Virtualization Case Study

Small Servers Powers Enterprise Applications for Printing Company


The client is a small printing company which offers services like large format prints, signage contructions and label printing. They have countless huge design files stored within the company; each designer stores their project files on their own computer therefore if a particular computer crashes, it will be a setback to the company especially if there is an ongoing project and the files are lost. The business owner needed to store all project files centrally, the solutions needs to be affordable and he is not keen on investing on maintaining his own server room.


Our team had a discussion with  business owner and the supervisor to work out their requirements as follows:


    1. The business owner have no control over the data in the company as they are stored on each designer’s computer or in some portable hard disks. If either the hard disk or computer  fails, the company loses important digital assets which can be used for other projects.
    2. Client does not want a server rack nor invest in maintaining a server room therefore there is a fixed budget to the server implementation.


Our team feels that the development of technology for Network Attached Storage(NAS) is powerful enough as a file server for small business applications such as our client. It is actually a hard disk enclosure with a small computer built within it so that it is smarter than a portable hard disk. A NAS offers the following advantages:

Small footprint– there is no need for a server room or a server rack. A shelf with good ventilation is good enough for the NAS to run reliably.

Robust-The NAS supports multiple large capacity hard disks which we can cascade them to mirror each other to boost the reliability of the server system. Also, the hard disks are better grade than desktop ones thus the server can have a longer lifespan.

 Simple– Though small, the NAS is extremely powerful, besides allowing us to configure which user have access to which folders, it has other powerful enterprise level applications such as backup solutions, disaster recovery and Virtual Private Network(VPN) which are all bundled within in therefore a single investment allows for many enterprise applications.


As the application is design related, we’ve selected a 4 bay NAS with quad core processor to support our client. We’ve supplied two pieces of  NAS hardware, one serving as the file server while the other is for regular scheduled backup(data redundancy)

The available storage for each NAS is configured using RAID-10 which provides the best reliability(High Availability), in our opinion. We created various folder shares to support Sales, Finance, Operations and Admin Department including assigning the necessary access rights. We then proceeded to create user and assign access rights to the folders. Each NAS has 2 ethernet LAN port thus we’ve combined them together to form a trunk link so that they have faster transfer speeds.

Our client then instructucts all designers and departments to transfer all digital assets to their respective folder within the new server. Once the transfer is completed and verified, we proceed to configure automatic incremental backups at regular intervals. 

Final Conclusion 

The rapid development of Smart Storage Solutions like the NAS lowers the entry barrier for Small and Medium Business to enjoy enterprise class low cost file storage solutions. This solution is idea for Small and Medium business as it:

  1. Is much smaller than conventional thus all it takes is a small server cabinet to store the setup therefore eliminates the cost involved in the maintenance of a dedicated server room.
  2. Super robust; we have a special way of settting up the storage that it is virtually fail safe and thus is exceptionally suitable for business application.
  3. Packed with features which enables business to enjoy enterprise class capability like features that support remote working, built-in backup and security features.
  4. Definitely affordable as the entire setup i.e. the main server plus its backup cost lesser than a Windows Server.

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