Drive Enclosures is a specialized casing designed to hold and power disk drives while providing a mechanism to allow them to communicate to one or more separate computers.

Drive enclosures provide power to the drives therein and convert the data sent across their native data bus into a format usable by an external connection on the computer to which it is connected. In some cases, the conversion is as trivial as carrying a signal between different connector types. In others, it is complicated enough to require a separate embedded system to retransmit data over connector and signal of a different standard.

Factory-assembled external hard disk drives, external DVD-ROM drives, and others consist of a storage device in a disk enclosure.

SCSI, SAS, Fibre Channel, eSATAp, and eSATA interfaces can be used to directly connect the external hard drive to an internal host adapter, without the need for any intervening controller. External variants of these native drive protocols are extremely similar to the internal protocols, but are often expanded to carry power and to use a more durable physical connector. A host adapter with external port may be necessary to connect a drive, if a computer lacks an available external port.

USB or FireWire connections are typically used to attach consumer class external hard drives to a computer. Unlike SCSI, eSATA, or SAS these require circuitry to convert the hard disk’s native signal to the appropriate protocol. Parallel ATA and internal Serial ATA hard disks are frequently connected to such chassis because nearly all computers on the market today have USB or FireWire ports, and these chassis are inexpensive and easy to find.

iSCSI, NFS, or CIFS are all commonly used protocols that are used to allow an external hard drive to use a network to send data to a computer system. This type of external hard drive is also known as Network-attached storage or NAS. Often, such drives are embedded computers running operating systems such as Linux or VxWorks that use their NFS daemons and SAMBA to provide a networked file system. A newer technology NAS, has been applied to some disk enclosures, which allows network ability, direct connection and even RAID features.

Cackle Telecommunications is proud to provide drive enclosures to NZ businesses. Choose from a selection of vendors, explore our products to find the right solution for you.

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