Jump to content
RESET Forums (homeservershow.com)

Connect N54L to PC by USB 3.0?


Hydrogen
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hi all,

 

I'm just checking some things out before finalising my decision and purchasing a N54L. I was wondering if anyone had experience connecting the unit directly to a regular desktop PC by USB 3.0, rather than over the slower Gigabit ethernet (DAS rather than NAS)? (I don't yet have an OS in mind - the unit would be used for media storage/backup, primarily.)

 

Theoretically I think this should be possible - although perhaps would require the BIOS update? - and I'd really love to exploit that up-to 5 Gigabit speed if possible, but I wanted to check before purchasing whether anyone has tried and succeeded or failed to get this to work?

 

Thank you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You will need to get a USB data transfer cable and software. Laplink and others still offer software. I don't think Windows ever built anything in that would accomplish this. USB is not a peer to peer network.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you want to use USB in place of Ethernet on an ongoing basis I think you're going to be disappointed. USB has much shorter maximum cable lengths, something like 16 feet. A quick look at some of the available USB Transfer Cables gave me a max length of 10 feet. There may be longer ones, but I don't think you're going to find one that can run from room to room.

 

OTOH, if you just want to transfer a bunch of data to your N54L from another computer then it should work.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you want to use USB in place of Ethernet on an ongoing basis I think you're going to be disappointed. USB has much shorter maximum cable lengths, something like 16 feet. A quick look at some of the available USB Transfer Cables gave me a max length of 10 feet. There may be longer ones, but I don't think you're going to find one that can run from room to room.

 

OTOH, if you just want to transfer a bunch of data to your N54L from another computer then it should work.

 

 

This is a one time transfer, right?  Just set it up and let it copy.

 

To cut a long story as short as possible:

At the moment, I'm living in such a small place (i.e. TV, computer and other devices right next to each other) that I've no need for a NAS or media server in the regular sense, and had found what amounted to little more than an external 5-bay hard drive enclosure (DAS via USB 3.0, with RAID support), which would've more than suited me for the next couple of years, when I'd planned upgrading to a regular NAS solution as my network and devices expanded. (To be clear, my main concerns were getting RAID support, and having the myriad of ext HDDs appear as one, not making my files available over a network.)

 

However, doing some further investigation before committing to that enclosure purchase, I discovered a superb offer that makes the N54L about half the price of the enclosure, so it seems to make more sense to go straight to NAS and not have to worry about RAID or filesystem compatibility when switching at some point down the line. But the N54L would, for the next year or so, still be sat on the same desk as my computer monitors, with TV directly beside, so no need for feet of cabling or network streaming.

 

I need to retain quite regular, quick access to the media files from my computer (they're currently stored on a number of external HDDs), and it's incredibly rare at present that I want or need to access them on other devices, such as the television. So I'd hoped to find a way to connect the N54L directly to my PC with USB 3.0.

 

 

But it sounds like this isn't going to be possible after all. Laplink, as suggested by schoondoggy, only appear to offer USB 2.0, which of course is significantly slower than the Gigabit Ethernet of the N54L.

 

Thanks for responses so far. Hope that all makes sense!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think you are trying to make things too complicated for no real benefit.  Your PC is already on a network, right?  Put in a gigabit hub that you plug the PC and Microserver into.  File transfers over gigabit will still be very fast.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Or get a crossover cable and connect the two directly.

Thought of that too but they would lose the internet connection of the PC unless they have more than 1 NIC.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I thought the task was to initially copy the data from A to B.  This would seed source two the quickest, and then go back to a normal network and let RoboCopy take it from there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the clarification Hydrogen. I can see where you would like to use USB but, as you said, most, if not all, of the cables are USB2. If the NICs weren't so expensive, I'd suggest 10Gbit Ethernet. Still, even 1Gbit Ethernet is pretty fast. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...