Network-attached storage (NAS) is dedicated file storage that enables multiple users and heterogeneous client devices to retrieve data from centralized disk capacity. Users on a local area network (LAN) access the shared storage via a standard Ethernet connection. NAS devices typically do not have a keyboard or display and are configured and managed with a browser-based utility. Each NAS resides on the LAN as an independent network node, defined by its own unique Internet Protocol (IP) address.

What most characterizes NAS is ease of access, high capacity and fairly low cost. NAS devices provide infrastructure to consolidate storage in one place and to support tasks, such as archiving and backup, and a cloud tier.