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NAS Reviews

ShareCenter 4-Bay Cloud Network Storage Enclosure
At a glance
ProductD-Link ShareCenter 4-Bay Cloud Network Storage Enclosure (DNS-340L)   [Website]
SummaryUndistinguished Marvell-based four-bay NAS
Pros• iSCSI support
• Fast RAID rebuild
• One USB 3.0 (front panel) and 2 USB 2.0 (rear panel)
• Inexpensive for a RAID5 NAS
Cons• Limited RAID Migration
• USB Backups can't be scheduled
• Limited logging
• Relatively poor write performance for all RAID levels

Typical Price: $560  Buy From Amazon

Introduction

At under $300, D-Link's new DNS-340L ShareCenter + 4-Bay Cloud Network Storage Enclosure is a relatively inexpensive way to bring RAID5 to your network. Although D-Link advertises it as a Business class NAS, the DNS-340L has neither the performance nor features you'd expect for that grade of NAS.

The screenshots below, taken from the DNS-340L User Guide, show the front and rear panels. The front panel has the single USB 3.0 port that is the only port usable for USB backups. The LEDs indicators, described in the lower image, use either Orange/White colors and Off/On/Blinking to indicate status. The top panel is easily removed for drive access.

D-Link DNS-340L Front Panel and LED description

D-Link DNS-340L Front Panel and LED description
The rear panel has two USB 2.0 ports that can be used for UPS monitoring or print sharing, a Reset Button, a power jack and two Gigabit Ethernet ports.

D-Link DNS-340L Rear Panel

D-Link DNS-340L Rear Panel

The Gigabit ports are each equipped with two LEDs. The left LED on each port indicates link status and activity. The right LED indicates either a Gigabit connection (solid light) or a 10/100 Mbps connection (LED off). The Gigabit Ethernet ports support jumbo frames. Port Bonding (link aggregation) and load balancing is supported with the modes shown below:

D-Link DNS-340L Port Bonding/Load Balancing

D-Link DNS-340L Port Bonding/Load Balancing

Inside

The DNS-340L uses a Marvell Armada 370 SoC running at 1.2 GHz. The photo below shows the main PCB. Toward photo left you can see four SATA connectors for the disks with an opening to the bottom-cover grille for air intake to their left. The system fan sits at photo right, drawing air across the drive bay. None of the components have heat sinks, including the Marvell SoC at photo upper center

D-Link DNS-340L PCB

D-Link DNS-340L PCB

The table below shows a comparison of key components for the DNS-340L as well as the other two NASes I'll use for comparison in this review, the Thecus N4310 and ASUSTOR AS-304T.

  DNS-340L ASUSTOR AS-304T Thecus N4310
CPU Marvell Armada 370 88F6707-A1 C120 @ 1.2GHz Intel Atom CE5335 @ 1.6 GHz AMCC APM86491-RKB1000T 1GHz SoC
RAM 512 MB Hynix H5TQ2G83FFR ?512 MB DDR3 (x2) 1 GB DDR3 on board 1 GB DDR3 Sk Hynix H5TQ4G43AFR (x2)
Flash 128 MB Hynix H27U2G8F2CTR 16 MB Spansion FL128SAIF00 1 GB Spansion S34ML08G101TFI000
Ethernet Marvell 88E1518 Gigabit Ethernet (x2) Realtek RTL8211E Atheros AR8035-A
USB 3.0 Etron Tech EJ168A Etron Tech EJ188H
SATA Marvell 88SE9215 4 port PCIe 2.0 SATA 6Gb/s and PATA Host Controller Asmedia ASM1061 PCI Express to two ports of Serial ATA JMicron JMB320 SATA II 3.0 Gbps port multiplier
Table 1: Key Component Summary

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