Coolmax CN390 NAS Enclosure

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Posted by on Sunday, October 25, 2009 - 7:07am

Coolmax CN390 NAS EnclosureThere are many reasons today to invest in such an enclosure and because they are accessible from the internet, security measures are capable of warning you via emails. There is more to a NAS enclosure than meets the eye. Coolmax sent us a sample of their CN390 NAS enclosure to see what their unit has to offer. If you are in the need for this type of device, we suggest you read along to see if it will be your next purchase.

Introduction to the Coolmax CN390 NAS Enclosure

Not many of us have the extra funds or parts to build a server for home usage. Honestly, I would not want the higher electric bill that comes with running such a system for the household. Yes, it is cool to be able to run apps for the whole family from a remote machine or prove to your friends that you are a network genius, because you can remote connect to a system and control all the functions of that system from anywhere.

These days, we see a smaller less power hungry way of sharing data amongst your local network. A nice little NAS enclosure is ideal for those who want to house all their important data in one secure location without having to worry about getting on your knees, reaching behind your PC looking for a empty USB port. Not only can a NAS box offer you a place to put all your stuff, but it also offers more than that. With the right enclosure, you can host an iTube server, turn your inkjet printer into a network printer or be a portal for retrieving your data when you are away from home.

There are many reasons today to invest in such an enclosure and because they are accessible from the internet, security measures are capable of warning you via emails. There is more to a NAS enclosure than meets the eye. Coolmax sent us a sample of their CN390 NAS enclosure to see what their unit has to offer. If you are in the need for this type of device, we suggest you read along to see if it will be your next purchase.

Coolmax take on the CN390

Coolmax presents the new economical, cost-saving NAS Model CN-390 SATA Network Enclosure – supporting SATA I/II disks up to 2 TB! You can easily share files among Windows, Mac, and Linux clients via a local network or remote access via web or FTP. Its simple, web-based interface is easy to configure and requires no drivers or servers! Password protection delivers folder-level security. It is perfectly designed for a quiet environment with its aluminum housed noise-free design. Not a techy? Not to worry. This NAS is user-friendly - simple to understand, easy to use.


 

Packaging and contents

The CN390 comes equipped with the necessary power adapter, USB cable, ethernet cable and operating manual.

Specifications

Controller CPU: ARM9
OS: Embedded Linux
MEMORY: ROM: 8MB Flash
RAM: 32MB DDR
LAN
Standard 10/100 BASE-TX Auto MDI/MDI-X
Connector • DC-in jack x 1USB 2.0 x 1 host
• 10/100/1000 RJ-45 Ethernet Port
Number 1
Speed Half Duplex and Full-Duplex operation
Protocol • Microsoft Network File CIFS/SMB
• Internet HTTP
• FTP
Network File System FTP
Hard Drive SATA I/II up to 2TB, FAT32
Software
Configuration Standard
Management • Hard Disk Failure Detection S.M.A.R.T.
• Disk Detect Auto Recovery
• Disk Space Used Status Management
File System • Internal HDD: XFS
• External USB drives: FAT32/EXT3
Configuration • Web browser – IE v5 or later
• Firefox
• Windows XP UPnP Support
Network  Auto IP (DHCP Server/ Client) / Fixed/Static IP
System Tools • Web-based firmware upgrade utility;
• Email Alert;
• System Software Upgrade;
• Support Network Time Protocol;
• Multi User accounts & Session setting
System monitoring • System log - 100 lists
• Email Alert (SMTP)
• Power-on self test
Server Services • iTune Server
• Print Server
• Network Time Server
• FTP server
Security protection • IP address filter for DENY or ALLOW
• User Name/password
Standards • IEEE 802.3
• IEEE 802.3u
• IEEE 802.3ab
• USB 2.0 (recommended)
Power Supply AC Input: 100 – 240V DC Output: 12V 2A / 5V 2A
Material Aluminum alloy good for heat dissipation
Buttons • Reset Button
• Power Switch Button
OS Compatibility Windows (98SE/ME/2K/XP/Vista); Linux; Mac OSX
 
 
Warranty: Coolmax 1 year limited warranty

Features

- Built in Ethernet switch port; provides easy access to shared data via LAN
- Suitable for one (1) 3.5” SATA I/II hard drive with capacities up to 1 TB
- Supports FTP Server, DHCP Server, UPNP AV Server
- Supports FTP Server on LAN, TCP/IP and SNTP protocol
- Compatible with DSL routers/modems
- Under network environment, it supports one (1) 10/100/1000 Mbps Ethernet port
- Features iTune Serv100_228_PS_SF_02_Driv_Net_WW_NBer, Print Server, Network Time Server, FTP Server
- Low power consumption with its Sleep Mode feature
- Aluminum housing noise-free design with fan to increase cooling
- Password management provides secure access to hard drive and web management
- Supports hardware reset function with reset switch

