Thoughts, information and reflections about technology

Buffalo 1 TB Linkstation Network Addressable Storage Device

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Our main desktop was getting a bit long in the tooth. My biggest fear at this point would be a hard drive failure. I’ve transferred most of my day to day activity to my Vista Laptop. That has been working well since I can now work downstairs. I was running out of drive space on the desktop and had been moving files to USB hard drives.

I purchased a Buffalo Linkstation 1TB Network addressable storage device. The whole thing cost a little less than $300 with shipping. The unit is about the size of a large shoebox.

When you plug it in, it takes a couple of minutes to fully boot. Once it is booted, it will connect via DHCP to your network. I got into the web interface and set a fixed IP.

Once the fixed IP was set I took a closer look at the configuration. It is not set up for RAID as a default. If you want to use Raid1, be sure to configure Raid prior to moving any data to the drive. Setting up the Raid Array takes a little bit of patience. Once you have it set up, then you are ready to start moving data. Also, keep in mind that enabling RAID1 will halve your available storage which means that the 1TB device will provide 500GB of storage with Raid1 enabled.

The web interface provides the ability to set up shares. Since we in a low threat environment, (all family members) I didn’t need to set up multiple shares with different permissions.

The device will work at GB speeds. Our network is running at 100mbs but with three users, that is acceptable. Once the drive is up and running, we simply mapped a drive on each of the local drives to the Linkstation

You can plug 2 more USB drives into the device. We haven’t tried that yet.

The Raid1 configuration provides protection against a single hard drive failure. However, it does not provide protection against other threats such as a someone malicioiusly or accidentally deleting data or something like your accounting data getting scrambled. You should have some type of backup plan which would involve rotating external hard drives, tapes or DVDs for your most critical data. Another option would be to use an online backup system.

Overall we are very happy with this. The RAID is a much better solution than spreading the data over a bunch of USB Hard drives without RAID.

Summary – Overall this is a great solution. Storage requirements are increasing especially with newer cameras and digital video. When you need more storage, you can purchase another unit and plug it into your network.

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