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Test K70 RGB Pro de Corsair

19 mai 2022 à 10:44

Clavier gaming K70 RGB Pro de CorsairTest du clavier K70 RGB Pro de Corsair. Visant le haut de gamme cette référence s’arme d’un profil tournois. De quoi s’agit-il ?

The post Test K70 RGB Pro de Corsair appeared first on GinjFo.

Test Freezer 34 eSports DUO d’Artic

18 mai 2022 à 13:21

Freezer 34 eSports DUOTest du Freezer 34 eSports Duo d’Artic, un ventirad tour équipé de deux ventilateurs de 120 mm positionné sous les 45 €.

The post Test Freezer 34 eSports DUO d’Artic appeared first on GinjFo.

Test Ecovacs Deebot X1 Plus

16 mai 2022 à 17:09

I. Présentation

Dans ce test, je vais vous parler du robot intelligent DEEBOT X1 Plus, qui est capable d'aspirer et de laver en un seul passage. Nous verrons tout au long de ce test que ce nouveau modèle est boosté par de nombreuses fonctionnalités et une intelligence artificielle très évoluée et aboutie.

Il y a quelques semaines, Ecovacs Robotics a dévoilé sa nouvelle gamme de robots intelligents : DEEBOT X1. Ce sont les nouveaux appareils haut de gamme du fabricant. D'ailleurs, je vous ai présenté les trois appareils de la gamme dans un article dédié que vous pouvez retrouver ici. Le modèle DEEBOT X1 Plus a quelques fonctionnalités en moins par rapport aux deux autres modèles : DEEBOT X1 Omni et DEEBOT X1 Turbo. Je reviendrai sur quelques-unes de ces différences dans cet article.

Plus d'infos sur le site officiel :

II. Package et design

Comme à son habitude, Ecovacs propose un packaging soigné où chaque élément est soigneusement rangé et protégé. Et comme à chaque fois, le carton est imposant, car il y a beaucoup d'éléments à stocker ! En complément du robot aspirateur et de sa station de charge, nous avons le droit à deux brosses latérales, un outil de nettoyage, un câble d'alimentation, un module OZMO Pro 3.0 pour le lavage du sol, un module pour la fonction Air Freshener (utilisable quand le bloc Ozmo Pro n'est pas en place), un sac à poussières (préinstallé), ainsi que des lingettes de nettoyage jetables et une lingette lavable (faisant office de serpillière, en fait).

Personnellement, je suis un peu déçu sur le contenu du package, car il n'y a pas de brosse latérale de rechange ni de filtre de rechange et il n'y a pas non plus la moindre cartouche de parfum pour utiliser la fonction Air Freshener.

Regardons de plus près ce charmant robot, qui est très élégant. Pour avoir vu de nombreux robots aspirateurs, et en avoir testé un certain nombre, celui-ci est sans aucun doute le plus réussi d'un point de vue du design. Même si c'est une histoire de goût, Ecovacs a vraiment fait un effort particulier sur le design de ses robots de la gamme X1 ! En effet, Ecovacs a collaboré avec le studio danois Jacob Jensen Design (en relation avec Bang & Olufsen, notamment) pour dessiner ses nouveaux robots haut de gamme !

Sur le dessus de l'appareil, il y a un seul bouton, tactile, qui est utile pour lancer un nettoyage d'une simple pression. On voit également le capteur laser, qui est surélevé, et qui correspond au capteur de distance TrueMapping, utile pour la cartographie et la navigation. Nous verrons que pour naviguer de manière précise, le robot peut s'appuyer sur d'autres capteurs !

Chose assez étonnante, le dessus du robot est totalement amovible afin de donner accès au bouton d'alimentation, mais aussi au réservoir à poussière. Cela permet d'avoir un capot entièrement plat et design, tout en permettant l'accès au réservoir à poussière. Cet accès est nécessaire pour la maintenance de l'appareil et l'initialisation, mais vu que le robot se vide tout seul dans la station, on a rarement besoin d'accéder à cette zone du robot. Autre idée : peut-être qu'Ecovacs prévoit de mettre à la vente des coques personnalisées par la suite ? 🙂

Les finitions sont vraiment top ! Je vous laisse admirer les photos ci-dessous !

Le dessous du robot est classique, on retrouve les deux emplacements pour les deux brosses latérales, la route centrale directionnelle ainsi que les deux roues motrices qui se feront un plaisir de surmonter les petites marches et les tapis.

Les appareils de la gamme X1 intègrent la technologie AIVI 3D qui s'appuie sur une véritable caméra. Cette caméra permet à Ecovacs d'imaginer d'autres fonctionnalités et c'est ce que le fabricant a fait avec sa fonctionnalité de "vidéo à la demande". On découvrira cette fonctionnalité plus en détail par la suite. D'ailleurs, Ecovacs avait déjà intégré une fonction de vidéo à la demande avec son modèle Ecovacs Deebot Ozmo T8 AIVI. Ainsi, le module contient le capteur de la caméra, le capteur 3D TrueDetect et le capteur de détection visuelle AIVI. Concrètement, ces capteurs vont permettre au robot d'identifier les objets !

Ecovacs a également travaillé le design de sa station de charge. Elle est encore plus imposante, mais esthétiquement plus travaillée et elle fait la même largeur que le robot donc l'ensemble est plus harmonieux, à mon avis.

Pas de bouton, pas d'écran, tout se passe sous le capot positionné sur le dessus, et à l'arrière, nous pouvons connecter le câble d'alimentation et enrouler le surplus afin de faire une installation propre.

En soulevant le couvercle, on accède directement au sac à poussière. Sur la gauche, nous avons un petit espace de stockage qui est parfait pour ranger les lingettes nettoyantes ! Sur les modèles X1 Turbo et X1 Omni, la station de charge reprend les mêmes codes d'un point de vue esthétique, mais elle contient des réservoirs pour l'eau (eau usée et eau propre). Dans la pratique, je note une amélioration d'un point de vue sonore par rapport à la génération précédente : la station d'autovidage est moins bruyante.

Le dernier élément à présenter, la plaque à positionner sur le sol et sur laquelle viendra se positionner le robot. L'avantage, c'est que la lingette ne touche pas directement le sol, ce qui pouvait être gênant sur du paquet à cause de l'humidité. Au moins, là, le robot n'est pas directement en contact avec le sol lorsqu'il est stationné à sa base.

La station de charge est en place, le robot également, ce qui nous donne le résultat suivant :

Une belle évolution sur le plan du design, nous verrons si le robot X1 Plus fait tout aussi bien dans la pratique.

III. Installation, efficacité, autonomie, station de vidage

A. Installation

Avant l'ajout du robot dans l'application Ecovacs Home, il faut préparer le robot. Cela est assez simple puisqu'il suffit de mettre en place les deux brosses latérales, d'installer la station puis d'y positionner le robot. Cela sera l'occasion de le mettre à charger. Pour la suite, cela se passe dans l'application.

Une fois qu'il est ajouté dans l'application Ecovacs Home, il nous est proposé de démarrer la cartographique. Le robot ne va pas laver votre domicile, il va simplement faire un petit tour rapide afin de générer une première carte. La cartographie rapide et initiale est réalisée en moins de 10 minutes pour 40m² environ ! La carte est précise et correspond à la réalité, même si le découpage des pièces et à revoir, ce qui n'est pas évident avec des pièces ouvertes. De toute façon, l'éditeur de carte de l'application permet de fusionner ou diviser des pièces à notre convenance, mais également d'associer un rôle à chaque pièce (cuisine, couloir, salon, etc.).

Suite à cette opération, nous pouvons commencer à profiter de notre robot aspirateur !

B. Efficacité du nettoyage

Ce robot aspirateur est très précis dans sa navigation et il nettoie avec méthodologie. Tout d'abord, il va effectuer les contours d'une zone, en veillant à éviter les meubles et les autres objets qu'il pourrait rencontrer, avant de faire des aller-retour en S dans la zone et effectuer le nettoyage. Quand une zone est terminée, il se dirige vers une autre et ainsi de suite.

Sur les deux premières images ci-dessous, on voit très bien cette logique. Sur la troisième image, le mode "x2" était activé donc le robot aspirateur effectue le nettoyage deux fois sur chaque zone, et on peut voir que les aller-retour sont effectués "verticalement" alors que c'était "horizontalement" lors du premier passage. Quand ce mode est actif, la durée du nettoyage est quasiment doublée, ce qui est logique.

Grâce à ces différents capteurs et sa technologie avancée, je pense notamment à la technologie 3D TrueDetect, à la détection visuelle AIVI, et au capteur de distance TrueMapping, le robot parvient à bien nettoyer tout en étant impeccable dans sa navigation. Il parvient à bien contourner les obstacles, tout en passant relativement près, ce qui est important pour nettoyer à proximité des murs et des meubles.

Si vous souhaitez que le robot soit intraitable avec la moindre petite miette qui traîne au sol, il faudra utiliser le mode "Max+" pour avoir le plus de puissance (et c'est aussi le mode le plus bruyant), ou opter pour le mode avec deux passages.

La partie lavage est assurée par le système OZMO Pro 3.0 où la lingette de nettoyage est fixée sur une plaque qui effectue un mouvement de 600 vibrations par minutes afin d'améliorer le frottement. Il y a une lingette lavable et quelques lingettes jetables, mais par expérience, sachez que vous pouvez laver quelques fois ces lingettes pour éviter de les jeter à chaque fois. Sur les modèles Turbo et Omni, le système OZMO Pro 3.0 n'est pas présent puisqu'il y a un nouveau système ingénieux avec deux brosses rotatives.

C. Autonomie

L'autonomie de ce robot est annoncée à 140 minutes, et cela se vérifie dans la pratique : une autonomie dans la moyenne.

Pour vous donner un ordre d'idée, il met 33 ou 34 minutes pour nettoyer une zone de 29 m² même si cela peut monter à 56 minutes avec deux passages. Afin d'optimiser l'utilisation de la batterie, sachez que le nettoyage x2 peut être activé uniquement sur une pièce.

IV. L'application Ecovacs Home

Parlons un instant de l'application Ecovacs Home, alliée indispensable pour profiter de son robot aspirateur. Personnellement, je suis habitué à l'utilisation de l'application Ecovacs Home, alors je parviens à m'y retrouver facilement. Elle est assez intuitive pour l'utilisation des fonctionnalités de base, mais on peut se perdre un peu si l'on cherche à accéder aux fonctionnalités avancées.

Elle regroupe de nombreuses fonctionnalités, que j'ai déjà évoquées au sein de précédents tests, mais en voici une liste non exhaustive :

  • Gestion des cartes (jusqu'à 3 cartes, vue 3D avec positionnement des meubles, assigner un rôle à chaque pièce, redimensionner les pièces, créer des limites virtuelles, etc.)
  • Historique de nettoyage (date, heure, durée, surface nettoyée, et carte du nettoyage)
  • Maintenance pour accéder à l'état des différents accessoires et des pièces du robot
  • Nettoyage intelligent pour activer le nettoyage continu, la gestion automatique de la puissance d'aspiration (utile pour les tapis), etc.
  • Ne pas déranger : ne pas effectuer de nettoyage pendant une période donnée
  • Gestion des mises à jour
  • Gestion du mot de passe pour le gestionnaire vidéo
  • Etc...

Ce robot est doté d'une véritable caméra qui est utile pour la navigation, mais qui peut être exploitée pour effectuer de la vidéosurveillance à distance. À distance, vous pouvez contrôler vous-même le robot pour vérifier quelque chose... Comme ici, où je me suis amusé à vérifier ce que faisait cette grosse bête poilue... Il y a également un mode intitulé "Inspection du logement" qui va permettre de demander au robot de faire le tour de votre domicile, mais également d'une pièce précise. La fonction "Appel vocal" va permettre d'exploiter le haut-parleur du robot pour parler à distance.

Lorsque le robot effectue son tour de garde, il va prendre des photos, et cela sera accessible dans le journal de l'appareil au sein d'une section dédiée de l'application. Lorsque vous effectuez vous-même la surveillance via le pilotage manuel, vous pouvez prendre également des photos.

Note : sur cet exemple, l'image est assez sombre, car c'est en début de soirée, sans lumière.

Cette version de l'application permet également de configurer l'assistant vocal Yiko, une nouveauté apportée par Ecovacs au sein de sa gamme DEEBOT X1. Ainsi, le robot devient pilotable par la voix sans passer par un assistant vocal externe ni même utiliser l'application.

Au sein de l'application, on peut configurer l'assistant vocal Yiko pour ajuster le volume et la langue (français, anglais, allemand, italien, etc.). Cet assistant vocal comprend différentes commandes afin de démarrer un nettoyage automatique ou d'une ou plusieurs pièces spécifiques, augmenter le niveau d'aspiration ou le débit d'eau, etc... Tout cela est bien détaillé dans l'aide de Yiko accessible via l'application.

Bien que cet assistant vocal fonctionne bien, il faut un peu de temps pour le maîtriser et pouvoir l'apprécier. Parfois, il a manqué un peu de réactivité pour se déclencher, mais Ecovacs va sans aucun doute peaufiner son assistant vocal par la suite, notamment à coup de mises à jour.

V. Conclusion

Le robot aspirateur Ecovacs Deebot X1 Plus est un excellent compagnon au quotidien, et c'est un produit très abouti dopé avec de nombreuses technologies et de l'intelligence artificielle. Finalement, c'est probablement son tarif qui va refroidir certains acheteurs, ce qui peut se comprendre, mais en soi, c'est justifié même si je regrette qu'il n'y ait pas un peu plus d'accessoires au regard du prix. Même si la station d'autovidage est encombrante, même plus encombrante qu'avec la génération précédente, l'ensemble est plus harmonieux donc je trouve que cela est bénéfique au final.

Ce robot aspirateur est très précis lorsqu'il navigue dans votre domicile et il nettoie très bien, y compris le système de lavage qui parvient à éliminer certaines tâches et qui apporte un bon complément. Pour que ce soit encore plus efficace, le mode avec deux passages est recommandé.

The post Test Ecovacs Deebot X1 Plus first appeared on IT-Connect.

Test Radeon RX 6650 XT Gaming X 8G de MSI

10 mai 2022 à 15:00

Radeon RX 6650 XT Gaming X 8G de MSITest de la Radeon RX 6650 XT d’AMD, une carte graphique gaming milieu de gamme RDNA 2 visant le Full HD et Full Option.

The post Test Radeon RX 6650 XT Gaming X 8G de MSI appeared first on GinjFo.

Test UD750GM et UD850GM de Gigabyte, du 80 Plus Gold Full Modulaire

6 mai 2022 à 11:40

Alimentations 80 Plus Gold UD750GM et UD850GMTest des UD750GM et UD850GM de Gigabyte, deux alimentations compactes au label 80Plus Gold proposant une gestion 100% modulaires des câbles

The post Test UD750GM et UD850GM de Gigabyte, du 80 Plus Gold Full Modulaire appeared first on GinjFo.

Test Everest 60, un clavier gaming 60% modulaire, personnalisable et RGB

29 avril 2022 à 15:29

Clavier Everest 60 de MountainTest du clavier gaming Everest 60 de Mountain. Il propose de la compacité, du RGB, de la modularité et une mécanique haut de gamme.

The post Test Everest 60, un clavier gaming 60% modulaire, personnalisable et RGB appeared first on GinjFo.

Test TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3090 Ti OC Edition, la carte ultime ?

27 avril 2022 à 14:40

TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3090 Ti OC EditionTest de la TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3090 Ti OC Edition d’Asus, une version personnalisée de la carte graphique « Mainstream » ultime de Nvidia.

The post Test TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3090 Ti OC Edition, la carte ultime ? appeared first on GinjFo.

Test NH-D12L de Noctua

22 avril 2022 à 14:12

Ventirad NH-D12L de NoctuaTest du NH-D12L de Noctua, un étonnant ventirad double tour visant les configurations compactes. Est-il performant et silencieux ?

The post Test NH-D12L de Noctua appeared first on GinjFo.

Test Ryzen 7 5700X d’AMD, un excellent ratio prestation/prix ?

20 avril 2022 à 11:53

Processeur AMD Ryzen 7 5700XTest du Ryzen 7 5700X d’AMD. Que vaut se processeur en usage classique et création et en gaming ? Offre-t-il un excellent ratio perf/Watt ?

The post Test Ryzen 7 5700X d’AMD, un excellent ratio prestation/prix ? appeared first on GinjFo.

Test Tronsmart Bang : une enceinte de 60W avec des effets lumineux

12 avril 2022 à 13:00

I. Présentation

Aujourd'hui, nous allons découvrir l'enceinte sans-fil Tronsmart Bang qui est l'une des dernières nouveautés de chez Tronsmart, une entreprise spécialisée dans les produits audio. Sur le papier, cette enceinte s'annonce intéressante et particulièrement polyvalente, mais je dois aussi vous avouer quelque chose : elle est imposante.

