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I've got a NAS with 2 ethernet ports. I have one connected to the router. I read that the second could be connected to double the speed of data to and from the NAS. I don't need to do that, as the speed from one port is adequate. I use the USB port for backup.

I'm interested in using the second port if I can. I just don't know enough to know what to use it for. I may find something to use it for I only I knew what is possible.

What can the second LAN port on a NAS be used for, other than link aggregation?

Thanks for your help.

Added: The NAS is a QNAP TS-251.

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    We'd need to know what NAS device you have. Their capabilities differ. Some may support only link aggregation and failover. Some may support dynamic routing. And so on. – David Schwartz Sep 20 '14 at 17:28
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So "double the speed" is a bit of misnomer. It is possible to increase the throughput of the NAS by having two ports aggregated together generally this is not to a factor of two.

Also, it is worth noting that link aggregation is not only useful for increasing throughput, but it can also be used to handle link failure, so if a physical port goes down for any reason, you will still have connectivity to the device.

That being said, I don't know about your NAS software specifically, but it is possible then to run segregated services on the secondary port. You could run maintenance services on that NIC, or even the management software from that port. This way you can perform you file transfer functionality on one port, and the misc. services on the other - keeping the port free for file transfers.

On my NAS I like to have a management port, and then the port(s) through which the actually NAS stuff happens.

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