667 SO-DIMM
Data Drives Hitachi Deskstar HDS721680PLA380
80GB 7200RPM 3.0 Gb/s SATA 8MB
Ethernet VIA VT6130 (on board)
OS Ubuntu Server 8.10 + mdadm + Webmin
on 2 GB USB Flash drive
Table 2: VIA ARTiGO A2000 Test Configuration

Table 2 summarizes the test configuration for the A2000 and Figure 4 is the product "beauty" shot. VIA provided the system for review and included the RAM, which normally does not come with the product. I moved the two Hitachi drives over from the MSI box and a second USB flash drive for the OS.


Figure 4: VIA ARTiGO 2000

Figure 5 shows the inside of the ARTiGO 2000. The drive bays are built right into the main chassis sheet metal. The yellow thing is a BIOS battery that was flapping around the cabinet. It wasn't clear where it belonged and was probably loose because VIA sent a system that had obviously seen some previous use.

VIA ARTiGO A2000 inside top view
Click to enlarge image

Figure 5: VIA ARTiGO A2000 inside top view

Figure 6 lowers the camera angle so that you can see a bit more of the Nano-ITX main board. The single SO-DIMM socket with RAM installed is to the left of the board. Most of the rest of the board is covered by a heatsink cooled by a small fan (visible). The approx. 3" case fan is attached to the rear chassis wall.

VIA ARTiGO A2000 side view
Click to enlarge image

Figure 6: VIA ARTiGO A2000 side view

Figure 7 shows the two systems side by side. The ARTiGO A2000 is obviously designed as a NAS, with no room for a 5.25" drive and small footprint. Both systems were equally quiet in operation, despite the Wind PC's smaller case fan.

The two systems
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Figure 7: The two systems

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