Avant d'attaquer le test, voici les caractéristiques clés :

  • Audio stéréo via SoundPulse Audio - Compatible AptX
  • Puissance de 60 watts
  • Effets lumineux (synchronisation avec le rythme de la musique)
  • Autonomie de 15 heures avec le volume à 50%
  • Batterie de 10 800 mAh
  • Certification IPX6 (Waterproof)
  • Facile à transporter grâce à la poignée
  • Paramétrable avec l'application mobile
  • Source de lecture audio : Bluetooth, prise Jack, carte microSD et clé USB
  • Support du NFC Seamless
  • Support des assistants vocaux (Siri, Amazon Alexa, Google)
  • Poids de 3 kg

Quelques liens utiles :

II. Package et design

La boîte en impose, il faut dire qu'à l'intérieur nous allons trouver une belle bête. Ce qui est cool, c'est qu'elle nous donne un bel aperçu du design de l'enceinte Bang, mais aussi sur ses fonctionnalités clés : son 360°, égaliseur personnalisable, etc.. À l'intérieur de la boite, nous retrouvons une notice d'utilisation, un câble Jack et un câble USB-C.

Premièrement, on peut constater que cette enceinte sans-fil est un beau bébé comme on dit. Elle est imposante, et c'est probablement parce qu'elle est très puissante. Néanmoins, ce format ne conviendra pas à tous les usages : si vous recherchez une enceinte discrète à poser dans un coin de votre salon, passez votre chemin. Par contre, pour une enceinte solide et un peu tout terrain, que vous souhaitez utiliser en extérieur ou pour faire la fête, là je dis oui.

En ce qui concerne les matériaux, elle est entièrement en plastique, de bonne qualité, si ce n'est qu'elle est recouverte par un "tissu" plutôt sympa. Je ne sais pas vous, mais personnellement son design me fait penser à la JBL Boombox.

L'été approche alors les occasions d'utiliser cette enceinte seront plus nombreuses, que ce soit pour une fête à la maison, ou tranquillou dans le jardin ou à la plage. Grâce au fait qu'il y ait la poignée sur le dessus, vous n'aurez aucun mal à la transporter malgré son poids qui n'est pas négligeable (3 kg pour rappel). Sa certification IPX6 est un avantage également, car elle ne craint pas l'eau.

Premièrement, sur la face avant de l'enceinte, nous retrouvons un bandeau lumineux, et de chaque côté de l'enceinte, c'est pareil il y a un anneau lumineux. Il y a plusieurs modes pour gérer les couleurs, comme par exemple la possibilité d'avoir la musique qui suit le rythme de la musique et qui change de couleurs automatiquement.

Deuxièmement, sur le dessus il y a un bloc avec de nombreux boutons dont voici la liste : synchronisation entre plusieurs appareils, mode audio, volume (+ et -), lecture/pause, SoundPulse (égaliseur) et bouton on/off. Enfin, nous retrouvons aussi 4 LEDs pour indiquer le niveau de batterie.

Troisièmement, c'est à l'arrière de l'enceinte que l'on retrouve toute la connectique : port USB-A, port USB-C pour la recharge, port AUX (Jack), lecteur microSD. Les ports sont protégés afin que l'enceinte soit waterproof. Toutefois, si vous utilisez une clé USB pour lire la musique, il faudra faire une croix sur le côté waterproof.

Pour conclure cette partie du test, vous devez savoir qu'il est possible de synchroniser jusqu'à 100 enceintes pour avoir une puissance audio de feu !

III. Qualité audio et application

L'association avec un appareil, comme un smartphone, s'effectue via Bluetooth ou le NFC Seamless si votre smartphone dispose du NFC. D'ailleurs, cette seconde méthode est particulièrement pratique. Pour les connexions suivantes, je trouve que le Bluetooth est très réactif : l'enceinte se reconnecter au smartphone en un instant.

Autant vous dire tout de suite que l'application officielle Tronsmart est indispensable pour exploiter totalement l'enceinte. En effet, elle intègre plusieurs fonctionnalités comme la gestion de la source, des effets lumineux ou encore de l'égaliseur. À ce sujet, vous devez savoir que l'on ne peut pas créer son propre mode dans l'égaliseur. En ce qui me concerne, je vous recommande le mode "Sound Pulse", car il offre, à mon avis, le meilleur rendu. Cela est d'autant plus vrai que le mode "Défaut" n'est clairement pas satisfaisant. Pour terminer au sujet de l'application, je dirais que la page d'accueil de l'application est un peu light, car Tronsmart aurait pu ajouter le pourcentage de batterie restant, plutôt qu'une simple jauge, et nous afficher la configuration actuelle de l'enceinte. Autre point noir : à chaque fois que l'enceinte est éteinte, vos paramètres sont perdus (l'égaliseur se remet sur "Défaut" et les lumières s'allumeront au prochain démarrage).

C'est le genre d'enceinte totalement adaptée pour écouter le titre El Incomprendido de Farruko, si l'on veut vraiment se mettre dans l'ambiance. 😉 - D'autant plus avec le mode Deep Bass qui renforce l'utilisation des basses, même si personnellement je préfère le mode Sound Pulse pour avoir un son plus équilibré.

À moins d'être en extérieur (ou que vous souhaitiez devenir sourd), vous n'allez probablement jamais utiliser l'enceinte au volume max, car avec sa puissance de 60 watts, ça envoie. Il y a de bonnes basses et le son reste stable même au volume maximum, ce qui est appréciable. Petite remarque concernant le volume minimal : si on se met vraiment au minimum, on n'entend quasiment pas l'audio, et si l'on augmente d'un cran, c'est déjà bien fort. J'aurais bien aimé qu'il y ait un "cran" intermédiaire pour écouter de la musique en fond.

Test Tronsmart Bang

Au final, le rendu audio de l'enceinte Tronsmart Bang est satisfaisant ! Même si l'on aurait aimé un peu plus de personnalisation au sein de l'application, et une meilleure autonomie, les impressions sont bonnes. Effectivement, le constructeur annonce une autonomie de 15 heures avec le volume à 50% et les LEDs éteintes, et 8 heures avec les LEDs allumées, tandis que moi je dirais que l'on est plutôt sur une autonomie de 7h avec les LEDs allumées. Vous allez me dire que c'est déjà pas mal, mais compte tenu de la présence d'une batterie de 10800 mAh, j'aurais bien aimé atteindre 8h voire 8h30 avec les LEDs. Sans les LEDs allumées, nous pouvons atteindre 14h30 d'écoute.

IV. Conclusion

Avec cette enceinte de 60 Watts, vous allez pouvoir mettre l'ambiance à coup sûr et sans vous ruiner puisqu'elle est vendue aux alentours de 120 euros ! Pour une enceinte avec cette polyvalence et cette puissance, je trouve que c'est un très bon rapport qualité/prix. Si vous recherchez une enceinte adaptée pour les soirées et l'usage en extérieur, c'est un bon choix, d'autant plus que vous pouvez utiliser le Bluetooth, mais aussi d'autres sources de lecture. Par contre, elle me semble trop imposante et trop peu discrète pour être positionnée dans un coin du salon ou sur un bureau. Enfin, l'application Tronsmart intègre juste ce qu'il faut pour profiter de l'enceinte, mais elle pourrait être améliorée (page d'accueil plus détaillée, égaliseur personnalisable, etc.).

Pour conclure, et insister sur l'aspect polyvalence, je vous rappelle que l'enceinte Tronsmart Bang peut également servir à recharger un appareil connecté à son port USB-A et qu'elle est compatible avec les assistants vocaux (Google, Siri, etc.).

The post Test Tronsmart Bang : une enceinte de 60W avec des effets lumineux first appeared on IT-Connect.

Runecast 6.1: Issue policy for IT security and compliance auditing

30 mars 2022 à 10:16

Issuing a security and compliance auditing policy across on-premises and multi- and hybrid cloud environments can be a challenge. Learn how Runecast 6.1 helps businesses solve these difficult security and compliance challenges.

The post Runecast 6.1: Issue policy for IT security and compliance auditing first appeared on 4sysops.

Test TCL 20 Pro 5G : une excellente surprise !

23 mars 2022 à 15:26

I. Présentation

Après un test de la tablette TCL 10 Tab Max, j'ai eu l'occasion de tester un smartphone de la marque : le TCL 20 Pro 5G. Avec ce modèle, le fabricant TCL a de grandes ambitions : s'imposer dans le haut de gamme, ce qui n'est pas évident dans le domaine du smartphone. Je vous propose de découvrir mon avis au travers de cet article, tout en sachant que ce smartphone est sur le marché depuis avril 2021.

Voici les caractéristiques principales de ce smartphone, hormis la partie photo que je vous réserve pour plus tard :

  • Écran : AMOLED Full HD+ / 6,67 pouces / 344 ppp / NXTVISIONMC / HDR10 / Taux de rafraichissement 60 Hz
  • CPU : Qualcomm Snapdragon 750G
  • RAM : 6 Go
  • Stockage : 256 Go, extensible par microSD jusqu'à 1 To
  • Batterie : 4 500 mAh
  • Chargeur : 18 Watts
  • Bluetooth 5.1
  • Wi-Fi 5 AC (2,4 GHz et 5 GHz)
  • NFC
  • Dual-SIM (nanoSIM)
  • Réseau 4G et 5G
  • Port Jack 3.5mm
  • Lecteur d'empreintes sous l'écran
  • Système Android 12 avec TCL UI v4
  • Épaisseur : 9,07 mm
  • Poids : 190 grammes
  • Coloris : bleu ou noir

II. Package et design

Au côté du smartphone, voici les éléments que nous retrouvons dans la boîte : une coque transparente et souple, un chargeur officiel de 18 Watts avec son câble USB-C, un guide de démarrage rapide et un outil pour accéder aux slots (nanoSIM et carte microSD).

Au premier déballage, l'impression est bonne et le smartphone est élégant : il faut dire que le noir, ça aide. En effet, ce modèle est noir et il est beaucoup plus discret que le modèle "bleu" où l'on est plutôt sur un bleu turquoise (qui me fait penser au OnePlus Nord CE 5G). Ce smartphone hérite d'un châssis métallique, et d'un dos en plastique mat, qui intègre une bande brillante. Sur cette bande brillante, nous retrouvons la mention "TCL" ainsi que les différents capteurs photos. L'occasion de préciser que le bloc photo est tout en longueur et qu'il est intégré entièrement à la coque : lorsque le smartphone est posé sur une table, il n'est pas bancale contrairement à de nombreux modèles. Par contre, on peut imaginer que cela influence l'épaisseur de l'appareil : 9,07 mm. L'avantage, c'est que les capteurs sont moins exposés en choc lorsqu'une coque est utilisée.

L'écran du TCL 20 Pro bénéficie de bords incurvés qui ne sont pas sans rappeler ceux que l'on retrouvent sur les smartphones d'une célèbre marque coréenne. Quoi qu'il en soit, cela apporte un côté premium à au smartphone.

Sur la tranche droite de l'appareil, nous avons le bouton on/off, ainsi que le bouton pour gérer le volume. Quant à la tranche gauche, elle contient une touche intelligente qu'il sera possible de personnaliser pour, par exemple ouvrir l'appareil photo avec un appui, effectuer une capture d'écran avec un double appui et lancer Google Assistant avec une pression longue.

Le dessous de l'appareil contient le port USB-C, un micro, un haut-parleur, ainsi que le slot pour accéder aux cartes SIM et à la carte microSD. Enfin, le dessus intègre une prise Jack 3,5 mm (ça, c'est cool !) et un micro.

Lors du premier démarrage de l'appareil, les impressions sont très bonnes, surtout au moment où l'on se retrouve sur l'écran principal d'Android. En fait, 93% de la surface disponible est utilisée par l'écran, ce qui offre un beau rendu et une belle surface d'écran. Par contre, le dos en plastique, totalement lisse, est agréable à l'œil comme je le disais, mais pour la prise en main, ce n'est pas avantageux car l'appareil est assez glissant. L'image est lumineuse et les couleurs sont très belles. Cela me rappelle mon expérience positive avec la tablette de la marque, équipée également de la technologie NXT Vision 2.0 (héritée directement des téléviseurs TCL) qui permet de transformer le contenu en HDR.

III. Qualité des photos / vidéos

Le TCL 20 Pro intègre une jolie panoplie de capteurs pour ses modules photos, et celui de l'arrière contient pas moins de 4 capteurs. Ce qui donne :

  • Un capteur principal : 48 mégapixels avec stabilisateur optique (f/1,79)
  • Un capteur ultra grand-angle (123°) : 16 mégapixels (f/2,4)
  • Un capteur macro : 5 mégapixels (f/2,2)
  • Un capteur de profondeur de champ : 2 mégapixels (f/2,4)

On peut voir que TCL ne cherche pas à faire la course aux mégapixels, et clairement, ce n'est pas plus mal ! Certains concurrents peuvent proposer un capteur principal avec plus de 100 mégapixels, mais pour autant les photos ne sont pas meilleures. Le capteur frontal destiné aux selfies fait 32 mégapixels, et pour avoir fait quelques essais, il permet de prendre de beaux selfies ! 🙂

L'application caméra intègre de nombreux paramètres et fonctionnalités, dont certains sont étonnants comme la fonction "Détection de calories". Plusieurs modes sont inclus dont les grands classiques : panoramique, mode portrait, ralenti, super macro, etc... tandis que le mode "Trace lumineuse" qui s'applique sur les flux lumineux en mouvement ou l'eau en mouvement, est un petit bonus sympa.

Alors, les photos, elles sont comment ? Et bien, elles sont propres ! Les couleurs sont correctement reproduites et cela ne semble pas dopé à l'intelligence artificielle. Le zoom x10 est plutôt bon, même s'il faut être super stable pour que le résultat soit satisfaisant. Voici un exemple, de gauche à droite : zoom x1 - zoom x2 - zoom x5 - zoom x10 (avec plus de recul).

L'application caméra intègre aussi un mode "Super nuit" qui permet de créer un cliché optimisé malgré la faible luminosité, en prenant plusieurs photos puis et en utilisant l'intelligence artificielle. Cela me fait beaucoup penser aux photos de nuit avec mon OnePlus 9 Pro. Au final, le résultat est vraiment propre comme vous pouvez le voir ci-dessous.

IV. Autonomie

Comme je le mentionnais en introduction, le TCL 20 Pro intègre une batterie de 4 500 mAh. Dans une utilisation que l'on pourrait qualifier de standard (appels téléphoniques, messages, réseaux sociaux et du web), le smartphone tiendra une journée sans broncher. Dès que l'on effectue des tâches plus gourmandes, comme le jeu, forcément cela impacte l'autonomie directement car c'est là que le smartphone est fortement sollicité.

Enfin, pour recharger complètement l'appareil à partir du chargeur rapide de 18 Watts, il faut compter 1h45. C'est un score classique compte tenu de la puissance, et c'est sûr que l'on peut trouver ça un peu long quand on voit les performances de certains smartphones dans ce domaine. La première phase de la charge est plutôt rapide car on peut atteindre 50% en 30 minutes environ.

V. Performances et système

Ce smartphone tourne sur Android 12 avec la surcouche TCL UI v4, même s'il est livré sous Android 11, une mise à jour de 3 Go est disponible afin de passer en Android 12. Une excellente nouvelle ! La surcouche TCL UI n'est pas lourde et trop invasive. J'aurais plutôt tendance à dire qu'elle apporte des fonctionnalités complémentaires que certaines personnes apprécieront. Cette surcouche permet d'aller plus loin dans la personnalisation de l'appareil.

Par exemple, il y a la barre latérale qui vient se positionner sur la droite, au niveau de la bordure incurvée, et qui permet d'accéder à une liste d'applications épinglées, à des contacts, et même à une règle. Astucieux. Nous retrouvons aussi des mini bulles de notifications, ainsi que la fonction de télécommande infrarouge ou encore de test du matériel.

En ce qui concerne les applications préinstallés sur l'appareil, elles sont peu nombreuses si l'on fait exceptions des applications Google. Personnellement, j'apprécie ! En applications tierces installées nativement sur l'appareil, nous avons Netflix, OfficeSuite, Booking, Microsoft Start et Modern Combat Rebel Guns. C'est raisonnable, on a déjà vu bien pire sur d'autres appareils !

L'écran peut être scindé en deux afin de faciliter le multi-tâches et de profiter des 6,67 pouces de l'écran. Pour afficher deux applications en même temps, c'est top. En complément, la touche intelligente accessible sur le côté de l'appareil offre un accès rapide à la fonction de votre choix.

TCL a fait du bon travail sur l'interface : TCL UI est agréable à utiliser !

Pour les performances, j'ai testé quelques jeux différents, notamment ceux que j'ai l'habitude d'utiliser pour mes tests comme Call of Duty Mobile, Fifa Mobile, Marvel Contest of Champions ou encore Snake.io. Lorsqu'un jeu est lancé, un mode "jeu" s'active automatiquement afin que l'appareil priorise le jeu au niveau de ses ressources. Les jeux tournent correctement et je n'ai pas constaté de problèmes de surchauffe.

