Quantum DXi4520 review

Quantum’s new DXi4500 appliances deliver affordable data deduplication to SMBs. In this exclusive review we put one through its paces in the lab and see what storage savings it can offer.

Creating NAS shares is a cinch as you choose a name, go for CIFS or NFS protocols and define access permissions where workgroup and AD modes are supported. At this stage you also decide whether deduplication should be enabled on the share but this is a one way trip and can't be reversed later on.

The console provides plenty of status information so you can keep track of network, RAID, deduplication and ingest activity on the appliance. You can view the deduplication ratio being achieved, check on storage usage and set up alerts that can be emailed to multiple recipients.

To test deduplication ratios we ran our own set of lab tests designed specifically to look at performance for file server operations. We used a 4GB data set consisting of 1,000 files and introduced controlled changes within a percentage of the files during a simulated standard backup strategy consisting of daily incrementals and weekly full backups.

To carry out the test backups we used CA's ARCserve r12.5 running on a Windows Server 2008 R2 system. To get it to work with the appliance all we needed to do was create an ARCserve disk backup location that pointed at the appliance's share.

After the first full backup was completed, we modified two per cent of the data in 40 per cent of the files prior to each subsequent backup. Quantum's reporting facilities were used to determine the amount of data sent to the appliance and how much was actually being stored on it.

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