D-Link DNS323 (DNS 323)

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The D-Link DNS323 (DNS-323) is a Network Attached Storage (NAS) device that holds 2 SATA hard discs and should enable backup etc.

Read on for my problems which started with a brand new unit and two new 320 GB hard discs on 28 April 2007. It took me two and a half days to realise what was wrong and sort it out. I've documented my experiences here so that everyone can benefit.

Other sources of information

There is a very useful wiki here, that has a lot of information about known issues and also a good forum, I've had helpul responses from a number of people there who have made positive suggestions - thank you all. Once this is sorted out I'll add something to the wiki to help others.

What it says on the box . . .

Here's a shot of the box indicating how the unit can be connected using a cable modem, router and computer(s)..

DNS323 box shot

That's exactly how mine is set up, I have a Shaw Cable connection with a cable-modem, that connects to a D-Link DI-524 router, although that is wireless I always use a cat-5 cable to connect to my computer.

Description of the problem

Unit arrived, with two Seagate 320 GB hard discs, installing the discs really was just a matter on taking them out of the packing and sliding them into the unit. Attaching to the network was amazingly easy, plug the cable that came with the unit into the back of the DNS323 then into one of the spare ports on the router.

Power on, unit booted up fine, completed formatting of hard discs with no problems as shown on Quick Install Guide, so far very easy.

I selected RAID1 because I wanted disc mirroring, two discs with the same contents in case of failure, that way I could also take out one disc and store it elsewhere when away from home.

Next step is to map the drive in D-link DNS323 to a drive letter on my computer.

D-Link provide software called the Easy Search Utility. Run this and it finds the network attached storage (NAS) box and shows the details, as below:

D-link dns323 setup

As you can see it looks great, the device is found and the two volumes are showing too. Volume_1 selected to map to drive F: and click connect, approximately 18 seconds later up pops the login box, as shown below. The device is unchanged from initial state so the username is admin and password blank.


map drive on dns323Click OK and the drive should map - but this is where the problems start . . .


dns323 problem map drive

That's the start of the problems. My first reaction was to think I had done something wrongly, but after a while I realised that's not the case.

I checked the D-Link support site and found that although this was a new unit the firmware and software that was supplied was a long way out of date. First I upgraded the firmware to version 1.02b and downloaded the latest Easy Search utility.

To make sure that all that was set up right I reformatted the hard discs before trying again - still no luck, the unit behaved exactly the same.

It was at this point that I called D-link technical support, fortunately it was an 800 number, which is good because the calls would have cost me plenty.

Response was good, I was talking to a technician within a couple of minutes.

He asked a lot of questions and spent a lot of time with me on hold, I got the impression that this was not a problem that he had dealt with previously.

He asked me to do various things then came round to the drive mapping using the windows system. I needed to go out so I said I would try that later, which I did.

The saga continues on the following pages, you can use the links at the bottom of the page to move to the next page or select from this list to see the pages.