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Thecus N5200BR Pro Diskless System Network Storage

  • 5-Bay
  • Diskless System
  • 1 x 10/100/1000M WAN + 4 x 10/100/1000M LAN
  • 4 x USB2.0
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Learn more about the Thecus N5200BR Pro

Quick Info

Warranty

  • Limited Warranty period (parts): 1 year
  • Limited Warranty period (labor): 1 year


Customer Reviews of the Thecus N5200BR Pro

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  • Anonymous
  • 11/19/2009 11:17:33 AM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: more than 1 year

5 out of 5 eggsLove it.

Pros: I have had mine running with 5 WD 750 GB drives flawlessly for almost 2 years. Support for RAID 6 is rare in this price range, so even if the price seems high for a box without the drives, I think it's the best choice out there. The speed is awesome for a NAS, easily outperforming others in its class. Creating user accounts and delegating access is really easy, it has support for setting it up as an FTP server using DynDNS, modules are available to put SlimServer and other media streaming solutions on it, I set up an ISCSI partition on it that's extremely fast. I bought this thing after losing a hard drive that had tons of important media I'd already billed clients for, costing me hundreds of dollars and over a month of labor to recreate. It's good to feel more secure about my data now.

Cons: The fans are a little loud, but there are folks on the Thecus forums who have documented replacing them with silent ones. I haven't taken the time to do it myself. It's not the most user-friendly interface for someone with no small network admin experience, but documentation is ample and it's flexible enough that someone with decent computer skills and a bit of patience can get it setup without TOO much difficulty. This was my first NAS, my first experience with a Dynamic DNS service to give remote users FTP access, my first experience with ISCI, and I figured it out just fine.

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Robert D.
  • 11/15/2009 10:41:20 AM
  • Tech Level: Somewhat High
  • Ownership: more than 1 year

5 out of 5 eggsProven Performer

Pros: Reliable storage solution. Works well for streaming high definition video files. Overall throughput is around 30MB/sec. (240Mbs). Lot's of other nice features including "modules" for unique functionality you would not expect in a NAS.

Cons: Advanced setup can be a bit daunting, but there is plenty of online support from Thecus and user's groups.

Other Thoughts: I recently upgraded two of the Pro units with WD 2TB hard drives that would not work in the Thecus N7700. It takes about 40 hours to build the RAID 5 array, which means you stand a significant chance of loosing the entire array before it can be rebuilt.

Very solid platform with months of uptime and almost no crashes between reboots.

1 out of 2 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Andrew J.
  • 6/15/2009 2:06:49 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

3 out of 5 eggsTerrific fuctionality... at a price

Pros: I love the RAID features, one of the best devices for Multipule RAID options and configurations. The opportunity to use 5 disks in a single stand alone system along with the RAID Expansion option is the reason i purchased this device and both options work well.

Cons: Unfortuanately with the "fast" 1.6 ghz processor with it's CPU fan and the single rear 120mm fan both running at full blast all of the time the thing is as noisy as a vacume cleaner.

I was attempting to run this in the bedroom or living room and either way it was just too loud.

Other Thoughts: If only the device had PWM CPU and system fan control to lower the noise output. I'd have modded the devices myself but that would have voided the warrantly and the Buffallo NAS device i'm using right now works fine (albeit a might bit slow)

6 out of 8 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Scott H.
  • 4/11/2009 3:29:07 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggs

Pros: This thing is great. Has a nice set of extra features I didn't buy it for, but like .... for example, wasn't expecting to really make use of it as a media server, but works great for that.

Cons: None

Other Thoughts: I bought this for home use to help ensure protecting family photos, videos, etc. The price might seem high since you don't get the drives, but its worth it. I got 5 OEM Hitachi drives to go in it and set it up for RAID 6 with a spare. I tinkered a bit with pulling and replacing drives in mid-I/O ops to see what it'd do and it performed flawlessly.

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Matthew D.
  • 12/31/2008 1:45:26 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggsSolid product, horrible UI

Pros: - Built in gigabit switch
- Lots of features (FTP, NFS, AFP, etc)
- Great flexibility to install new features
- Very active user community
- Solid, well-built hardware

I bought this to house 5 x 1.5 TB Seagate HDDs (with new firmware) and have been very pleased. The hardware is built well and quite solid. Installation was very easy (and it was fun to take the whole thing apart and check out the guts!)

Cons: The only complaint is the web interface -- but it's a huge complaint! I have never seen a production web application that was so counter-intuitive, unpolished, and all-around painful to use.

Some of the issues clearly stem from the fact that this was made overseas and they didn't fork out the cash for a good translator. Others are cultural byproducts (for example, to add a user to a group you move them from the right-to-left, not left-to-right).

The web-UI has been the single stumbling block in using this product. If Thecus put some time and money into producing a more refined UI then this product would be unstoppable.

Other Thoughts: If you are a real geek then you're likely to enjoy this product. The user community is very strong and produces lots of plugin modules, ranging from simple SSH access to BitTorrent to media servers.

People have also been successful at various physical mods, ranging from memory upgrades to CPU upgrades to soldering extra ports onto the mainboard. Obviously these things void the warranty, but if you enjoy tinkering with hardware then this is the NAS for you!

