Raidon GR5630-WSB3 4-Bay Desktop Storage System ReviewNemo - November 3, 2011
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Normally we look at the cooling and power consumption numbers at this point in the review. However, without any monitoring utility for the GR5630-WSB3, we do not have access to any system temperature information, nor can we look at drive temperatures via S.M.A.R.T. results as we are used to with the NAS units we've reviewed. That just leaves us with the power consumption performance, which we can measure using a power meter.
The external RAID 5 enclosure does offer similar advantages to NAS servers in that it offers lower power consumption than a stand-alone PC, but it also lacks the ability to shunt the drives into a low-power mode when not in use.
I tested the power usage of the GR5630-WSB3 in an idle state with the disks spinning, but no activity, and during a full RAID 5 test with read and write activity. All measurements were taken with a P3 International P4400 Kill A Watt power meter.
|Power Mgt. Mode||N/A|
|RAID 5 Test||38-40|
The GR5630-WSB3 achieved power consumption levels very similar to the N3200XXX NAS server we reviewed earlier, with 35 watts measured in an idle state and 38-40 watts during heavy usage. You need to remember that the GR5630-WSB3 has four drives to the three drives in the N3200XXX. The GR5630-WSB3 loses out though, as it can't go into a low-power mode, so usage doesn't drop below 35 watts.
RAID 5 Data Protection
RAID 5 provides a level of protection against data loss in case of a single drive failure. We'll test the ability GR5630-WSB3 to support data operations after a simulated drive failure, as well as its ability to recover and rebuild the volume once the failed drive is replaced. The failed drive is simulated by removing one of the drives while the system is running. With the hot-swappable drive trays on the GR5630-WSB3, you can safely remove and replace drives while the unit is powered on.
When I removed drive four from the bay, the unit immediately displayed a red alarm LED on the front panel and sounded an alarm. The front LCM display also switched from showing 'Active' to 'Degraded'. Unlike the NAS unit we've looked at, the GR5630-WSB3 has a mute button on the control panel to silence the audible alarm. Once the 'failed' drive was replaced, the unit extinguished the alarm LED and the unit automatically began rebuilding the volume as indicated on the LCM panel, which displayed 'Rebuilding' and an approximate time to finish of 1:35 (hours:minutes). During degraded operation, the data on the volume was still present and accessible. This was also the case while the volume was being rebuilt. The GR5630-WSB3 did an excellent job of protecting the data and the auto-rebuild process worked flawlessly.