— Netgear has added an entry-level NAS system for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) to its product line with support for iSCSI and an embedded cloud backup option via partner ElephantDrive.

The new ReadyNAS NVX, announced and on display today at the Storage Networking World conference, offers double the performance of previous Netgear NV products, support for file services and application services for Windows, UNIX/Linux and Mac systems, including support for Time Machine in Mac OS X v 10.5 Leopard.

With support for both NAS and iSCSI, the NVX simultaneously handles file sharing for Windows, UNIX/Linux and Mac systems, and also stores data for server applications such as email, databases and virtualization.

Like its ReadyNAS counterparts, the NVX features RAID protection, local USB backups, snapshots, and secure offsite replication to other ReadyNAS systems.

Netgear is positioning the ReadyNAS NVX on the line between the so-called “prosumer” market and SMB users, according to director of storage networking products, Drew Meyer.

“The ReadyNAS NVX is our entry-level business class platform for SMBs. We have expanded the ReadyNAS product line over the last year and now have a complete family of products separate from the home and prosumer customer,” says Meyer.

The launch of the NVX comes on the heels of Netgear’s first foray into the cloud storage services market. Last February, the company announced the embedded Vault option for its ReadyNAS line, which gives users the ability to archive data in the cloud.

Meyers says the Vault option is the first instance of device-integrated, cloud-based backup for Netgear’s products. The Vault backup service is provided by Netgear’s partner ElephantDrive.

The ReadyNAS NVX system is available now from VARs at an estimated starting price of $1,500 with 2TB of storage. The ReadyNAS appliances come with technical support and a five-year warranty. In addition, a free 30-day trial of the ReadyNAS Vault internet backup service is available now on all ReadyNAS systems. Pricing for the ReadyNAS Vault service starts at $5.95 per month for consumers and $19.95 per month for businesses.

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