10 out of 11 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Daffyd Z.
  • 12/12/2008 12:32:02 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 month to 1 year
  • Verified Owner

4 out of 5 eggsI'm pretty impressed

Pros: Fairly simply and straight forward to configure. Large arrays -- well, any size arrays, take FOREVER to "build" (the initial RAID build) so don't plan on plugging this in right away and having it working.

I think most of the comments about the web interface being not intuitive are off, this is a pretty simple interface and if people are willing to read the manual they'll be fine.

I've had luck with the drives I randomly selected (just purchased my second unit) and even did a firmware upgrade, pretty flawlessly.

I'm actually using the unit as both a RAID array and installed a Linux application on it as a module (so it's essentially running like a server) -- seems to have enough horse power and then some.

Cons: Some drives seems to have issues with this and the "rebuild the RAID array" isn't as automatic under certain circumstances as you'd think. READ THE MANUAL!

The plastic drive releases are cheap -- you ruined a wonderful case with these, I broke one off the first day. I knocked a point off for that -- c'mon guys!

The display, error/status lights, interface and e-mail notifications are great.

Other Thoughts: This is a good unit, in today's dollars is probably a couple of hundred dollars over priced for JUST a RAID array, if you're looking for iSCSI and enough (processing) horse power to make sure that this system can handle and future enhancements you're probably seeing money well spent.

2 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Stoicho G.
  • 9/24/2008 10:35:15 AM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 week to 1 month
  • Verified Owner

3 out of 5 eggsNot all the hype...

Pros: See my previous review.

Cons: Web interface language s.cks... Unclear, confusing options and error messages. Windows 2003 Domain and Active directory integration *does NOT* quite work - after two weeks of trial and error (mostly errors) - still produces Kerberos authentication errors in the domain controller, without being able to authenticate properly.
Folder management lacks sort or any kind of local browsing/file mgmt capability - if you need to transfer files from one N5200 folder to another, expect to have to copy to a separate network location and back (instead of relink (almost instantaneous)), even though the folders belong to the same logical volume.

Other Thoughts: iSCSI target (although as basic as it can be from configuration standpoint) works much better than the NAS (main functionality). I have it working as iSCSI target with ESX3i and had to revert to MS DFS for NAS folder linking and organization as well as ACL mgmt. I hope future releases of the firmware (beyond the 2.0.12) fix the AD integration issues.

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Stoicho G.
  • 9/17/2008 1:15:22 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsExcellent storage appliance for the price

Pros: Almost all features of $10k+ storage appliance are available on this unit.
Currently running in a RAID 6 with 5x Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s HDDs. Very solid performance for the RAID level (6) with large file transfers in the 20+ MBytes/sec range, while the RAID was still being built.
Sleek design/appearance... (with the exception of the LCD controls - see cons)
Noise level is minimal with the HDDs I have in it.

Cons: 1. The English web interface needs to be improved... BIG time. Most of the messages and descriptive text will leave you scratching your head: "What the ?ell do you mean by that message/menu item or action button?" The documentation (user manuals, add'l modules docs) suffers from the same English language issues.
2. Enterprise features are not quite at enterprise level yet... (e.g. only 5 LUNs for iSCSI targets per RAID). Not unexpected for the price range though.
3. Front face LCD display controls are "flimsy" and IMHO - quite useless for configuring the unit... Status info content on the LCD could be improved upon as well.

Other Thoughts: Out of the 5 TB (5x1 TB HDDs) raw storage in RAID 6 configuration, you are left with "2788.9 GB" or about 2.72 TB according to the appliance.

Waiting for the i5500 appliance to become readily available.

1 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Michael C.
  • 9/11/2008 12:24:45 PM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: less than 1 day

3 out of 5 eggsCareful which drives you buy

Pros: Not sure yet....will update when I get drives that are compatible.

Cons: System is not compatible with drives that won't spin up before 'start unit' command recieves; such as Seagate Barracuda 7200.9 series. I found this info on the support site when I checked for updates. Nothing in the instructions told me this.

3 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

  • Fernando P.
  • 7/24/2008 10:44:33 AM
  • Tech Level: High
  • Ownership: 1 day to 1 week
  • Verified Owner

5 out of 5 eggsAffordable NAS

Pros: Easy to setup right out of the box. Added 5 WD Caviar SE16 WD7500AAKS 750GB and the thing works like a charm. It does take a while to create the RAID but you can begin laying out your folders and adding your groups and users while that's going on. Once some space becomes available you can begin moving data to you folders. It provided a nicely accessible 2.7TB in RAID 5 mode which was a nice relief for my server. The print server is a nice feature. The noise that everyone mentions is insignificant in a work environment, but I would not recommend it for a living room. Very feature rich and easy to configure .... What else could you ask for.

Cons: None

Other Thoughts: I chose WD driver because review showed that they were the most efficient at a lower noise and heat level. I have it sitting in my home office and so far, am very happy. I especially like the on/off schedule. Shuts down at 11PM and up by coffee time at 7AM. I also like the eMail alerts. 7AM I receive an eMail that the system is up and RAID is healthy.

1 out of 3 people found this review helpful. Did you? Yes No

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