Terminons par le résultat des benchmarks.

VI. Conclusion

Au-delà de son design très abouti, le TCL 20 Pro est un smartphone qui a de nombreux arguments pour séduire les consommateurs ! L'écran est top, déjà parce qu'il occupe la majeure partie de la surface disponible, mais aussi parce que le rendu est superbe. C'est certain que le savoir-faire de TCL au niveau des téléviseurs a joué un rôle dans l'optimisation de l'affichage. Quant aux photos, aux performances et à l'autonomie, c'est vraiment satisfaisant également, même si l'autonomie est simplement dans la norme. La recharge est un peu décevante puisqu'il faut 1h45 pour le recharger complètement, mais là encore, ça reste dans la norme de nombreux appareils concurrents. Le principal défaut côté design, c'est que l'appareil est très glissant. Il sera indispensable de remédier à cela avec une coque de protection sinon je ne donne pas une semaine au smartphone.

Pour moi, ce smartphone TCL 20 Pro est une très belle surprise ! Il vise le haut de gamme, et honnêtement, il ne lui manque pas grand chose car c'est une belle réussite. Hâte de voir ce que TCL pourra nous proposer pour son prochain modèle.

Terminons par le prix, et là c'est pareil, on ne se fait pas allumer : 399 euros sur Cdiscount, avec 256 Go de stockage.

The post Test TCL 20 Pro 5G : une excellente surprise ! first appeared on IT-Connect.

TrueNAS Core Software Review – Account Management, Alerts, Notifcations & Business Support

23 mars 2022 à 01:17

TrueNAS Core Software Review – Part II, Managing Accounts, Alerts & Business Support


If you are considering managing your own private server, want to build it yourself (investing your budget primarily into the hardware) and want to take advantage of free to download open source software, then there is a huge chance that you are aware of TrueNAS. In part two of my full review of the TrueNAS Core software, I will be looking at how business users are going to find the account management of TrueNAS, how those accounts can be adapted/changed on the fly, what authentication methods are on offer to those accounts, how detailed the alerts are, in what ways can those concerned by notified as quickly as possible and just what options are available to business users who like the flexibility of TrueNAS but want commercial-grade support. We have a lot to cover, so I won’t waste much of your time, but I should add that today’s review was made possible with help from iXsystems providing a Mini X+ TrueNAS system. iXsystems is the business arm of the open-source TrueNAS platform and they provide the means for users who like the FreeBSD platform to have more of a turnkey ‘off the shelf’ solution at their disposal. If you want to read the FULL review, you can read the (LONG) FULL Review of TrueNAS is available HERE.


Part I of the TrueNAS Review Can be found HERE


Part III of the TrueNAS Review is HERE (25/03)

Review of TrueNAS – Accounts Creation, Control & Management


Given the rather technical, bespoke and detailed nature of TrueNAS, it is easy to understand why the solution is aimed at business users who want things set up in a ‘certain way’. Although turnkey solutions are easier to deploy and are generally more user-friendly, they are more often than not too rigid and inflexible for businesses to use in their larger business models. In most cases, a TrueNAS custom-built (or iXsystem) will be deployed in the center of a business and accessible from many, many company staff for backups, email, document archives, hybrid sync storage and more. Therefore it is important to review how TrueNAS handles multiple accounts, how security is afforded to these accounts and how privileges and access to more mission-critical or confidential data are managed. TrueNAS features a quick and easy means to create multiple users and/or groups for the host user network (as well as connecting these with remote access as required). Let me talk you through what stood out for me in TrueNAS when it comes to account management.


Significant Range of Security and Account Configuration Options


Creating a user account in TrueNAS is incredibly straightforward, as well as making each account as secure as possible. Each account has the standard username and password settings you would expect, but then they delve quite a bit deeper into how you want these users to access the system, their subgroups (which then allows you to create bulk protocols/privileges for all users in that group quickly) and the nature of their account. Options such as which file directories this user can interact with can be set to rear only, write or full access are fairly standard, but I like the options for locking some user accounts easily, creating unique SSH keys, creating temporary admin powers and rotational/changeable passwords are a nice extra touch. As the system is predominantly designed to be remotely accessed via 3rd party client OS’ and 3rd party client software, the more customizable user account features of user images and bespoke desktop GUI found on NAS systems such as Synology and QNAP are absent, but this is still a very easy and detailed user creation element to TrueNAS.

Good Support of Microsoft Account Authorization


It’s a relatively small extra detail, but user account security in TrueNAS also includes an option to integrate the use of Microsoft account security when accessing the storage on the server. This is applicable to any system running Windows 8 or higher (including Windows 11) and allows the authentication methods that are used in the Windows operations system to be used to further verify the identity of a connected user. This user service is not exclusive to TrueNAS of course, but it is another neat piece of third party crossover support that the software includes in its open-source architecture.


Impressively Configurable 2-Step Authentication


The fact that TrueNAS features the support of 2 step authentication (also known as 2FA – 2 Factor authentication) is not going to be a huge surprise for many, given its ubiquitous appearance on pretty much all software clients in the last few years. For those that arent aware, in brief, two-step authentication allows you to have a 2nd degree of user authentication when logging into a service/software alongside your password, as your phone will need to provide a randomly generated code every time when you log in. You need to use one of the many authentication client tools available online (with Google Authenticator being one of the most used for mobiles), but it is surprisingly easy to set up. Where 2-Step authentication in TrueNAS differs from most is the level of configuration that is on offer within the 2FA settings.



Most systems will provide you with the option to simply synchronize with the authentication tool you are using (3D generated barcode or long passkey as best suited to the end-user). TrueNAS on the other hand allows you to change the authentication interval that the randomly generated code changes (usually 30 seconds) to longer for those that need it for accessibility support, as well as change the validity period/number of attempts before a potential lockout. Then you have the option to customize the length of the one-time password (OTP) to greater than the usual default 6 digits (something I have not seen offered by any other NAS brands in 2022). Finally, there is the choice to integrate the requirements for 2-step authentication into SSH logins (command line access with an SSH client window tool such as Putty), which given the huge degree of SSH access built into the typical TrueNAS use scenario, it definitely beneficial.

No Bulk Group or User Creation Options


One small but present absence that I noted in TrueNAS was the lack of an option to create bulk users at once or to import an existing CSV or .xlsx file. This is a very minor detail of course and only applicable to users who have larger volumes of users they wish to move over to a new server from an existing setup, but I am still surprised that it is absent in TrueNAS Core. I have contacted iXsystems to enquire about this and apparently it IS an option that is available in TrueNAS Scale, but nevertheless, I am disappointed that it is not available across the whole platform.

Review of TrueNAS – Alerts & Notifications


Most users who are looking at getting a private server, although initially heavily invested in tinkering and playing with the device, will eventually want the system to just sit in the corner, be quiet and do it’s job! It’s understandable, as interesting as the software and services are, ultimately a NAS (TrueNAS or otherwise) is a tool and as soon as you have set the device up to do the thing you specifically need it to, you want to go back to doing other things and whilst your NAS carries on. However, whilst that is true, in the event something is wrong or out of the ordinary system processes are noticed internally, you want the TrueNAS to tell you ASAP! Most NAS systems have inbuilt notifications and alerts that can be pushed to select/all end users that can be tailored to preferred client devices and methods. In the case of TrueNAS there are (as you might expect) a wide, WIDE variety of settings and choices for delivering those all-important notifications and although in the case of many apps being 3rd party (therefore having their own notification and alert schemes in place as appropriate), the greater storage system, network/internet connections and user behaviour alerts are still pretty extensive in their alert options. Here is what stood out in TrueNAS for me in this area.


VERY Customizable Alerts and Notification Customization


I really cannot stress enough how diverse the range of alert configuration options that TrueNAS allows you to adapt. The window above is just a small example of the many, many windows available although it is a long, long list of options, you cannot really suggest that TrueNAS didn’t cover all the scenarios. There are even slightly more customizable ones that you can add too. The delivery of these alerts is a little less straightforward than those found in Synology/QNAP (which have proprietary client apps for mobile and desktop that allow faster alert methods) but a large number of platforms are supported in TrueNAS for notifications that include email, Slack, AWS, InfluxDB, Mattermost, Pager Duty, SNMP Trap and more. Alongside incredibly concisely built alert parameters, each one can be scaled in priority and in turn, its urgency adjusted.



TrueNAS uses a 7 tier alert priority scale and you can adjust each alert & notification variable in the wide-ranging list to your own requirements. For example, if you were running a shared storage area with a team of 10 users and 8/10 of those users were accessing the system at once (potentially bottlenecking the network in a 1GbE network, depending on the file volume/frequency), you might want the system admin/IT to know this. It isn’t a high-level alert, more of a case of being aware of the additional network load. In that case you can setup an alert of bandwidth/zdev access above a certain level/% and suitable admin to receive a level 2 notification (NOTICE) so they are aware. Alternatively, example 2, there have been several failed login attempts under a specific user account, but eventually that user has logged in successfully. This might be a cause of concern as repeated password attempts could so easily be an unauthorized individual connecting to the greater system. You can set the # of failed login attempts before an automatic lockout OR set an alert of level 3 ‘WARNING’ to alert a system admin to look into this account behaviour to access the situation. Alerts and notifications become significantly more intricate (breaking down into encryption certificates, hardware health, critical system failure, SSH/Telnet logins. etc) and this easy 7 tier alert system can be applied to all instances.


Build In Support Lines, Business Support tiers, Direct System Messaging System and Issue Reporting Mechanism in the TrueNAS GUI


As TrueNAS is an opensource and community-driven NAS platform, you would be forgiven for wondering just how much this all means when you hit a technical wall, encounter system roadblocks, need advice on a setup or just generally looking for guidance. One of the main appeals of an off the shelf/turn-key solution from brands such as Synology and QNAP is that as a paid hardwware+software solution, you feel that there will be technical support lines via live chat, email and even phone in some cases (depending on the level of solution of course) that a homebrew/DiY solution will not be able to supply. However, the support on a TrueNAS system is a little more diverse than that. If you build your own NAS system from scratch and install TrueNAS Core onto your system, you will not have access to premium/commercial level support, but you do have links in the TrueNAS GUI to community support, details online guides and access to the Jira support system that allows your query for assistance to be submitted to the community pool. There are also provisions there to check if your issue has already been documented and resolved elsewhere. These links are immediately available from within the GUI in multiple areas.



But if you are a business user, despite the TrueNAS open-source/freely available status, you may well have opted for it for it’s customization and flexibility compared with off the shelf NAS solutions. Therefore you might still want paid/commercial/enterrpise grade support. This is where the distinction between going TrueNAS DiY and pre-built TrueNAS from iXsystems becomes a little clearer, as iXsystems are the official pre-build provider of TrueNAS and with their solutions, they offer a scaled range of support options that include numerous contact methods. In addition to all the TrueNAS CORE support options that are still available, TrueNAS Enterprise customers who purchase hardware from iXsystems can receive assistance from iXsystems if an issue occurs with the system. Silver and Gold level Support customers can also enable Proactive Support on their hardware to automatically notify iXsystems if an issue occurs. Here is how those support options scale and which systems support each tier:

Gold Silver Bronze Warranty
Software Help Desk 24×7 12×5
12×5 Limited
Hardware Support 4 Hour

On-Site Support & Repair

Next Business Day
On-Site Support & Repair
Advance Parts Replacement Return to Depot
Remote Deployment Assistance (60 days) Yes Yes Yes No
On-Site Hardware Spares Kit Included Optional Optional Optional
Proactive Support & System Monitoring Yes Yes No No
Advanced Hardware Replacement
Delivered the next business day
and/or Saturday.
Delivered the next business day. Delivered the next business day. No
After Hour Maintenance/Upgrade Assistance By appointment By appointment No No
Online Support Portal and Knowledge base Yes Yes Yes Yes
Software Updates Yes Yes Yes Yes
S1: Not serving data or severe performance
degradation, critically disrupting business.
Response within 2 hours, 24×7 Help Desk Support Email Response within 4 hours, 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM Pacific Time (M-F) Email Response within 4 hours, 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM Pacific Time (M-F) Email support (Next business day) for S1 and S2 intermittent faults only
S2: Performance degradation in production or
intermittent faults.
Response within 4 hours, 24×7 Help Desk Support Email Response within 4 hours, 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM Pacific Time (M-F) Email Response within 4 hours, 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM Pacific Time (M-F) Email support (Next business day) for S1 and S2 intermittent faults only
S3: Issue or defect causing minimal impact. Email Response within 4 hours, 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM Pacific Time Email Response within 4 hours, 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM Pacific Time (M-F) Email Response within 4 hours, 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM Pacific Time (M-F) No support available.
S4: Request for information or administrative
requests.
Next business day response. Next business day response. Next business day response. No support available.

The level of support afforded to each tier of the iXsystem hardware portfolio is not quite as straightforward, however, as smaller-scale systems only support upto a bronze tier. Therefore on closer examination, you can only access the highest/most-involved customer support tier when you are looking at the enterprise tier hardware systems. Now, on the face of it, that makes sense in terms of priority as it is those highest volume use systems that are going to want the fastest and most responsive support. Equally, the most modest systems will be used by smaller-scale users and have smaller scale utilities in mind. Still, I know more than enough NAS users who choose more modest NAS systems from Synology and QNAP, BUT will push for extended warranties, 5year warranty enterprise storage media, choosing to allocate their storage server budget towards lengthy support periods for peace of mind/insurance. Here is how the commercial support options spread across iXsystem hardware options:

Model Gold Silver Bronze Warranty
M-series Available Available Available 3-Year Included
X-series Available Available Available 3-Year Included
R-series Not Available Available Available 3-Year Included
FNC Not Available Available Available 3-Year Included
Mini Not Available Not Available Available 1-Year Included. SW Warranty requires registration

In the case of my review, I have been using a TrueNAS mini x+ and below is how the support prices are based on this model of the TrueNAS iXsystem mini. It is worth noting that only systems with all hardware provided by iXsystems are eligible for software support and warranty. Enterprise Bronze Support is only available for customers that have larger TrueNAS systems also under Enterprise Support Contract. Component swaps are the standard process for resolving major issues.

Model 3-Year Silver 3-Year Bronze 3-Year Warranty Warranty
Mini E, E+ Not Available $299 $149 1-Year Included. SW Warranty requires registration.
Mini X, X+ Not Available $399 $199 1-Year Included. SW Warranty requires registration.
Mini XL+ Not Available $599 $299 1-Year Included. SW Warranty requires registration.

Overall, I think TrueNAS (and iXsystems) have balanced the level of support and assistance options that are available to most kinds of NAS user. It makes sense that a free-to-download software platform would not be able to provide a commercial/enterprise-grade support level without having to financially support this behind a subscription service. And they do not leverage this against the community support, opening encouraging this as an option and facilitating multiple methods of looking up similarly submitted and solved issues, streamline the community support process as much as possible and still presenting the choice to go down the paid-support route when needed. The face this support is not available in non-iXsystem TrueNAS setup’s might be a bit of a downer for some, but as mentioned multiple times in this review, the money that some users are saving in a custom/DiY solution in TrueNAS vs a turnkey/off-the-shelf solution from Synology/QNAP needs to be paid in learning how it all works. I think TrueNAS and iXsystems found the best middle ground possible here.

Larger Range of Configuration Options Can be Overwhelming and Lacks Convenient Preset Options


When I said that there are a lot of alert and notification choices built into TrueNAS, I was not kidding. Even at a casual glance, they are in the triple figures, and that is jsut on the outset. It IS true that the bulk of them are automatically set to one of the 7 pre-set alert levels by default, but if you have a slightly more secure/closed setup in mind for your system notifications, you are going to be spending hours, not minutes adjusting them all to your unique needs. The same goes if you want to run a more open setup for testing, as the TrueNAS default settings are a pinch higher than I would class as ‘casual’ in scaled alerts (better safe than sorry). Now, other turnkey solutions on the market combat this by providing various alert/notification switches BUT also arriving with security councillors/preset configuration dropdowns. In brief, I wish TrueNAS had a range of preset notification levels, perhaps set as ‘low-medium-high-business-enterprise’ that changed these settings in bulk and THEN you can go in manually where needed and change a few, allowing you to create a custom profile which you can then save as ‘CUSTOM’. Similar tiered/scaled choices exist in other areas of TrueNAS for other services that change bulk options on the fly, as well as ‘advanced’ tabs in places when you want to get your hands a little dirtier and play with options at a deeper level in the GUI. Overall though, I prefer to have too many alert/notification options that are not enough though!


In the third and final part of my review of TrueNAS coming later this week, you can find out what I thought about Security, Network Management, how the platform handles applications & Addons and my overall verdict of TrueNAS Core 12.