 

Closer look at the CN390

If you take the time to read the page before this one, you will realize that the CN390 is a mini computer unto itself. Powered by a low power ARM 9 CPU and 32MB of DDR. The combination of the two offers great latencies across the network. There are other units out there with larger processors and a lot more ram, but they are mostly dual bay or multi-bay enclosures that support various forms of raid. This is not the case for the CN390, as it is a one drive unit, so no raid or support for multi-disk setups.

The CN390 serves several functions that would be useful to anyone in a home or very small office environment. A few of these services includes iTune server, print server, file server, ftp server and network time server. So technically, you get numerous servers in one small box. The CN390 really packs a lot of function into a single box solution.

The CN390 is made of aluminum and plastic, making it very light. The front and back of the CN390 are made of plastic. The front is plain and only consists of the Coolmax logo and a power button. Nothing must to scream about. The rear of the enclosure has a lot of connections that can be utilized in an office as well as a home. A power connector and network plug are just the usual plugs here. But, because the unit serves as a print server as well an A-type connector is present. And if you run into some type of problems with the enclosure, there is a reset switch to help clear those issues.


 

Opening up the CN390

To open the enclosure, there are two screws that secure the three pieces of the unit together. Once removed, you have access to the main component railing that holds the PCB and that the hard drive attaches to as well as the hard drive itself. The rear of the tray houses a small cooling fan. The fan measures approximately 70mm.

Turning the tray over, you can see the CPU and on-board ram exposed. Also with the tray removed, you can see just how the hard drive is connected to the tray.


 

Installation and Software

There isn't much to installing a hard drive into the enclosure. All it takes is connecting the power and SATA cables to the rear of the drive and then screwing the drive into the tray of the enclosure. Sliding the drive and tray back into the enclosure and securing the end pieces is all it takes. Very simple. After the drive is installed you will have to format the drive whether you have data on it or not. So it is best to start with a fresh drive.

Here are the various setup options for the CN390 enclosure. In order to even get access to the NAS, you will have to visit Coolmax's website and download ScanTools. This is a small application that scans your network for the I.P. address of the enclosure. Once found, you plug the I.P. into your favorite web browser. Putting in the default login credentials opens up a world of options.

After logging in to the drive, you are greeted by the System Information screen. This screen gives you all the details of the hard drive as well as its status on the network. It also lets you know what servers are currently running on the CN390.

IP Config is the status screen for the DNS configuation for the drive. You have the option of automatic or static settings.

If Coolmax ever decides to upgrade the enclosure in some form, you can do it from the Maintenance screen. A factory reset and reboot can be performed from here.

If you are on a Microsoft box and need some form of file and print sharing, then the SMB file is where the setup is done.

And if you need to host some files that can be accessed via the web then the CN390 can serve as a FTP server as well. You can setup as many accounts with passwords as you want.

Want to set up a bit torrent server? Yes, the CN390 can serve as one of these also.

Media buff? If so, the CN390 could be up your alley. The unit can serve as a media server deploying you favorite video, music or pictures across your own network.


 

Conclusion

A NAS drive is a great thing to have around the home as well as an office. I am sure that you have many digital files that you would like to have in a safe place and be able to access them from any location just as long as you have an Internet connection. With the CN390, you have these features as well as many others. For the music and video buff, the iTunes feature will be a big hit. If you spend half your wages at the iTunes store and don't want to house all your files on your local drive, Coolmax made it possible to store them on the CN390 and make it just as easy to retrieve them. The built-in print server is great for the one printer families out there. No longer do you have to leave a PC running to print from another.

Physically, the CN390 is not too bad looking. But what is nice is that Coolmax did integrate a small fan into the side of the unit to cool the drive inside. Cold air is what it takes to having a long-lasting hard drive. The fan is audible but not to the point where it would be considered disturbing. Most sounds within the room will drown it out. And the gigabit LAN support is great for having a fast and speedy connection from your PC to the CN390.

The CN390 only supports one drive, so no form of raid is there. Coolmax does manufacture the CN330 which  supports multiple drives and raid, but does not have all the features of the CN390. Maybe there is a new NAS in the waiting to support more drives and the features of the CN390. The CN390 retails for about $60 from the retails we Googled. Not too bad for a NAS with so many features.

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