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Review: Anthology Solutions Yellow Machine TeraByte Storage Appliance

Introduction

Anthology Solutions Yellow Machine TeraByte Storage Appliance
SummaryRAID 5 NAS with built-in 8 port 10/100 switch and mediocre router / web proxy server
UpdateNone
Pros• Supports up to RAID 5
• Automated backup capability
• Compact form factor; up to 1.6 TB storage
• Solid construction
Cons• Lackluster performance
• Buggy Proxy mode

I've looked at a lot of NAS devices over the last year. Most are fine for normal home usage, but sometimes, users in a small office setting may want a little more security for their data than a typical home NAS can provide. In the same vein, these users might also want a device with more capacity than a home NAS, or one that does more than serve up data.

Anthology solutions' Yellow Machine TeraByte Storage Appliance P400T is designed to meet the needs of such users. The Yellow Machine is a NAS with RAID capabilities that can handle up to 1.6 TB of disk storage, and includes a built-in router, an 8 port switch, and Internet proxy capabilities.

When I first started working with the Yellow Machine, its heavy, solid, construction reminded me of a mailbox, or maybe a large lunch box. Its bright yellow color may not fit all decors, but for me it was a welcome change to my shelf of silver and black network appliances. The front panel sported 10 LEDs used to signal status of its internal drives, network ports and overall health of the unit. A "mode" button is also provided, to be used to reset this device to its factory defaults. Along with a power connector, the back panel contains 8 10/100 LAN ports, a single 10/100 WAN port, and a serial port for connecting this device to a UPS.

Figure 1 shows the back of the Yellow Machine with LAN and WAN ports, plus a serial port for a UPS connection.

Figure 1: Yellow Machine Back Panel

I was somewhat surprised not to see any USB ports on this high-end NAS. USB ports are typically used on NAS devices to connect printers or additional storage, and provide important flexibility and expansion options. Along with the ports, the back panel has venting and a fan opening. A look at the bottom of the unit reveals a second fan.