Part I of the TrueNAS Review Can be found HERE


Part III of the TrueNAS Review is HERE (25/03)


Alternatively, you can read the (LONG) FULL Review of TrueNAS is available HERE.


 



 

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TrueNAS Core Software Review – GUI, Design & Storage Management

21 mars 2022 à 01:10

TrueNAS Core Software Review – Part I, Design, the Interface & Storage Management


Have you been considering a NAS for a few years, but looked at the price tag that off the shelf featured solutions from Synology or QNAP and thought “wow, that seems rather expensive for THAT hardware”? Or are you someone that wants a NAS, but also has an old PC system or components around that could go towards building one? Or perhaps you are a user who wants a NAS, but HAS the budget, HAS the hardware, but also HAS the technical knowledge to understand EXACTLY the system setup, services and storage configuration you need? If you fall into one of those three categories, then there is a good chance that you have considered TrueNAS (formally FreeNAS). The community supported and highly customizable ZFS storage platform that is available for free and along with regular updates has adapted over recent years towards diversifying different kinds of users, their setup’s and their requirements of TrueNAS. Today I want to review the TrueNAS software. In order to do this, I have been supplied with a Mini X+ 5 HDD/2 SSD Desktop system (hardware review on that soon) by iXsystems, a company with established ties with TrueNAS and the platform’s official enterprise hardware solution partner. This review is going to be conducted a little different than my normal NAS server reviews. Unlike a review of a new piece of NAS hardware, TrueNAS is a software platform that is significantly more flexible in it’s installation (ultimately available in one form or another on a custom PC build or even much smaller shuttle case builds). Equally, unlike many who have reviewed TrueNAS and it’s previous versions or recent splinters (e.g. FreeNAS, Core, Scale, Enterprise, etc), today’s review is going to be a fresh look at this platform, what it does better than Linux NAS systems like Synology or QNAP, what is does worse and ultimately help users who are thinking of moving towards the steeper learning curve of custom-built TrueNAS. What TrueNAS lacks in the ease and simplicity of traditional NAS drives, it can more than makeup for it in its sheer scope and potential to be more powerful, efficient and flexible overall. So, let me guide you through my highlights of 30 aggregate hours of use with TrueNAS.


Part II of the TrueNAS Review is HERE (23/03)


Part III of the TrueNAS Review is HERE (25/03)


Alternatively, you can read the (LONG) FULL Review of TrueNAS is available HERE.



TrueNAS Review Disclaimer – As mentioned in my introduction, my review of TrueNAS today was made on an iXsystem Mini X+, an 8-Core Intel-based system that featured 32GB of DDR4 memory, as well as arriving with 2x 10GbE ports, PCIe Upgradability and mixed storage media support. The system arrived with 5x WD Red Drives and 2x 2.5″ SSDs. This hardware does not impact the bulk of this review as TrueNAS is available as an open-source download that can be installed onto a custom PC, flashed server etc. However, the iXsystem Mini X+ arrives with TrueNAS Core and a few smaller extra bits that are exclusive to this more complete hardware+software package. Where appropriate, I will highlight it, however, the bulk of the features, settings and stand out areas of attention below can be applied to the free, standalone version of this platform. Additionally, there are references to enterprise features and TrueNAS Command (a wider remote deployment monitoring and management portal tool) that may be exclusive to that platform. Finally, my personal background is largely focused on traditional turn-key NAS solutions and therefore I decided to present this review on how things are done differently to NAS brands such as Synology and QNAP. You can find iXsystems Pre-built TrueNAS solutions over on Amazon here.

Review of TrueNAS – GUI & Deployment


First-time deployment of TrueNAS (after the initial installation of the software on the hardware system which will vary based on whether you have opted for an iXsystem solution or a custom build) is very straightforward. Once the system is booted, connected to your network and initialized, finding the device is possible via truenas.local. or obtaining it’s address from your switch or using an IP Scanner.



So, the first thing that I want to discuss about TrueNAS is the design. Finding a very interesting middle ground between providing all the configuration options in a single screen, whilst still not overwhelming the end-user, getting it pretty close to nailing it.


Alot More Hints and Tips than I was Expecting!


The first thing I was very surprised by in the design and deployment of the TrueNAS GUI was the sheer number of hints and information ‘i’s around every single screen. As TrueNAS and FreeNAS before it are built on FreeBSD, although there I expected a GUI, I did think it would still be rather command-line heavy still. However, not only are the controls of TrueNAS almost all displayed in a clearly visible GUI, but also I struggled to find a single option or choice that didn’t have a tip or guidance suggestion. This was a particular surprise as one of the biggest hurdles for most users considering moving from a turn-key NAS solution towards TrueNAS (custom or an iXsystem) is that intimidating climb up the steeper learning curve. It was a genuine and extremely welcome surprise to see how much guidance was available to even small and insignificant choices in the storage system setup where available.


Presentation of Storage and Resource Use is VERY Clear


Another thing that I fully expected to be present, but not to this level, was how the information on your storage areas (Pools, data sets, individual drives, etc) and the monitoring of your resources were displayed both analytically AND clearly. Of course, I expected TrueNAS to have the means to assess the system hardware health and status, but like most of my early personal experience with FreeNAS, UnRAID and FreeBSD years before, I thought this information would be available less in the GUI and more in command retrieval. However, the resource monitor and storage status (both, when delving into the system deeper and just via the initial splash screen of the GUI) provide an excellent level of information and in the case of the former, can be broken into a report form. Getting the presentation of storage on a GUI that can suit both the novice and the veteran techie is a tremendously tough line to balance and although there are a few areas where TrueNAS tends to ‘info-dump’ you a little, this area was no one of them.


Sharing Tab and its Breadcrumbs (WebDav, iSCSI, SMB, etc) Are More Intuative than Most


Another part of the TrueNAS graphical user interface that sets it apart a little from off the shelf NAS hardware+software is how the menu bar is displayed. With most NAS brands having their GUI comparable to popular operating system desktops (primarily Windows, MacOS or Android for the most part), TrueNAS’ GUI is a little bit more comparable to WordPress for the most part. The bulk of the config and service options are all located on the left-hand side of the screen and although there is only a handful at first glance, each one breaks down into subcategories quite quickly. The responsiveness of this menu system is particularly impressive and it’s easy to forget that you are accessing a remote system. Although the bulk of the tabs and options are where you would hope, one particular stand out example of things being done in a different and better way than most brands in the sharing tab/menu. Although most NAS brand software and GUI have tabs dedicated to sharing files (as well as contextual menus on files and folders), once you start breaking down into different sharing protocols, things get a little distance out and you end up having to keep multiple windows open to create and manage your cross-platform sharing environment. TrueNAS on the other hand has bulked these all together into the single tab and allows navigation through and between considerably more intuitive. Equally, the customization and configuration of shares and you delve deeper (although increasing the learning curve) are significantly more diverse to allow tweaking and improvements based on your setup.


Live Reports of System & Processes are Very Detailed and Quick to Navigate


Much like the Storage Presentation and Resource Use, getting reports of historical system information and active processes are much more detailed on the TrueNAS platform than I have seen from many NAS brands. TrueNAS uses Graphite for metric gathering and visualizations. Some general settings can be found in System > Reporting. Once again, it’s a fine line to have information regarding the server be presented in a fashion that is digestible to less storage-experienced users without potentially dumbing things down a little. Luckily these do still seem to present all the information that either tier of user is going to need and is done so by the information being broken down into sections that in turn can be delved deeper into by degrees. The UX of TrueNAS has clearly been thought about a lot and although many FreeNAS veterans might have disliked the changes in some areas towards making it simplified in places, there are still options for drilling down into system heath and history quite significantly.


Lots of Theme Customizations and a Theme Maker


A very surprisingly detail of TrueNAS is how much the GUI can be customized. Most NAS brands and their software allow the end-user (i.e that current user of many that have access credentials) to change minor details. The Wallpaper, their login icon and time/date display and pretty much the full range of choices. Given the fact most off-the-shelf NAS solutions are designed with being more user-friendly and attempting to de-mystified network storage for average users, I was VERY surprised that it was TrueNAS that had a greater degree of customization available in how the GUI is displayed. Colour schemes, logo changes, scaling, icon replacements, fonts, accents and changes to the top bar. There is a comparatively large amount of choice and customization compared with turn-key NAS solutions from Synology and QNAP and leans very well into the already established idea that TrueNAS is designed around custom builds.

Click to view slideshow.

No Avoiding That it is Still Very Stat and Tech Heavy some less experienced Users


As much as I like the GUI fo TrueNAS and how it has melded the controls very well to remain accessible to the experienced and inexperienced user, it has to be said that this is not done 50/50 and although there are hints, guides and recommendations by the system through all choices, it is still a very tech-heavy product and although the basic/top-layer decisions are user friendly, it isn’t going to be long before the full pages fo customization and configuration choices presented in the TrueNAS GUI are going to be a little overwhelming for those that are more used to these tougher decisions being hidden behind presets or set up behind a scaled option of security. In a few other areas of TrueNAS, this is addressed with an ‘advanced’ tab or mode option that until pressed will hide these tougher elements of the setup unless needed. Sadly this is not a system-wide design choice in the GUI and the TrueNAS UX is something that can demand accelerated learning. Alot of this might be solved with ‘easy’ ‘intermediate’ or ‘expert’ table opens on the bulk of pages, but as it stands it can sometimes be a bit of a ‘cannot see the wood because of all the trees’ situation when looking for a specific option in a menu, as there are 10-15 choices/boxes on the screen. The TrueNAS UI in the latest version IS very good and considerably more user-friendly than I thought it would be, but I would still be reluctant to call it novice-friendly.


No Search Functionality at the Home Screen


This was something that, despite the arguably higher skill level that TrueNAS commands in it’s user base, I was still surprised was absent – A search feature from the main GUI. It would not be a commonly used feature, however, I have met plenty of less experienced users or those in a rush looking for a specific option/service/setting that would appreciate a search functionality to be available. There ARE a few services and options in the menus that feature search functionality, but they are generally always limited to that specific function and not system-wide.

Review of TrueNAS – Storage


Realistically, THIS is the thing that is going to be paramount to most users of TrueNAS, Storage! But simply storing data is not enough, it is about how well it stores it, how customizable it is to different user environments, how secure it is in terms of backups and redundancy, how robust it is and the maintenance of that storage moving forward. TrueNAS arrives with ZFS (zettabyte File System), an enterprise-ready open source file system, RAID controller, and volume manager with unprecedented flexibility and an uncompromising commitment to data integrity. It eliminates most, if not all of the shortcomings that veteran storage professionals claim are apparent in ‘EXT4’ or the much newer ‘BTRFS’ file systems from brands such as Synology and QNAP NAS devices. Alongside the widest support of ZFS currently available in the market, TrueNAS also is one of the most scalable solutions available in the world (in part thanks to that freedom in building the hardware architecture being available and the open-source design of the platform allowing migration being considerably more seamless as you change out hardware over time. ZFS also brings big advantages in deduplication and compression techniques that improve how much data is being written to the system, whilst simultaneously simplifying the internal pathways of the system to larger bulks of users. In recent years, turnkey solutions from Synology and QNAP (as well as more affordable brands such as Asustorand Terraamster) have provided a degree of duplication on their platforms (QNAP seemingly extending this more than most) but ZFS has most of the architecture for these processes natively built into it and although you WILL need to bulk up on your hardware (16GB memory recommended in most cases if you want both for example), it still allows TrueNAS to stand out. Here are the elements of TrueNAS storage that stood out for me.


Exceptionally High Level of Access Control Options and Configuration of Data Sets


If there are two areas of consistency throughout TrueNAS storage that need to be highlighted above all others, it would be control and security. At practically every tier of the system’s internal storage management, you are able to apply numerous measures of bespoke user choice protection. More than the fact that standard elements of encryption, ACL and storage segmentation are available here, but more the sheer depth of it. You are able to assign extremely rigid access controls to your storage pools, zDevs, zVols and data sets from the ground up, as well as the branch these security measures into select user and group access (which can be changed by a superuser on the fly with ease). Along with that, ACL support is extremely wide-ranging, giving you the means to create areas of storage that are completely inaccessible (in either direction) by the greater system that ensure that storage can be created quickly, but without opening doors to your mission-critical storage. This bespoke control extends quite heavily to the configuration of Access Control Levels, as access Control List (ACL) is a set of account permissions associated with a dataset and applied to directories or files within that dataset. ACLs are typically used to manage user interactions with shared datasets and are created when a dataset is added to a pool. TrueNAS seemingly allows a create degree of control on this than most NAS systems on the market right now.


Excellent level of support of SED Media and Encryption levels in General


Then with Security, TrueNAS covers this in a few key areas. First off, several methods/protocols of encryption are supported by the system (giving the end-user a choice at the setup level) and generally ‘choosing’ your encryption method is not something offered by most brands to this extent (or at all in many cases). Next, there is the fact that encryption can be applied at every level of thes storage is required. When we look at some other NAS brands that included encryption, they tend to include encryption at the shard folder or volume level (pool level is supported with the use of encrypted drive media). TrueNAS is one of the very few several software on the market that provides native and configurable encryption at every level (storage pool, volumes, data sets, etc) and along with support of key management, there are additional failsafe options available that also passphrase support too. Finally, you have the support of self-encrypted drives (SEDs) in the system that can be fully utilized and that additional encryption be afforded to the greater storage system with the others. In short, you can create a fantastically encrypted storage system to an unparalleled degree in trueNAS. Again, not too shabby for an open-source bit of software!


Unrecommended Storage Configuration Choices Need to be ‘Forced’ to be actioned


One issue that will inevitably come to providing software that is highly customizable is giving the end-user too much rope to hang themselves with! Once you make your way past the rudimentary aspects of storage, the end-user can start putting together the building blocks of their storage inefficiently (or worse still dangerously) and run the risk of creating a basis for their storage for years to come that is inherently flawed. Balancing that line of allowing complete control and customization, whilst stopping a user from doing the wrong thing is a tough line to tread (QNAP have been walking this one as best they can for years too). TrueNAS has addressed this with a (very) soft lock system. When building your storage, if you are configuring the resources in a less than optimal/safe way, the system will give you a warning on the screen that details the potential downside/detrimental effect of your action. This warning can then be closed/dismissed and in order to continue, the ‘continue’ option will be joined with a button ‘force’. This is TrueNAS’ middle ground to allow creative freedom, whilst letting the end-user know that the action they are performing has a layer of risk attacked. For example, you are configuring a RAIDZ2 (think RAID 6) and you are using 8 disks that are not all uniform in capacity, but you do not care/want to proceed anyway. This is where the system would present you with a warning to ‘force’ through. The same thing when you build pools without redundancy or use differing media interface types outside of a fusion pool or cache setup. It is by no means a perfect solution, but at least TrueNAS have clearly understood that they need to steer things a bit at times.

Copy on Write Architecture is an additional Layer of File Level Error Recovery


An interesting architectural advantage of TrueNAS utilizing ZFS is the support of CoW (Copy on Write). This is a system of checksum built data health that involves a brief period of two actions of write occurring on any data being sent to the TrueNAS serve, which are then compared for consistency and then a single final, verified version of that data resides. ZFS does not change the location of data until a write is completed and verified. This ensures that your data isn’t lost during an interrupted task such as a power outage. ZFS uses a 256-bit hash of the data in a file system block, known as a checksum. This checksum ensures data integrity during writes. The way it handles and tests writes means that each write is tested, eliminating storage degradation such as bitrot. It also eliminates the write hole which allows for silent data corruption within RAID. Similar methods of data health and verification are utilized in other storage technology (such as ECC memory and in the write actions of BTRFS) but not to this extent and in such a widespread way. Writes do not overwrite data in place; instead, a modified copy of the block is written to a new location, and metadata is updated to point at the new location.


Support of RAIDZ Means that Initial Building is Faster and Recovery More Precise


One of the long understood advantages of ZFS that TrueNAS provides immediately (perhaps to the jealousy of EXT4 and BRTFS system users) is the utility of RAIDZ. RAID (redundant array of independent disks) is the ability to combine multiple media drives into a single storage pool that provides some/all of the benefits of increased storage performance, storage performance and redundancy (eg a safety net to still access/recover your data in the event of a drive failure). RAID and RAIDZ are similar on the face of it (with support of striping and mirroring), but it is a lot of difference in the larger arrays in terms of building, writing and recovery. RAIDZ has some interesting benefits, the first and most obvious is that a RAIDZ compared with a RAID5 takes minutes, not hours to build! Additionally, RAIDZ has a better understanding of empty blocks and that becomes beneficial in the event of a RAID rebuild, as in the event a drive fails and you introduce a new HDD/SSD, RAIDZ will ONLY need to rebuild the areas onto the replacement disk that data original resided on (using parity data from the other present disks) and then just zero’ing the rest of the disk. Similar systems like this have arrived from Synology on their platform for after RAID recovery (still using TBRFS) but still not as fluid and native as in ZFS. Striped VDEV’s, Mirrored VDEV’s and Striped Mirrored VDEV’s are essentially the same as RAID0, RAID1 and RAID10 accordingly with one difference; automatic checksumming prevents silent data corruption that might be undetected by most hardware RAID cards. ZFS uses the additional checksum level to detect silent data corruption when the data block is damaged, but the hard drive does not flag it as bad.

