Monday, April 15, 2013

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SAN and NAS are two different types of storage or backup systems. Before understanding the difference between them, we need to understand concept of NAS and SAN. In SAN, data copied block oriented and in NAS, data copied or it will have access at file level. Server attached storage faces many problems, that’s why to replace this kind of storage SAN or NAS is the best option.

 Storage Area Network:

SAN is the storage area network which is useful for long distance storage. i.e. Name defines that storage of some area network. it is fast as compared to NAS copying speed. Fibre optics cable is used for this network.


  • SANs are networked infrastructures designed to provide a high performance, flexibility in use and scalable storage environment. 
  • Fibre Channel switches and fibre channel network protocols used in SANs, and it makes device connections reliable and efficient. 
  • Data copied from server to storage devices in blocks which make it faster.
  •  SANS are used for wide variety of applications where we need less response time, storage scalability while accessing storage. If we need centralized storage for applications in which performance, data integrity and reliability matters for us then we should have to go with SAN.
  • SAN provides high availability and application failover environment as well.
  • Up to 150KM distance, SAN provides high fibre channel performance.

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 Network Attached Storage:


It is a storage which accessed by workstations or servers through a network protocol like TCP/IP protocol and applications like NFS (Network File System) or Common Internet File System (CIFS) used for file access. NAS appliances are really very easy to deploy in running environments. We can easily add file storage capacity to infrastructure.



·         NAS is suitable for those applications where we need to deliver file data to multiple client machines over the network.
·         NFS(Network File System) used in Unix and CIFS used in Windows for NAS file sharing tasks.
·         NAS clients can access the files from anywhere in the organization.

Difference between SAN and NAS as in following diagram:



NAS applications are now increasingly using SANs to solve operational problems associated with storage expansion and data backup or restore.  

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Posted by Machindra Dharmadhikari On 4/15/2013 11:22:00 PM 7 comments

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