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Initial Setup and Drive Configuration

After you physically install the drives, the setup is also quite straightforward. You just connect the 323 to your network and power it up. By default, it's configured to receive an address from your network's DHCP server, but if it doesn't receive one, it defaults itself to 192.168.0.32. (The 192.168.0.0/24 network is the default network used by all D-Link products.) For initial configuration, D-Link supplies its Easy Search utility (Figure 5) that will search your network regardless of IP addressing used and find the 323.

Easy Search Utility

Figure 5: Easy Search Utility

The utility lets you assign a static IP address and enable/disable the DHCP client. Once you've initialized the drives, you can connect to them and map a drive letter from within the utility if you like. Or a click on the Configuration button takes you to the 323's web-based administration page where a wizard is available to help you through the initial configuration of your hard drive(s). The 323 supports four drive configurations (Figure 6):

Drive Configuration screen

Figure 6: Drive Configuration screen
  • Standard
    Mounts each drive separately. so that each drive is its own volume

  • JBOD (Just a bunch of disks)
    This configuration concatenates the two drives together to make one large volume. The advantage of this configuration is that you can use any capacity drive in either of the two drive bays, and the total capacity is the sum of the capacities of the individual drives. If one drive fails, you'll only lose the data on the failed drive.

  • RAID 0
    In this configuration, data is striped across the two physical disks without parity information for redundancy. While you can use different sized disks, such as 160GB and 250GB drives, the maximum capacity of the striped volume will be two times the size of the smallest drive. In this example, that would be 320GB.
    The "leftover" 90GB can be configured as an individual JBOD volume giving you a total storage capacity of 410GB. You would normally choose RAID 0 for optimal performance, but keep in mind that if either disk fails, you'll lose all of your data contained in the RAID 0 array.

  • RAID 1
    In a RAID 1 configuration, all of the data on one disk is mirrored on the second disk. Though you use twice as much physical disk space, RAID 1 provides you with redundancy. If one disk fails, all of the data is available on the second disk. As with RAID 0, the size of the RAID 1 volume is based on the smallest sized disk. Using the example above, in a RAID 1 configuation, you could have up to 160 GB of fault tolerant storage. Similarly, the "leftover" 90GB could be configured as a JBOD volume giving you a total storage capacity of 250GB.

After you decide how you want to configure your disks, the 323 will format the drives. The 323 supports EXT2 (default) and EXT3 file formats. All data will be lost, so if you're installing a previously formatted disk that contains data you had better have it backed up somewhere! Once the drives have been formatted, the 323 will reboot, and you'll be ready to start configuring users, groups and some of the more advanced features of the 323.

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