  • RAIDZ (sometimes explicitly specified as RAIDZ1) is approximately the same as RAID5 (single parity)
  • RAIDZ2 is approximately the same as RAID6 (dual parity)
RAID5 example of parity
Disk 1 Disk 2 Disk 3 Disk 4
1 2 3 P
5 6 P 4
9 P 7 8
P 10 11 12

RAID5 places blocks in a regular pattern. You only need to know the block number (address) to determine which disk stores the block, at what address, and where the corresponding parity block is. Also, with N disks, exactly one parity block is stored for every N-1 data blocks.



In RAIDZ, ZFS first compresses each recordsize block of data. Then, it distributes compressed data across the disks, along with a parity block. So, one needs to consult filesystem metadata for each file to determine where the file records are and where the corresponding parities are. For example, if data compresses to only one sector, ZFS will store one sector of data along with one sector of parity. Therefore, there is no fixed proportion of parity to the data. Moreover, sometimes padding is inserted to better align blocks on disks (denoted by X in the above example), which may increase overhead. However, we have still not touched on two more core advantages of ZFS and it’s RAID management…

3 Disk Redundancy is Available and Should Get More Kudos!


TRIPLE DISK PARITY! Now, if you don’t know what that is, then you can be forgiven for wondering why I have put that in capital letters. However, those that know, love it. In short, RAIDZ3 is the 3 disk fault-tolerance storage pool configuration that is largely unavailable conventionally in any other RAID configuration, requiring at least 5 disks (again, HDD or SSD) it means that you can withstand 3 drives failing. Now, if that sounds like tremendous overkill, then let me share a fun fact with you! Most drive failures that I have witnessed (and I welcome commentors to contribute on this) do NOT stem from poor treatment of a single drive, dropping an enclosure or poor individual handling. No, the bulk of drive failures I have witnessed have stemmed from three causes (looking at logs and SMART info):


  • Inherent fault at the point of manufacture or in the logistics chain that has developed over time
  • Overworked system hitting RAID arrays harder than intended 24×7 etc, or just designed drive workloads being exceeded in general
  • Critical larger system failure in the middle of a widespread write action (eg power failure as all drives are engaged for writing)

Now, in THOSE three examples, the key factor to keep in mind is that in none of them is an HDD or SSD on its own. At manufacture in bulk, in transit in crates of 20x at a time or in larger setup RAID array – the things that harm the storage media is hitting several at once. Even if you ignore the degenerative factors of exceeding workloads and system critical failure damage, there is no avoiding that when you buy multiple HDD/SSD from a single e-retailer (eTailer?), they do NOT provide you with multiple drive with each drive from a different crate/carton. No, that would be spectacularly inefficient for any retailer. No, you have to accept that there is a % chance that as soon as 1 drive fails that (without identifying to cause) that another drive in the array could fail for the same reason soon. So a double disk redundancy such as RAIDZ2 or RAID 6 would give you extra time – but how much time? Who known. But if your data is mission-critical and you weigh up the cost of another HDD in a custom build design such as TrueNAS, a triple parity RAID system starts to make a lot of sense.


ZFS ReSilvering Often Overlooked Safety Net


Another wildly overlooked and misunderstood advantage of ZFS and TrueNAS’ utility of it is in the support of Re-silvering. For those unaware, resilvering is when a drive that WAS part of the RAID array is disconnected and reconnected in a brief window that allows the system to identify that the drive belongs in the original pool and re-embraces it quickly. In practical terms, imagine your system suffers a very brief SATA/Controller board malfunction and a drive is dismounted (software level). Alternatively (and something surprisingly more command than you might think) an HDD in a tray/bay of the NAS might be accidentally physically ejected. Resilvering would allow the system to KNOW that the drive is part of the set and reintroduce it. In EXT4 or BTRFS, that brief disconnection would result in the RAID pool changing to a degraded status and the end-user would be forced to 1) endure a slower system as data is being exchanged with the pool in this parity-reading state as 2) the system wipes the former HDD/SSD to re-write all the data it had already and 3) unnecessary stress is placed on the system resources throughout. In ZFS and TrueNAS, the system would SEE that the recently ejected/dismounted drive is part fo the pool, verify that it has the data in place and then re-introduce the drive. the time this takes is largely based on how long the drive was disconnected (and data written in the interim) but it can genuinely take seconds or minutes – unlike the hours to days that a RAID recovery from a degraded state would take.


USB Storage Media is Visible and Managed in the Storage Manager


It is a very small detail but one I think is worth highlighting. Namely that USB storage media in TrueNAS is handled much differently than in other turnkey NAS solutions from Synology and QNAP. In those latter examples, USB storage is treated at arms length, visible in the file manager in the GUI of course, but then only really visible for use in the backup tools (which is still great). In TrueNAS however, USB storage media is visible, configurable and manageable directly from the storage manager. Now, obviously spreading a RAID over SATA storage media and a USB drive would be ridiculously dangerous for storage, however, there are still plenty of benefits and management advantages to having external storage visible alongside the management of the rest of the storage – aside from backup management and configuring the access privileges of the drive media, it also allows the USB drive to be managed for scheduled tasks and processes alongside the rest of the system and integrated into the reports and monitoring of the TrueNAS system. It is a small detail, but one that really stood out for me when comparing TrueNAS against Synology DSM and QNAP QTS USB media management overall.


Fusion Pools of Mixed Storage Media is Great and Rarer Than You Might Think


Another (relatively) recent addition to TrueNAS and its use of ZFS is the option to create fusion pools. A comparatively streamlined process, when you think about how technical and advanced the average options of TrueNAS can be to the end-user, fusion pools allow you to introduce mixed tiers of storage of different performance and combine them into a single visible pool, but in the background the system is sending data to the drive media that is best suited to supply it – so metadata on the SSD media, larger bulkier sequential data on the HDDs etc. ZFS sends writes to individual physical disks rather than just a RAID volume. This allows for stripe writes across RAID volumes and can perform synchronous writes to speed up performance. This model also ensures there are no long waits for file system checks. ZFS incorporates algorithms to make sure your Most Recently Used (MRU) and Most Frequently Used (MSU) data are stored in your fastest system storage media. Utilizing MRU & MSU combined with flash/NVDIMM ZILs/SLOGs and ARC/L2ARC devices, you can speed up your performance astronomically. Similar systems to this exist in QNAP’s EXT4 service ‘tiered storage’ and both they and Synology offer NVMe SSD caching services in conjunction with an existing pool/volume, but again this is done to a considerably higher and more customizable degree in TrueNAS. It just takes more time and knowhow to set up though.


Smart/Intuitive Option to Define Drive Media Use


Then there is an interesting storage setup choice that TrueNAS offers that is actually quite a bit of fresh air versus the more complex elements of it’s configuration. Namey that the system also includes an option to specifically designate a soon to be created area of storage to a task/use. So, if you have introduced one or more drives to your custom build server, you can choose whether you want this to be an independent new pool as a hot spare, to factor as additional storage redundancy, dedicated deduplication storage, designate the space for metadata (SSD recommended of course) and more. It is a surprisingly user-friendly option amidst all the complexity and a welcome addition to save time and headaches!

No Native Browser GUI Based File Manager


One missing feature of TrueNAS that really surprised me was the absence of a browser-based file manager. Now, on the face of it, many will argue that the GUI of your storage system should be reserved for system management, configuration and for troubleshooting (some even erring away from browser GUIs entirely in favour of SSHing etc directly into the system as a superuser for these tasks for pace). Equally, once you have correctly created and configured your storage (along with creating shared paths and enabling the right file access protocol in TrueNAS) you will be able to mount and access your storage in a drive, folder and file level in your native OS (arguable BETTER). However, the ease and added benefits of ALSO being able to access your system storage from time to time in even a simple file/folder level in the GUI cannot be overstated. Sure, you CAN create a very based root directly breadcrumb style breakdown in a browser tab – but with most NAS brands offering the same OS-level native file/folder access AND offering a web browser GUI file management option (with copy, paste, archive, thumbnails, sharing, editing) AND mobile applications to do the same. It is really odd that this is not a native option in TrueNAS. You COULD use 3rd party tools of course to do this, but that would be a credit to those and not TrueNAS.

RAIDZ Still Takes Longer than Traditional RAID in ReBuilding Fuller Arrays


This is a small negative in the grand scheme of things and hardly something that leaves TrueNAS/ZFS reflected too badly against EXT4 and BTRFS setups, but although ZFS Raid rebuilding IS much faster if your actual capacity used is smaller (only building the data/space used and hashing/zeroing the rest), that advantage does not help in the event of your storage pool being much fuller and in testing a RAIDZ at 90% full vs a near-identical RAID5 on 4x4TB actually took a pinch longer on the ZFS pool. Again, the difference was small and largely down to the additional checksums and verification of ZFS, but still, something to note.


Potential Defragmentation in Copy On Write Methodology


Earlier, we discussed that ZFS utilizes copy on write (CoW) in order to create a 2nd copy of the data for ensuring the integrity of the write action. Unfortunately, this can mean that TrueNAS can suffer from data fragmentation as time wears on. There are direct performance implications that stem from that fact. This can be avoided with scheduled/periodic de-fragmentation, but this can be time and resource-consuming depending on the volume of your storage. So potentially, the fuller your storage pool is with actual data, the slower it will ultimately get. Write speeds in ZFS are directly tied to the amount of adjacent free blocks there are to write to in order to maintain the CoW process. As your pool fills up, and as data fragments, there are fewer and fewer blocks that are directly adjacent to one another. A single large file may span blocks scattered all over the surface of your hard drive. Even though you would expect that file to be a sequential write, it no longer can be if your drive is full. This can be an often overlooked and direct reason for long term performance drops in some systems over time if left unchecked. I have personally not experienced this, but it has been discussed online (forums, reddit, etc) and therefore I still thought I should address this.

Still Not Especially Novice or even soft IT knowledge Friendly User


Despite the big efforts by TrueNAS to demystify the complexity of storage management in several areas of its storage area (fusion pools being partially automated mixed media pools, the suggested vDev drive drop-down, USB management in that same area and ‘force’ warning options to name but a few), there is still no avoiding that TrueNAS is CONSIDERABLY more complicated to setup your storage and is a large jump from the frank simplicity of Synology and QNAP. Some would argue that the simplicity offered by turnkey/off-the-shelf NAS solutions are incredibly restrictive and inherently limiting, but there is still a substantial learning curve to setting up your storage in TrueNAS that needs to be appreciated and understood at the outset.


In the next part of this review of TrueNAS later this week we will be looking at Account Management, as well as how Business Users who are considering TrueNAS for their enterprise storage can get support and how far that support extends.


Part II of the TrueNAS Review is HERE (23/03)


Part III of the TrueNAS Review is HERE (25/03)


Alternatively, you can read the (LONG) FULL Review of TrueNAS is available HERE.


 


 

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Terramaster T12-423 Celeron based 12-bay NAS

18 mars 2022 à 01:06

TerraMaster Introduces 12-Bay T12-423 High-Performance NAS

Terramaster continues to roll out their new ‘423’ series of devices and for those that thought the recent 9-Bay solution that was revealed was intriguing will be pleased to hear that Terramaster have doubled down o this and crafted a new 12-Bay NAS solution in the T12-423. The Terramaster T12-423 NAS is their first 12-Bay NAS drive (indeed, I can only think of around 3-4 other12-Bay NAS systems ever released and they were HDD/SSD combos, such as the QNAP TVS-1288X or TVS-1282) and building on the architecture of what we have seen from the brand until now, this new system arrives with a current-gen server-grade Intel CPU, improved network connections and a tower-style of desktop chassis. Let’s take a look at everything we know about the T12-423 NAS Drive coming soon.

T12-423 FRONT T12-423 BACK/PORTS

The Terramaster T12-423 NAS – Performance & Connectivity


The Terramaster T12-423 arrives with similar connectivity to a number of their older Fx-422 and Fx-421 NAS systems, however, there have been improvements in a number of key areas and if this is an idea of what the rest of the Tx-423 NAS range will be featuring in 2022, it is a solid start. The external network connectivity of the T12-423 features two 2.5GbE network ports, that allow upto 5GbE via link-aggregation/port-trunking with a supported network switch (as well as being backwards compatible with 1GbE networks of course). Until now Terramaster has only supplied Desktop 1GbE solutions (along with a couple of 10GbE servers too), so it is nice to see the brand embracing the emerging deployment and utility amount network client hardware to include 2.5GbE at the same price as 1GbE. Alongside this, there are USB 3.2 Gen 1 Ports that support external storage, but also Terramaster is one of the last brands in the market with comparatively large USB accessories support vs the likes of Synology and QNAP. These being 5Gb ports and not 10Gb USB ports is a bit of a shame (especially for those who are considering USB local backups to this TWELVE bay system) but the wider USB support is still very welcome. Finally, there is the HDMI output on the rear. Sadly, Terramaster have still to develop any visual/GUI putout for this port and it is reserved for direct, command-level access with security credentials -in other words, maintenance at best. The 2.5GbE ports are the show stealer here though and I hope this is a trend we are going to see from the brand in their 2-Bay, 4-Bay and 5-Bay systems in 2022/2023.

The Terramaster T12-423 NAS – Internal Hardware

The internal hardware of the T12-423 NAS is an interesting mix and alongside the use of the current SMB/Prosumer grade favourite CPU (the Intel Celeron N5105 or N5095 – an Intel CPU Refresh amidst the pandemic means that there are several runs on similar CPUs right now that would have been scheduled in other circumstances), the system arrives with an impressive 8GB of memory by default. I am particularly impressed by the 1x 8GB DDR4 Memory module as standard in the T12-423, as most systems that have arrived in the last 3 months with this CPU (about 3 NAS’) have all featured 2GB or 4GB, so this is a welcome increase for day 1 users. The CPU itself is certainly worthy of note and serves as a notable upgrade over the J4355 in the 2020/2021 generation Terramster systems:

Another couple of areas of note are to do with how Terramaster have stretched the chipset and CPU lanes available in the T12-423. Firstly, the memory maximum of the T12-423 is 32GB. Most systems with this architecture arrive with a 16GB maximum, largely because Intel rate this CPU with that maximum. Therefore it is unusual that Terramaster rate this at 32GB maximum (2 slots, 16GB per slot). Additionally, the system features an additional M.2 NVMe SSD slot (PCIe Gen 3 x2 = 2,000MB/s throughput) but I am still seeking clarification if this can be used for BOTH caching and general storage, or just caching. Most systems would arrive with two M.2 slots (to allow the possibility of Read/Write caching), but I imagine the 12 bays of storage ticked over into the chipset/PCI lanes are enough to prevent this. Still, having the option of installing even a single m.2 SSD is better than ot having it at all, Below is a breakdown of the rest of the hardware specifications:

Processor
Processor Model Intel® Celeron® N5105
Processor Architecture X.86 64-bit
Processor Frequency Quad Core 2.0 GHz (Max burst up to 2.9 GHz)
Hardware Encryption Engine
Hardware Transcoding Engine H.265 (HEVC), MPEG-4 Part 2, MPEG-2, VC-1; maximum resolution: 4K (4096 x 2160); maximum frame rate per second (FPS): 60
Memory
System Memory 8GB
Pre-installed Memory module 1
Total Memory Slot Number 2 (SO-DIMM)
Maximum Supported Memory 32 GB (16 GB + 16 GB)
Note TerraMaster reserves the right to replace memory modules with the same or higher frequency based on supplier’s product life cycle status. Rest assured that the compatibility and stability have been strictly verified with the same benchmark to ensure identical performance.
Storage
Disk Slot Number 12
Compatible Drive types 3.5″ SATA HDD
2.5″ SATA HDD
2.5″ SATA SSD
Maximum Internal Raw Storage Capacity 240TB (20TB x 12) (Capacity may vary by RAID types)
Max Single Volume 108TB
Drive Hot Swap
Note . Hard drive vendors will release their latest models of hard drives, and Maximum internal raw storage capacity may be adjusted accordingly.
. The maximum single volume size is not directly related to the maximum raw capacity.
File System
Internal Drive EXT4,BTRFS
External Drive EXT3, EXT4, NTFS, FAT32, HFS+
External Ports
RJ-45 2.5GbE Network Jack 2
USB 3.1 Port 2 (Type-A USB 3.1 Gen2)
HDMI 1
M.2 2280 NVMe Slot 1 (PCIe3.0 x2)
Appearance
Size  mm
Packaging Size  mm
Weight Net Weight:  Kg   Gross Weight:  Kg
Others
System Fan 80 mm x 80 mm x25mm 3 pcs
Fan Mode Smart, High speed, Middle speed, Low speed
Noise Level dB(A) (Fully loaded Seagate 4TB ST4000VN008 hard drive(s) in idle state)
Power Supply 500W
AC Input Voltage 100V – 240V AC
Current Frequency 50/60 Hz, single frequency
Power Consumption W (Fully loaded Seagate 4TB ST4000VN008 hard drive(s) in read/write state)
W (Fully loaded Seagate 4TB ST4000VN008 hard drive(s) in hibernation)
Limited warranty 2 years
Certificate FCC, CE, CCC, KC
Environment RoHS, WEEE
Temperature
Working Temperature 0°C  ~ 40°C (32°F ~ 104°F)
Storage Temperature -20°C ~ 60°C (-5°F ~ 140°F)
Relative Humidity 5% ~ 95% RH
Package Contents
Host unit (x1)
Power cord (x1)
RJ-45 network cable (x1)
Quick Installation Guide (x1)
Limited Warranty Note(x1)
Screws(a few)

The Terramaster T12-423 NAS – Size, Noise & Impact

Now, let’s discuss the remarkably tall elephant in the room! The T12-423 12-Bay NAS is desktop chassis that is vertically stacked. Much closer in appearance to a desktop PC that you might find under your desk, the SATA HDD bays are a 4×3 configuration, Looking much more in initial appearance to a compact rackmount NAS chassis, this is quite a unique choice of design. The size of the chassis in its narrow form is much taller deployment might out some users off, in more compact server rooms this would be quite appealing. As this is a 12-Bay chassis, with an internal 500W PSU and 3 rear active fans, the ambient noise level (even with modest Hard Drives) will be quite noticeable. However, this is to be expected once you hit this kind of storage capacity. Overall, although the initial design of the Terramaster T12-423 is unusual, I think there IS a method to the madness and I quite like it!

