WD has today announced four new NAS units; two that expand upon the existing My Cloud Expert Series, and two within the newly created My Cloud Business Series.
Joining the Expert Series is the 2-bay My Cloud EX2100 and the 4-bay My Cloud EX4100, available in capacities up to 24TB. These devices target so-called prosumer users, with WD placing particular emphasis on creative professionals (photographers, video editors, graphic designers etc.) who often work with large, high-resolution source files.
The EX2100 and EX4100 are based on the Marvell ARMADA SoC, specifically the 385 and 388, equipped with 1GB and 2GB of RAM respectively. The two platforms are largely similar, sporting a pair of ARM v7 Cortex A9 cores, running at 1.3GHz or 1.6GHz. The only other real difference is that the latter supports four, rather than two, SATA 6Gbps ports, hence the split between the 2-bay and 4-bay models. WD promises that the processing capabilities will bring large improvements to performance and offer top of class sequential read and write speeds, with the ability to stream multiple HD media files simultaneously without interruption.
The new My Cloud Business Series will also be populated by a 2-bay and 4-bay model, the My Cloud DL2100 and My Cloud DL4100, again with a maximum capacity of 24TB. Until now, WD has not offered a Linux-based NAS solution for the small business section, but the two new models will, like the Expert Series, run the Linux-based My Cloud OS. This is in contrast to the Windows-based Sentinel-X and Sentinel-S Series products. The Business Series is thus seen as a more cost-effective solution for small business users, plugging a gap in the product stack and effectively offering WD users more choice.
Like the new Expert Series models, the two Business Series NAS units are dual-core models, but run more powerful Intel Atom CPUs. Specifically, the 2-bay model is equipped with the Atom C2350 and 1GB of RAM, while the 4-bay DL4100 has the C2338 with 2GB of RAM. The extra horsepower is said to be beneficial for multi-user, multi-application environments, and the Business Series uniquely offers the ability to expand the on-board SODIMM memory up to 6GB.
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'As the market leader in the single-bay personal cloud category with our award winning My Cloud platform, as well as in the NAS hard disk drive (HDD) category with our WD Red line, WD understands that customers need more power and more choice in NAS systems,' said Jim Welsh, executive vice president, WD Content Solutions Business and Worldwide Sales. 'We are very excited about our new My Cloud Expert Series and My Cloud Business Series NAS products that offer the performance, ease of use, reliability and My Cloud OS that customers want from WD.'
Feature-wise, the Expert Series and Business Series models are very similar. There are dual USB 3.0 ports, one of which is front-mounted with a one-touch USB 3.0 copy button to instantly transfer the contents of USB-attached storage to the NAS. There are also dual Gigabit Ethernet ports, with the dual NICs capable of expanding the available storage by daisy chaining other support WD NAS models. A pair of power supply inputs with failover support provide some protection from power loss for the 4-bay models, while the units also support UPS.
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The usual software features are also present, with a Twonky, DLNA-certified media server, iTunes server, file, FTP, backup and P2P download servers all present, as well as support for a variety of third-party apps including aMule, Icecast, Transmission, DVBlink, SqueezeCenter and more. Business users will be more interested in the iSCSI target and initiator support, WebDAV server, SSH Shell, and Microsoft Active Directory support. The units also offer 256-bit AES encryption, and the ability to backup to another off-site My Cloud device, or other third-party services like Amazon S3 and ElephantDrive.
As My Cloud products, all four new NAS units offer full compatibility with the free iOS/Android WD My Cloud app, providing your mobile device with access to your NAS anywhere that has a suitable internet connection.
The 2-bay EX2100 and DL2100 will be offered diskless, or in 4TB, 8TB and 12TB configurations, while the 4-bay EX4100 and DL4100 will be available in 8TB, 16TB or 24TB set-ups, or simply diskless:
|WD My Cloud Expert/Business Series NAS MSRPs|
|4TB||£399||£499|| || |
|12TB||£709||£829|| || |
|16TB|| || ||£999||£1,099|
|24TB|| || ||£1,399||£1,419|
If you opt for a populated model, the drives will of course be WD Reds, which are specifically designed for NAS environments, and they'll be configured in RAID 1 or RAID 5 depending on the exact set-up. You also get an extra year's warranty - three instead of two. All RAID levels, including 0, 1, 5 and 10 as well as JBOD and spanning, can be configured easily through the browser-based interface. The My Cloud OS comes pre-installed on the units' on-board flash.
The new My Cloud Expert Series products are available for pre-order now through wdstore.co.uk
, with all new units expected to be reach channel partners in March.