Seagate on Tuesday said it plans to expand the BlackArmor brand of disc drives to include a broad portfolio of small-business storage products, including network-attached storage and direct-attached storage for workstations and portable devices.
Introduced last year, the BlackArmor brand started as a portable drive with disc encryption. The expanded line of products will be offered as a business alternative to Seagate's FreeAgent consumer brand. The new products will include priority support and extended warranties meant to appeal to small businesses.
"We’ve become keenly aware that small businesses are a sector of the market with specific needs when it comes to their storage solutions," Jon van Bronkhorst, executive director of product marketing for Seagate’s consumer solutions, said in a statement.
BlackArmor products are tailored for small offices with up to 50 PCs or Macs, as well as self-employed professionals, such as financial consultants and accountants looking to securely store, share, and back up client information. Medical offices looking for storage for patient records are another target.
The first two products are the NAS 440 and NAS 420 servers, which are fully contained hardware with user-serviceable, hot-swappable drives that are RAID-configurable disc arrays. Later this year, Seagate plans to introduce BlackArmor direct-attached storage for workstations and portable storage devices.
The NAS storage boxes are available in 2-, 4-, 6-, and 8-TB capacities. The 420 contains four bays and two drives, and the 440 four bays and four drives. The systems offer automatic backup for networked computers, as well as file- and folder-level password protection and encryption for secure access and sharing. The systems also include software for remote access of data through a Web browser.
Other features include four USB ports to attach external drives, an external power supply, and a user-serviceable fan to avoid outside support and minimize downtime, Seagate said.
The BlackArmor NAS 440 and 420 support Windows XP, Vista, and Mac OS X 10.4.11 or later. The 420 starts at $800 for the 2 TB model. The 440 starts at $1,200 for 4 TB, $1,700 for 6 TB, and $2,000 for 8 TB. The systems include three-year warranties.
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