The TeraStation Pro II is Buffalo’s latest upgrade to the TeraStation Pro range launched back in 2005. The new version is available in one and two terabyte versions and is aimed at users needing a plug and play NAS (Network Attached Storage) device that works in just a few minutes and requires little or no attention after install.
Buffalo has kept the mini-server look and feel from the previous TeraStation, but the company has been hard at work inside the box. Like the old device the new TeraStation runs on a version of Linux Samba, however the processor has been upgraded and is now faster, and that, combined with the four 7,200rpm SATA drives, gives a claimed 35MBps data transfer rate.
Buffalo has also made it much quieter: you have to put your head close to the unit to hear anything, and Buffalo claims you’ll only ever hear the fan on the hottest of summer days when the drives are working at full bandwidth. In addition, this new model is “greener” than the previous one, as the power requirement has been reduced to 65-90W. However, functionally the new TeraStation is almost identical to the previous version. The Web front-end has had a few tweaks to make it look better, but the structure and features are identical to the previous version.
The TeraStation Pro II can be configured in one of five RAID operating modes. It comes set up as a RAID-5 array which gives you 700GB of storage on a 1TB system and allows you to carry on operating as normal should a disk fail. In addition, Buffalo has made replacing a dead drive simple: you just unlock the front, pull out the drive and slot in the new drive. The drives are helpfully numbered so you know exactly which one to replace. The other modes supported by the TeraStation are RAID-0/1/10 and JBOD (Just a Bunch Of Disks) mode where each drive works independently and has its own individual drive letter.
In addition to the four internal drives there are also two USB 2.0 ports that allow further drives to be added and both additional drives can be administered through the TeraStation’s Web interface. Additionally, the USB port drives can be used as a way of backing up the TeraStation Pro II using the device’s internal backup software. If you have an old TeraStation or LiveStation, unfortunately the RSync Linux backup software won’t recognise them to backup to, or from. But Buffalo has said that a new firmware upgrade will be available soon to solve this problem.
Buffalo also includes a copy of Memeo’s AutoBackup software for those wanting to use all or part of the TeraStation Pro II as a backup device.
The Web front-end is very simple to use and most users would have no problems in installing the device on a network and then configuring it. In terms of configuration the TeraStation Pro II offers a host of different options.
It can even work with Macs using AppleTalk, plus it’s got a built-in FTP server so anyone with an Internet connection can get access to the files on the device. Security-wise there’s Group and User level security, so you can set access rights to any directory on the device – including any USB devices – for a particular group or individual user.
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