The Terramaster T12-423 NAS – Applications

The Terramaster T12-423 NAS (much like the rest of the Pro/SMB servers in their portfolio) arrives with the TOS software and services. We have reviewed this NAS GUI and platform back in 2019 in Version TOS 4 HERE, but the brand is currently working on TOS version 5.0, with promised improvements in the user interface, security, applications and responsiveness. We were lucky enough to get access to an early build of Terramaster TOS 5.0 and you can find out more in the video below.

The Terramaster T12-423 NAS – Price & Release Date

The release of the Terramaster T12-423 12-Bay NAS looks like it will be relatively soon, as the official product page for this NAS has been made public on the official brand pages. Terramaster says that the T12-423 will be available at approx $1399 and further pricing worldwide will be available soon.

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Need Advice on Data Storage from an Expert?

We want to keep the free advice on NASCompares FREE for as long as we can. Since this service started back in Jan '18, We have helped hundreds of users every month solve their storage woes, but we can only continue to do this with your support. So please do choose to buy at Amazon US and Amazon UK on the articles when buying to provide advert revenue support or to donate/support the site below. Finally, for free advice about your setup, just leave a message in the comments below here at NASCompares.com and we will get back to you. Need Help? Where possible (and where appropriate) please provide as much information about your requirements, as then I can arrange the best answer and solution to your needs. Do not worry about your e-mail address being required, it will NOT be used in a mailing list and will NOT be used in any way other than to respond to your enquiry. [contact-form-7] Terms and Conditions Alternatively, why not ask me on the ASK NASCompares forum, by clicking the button below. This is a community hub that serves as a place that I can answer your question, chew the fat, share new release information and even get corrections posted. I will always get around to answering ALL queries, but as a one-man operation, I cannot promise speed! So by sharing your query in the ASK NASCompares section below, you can get a better range of solutions and suggestions, alongside my own.  

Terramaster NAS TOS 5 Beta Now Publicly Available

14 mars 2022 à 01:11

Latest Terramaster NAS TOS 5 Software Now Available to Test in Beta


If you are a terramaster user and have been wondering what the brand has had in store for it’s software in 2022, it would appear that they have been working busily on a host of improvements, upgrades and new features for the latest version of their NAS System, TOS 5. Now terramaster users are able to try out some of the new features and services that are included that range from a new self-isolation mode, to flexible RAID configurations, AI Photo recognition, Docker, Surveillance support and improved client sync applications. Remember, this is still a Beta and therefore you should not upgrade the firmware on your mission-critical system with this less stable beta! The TOS 5 beta is intended as a means of getting feedback from users on what works, what doesn’t;t and ultimately to help ensure the full release of TOS 5 is the best it can possibly be. So if you do want to test out TOS 5, get your backups in order first! Let’s discuss what is new and improved in TOS 5!


Note – We originally previewed an earlier build of Terramaster TOS 5 Alpha in the video HERE on the NASCompares YouTube channel. LOADS more features have been added since this original alpha preview and we will soon be deep-diving into this newer Beta release very soon. Below is what Terramaster say is included in the new TOS ver.5 Beta. The original press release can be found here with further details, alongside existing features of TOS that will also remain and/or be improved upon in TOS 5 – HERE.


(from the official Terramaster new pages below)

New Features & Improvements in Existing Services


In TOS 5, not only have the storage structure and data interaction mode been reconstructed but also, compared with the previous generation, it adds more than 50 features and 600 improvements. The new features meet more business requirements, as well as significantly improve response speed, security, and ease of use.

Browser Access to TOS is Now 3x Times Faster


TOS 5 adopts progressive JavaScript language and a lightweight framework with faster loading speed. TOS 5 features bidirectional data binding, easier data manipulation, and automatic synchronous response to data changes in the page; UI, data, and structure separation makes it easier to change data without the need to modify logic codes. Using progressive JavaScript language, TOS 5 has a more lightweight framework. In addition, through two-way binding of data, the view, data and structure are separated. When the page is operated, it automatically responds to changes in data, which makes the system “lighter” and achieve faster loading speed.



New caching technology avoids network round trips between the server and the database, bypasses the calculation that occupies resources, saves server resources, and improves response time and waiting time, so TOS 5 has the fastest response time in the current TOS family. Compared with the last generation, the TOS 5 response speed has increased by 300%! Use WASM to optimize the calculation method and execute the back-end complex calculations on the front-end, thereby reducing the calculation pressure on the server. In addition, TOS 5 uses the most popular back-end language at the moment, which can support high concurrent requests. Compared with traditional interpreted languages, the compilation speed is faster. Further information on the newest version of TOS and how the GUI has been redesigned can be found HERE.

Improved Resource Monitor in TOS 5


The new iconic resource monitor board allows you to grasp the operating status of your TNAS comprehensively and intuitively in real-time; at-a-glance visibility of system load, CPU and memory usage, network traffic, disk I/O, device temperature, storage, processes, online users, listening ports, and system resource occupancy. Historical records of up to 30 days can be easily traced back.


Full One Button System Isolation Mode Available in TOS 5


TerraMaster’s unique security isolation mode completely isolates your TNAS device from the external network through network isolation, digital signature, and file format restriction, providing a safer operating environment and effective protection against virus and ransomware attacks.

Support of the WORM File System in TOS5


Data can be written at one time within the customized protection period and cannot be deleted or modified. This effectively protects your data from malicious damage, deletion, or tampering and provides data protection for up to 70 years; essential for the financial, judicial, medical, and scientific research sectors, as well as other business users.

Improved Storage, Backup & Sync Features in Terramaster TOS 5


TOS 5 features optimized storage architecture to reduce the system space occupation. The file deduplication system, file system compression, TRAID elastic array, and other functions also save you up to 40% of storage space

Single Portal Folder Level Backup for Home and SMB Users


Reduce complexity and embrace simplicity. All backup needs can be completed through a single portal, providing one-stop backup solutions including Central Backup, TerraSync, Duple Backup, Snapshot, USB Copy, CloudSync, and other comprehensive backup tools. This meets your clients’ disaster recovery and restoration requirements, as well as backup policies and destinations.

Business Focused ProActive Backups for Larger Business


To improve management efficiency, medium and larger-sized businesses need a centralized and active backup solution for multiple users, PCs, and servers. Centralized Backup is a business-oriented backup solution that supports backup and restoration for multiple device types. You can centrally backup data of dozens or even hundreds of PCs, servers, or virtual machines with only one TNAS.


New Flexible RAID Support in TRAID in TOS 5


By optimizing the traditional RAID mode, TerraMaster RAID (TRAID) gives you flexible disk array configuration, flexible online migration, capacity expansion, and redundancy policies. As well as improving disk space utilization, it also provides solutions and security protection for storage space changes caused by new business requirements. Much like Synology Hybrid RAID (SHR) in that you can mix drive capacities for improved storage after the RAID redundancy calculation. I reached out to Terramaster directly on this and they confirm that this function is supported in TOS 5.

Multiple Client Sync with TerraSync in TOS 5


TerraSync, a TerraMaster self-developed synchronization tool, realizes data synchronization between multiple users and multiple devices. It efficiently implements data sharing among branch offices and data synchronization between individuals on multiple devices and platforms, which assists employees in collaborative work and improves work efficiency.


New CloudSync Application for Bare Metal-to-Cloud Live Sync in TOS 5


The new CloudSync app integrates multiple cloud drives and syncs them into one application, including Google Drive, One Drive, Amazon S3, Backblaze, Box, Dropbox, Koofr, OpenDrive, pCloud, Yandex disk, and Aliyun. This allows users to centralize the management of multiple synchronization tasks and add a variety of cloud disk synchronization options including Aliyun and Rackspace. A more flexible, stable, and efficient solution for data synchronization between your TNAS and cloud drives is facilitated by your choice of customized synchronization strategies, such as traffic control, scheduled tasks, and encryption.

CCTV Surveillance in Terramaster TOS 5


TNAS is an ideal video recording storage device. The new Surveillance Manager makes full use of TNAS storage resources to realize camera management, real-time monitoring, video storage, playback, query, event and activity monitoring and recording, providing you with economic and flexible video monitoring management tools to safeguard your personal and property safety.


AI Photo Recognition Now Available in TOS 5 with Terra Photo


Terra Photos is TerraMaster’s brand-new AI photo management application that provides smart solutions for your photo management and sharing; it uses intelligent AI algorithms to identify and classify faces, pets, locations, and other objects in your photos.


Docker Added to Existing Container Tools in TOS 5


Combined with docker-compose and portainer, the new Docker Manager features an optimized operation interface, with multiple new features which provide visual management that meets all your requirements for container customization and flexible configuration.


New Update to Terramaster’s Mobile App, TNAS Mobile 5


To adapt to TOS 5, TNAS mobile has also ushered in a comprehensive update, TNAS mobile 5. Featuring an optimized user interface and interaction, it has also added mobile phone backup, photo management, personal folders, team folders, data safebox, TerraSync, remote administrator, and other functions, which provide more convenience for remote access, mobile office, and remote management of your TNAS.


 

How to Access the Terramaster TOS 5 Beta?


Before starting the test, please be sure to read the following precautions carefully.


Precautions:

  1. A beta version is an early version of a program that contains most of the main features, but is not yet complete and may have some defects. This version is only released to a select group of people, or to the general public, for testing and feedback;
  2. The Beta version is not suitable for use in work or production environments. If your TNAS device is running business or storing important data, please do not participate in this test;
  3. The root file system, storage mount path, application storage location, and startup mode of TOS 5 are different from those of other versions. You will not be able to install TOS 5 through an update, but will need to reinstall the system. Reinstalling the system normally will not delete the data on your hard disk, but for safety, please be sure to back up your data in advance;
  4. The Beta version released this time is only applicable to TNAS models in X.86 series (220 series, 221 series, 420 series, 421 series, 422 series);
  5. Your current TOS version must be 4.2.09 or higher;
  6. TOS 5 Beta requires a new version of TNAS PC (Windows OS: V5.0.4 / macOS: V5.0.4) and TNAS Mobile (Android: V5.0.1 / iOS:V5.0.1).

Download link:


TNAS PC for Windows OS:    https://download2.terra-master.com/TerraMaster_TNAS PC_for_win_V5.0.4.zip
TNAS PC for macOS:    https://download2.terra-master.com/TerraMaster_TNAS PC_for_Mac_5.0.4.dmg
TNAS Mobile for Android: It will be published later.
TNAS Mobile for iOS: It will be published later.


How to install TOS 5 Beta?

  1. Download the TOS 5 Beta installation package:  https://download2.terra-master.com/TOS_X642.0_5.0.50_Beta_00063_2203071918.ins
  2. Log in to your TOS, go to control Panel > General Settings > Update & Recovery > Restore to Factory Defaults, select “Restore to Factory Defaults” and click “Apply” to clear your original settings;
  3. Your TNAS will automatically restart and enter the initialization guide page; If the initialization page is not displayed, please search the NAS IP address by TNAS PC, and enter the IP address in the browser’s address bar to access;
  4. Please select “Manual Installation”, upload the downloaded TOS 5 Beta installation package, and wait until the installation is complete;
  5. The system will automatically restart when TOS 5 Beta is successfully installed. After the system restarts, set the administrator settings as instructed to complete the system installation;
  6. After the system is installed, clear the browser cache. Otherwise, some system pages may not be displayed correctly.

Bug reports


As the Beta version is an early version of the program, there may be some defects, please do not pass the bugs of the Beta version to the public to avoid causing unnecessary trouble to others.
If you’d like report a bug, please send the description, reproduction method and screenshot of the bug to the email address: [email protected]


 

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This description contains links to Amazon. These links will take you to some of the products mentioned in today's content. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Visit the NASCompares Deal Finder to find the best place to buy this device in your region, based on Service, Support and Reputation - Just Search for your NAS Drive in the Box Below

 

SEARCH IN THE BOX BELOW FOR ANY OTHER NAS

Need Advice on Data Storage from an Expert?

We want to keep the free advice on NASCompares FREE for as long as we can. Since this service started back in Jan '18, We have helped hundreds of users every month solve their storage woes, but we can only continue to do this with your support. So please do choose to buy at Amazon US and Amazon UK on the articles when buying to provide advert revenue support or to donate/support the site below. Finally, for free advice about your setup, just leave a message in the comments below here at NASCompares.com and we will get back to you. Need Help? Where possible (and where appropriate) please provide as much information about your requirements, as then I can arrange the best answer and solution to your needs. Do not worry about your e-mail address being required, it will NOT be used in a mailing list and will NOT be used in any way other than to respond to your enquiry. [contact-form-7] Terms and Conditions Alternatively, why not ask me on the ASK NASCompares forum, by clicking the button below. This is a community hub that serves as a place that I can answer your question, chew the fat, share new release information and even get corrections posted. I will always get around to answering ALL queries, but as a one-man operation, I cannot promise speed! So by sharing your query in the ASK NASCompares section below, you can get a better range of solutions and suggestions, alongside my own.  

TrueNAS/iXsystems NAS Q&A – Your Question’s Answered

11 mars 2022 à 01:43

A TrueNAS and iXsystems Questions & Answers Interview



If you have been on the fence about moving into the world of using the open-source platform TrueNAS for your private server, there is a good chance that the rather elite level server software is leaving you a pinch intrigued. The big ZFS optimized software that is available to download completely for free OR as part of a business targeted solution from iXsystems seemingly promises significantly more freedom and flexibility than off-the-shelf commercial NAS solutions, but there is no denying that regardless of whether you are an existing NAS user that is thinking of going down the ‘custom build’ route OR someone who thinks they are I.T verses enough to DiY it on day 1, that TrueNAS can be fantastically intimidating. Later in 2022, I will be exploring TrueNAS in huge detail, looking at what the platform offers to new users, how it compares with popular NAS brands like Synology & QNAP and hopefully helping to demystify this more community-supported platform. In this first Q&A, in what I hope will be many in 2022/2023, I have canvased YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and directly here on NASCompares for traditional NAS users burning questions about TrueNAS. I spoke with Morgan Littlewood, SVP for Product Management over at iXsystems, and put your questions to him. Below are those questions and his responses. If you have any further questions that are not covered in today’s Q&A, or have follow-ups to those that were asked, then fire them in the comments. We will have our full review of TrueNAS coming very soon here on NASCompares, along with a hardware review of the iXsystems Truenas Mini X+, so don’t forget to subscribe for that. But, let’s crack on with the Q&A.


Note – Today’s Questions come from you, the viewer/reader via the site or social media platforms. Where possible I have kept the questions in their original verbatim form. Where changes have been made, it has been for the sake of clarity in the question for structure.

Why are the hardware requirements for TrueNAS higher than EXT4 based Systems that also run on Linux?


TrueNAS is optimised for reliability and performance. Less RAM can be used, but it is not recommended. We don’t recommend anything that may result in a poor experience. ZFS is more robust and resource-intensive than EXT4 on account of its much safer Copy-on-Write architecture. Snapshots and clones are much simpler, and data safety during hardware and power failures is much higher.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  04:18

Why are the RAM and CPU requirements so high compared to other systems (from Synology or QNAP for example) that can arrive with Intel Celeron’s and even ARM processors?


