One of the biggest issues with having tons of data on your computer is accessing the stuff from multiple systems around your household. This task is usually completed via flash drives and by making multiple rounds from one computer to the other. All you get at the end of the day is a headache and very little amount of data transferred.
This is where Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices come in. They allow you to backup as well as transfer data wirelessly across your network. So all you need is a router for the Device and off you go, you can now access the data as you would on a normal computer.
Today, we will take a look at the new NAS device from Seagate. It's called the GoFlex Home and is the newest entrant in the GoFlex line of devices. The one we have for review is the 1TB variant, but it is also available in 2TB capacity.
Design and First Impressions
The GoFlex Home is quite a looker in terms of design and aesthetics, it consists of a 3.5-inch external hard drive and a GoFlex Dock Network connector dock with a black shiny finish, which will look perfect next to your computer.
At the back of the dock, you will find a power connector, power switch, a USB 2.0 port and a Gigabit Ethernet port. You can use the USB 2.0 port to attach a USB printer or another storage device like a flash drive to increase storage speed.
The external hard-drive should look quite familiar to quite a few users, as it employs the same plastic enclosure as the other GoFlex Drives. The bottom consists of the GoFlex Connector which fits snugly into the dock.
Setup and Features
The Seagate GoFlex Home can be setup in minutes as the Device has just two cables to connect. All you do is physically hookup the device to your home network via a router. Once that is done, install the software from the CD. The first time you setup the device, you will need to assign a unique name for the device as well as create a new account and password (internet connection required). This is mandatory and cannot be skipped. I had a few issues while trying to create the account as the device kept throwing up the error “Failure to connect to device”. A quick reboot and all was well in the NAS-Land.
The GoFlex Home allows five unique accounts on the device. But Seagate also offers a Pro version of this service which allows unlimited accounts along with RSS feeds, Facebook/Twitter/Bebo access as well as secure FTP. Seagate provides you with a 30 day trail of this service, but will charge you $19.99 for a subscription.
With all the above done, I was greeted with the Seagate Dashboard. Which, as you can see by the screenshot above, is divided into three sections. One section allows you to add content on to the device and add more users and computers.
The next one is the applications section which allows you to backup your files via Instant Backup software and view your files and go into the Seagate Share Program
The Application Store is the one which allows you to install and use the premium applications that we spoke of earlier. I wish the premium backup feature came as a standard on the device and is the only issue I have with the old package, although novice users may have to rely on trial and error while going through the options as the descriptions are rather vague, even setting it up may become an issue as a printed user guide was not provided in the package.
The Seagate GoFlex Home works as intended and does its job flawlessly. We tried backing up 20GB worth of files from the host computer to the drive via a wired connection. Transfer speeds reached up to 60MB and the operation was complete in 15 minutes. You can also drag and drop files, or entire drives which you need backed up, via the ‘Advanced Options’ Menu.
Accessing the files on another computer was as simple as viewing it through Windows Explorer. Transfer times ranged from 55 seconds to 1 minute for a 1GB file, but this depends on the connection as well the router.
The Seagate GoFlex Home can also stream your media to a gaming console or Seagate’s GoFlex TV. This feature is appreciated as you can stream data to the devices independent of a computer.
The Seagate GoFlex Home is a great option for those who want a NAS device which is simple to setup and easy to use. The backup facility as well as the Media streaming features are great and work without a hitch. The only issue for me was the Pro version being a paid service. But all things considered, the Seagate GoFlex Home is a great product for first time users who want a Network Storage Device as well as a Backup device among other things.
The Seagate GoFlex Home is available in 1TB and 2TB variants and it's priced at Rs. 8,000 and Rs. 12,000 respectively.
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