Unreleased Western Digital DX4000 NAS Spotted on IDF Floor

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Despite being hailed as an Intel Developer Forum, there were any number of manufacturers represented on the show floor – some were there on their own, while others saw their products getting used by third party manufacturers. So it was with Western Digital’s little black box, tucked into a corner of Intel’s storage display.

Western Digital WD Sentinel DX4000 Western Digital WD Sentinel DX4000

What are the details of this little box? Too vague to tell, so far. Since it was sitting in Intel’s Storage booth at IDF, it no doubt holds an Intel processor of some specification – chances are good that it uses a next-generation single- or dual-core Atom processor. A few other Intel-powered solutions use alternate CPUs, however, so it could also be some flavor of low-powered Pentium class.

NowWestern Digital WD Sentinel DX4000 that Western Digital produces 3TB drives, this guy could pack up to 12TB of storage within its four drive bays. There is at least one Gigabit Ethernet port on the back for speedy access, but we couldn’t get a better look – the demo unit was being used at the time, and Intel’s rep politely asked us not to push around a box full of spinning media – a reasonable request.

It seems to be an evolution of the WD ShareSpace boxes, which also packed multiple drives into a single enclosure. Unlike that series, however, the software running on the Sentinel DX4000 is much more robust. Instead of running a custom linux interface, the new Sentinel series will operate with help from Microsoft’s Windows Storage Server.  WSS is itself a trimmed down version of Windows Server 2008. Not unlike the consumer-friendlier Windows Home Server, WSS is designed to make managing your connected storage easier for companies without large, dedicated IT departments.

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