TrueNAS is a fully Open Source system based on FreeBSD (TrueNAS CORE) or Linux (TrueNAS SCALE) with OpenZFS. The software is professional-grade and is not optimised for minimum personal electronics cost. The software can run on virtually any hardware, including all drivers, even QNAP hardware. Less CPU and RAM will result in lower performance.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  06:08 


In light of a recent spate of off-the-shelf NAS Ransomware Attacks on the likes of Asustor, Terramaster and QNAP, is there any reason that I should think that a TrueNAS build system is less susceptible?


Yes, QNAP (and Synology) have a consumer-grade architecture with poor isolations between apps and the Operating System. Hackers can break into these systems through the complex apps and get access to the underlying OS as a root user.  TrueNAS is professionally architected to avoid these and other issues. Complex apps are isolated to Plugins, Apps, and VMs with no host access. Unlike QNAP and Synology, all software is Open Source and visible to security experts for inspection. It is still important that users follow the best practices our software and documentation encourage.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  08:25

If TrueNAS (aka FreeNAS) is free and can be used on a custom build server, why should I spend more on hardware to buy an iXsystems system?


TrueNAS is Open Source and customers have a choice. Running TrueNAS on used equipment is the lowest-cost approach. TrueNAS on Minis or new server hardware will be similar in cost. TrueNAS Minis have the advantage of being thoroughly tested and supported by iXsystems. There is additional software for managing enclosures which are themselves optimised for storage (e.g., whisper-quiet fans). Any revenues from TrueNAS Mini contribute back our support of the TrueNAS Open Source project.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here: 10:32


Does TrueNAS have Mobile Applications?


TrueNAS is an Open System. There are many mobile apps that use the SMB, NFS, and WebDav interfaces into TrueNAS. Mobile browsers can access the TrueNAS or TrueCommand UIs.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here: 13:57 

Does TrueNAS have any preset minimums in place regarding that, if left unaddressed, inhibit the system in any way (remote access, application support, etc)?


If there is insufficient boot drive space, the software updates will be inhibited. Insufficient RAM will inhibit VMs from performing well.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here: 15:09

Aside from S.M.A.R.T and single drive benchmarks, does TrueNAS have more/better self-testing and benchmarking tools? e.g in an internal means to measure the performance of a RAID configuration?


We recommend FIO for performance testing of the ZFS pool, which is built into TrueNAS. Any other testing can be performed remotely on the system via its various protocols.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  17:40


What is the hardware entry point for a home user to start using TrueNAS?


TrueNAS is not targeted at small home users with one or two drives. Rather, it is for home users with many Terabytes of data, typically video or photo enthusiasts and/or users with a background in IT. We recommend either a used server or a TrueNAS Mini for home use. The TrueNAS Mini-E is the lowest cost, and the TrueNAS Mini-X has more power and flexibility. 


Find the answer in the video Q&A here: 19:22

What are the benefits of running a smaller 4 Disk NAS on TrueNAS compared to Synology DS920+?



The Synology 920+ is a 4-Bay, 4 core Celeron processor with 4-8GB RAM. It uses a combination of BTRFS and RAID to store its data. It is a nice little hardware package with a non-production file system that is less reliable. Synology then mates BTRFS with RAID-5 which is also less reliable in the presence of power outages and bit rot. This combination makes the data storage less resilient, scalable, and portable. The TrueNAS Mini-X system is a step up from the Synology 920+ in reliability and flexibility. It has 7-Bays, 4 Cores, and 16-32GB of ECC protected RAM. It uses OpenZFS 2.0 which is more reliable by design and enables open, efficient replication to any OpenZFS system, plus the normal Rsync tools. ECC RAM is used to avoid any corrupted data or files and provide rapid detection of any faulty hardware. Without ECC, silent errors that are very difficult to troubleshoot and fix can occur.


TrueNAS has recommended drives, but does not make it difficult to use third-party drives, used or new. We’ve seen Synology move to branded drives with poor support of other drives. TrueNAS supports a ZFS Write Log function which makes the system very reliable even during power failures. Data that is written and acknowledged is always safe. The use of RAID-5 and BTRFS does not provide this level of protection


Find the answer in the video Q&A here: 21:07

Which Drives do you use in your pre-populated systems and is the warranty on these inclusive with that of the system?


TrueNAS Minis use WD Red Plus HDDs and a variety of different SSDs. The system warranty includes all pre-populated drives for a single throat to choke experience. We have found the WD Red Plus drives to be very reliable in conjunction with OpenZFS.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  23:16


With TrueNAS Scale, will RDMA/RoCEv2 be supported? 


RDMA is a very useful technology for accessing data in RAM on another system. For accessing data on HDDs and Flash, there is only a minor benefit. TrueNAS SCALE will support RDMA in a future release based on customer/community demand.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  25:05

Do iXsystems and/or TrueNAS adequately support flash server use and if so, does it have intelligent wear monitoring?


SSD wear monitoring is available, but it’s really a band-aid for systems with poor flash characteristics. OpenZFS does two things that ensure a much longer flash life:

  1. Writes to flash are distributed evenly over the drives in the system through the use of ZFS VDEVs
  2. Small writes (e.g., 4K) are aggregated into larger writes (e.g., 64K) as part of the writing process. This reduces the stress on the flash media enormously. Even QLC drives can sustain heavy workloads with OpenZFS.

Find the answer in the video Q&A here: 26:04

How migratable is a TrueNAS RAID array between systems? I.e If my Intel i5/16GB DDR4 6 Drive RAID6 Drive configuration based system suffers a motherboard failure, how smooth/easy/possible is installing these 6 drives in another system? And does the hardware configuration need to match?


Great question. This is the beauty of OpenZFS. There are two ways to migrate data efficiently:


ZFS replication: this is incremental, very efficient, and can be done between two systems with different sizes and even different OSes. You can replicate the entire pool or specific data sets within it. Replication is efficient, making it feasible to do every ten minutes or every night.


Drive Transfer: A ZFS pool can be exported to its set of drives. The drives can then be removed and placed in another system, server, or JBOD and imported as a new ZFS pool with all data intact. The new system does not need to use any similar motherboard, RAID card, OSes, and it can even be a VM with access to the drives. If there are any drive errors, these can be repaired by the ZFS checksum and scrubbing processes. 


You can ZFS replicate or transfer a TrueNAS pool to an Ubuntu VM running on VMware. This is the difference provided by an Open Software model with a professional-grade architecture. The software is designed to give users the flexibility they want and not lock them into a proprietary ecosystem. TrueNAS enables data to be maintained well through several generations of hardware using these techniques. This is critical for long-lived data like family photos, videos, and professional work product. For businesses, it is very important that TrueNAS enables scalability from a few drives to over 1,000 drives in a single system. Large archive/backup systems can support many workgroup systems with the same software and tools. Synology is particularly limited in the scalability of its systems.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  28:16

Does TrueNAS have an active homebrew scene?


Yes, there is a very active community of users doing three things:

  1. Building their own hardware platforms with new and second-hand parts. We have a few users that have re-used QNAP systems.
  2. Assisting with software development. Some users will find a bug and then resolve it themselves. The software is largely in Python and C. Most users will just report the bug via our Community.
  3. Developing or building Apps that run well on TrueNAS. Most of these Apps are now docker containers or combinations of containers.

Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  31:32


What are the benefits of an Open Source NAS over an off-the-shelf NAS system?


The role of a NAS is the long term retention and sharing of data.  Videos, photos, financial, and medical records all need to be retained for tens of years…even multiple lifetimes.  This can’t be done with a single box and will require an evolving family of platforms and backup strategies. Open Source provides the benefits of long term evolution and migration options.  Data can be replicated and migrated easily between systems. New systems can be built with second-hand hardware and free Open Source software.  The user has control of their own destiny. That is Open Source economics. TrueNAS embraces Open Source economics and allows you to choose the hardware platform that best suits your applications and your budgets.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  33:35

How does the TrueNAS Community help a new user?


The TrueNAS Community is a fantastic resource for the average user. Because TrueNAS is Open Source, there are thousands of users that both have operating experience, but extremely good knowledge of how the software works and how to resolve systems integration issues, recover data, and troubleshoot hardware.  When you are trying to do something new with your system, it’s common to find that hundreds of people have already worked out how to set something up, or have the experience to tell you that you can’t get it to work. Community members can save themselves many hours of work and have a fun conversation. The TrueNAS forum is moderated to make sure forum posts are polite and welcoming.


Find the answer in the video Q&A here:  35:48


 


You can watch the original Q&A with Morgan Littlewood of iXsystems below:


 



If you have any further questions about TrueNAS that were not addressed in this Q&A, fire them below in the comments and we will have them featured in a follow-up interview this spring/summer. Thanks for reading.


 


 

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Test POCO X4 Pro 5G

10 mars 2022 à 10:00

I. Présentation

Le tout nouveau smartphone de chez POCO, le POCO X4 Pro 5G est passé entre mes mains ! Il est temps pour moi de vous livrer mes impressions dans cet article après plusieurs jours d'utilisation. Tout d'abord, il faut savoir que POCO continue dans la même direction : proposer un smartphone avec une fiche technique solide, le tout à un prix attractif. Ainsi, le modèle X4 Pro est le premier modèle de la gamme X à intégrer un écran AMOLED !

Sans plus attendre, voici la fiche technique complète, à l'exception des capteurs photo qui seront présentés par la suite :

  • Écran : AMOLED / Full HD+ de 6,67 pouces / taux de rafraîchissement de 120 Hz / taux d'échantillonnage tactile de 360 Hz / DCI-P3 / Gorilla Glass 5
  • CPU : Snapdragon 695 (5G - 8 coeurs) - Gravure 6 nm
  • GPU : Adreno 619
  • RAM : 6 ou 8 Go (LPDDR4x)
  • Stockage : 128 ou 256 Go en UFS 2.2, extensible par microSD
  • Batterie : 5 000 mAh
  • Chargeur : 67 Watts
  • Bluetooth 5.1
  • Wi-Fi AC (2,4 GHz et 5 GHz)
  • NFC
  • Dual-SIM
  • Double haut-parleurs
  • Port Jack 3.5mm
  • Lecteur d'empreintes sur le côté
  • Système MIUI 13 for Poco
  • Capteurs : capteur de proximité, capteur de lumière ambiante, accéléromètre, boussole électronique, émetteur infrarouge, gyroscope
  • Épaisseur : 8,12 mm
  • Poids : 205 grammes
  • Coloris : jaune, bleu ou noir
  • Prix : à partir de 299 euros (Offre de lancement à 249€)

II. Package et design

Lorsque l'on a une boite noire et jaune entre les mains, on sait à peu près ce que l'on va trouver à l'intérieur ! À moins que ce soit une Renault F1 des années 2000 en miniature, mais sinon on peut s'attendre à découvrir un smartphone POCO. Regardons le contenu réservé par POCO cette fois-ci.

En complément du smartphone, nous avons une coque de protection transparente en plastique souple, ainsi qu'un chargeur officiel de 67 Watts, accompagné par son câble USB-C. Enfin, nous retrouvons aussi un guide de démarrage rapide et un outil pour accéder aux slots où se situent les emplacements pour cartes SIM et la microSD. Certaines personnes seront surement déçues de ne pas avoir le droit à la planche de stickers, comme avec le POCO M4 Pro. 😉

L'appareil hérite d'un cadre en aluminium, et le dos de l'appareil est en verre. C'est beau, mais c'est très sensible aux traces de doigt, d'autant plus que c'est la version que j'ai pu tester.

Au dos de l'appareil, nous retrouvons un module photo relativement imposant, accompagné par le sigle "POCO" : une habitude chez ce fabricant, alors ce n'est plus une surprise. L'intégralité du bloc photo est déportée, ce qui augmente l'épaisseur de l'appareil à ce niveau-là, d'autant plus que le capteur photo principal est déporté encore un peu plus. Grâce à cette astuce au niveau de la conception, cela permet à POCO d'éviter d'avoir un appareil trop épais sur toute la surface. Lorsque le smartphone est positionné dans la coque fournie, l'intégralité du bloc photo est protégée grâce à des rebords assez épais.

Si l'on s'intéresse à la tranche droite de l'appareil, on y trouve le bouton on/off qui intègre le lecteur d'empreintes, ainsi que le bouton pour gérer le volume. Par contre, sur la tranche gauche, il n'y a rien du tout. Sur le dessus se trouve la prise Jack, un haut-parleur assez large, un micro et un capteur infrarouge. Enfin, sur le dessous, se trouve le slot pour les cartes SIM/microSD, un deuxième haut-parleur, ainsi qu'un second micro, et le port USB-C. L'appareil est très complet d'un point de vue de la connectique.

On croise beaucoup de modèles de smartphones avec un écran de taille 6,67 pouces, et il faut avouer que c'est une taille confortable. Dans le cas du POCO X4 Pro, cette taille d'écran est bien mise en valeur grâce au bel écran AMOLED en 120 Hz : un atout indéniable pour ce modèle ! L'écran est protégé par un film de protection déjà installé par le fabricant. Sur les photos ci-dessous, vous pouvez constater que l'écran est plat.

Même si en ce moment le soleil se fait rare en Normandie, la luminosité de l'écran me semble suffisante pour une utilisation en extérieur en étant exposée au soleil. D'ailleurs, la luminosité est quasiment doublée par rapport au POCO X3 Pro de l'ancienne génération. Preuve que Xiaomi a souhaité améliorer son appareil sur ce point.

Le téléphone a une bonne tenue en main, mais peut-être même un peu trop, car je le trouve un peu trop épais, un peu trop massif. Cela est accentué lorsque l'on ajoute la coque de protection, ce qui semble indispensable.

III. Qualité des photos / vidéos

Nous l'avons vu : physiquement, le module photo est imposant, mais est-ce qu'il en impose toujours autant au moment de prendre des clichés ? Avant de vous parler de la qualité des photos, parlons des modules photo. Sur le POCO X4 Pro, nous avons :

  • Module avant : capteur unique de 20 mp
  • Module arrière : capteur principal de 108 mp + capteur ultra grand-angle de 8 mp + un capteur macro de 2 mp
  • Enregistrement vidéo : 1080p @ 30 ou 60 fps

Sur le papier, c'est plutôt intéressant, notamment le capteur de 20 mp pour réaliser de beaux selfies. À voir dans la pratique...

Ci-dessous, trois photos de la même scène : la première à gauche en ultra grand-angle, la seconde sans zoom et la dernière avec le zoom x10. On peut dire qu'en extérieur, avec une bonne luminosité, la qualité des photos est bonne et le rendu satisfaisant, sauf pour le zoom X10. Concrètement, avec le zoom X10 la qualité est mauvaise, par contre jusqu'à zoom X4 c'est bien.

Voici deux autres photos qui montrent qu'en extérieur, le POCO X4 Pro est capable de prendre de bonnes photos.

Par défaut, les photos ne sont pas en 108 mégapixels et cela n'a d'intérêt que si vous souhaitez zoomer comme un fou sur une photo : le rendu ne sera pas meilleur, dans tous les cas. L'application "Caméra" donne accès à différents modes pour la prise de vue, mais cela reste du classique. En mode "Super macro", la qualité est correcte, mais c'est la mise au point automatique qui n'est pas super précise ni pratique à utiliser.

Dès qu'il y a moins de luminosité, il y a un bruit important qui apparaît sur les photos, et on perd fortement en détail. Sur l'exemple ci-dessous, en intérieur avec la lumière allumée dans la pièce, on perd déjà un peu en netteté alors que l'éclairage reste suffisant à mon sens.

POCO X4 Pro 5G

De nuit, avec seulement un éclairage d'appoint comme ici avec la lumière à l'extérieur de la maison, j'aurais bien aimé que l'IA sorte le grand jeu pour que les photos soient moins sombres.

IV. Autonomie

Alors que certains fabricants peinent à proposer la charge - réellement - rapide au sein de leur smartphone, chez Xiaomi, c'est généralement un atout. Cela se confirme sur le POCO X4 Pro qui bénéficie d'une charge très rapide avec un chargeur de 67 Watts qui va permettre de passer de 0% à 100% en 45 minutes. Pour atteindre 50% et repartir pour quelques heures, il faut compter environ 20 minutes. À noter une belle évolution par rapport à la génération précédente où l'on avait le droit à un chargeur de 33 Watts.

Avec le POCO X4 Pro, on peut espérer tenir une journée et demie dans le cadre d'une utilisation que l'on pourrait qualifier de classique : navigation web, vidéo en streaming, des messages, quelques appels et utilisation des réseaux sociaux. L'intégration de l'écran AMOLED est certainement bénéfique sur ce point, car il est moins gourmand en énergie que l'écran de la génération précédente.

V. Performances et système

Le POCO X4 Pro embarque Android 11 dopé par l'interface MIUI 13 (version 13.0.1) avec les correctifs de sécurité de janvier 2022. Tout d'abord, ce que l'on peut constater c'est que l'appareil n'est pas livré avec Android 12 à sa sortie. Dommage. Pour le moment, il n'y a pas de mise à jour proposée.

