New To The Charts: Maxtor Central Axis

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Tim Higgins

The Central Axis is packaged in a pyramid-styled black plastic case with an external "wall-wart" power supply. It draws 15 W and runs very quietly when active and 13 W when the programmable power-save mode kicks in.

The CPU is a Marvell 88F5281 and RAM complement is 64 MB. A gigabit Ethernet LAN port supports 4k and 8K jumbo frames. There is a single USB 2.0 port for the built-in USB print server or for scheduled backup to an external attached drive.

The Central Axis runs a customized version of the FreeBSD-based FreeNAS. But root access is not provided for customization.

Only the CIFS/SMB network file system is supported and you can’t join Microsoft NT domains or Active Directory for user authentication. There are email alerts and simple logging but administration via HTTPS isn’t supported.

Write performance with a gigabit LAN connection averaged 14.1 MB/s for file sizes between 32 MB and 1 GB. Read performance for the same conditions averaged only 12.1 MB/s. This ranks the product toward the lower-end of the middle group of single-drive NASes for read and mid-pack for writes.

There will be full review soon. In the meantime, use the NAS Charts to run your own comparisons.

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