Like Synology, QNAP has adopted a unified OS for its broad NAS line. The current iteration is called simply "Turbo NAS Firmware V3.3" and can be explored through QNAP's live demo.
This review is intended to serve as a feature reference for our QNAP hardware reviews, so let's get to it.
Here is a summary of V3.3's features. Of course, volume types supported vary by the number of drives in a product. So don't expect to buy a two-bay NAS and get RAID 5 and higher support!
Here's the feature summary:
Volume Types, File Systems, Services
- Network file sharing via SMB/CIFS, NFS, AFP
- WebDAV support
- Hot-swappable individual drive, JBOD, RAID 0, 1, 5, 5 + spare, 6 volumes
(volume support varies with number of drives)
- Online RAID expansion and RAID level migration
- Selectable EXT3 / EXT4 volume file systems
- FTP (and -SSL, -TLS) with upload / download bandwidth control
- HTTP / HTTPs file and admin access
- iSCSI target and initiator (maximum number varies by model)
- ISO mounts
- CIFS Recycle Bin
- Apache webserver
- USB printer serving
- Vmware Ready (varies by model)
- Citrix Ready (varies by model)
- Windows 2008 Hyper-V compatible (varies by model)
- SPC-3, MC/S, MPIO support
- Multiple target and LUN support with Thin Provisioning
- CHAP authentication with Access Control List
- iSCSI initiator (Virtual Disk Drive)
- Joins NT Domain / Active Directories for account information
- Users (maximum number varies by model)
- Groups (maximum number varies by model)
- Scheduled and immediate networked backup to other QNAP NASes using proprietary rsync-based protocol or standard rsync servers with compression and encryption options.
- Client Backup: NetBak Replicator (Windows only, unlimited licenses)
- Scheduled Backup to attached drives
- USB device pushbutton copy
- Apple Time Machine backup
- Backup to Amazon S3
- Media servers: UPnP AV / DLNA, iTunes
- DLNA server transcodes AVI, M4V, MPG/MPEG, RM/RMVB, WMV
- PS3 and Xbox360 media access support
- Remote music and video access via web browser
- Web photo album (CoolIris)
- BitTorrent / HTTP / FTP download
- IP camera recording and playback (select models, maximum number vary by model)
- ioS and Android apps for remote music and photo access
- Many more including Magneto, OpenLDAP, Optware, Joomla
- Browse and download QPKG from admin interface
- UPS shutdown sync via USB
- Network UPS
- Programmable idle drive spindown
- Scheduled shutdown / startup
- Wake On Lan
- Auto restart after power failure
- Link failover and aggregation (dual Network models)
- Jumbo frames up to 9000 Bytes
- Dynamic DNS support
- Email alerts
- Telnet / SSH root access
- SNMP management
- Resource monitor (CPU, memory, network usage graphs)
The main thing that QNAP is missing versus competitors is easy Remote Access. V3.3 has built-in Dynamic DNS support for dyndns.com, update.ods.com, www.no-ip.com and others. But it lacks a hosted remote access service like NETGEAR's ReadyNAS Remote or even simpler services like those offered by Buffalo, WD, Iomega and other NASes that would simplify remote access for less knowledgeable users.
Using the live demo is the best way to get a feel for V3.3. Although its admin interface is browser and AJAX based, it maintains a more traditional look and feel vs. Synology's "desktop" and LaCie's "widget" styles.
QNAP V3 Overview screen
The gallery below hits most of the highlights of V3's feature set.
Most users will find QNAP's V3.3 firmware more than adequate to access their NAS' many features.