One of the main reasons to install a network attached RAID is for transfer speed. Since I was running the QNAP TS-439 in such a mixed environment, I could test out the throughput using each of the supported mounting protocols (SMB, AFP, and NFS).
For my first benchmark, I used a 1080p version of Lord of the Rings Two Towers; coming in at 8048 MiB, it’s just the sort of large file that you might want back up on your NAS. See the chart below for the results.
The Intel NAS Performance Toolkit file system exerciser, a windows only benchmark is designed to emulate the behavior of an actual application, NASPT uses a set of real world workload traces gathered from typical digital home applications. Traces of high definition video playback and recording, office productivity applications, video rendering/content creation and more provide a broad range of different application behaviors. With the latest version of NASPT, users may even add their own custom traces. NASPT reproduces the file system traffic recorded in these traces onto whatever storage solution the user provides, records the system response, and reports a rich variety of performance information. The results are shown below.
ATTO is one of the oldest hard drive benchmarks that is still used today. ATTO measures transfers across a specific volume length. It measures raw transfer rates for both reads and writes and places the data into graphs that you can easily interpret. The test was run with the default runs of 0.5kb through 8192kb transfer sizes with the total length being 256mb.
Benchmarking Results: You can see from the file copy test above, mounting via NFS appears to be the fastest way to access the NAS. Although it seems slow, note that using SMB/CIFS on Vista is about 11 MiB/S on T-100, not Gigabit, so that means that it is running at nearly the maximum speed. The NASPT and ATTO benchmarks were run on the same Vista machine and the performance was at or near the maximum performance for large files. Unfortunately I did not have a Windows machine with Gigabit networking to test on, but according to QNAP, they get almost 80 MiB/s with SMB/CIFS via T-1000