Personnellement, je trouve que l'interface MIUI 13 est agréable à utiliser et, clairement, elle a fait ses preuves depuis un bon bout de temps déjà. Le menu d'accès rapide est sympa niveau design (ça ressemble à Apple, non ?) et il intègre de très nombreux raccourcis, ce qui est appréciable... et on peut bien sûr le personnaliser.

Pour l'organisation de votre "Bureau" Android, vous pouvez positionner les applications vont vous le souhaitez, individuellement ou par dossier, tout en sachant que l'on peut modifier la grille (nombre d'applications par ligne, par exemple). Sinon, le listing de toutes les applications intègre une navigation par onglet où chaque onglet correspond à une catégorie d'applications (Tout, communication, divertissement, jeux, etc.).

Au niveau audio, l'appareil est bien équipé, car il y a deux haut-parleurs afin de proposer de l'audio stéréo. De plus, dans les paramètres du système, nous pouvons accéder à un égaliseur et l'on peut constater la prise en charge du Dolby Atmos. De quoi exploiter la prise Jack 3,5mm en venant connecter son casque audio. Enfin, le paramètre "Toujours afficher" correspond à la fonction "Always On" et permet d'afficher une horloge et les notifications sur l'écran, sans avoir à réveiller l'appareil : c'est tout l'intérêt d'avoir un écran AMOLED. 😉

Il ne faut pas hésiter à faire un tour dans les paramètres de l'appareil pour tirer profit au maximum des caractéristiques de l'appareil. Par exemple, le taux de rafraichissement de l'écran est réglé par défaut sur 60 Hz, alors que l'on peut basculer en 120 Hz pour plus de fluidité. Alors, même si cela aura un impact sur l'autonomie du smartphone, c'est bien de pouvoir en profiter, surtout lorsque l'on joue.

Ce qui me déplaît personnellement, et à chaque fois que j'allume un smartphone pour la première fois j'y prête une attention particulière, c'est le nombre d'applications tierces préinstallées ! Si l'on prend celles de Google et Xiaomi, on est déjà à près de 40 applications, auxquelles s'ajoutent des applications supplémentaires : AliExpress, Amazon Music, Booking, LinkedIn, Netflix, Opera, Tik Tok, Spotify, etc... À cela, ajoutez aussi des jeux : PUBG, Lords Mobile, State of survival, Dust Settle, Bubble Shooter, etc... Il y a près de 20 applications/jeux préinstallées en plus de la panoplie de base. Franchement, c'est trop.

Parlons des performances. Si l'on compare le processeur du POCO X3 Pro et du POCO X4 Pro, on remarque que l'on a d'un côté un Snapdragon 860 pour l'ancienne génération et un Snapdragon 695 sur cette nouvelle génération. Même s'il a hérité de la 5G grâce à cette nouvelle puce, soyons clairs : le X4 Pro est moins performant que le X3 Pro. Néanmoins, à l'usage, il suffit largement ! Bien équipé par 6 ou 8 Go de RAM selon la version, le POCO X4 Pro répond présent et au quotidien il très bien, et de façon fluide. J'ai également joué à plusieurs jeux, sans problème (Call of Duty Mobile, PUBG Mobile, Snake.io).

Finissons cette partie avec quelques benchmarks réalisés avec Geekbench et 3D Mark. La bonne nouvelle, c'est que lors des stress tests effectués via Geekbench, le smartphone n'a pas chauffé.

VI. Conclusion

La marque POCO est présente sur le marché depuis plusieurs années et leurs smartphones sont désormais des valeurs sûres. C'est prouvé une fois de plus avec le POCO X4 Pro.

Je pense que le POCO X4 Pro est un smartphone équilibré puisqu'il ne mise pas tout sur la puissance pure. Même s'il est un peu moins puissant que le précédent modèle, Xiaomi l'a amélioré sur d'autres points, comme le montre ce bel écran AMOLED et sa compatibilité 5G. Malgré tout, ce POCO n'a pas changé sur un point : proposer un smartphone avec un bon rapport qualité/prix.

Ce smartphone séduira un grand nombre de personnes, car il est polyvalent : suffisamment puissant, il propose une bonne autonomie, des haut-parleurs stéréo, une prise jack 3,5mm, etc... Sans oublier l'interface MIUI 13 qui est agréable à utiliser. En revanche, si vous êtes très exigeants sur la partie photo, il ne sera surement pas fait pour vous, car il montre trop vite ses limites sur ce point.

Je vous recommande l'offre de lancement de Goboo.com pour l'acheter :

The post Test POCO X4 Pro 5G first appeared on IT-Connect.

Test Xiaomi Vacuum Mop 2C : un aspirateur robot abordable et efficace

8 mars 2022 à 09:58
Par : Valentin

I. Présentation

Dans la catégorie maison connectée, la marque Xiaomi nous dévoile son nouveau robot aspirateur, le Vacuum Mop 2C que l'on pourrait aussi appeler Mi Robot 2C. Cet appareil hybride aspire et passe la serpillère en même temps, il est d’ailleurs équipé d’un tout nouveau réservoir d’eau plus petit et contrôlé électroniquement pour rendre le nettoyage plus homogène. Il embarque également un processeur ARM avec 4 cœurs pour des calculs plus efficients. Nous verrons toutes les nouveautés tout au long de ce test, mais commençons par présenter les caractéristiques techniques.

De l’aspirateur:

  • Puissance d’aspiration : 2200 Pa
  • Réservoir d’eau : 200 ml, contrôlé électroniquement
  • Navigation visuelle 2.0 (algorithme de  VSLAM)
  • Processeur : ARM Cortex-A7 1.8Ghz
  • 15 groupes de capteurs
  • Serpillère antibactérienne
  • Compatible assistants vocaux (Alexa et Google Home)
  • Tension : 14.4V
  • Puissance : 40W
  • Batterie : Lithium-ion 14.4v capacité nominale 2 600mAh
  • Poids : 3,3 kg
  • Dimensions : 353 x 350 x 81,5 mm

De la base de rechargement:

  • Dimensions : 130 x 126 x 93 mm
  • Courant Entrée : 100-240 V ~ 50/60Hz 0.5A
  • Courant Sortie : 19.8V - 1A

Lien utile : Fiche produit sur le site officiel

II. Package et design

Le carton de l’aspirateur est plutôt sobre, un croquis de l'aspi et quelques informations sont visibles dessus. A l’intérieur nous retrouvons :

  • L’aspirateur robot 2C
  • Le manuel utilisateur (en anglais)
  • Une brosse latérale
  • Le réservoir d’eau
  • Une serpillère
  • La station de chargement avec son câble d’alimentation
  • Le livret de garantie

L’aspirateur est majoritairement blanc, le capteur infrarouge à l’avant tranche un peu avec sa couleur noire. Sur le dessus nous avons deux boutons gris : home et marche/arrêt. Juste en dessous se trouve la caméra qui permet au robot de se repérer, de naviguer.

En soulevant le capot, nous accédons au réservoir à poussières, non loin un voyant LED bleu indique l’état de la connexion Wifi, celui-ci est accolé au bouton Reset.

Pour accéder au réservoir d’eau, il faut regarder à l’arrière de l’aspirateur, en dessous. Il est large, mais très fin comparés aux autres modèles existants, et la fixation se fait grâce à des aimants. Sa petite taille est due à l’électronique qui gère de façon précise le débit d’eau, ce qui évite les pertes.

Retournons à présent notre appareil pour voir ce qui se cache en dessous. Nous retrouvons les habituels capteurs de mouvements et de chutes, les contacts de recharges, la roue omnidirectionnelle, deux roues d’entrainement, la brosse principale et une seule brosse latérale.

Xiaomi Mi Robot 2C

Je vais terminer par la base de rechargement qui est comme le réservoir d’eau, compacte, elle est donc plus discrète. Néanmoins, c'est une taille classique pour une station de recharge. Elle respecte le même design que l’aspirateur, principalement blanc avec une touche de noir à l’avant. Le câble d’alimentation se situe à l’arrière. Il n’y a aucun système pour enrouler le câble et le cacher.

Xiaomi ne fournit pas d’accessoires complémentaires comme une brosse multifonctions ou encore d’accessoire de rechange comme des brosses latérales ou des serpillères.

Passons sans plus attendre à la mise en service et à l'utilisation.

III. Installation, efficacité, autonomie

A. Installation

La mise en service de l’appareil est un jeu d’enfant. En prérequis vous devez installer l’application Xiaomi Home et créer un compte chez le constructeur.

Pour ajouter l’aspirateur à votre application, un simple scan Bluetooth suffit ce qui facilite grandement son installation. Vous devrez ensuite renseigner votre mot de passe wifi pour terminer l’installation. Je vais vous résumer l’installation par les captures d’écran ci-dessous :

Le setup se termine par quelques conseils d'utilisation, puis par une mise à jour du firmware de l'appareil :

Nous sommes maintenant prêts à l’utilisation, voyons tout de suite ce que vaut le Xiaomi Robot Vacuum-Mop 2C.

B. Efficacité

Dans un premier temps, je rappelle que l’aspiration est le passage de la serpillère peut être réalisé en un seul passage. L’aspiration peut également être lancée seule.

Avant de lancer votre premier nettoyage, je vous conseille d’activer dans les paramètres de l’application le "Mode d’enregistrement des cartes (Fonctionnalités expérimentales)". Je reviendrai plus en détail dessus dans la partie "Application".

Pour nettoyer de façon efficace, notre robot aspirateur à plusieurs cordes à son arc. Comme la plupart de ses camarades, il dispose de plusieurs puissances d’aspiration. Elles sont au nombre de quatre "Silencieux", "Standard", "Fort" et "Turbo". Chacune d’entre elles à son utilité, et l’application est là pour vous le rappeler.

J’utilise le mode standard qui est suffisant même avec un chien à la maison.

Remarque : le mode d’aspiration ne change pas automatiquement en fonction du type de sol.

De plus, la brosse principale et l’orifice d’entrée pour la poussière sont plus larges, ce qui permet un ramassage des saletés plus efficace.

Concernant la partie serpillère, le débit d’eau est géré électroniquement, nous n’avons pas la main dessus. Cette particularité permet à Xiaomi de réaliser un nettoyage homogène et de contrôler la consommation en eau. C’est mission réussie, car la propreté est similaire à des modèles concurrents avec l’avantage de consommer moins d’eau. Avec un réservoir plus petit de 200ml, le nettoyage et efficace. Le Xiaomi 2C fait donc aussi bien avec moins d'eau !

L’aspirateur parcours la maison en faisant des allers-retours en forme de S et termine par longer les murs.

Je vais aborder maintenant la partie motricité. Comparé à certains modèles que j’ai pu tester, l’aspirateur ne se bloque pas sur des pieds de porte-manteaux ou de tabouret.

Pour terminer cette partie, je vais parler de la navigation, même si je reviendrais sur les cartes dans la partie application. Avec son processeur quad core, son capteur grand angle de 166° et ses 30 000 points d’acquisitions par seconde, Xiaomi met en avant sa navigation 2.0 qui serait plus performante, mais qu’en est-il vraiment ?

La différence d’efficacité avec la concurrence est visible, nous avons toujours besoin de 3 nettoyages complets pour obtenir une carte, mais le temps de nettoyage est réduit. Il faut environ une heure pour nettoyer mes 55 m² alors que les aspirateurs que j’ai testés jusqu’ici mettent au moins 15min de plus pour faire cette même surface. Plus rapide donc avec une qualité de nettoyage équivalente voire supérieure.

Regardons à présent quel est l’impact sur l’autonomie.

C. Autonomie

La batterie de 2600mAh permet, dans mon cas, un nettoyage complet de mon logement (55m2) en une seule passe avec le mode d’aspiration "Standard". À partir de la puissance "Fort", l’aspirateur est obligé de faire un tour au stand pour faire un nettoyage complet, au bout d'une heure environ. L’autonomie est satisfaisante. Si l’aspirateur n’a plus de batterie pendant un nettoyage, il reviendra automatiquement à la base et reprendra le nettoyage lorsqu’il sera rechargé à 80%. La vitesse de rechargement est qu’en à elle rapide, quelques heures suffisent pour une recharge complète.

Nous pouvons à présent passer à la partie fonctionnalité de l’application Xiaomi Home.

IV. Application

A. Cartographie

Dans la partie efficacité, j’ai précisé qu’il fallait activer l’option "Mode d’enregistrement des cartes (Fonctionnalités expérimentales)" avant le premier nettoyage. Sans elle, la carte de votre maison ne sera pas sauvegardée, vous aurez simplement une vue des endroits où votre aspirateur est passé, mais celle-ci sera effacée lors du prochain nettoyage.

Voici une vue de la carte sans (gauche) et avec (droite) la fonctionnalité d’activée :

Les traits blancs sur la capture de droites représentent le parcours que l'aspirateur a effectué pour faire son nettoyage.

Avec l’option d’active, je rappelle qu'il faudra 3 passages pour que la carte soit sauvegardée. Les pièces vont automatiquement être délimitées. Vous aurez cependant la possibilité de créer des zones virtuelles dans votre maison pour faire vos propres séparations, mais aussi de créer des murs virtuels afin d’empêcher l’accès à certains endroits de votre logement à votre aspirateur. Vous pouvez également créer des zones de nettoyages personnalisées. La configuration est très simple.

B. Planification et automatisation

Des paramètres de planification sont disponibles, vous pouvez configurer votre aspirateur pour qu’il lance un nettoyage de tout votre logement.

L’avantage de Xiaomi, c'est que vous pouvez faire interagir tous les types d’appareils de la marque ensemble grâce à la fonctionnalité "Automatisation". Vous pouvez créer des scénarios en fonction d’un déclencheur. Pour l’aspirateur, les options disponibles sont "Démarrer le nettoyage", "Mise en pause" et "Retourne au quai". Si ce n’est pas votre premier appareil Xiaomi, vous pourrez profiter de cet avantage.

De façon plus simple, des programmes de nettoyages peuvent être créés sans dépendance avec d'autres appareils de la marque.

C. Autres fonctionnalités

Dans cette partie je vais vous parler des fonctionnalités annexes, mais qui restent intéressantes. Une télécommande virtuelle est disponible depuis l’application, vous permettant de diriger l’appareil où bon vous semble. Vous pouvez coupler cette fonction avec le nettoyage d’une zone de 1,5m sur 1,5m (Spot Clean Mode). Ce mode de nettoyage s’active en appuyant 3 secondes sur le bouton home situé sur l’aspirateur. Une fois la zone nettoyée, l’appareil revient à son point de départ.

Le mot Spot Clean Mode ne se lance pas depuis l’application. Il faut physiquement appuyer sur le bouton home. Je trouve qu'il perd de son utilité.

Le robot est équipé d’un haut-parleur, il vous informe de l’état du nettoyage (départ, pause, fin retour à la base). Si votre robot est introuvable, une fonction "Trouver le robot aspirateur laveur" est disponible depuis l’application. Plusieurs langues sont disponibles dont le français.

Quant à la maintenance, l’usure des consommables est visible depuis l’application avec le nombre d’heures d’utilisation restante.

Ce test est à présent terminé, nous pouvons passer à la conclusion.

V. Conclusion

Pour moins de 250 euros, Xiaomi vous propose son nouvel aspirateur robot d'entrée de gamme, qui en plus d'aspirer, vous propose de "laver" votre sol grâce au passage d'une serpillière humidifiée avec de l'eau. Cet appareil hybride intègre toutes les fonctions standards d'un aspirateur robot, avec en plus cette fonctionnalité de cartographie, avec une gestion par zone, comme nous pouvons retrouver sur les appareils un peu plus haut de gamme. C'est un point positif.

Le Xiaomi Vacuum Mop 2C est performant, dans le sens où le nettoyage est satisfaisant, y compris pour moi qui ait un chien à la maison. La serpillière offre un complément à l'aspiration, toujours appréciable. Par rapport à d'autres modèles de gamme équivalente, je le trouve plus efficace et plus rapide. Dommage que Xiaomi n'ait pas inclus d'accessoires de rechange à son package : il faudra passer commande au moment de renouveler la brosse et le filtre. Enfin, le mode "Spot Clean Mode" perd un peu de son utilité, car il est impossible de le lancer depuis l'application : on aura tendance à l'oublier. Mise à part cela, l'application est bien fournie en fonctionnalités.

Offre de lancement : vous pouvez retrouver ce modèle sur Aliexpress au prix de 186,60 € au lieu de 245,48 € avec le code "TSFRD40" ! Ce code est valide jusqu'au 11 mars 2022, dans la limite de 500 utilisations et l'aspirateur-robot est expédié directement depuis la France ! 🙂

The post Test Xiaomi Vacuum Mop 2C : un aspirateur robot abordable et efficace first appeared on IT-Connect.
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