Netgear ReadyNAS Duo 2-Bay (Diskless) Desktop Network Storage RND2000

List Price: $289.99

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Product Description

The ReadyNAS Duo is perfect for homes with more than one computer. Unlike a USB drive, the ReadyNAS connects to the network and is simultaneously accessible via all connected Windows or Macintosh computers. If there is a broadband Internet connection and a home router, the ReadyNAS can be set up to provide secure access to all the stored files remotely via the Internet.For added protection of stored data, an optional second hard disk drive can be installed. The spare hard drive will keep an extra copy of all the data and instantly take over if the first hard drive should fail. Advanced media streaming support allows the ReadyNAS to directly serve media, with no PC required. Officially licensed BitTorrent client allows downloading to occur without the need for an additional computer. A web-based interface facilitates download management from computers, and a special NETGEAR digital entertainer interface allows management from the select NETGEAR device.

The NETGEAR ReadyNAS Duo, a member of the award-winning ReadyNAS family of advanced network storage products, is the ideal storage and file sharing solution for the home or small-office. This compact, quiet, and very low-power-consuming, network attached server lets your network users share all your files, including music and video, easily and securely. The Duo has two storage bays and supports RAID for secure storage with great performance.

The ReadyNAS Duo is a compact but powerful storage device that can store and stream your digital media throughout your home .

With two drive bays, you can easily upgrade the Duo for data redundancy. View larger.

Fast Network Storage and Media Streaming for the Entire Network
The ReadyNAS Duo is compatible out of the box with computers running Windows, Mac OS, or Linux. You don't need to install any special software to get started. One person can be editing photos in one room, another might be listening to music, and a third could be watching video files -- all working off the ReadyNAS. The ReadyNAS Duo features a 10/100/1000 Ethernet connection, so everyone will have fast access.

With the Duo, you don't need to keep your computers running to stream media files. Thanks to its built-in media server capabilities, the Duo can connect via your network to such devices as the NETGEAR EVA8000, Sonos Digital Music System, Apple iTunes clients, Sony Playstation 3, Microsoft Xbox 360, and more.

It also features Logitech's SlimServer software, which means you can stream the music stored on the Duo directly to your Logitech Squeezebox Boom, Duet or Classic devices, completely bypassing your computer. In fact, the Duo will work with just about any DLNA-compliant device.

The Duo also has a built-in BitTorrent client that lets you download files via BitTorrent directly with the Duo, letting you keep your computer off. You can even set your ReadyNAS up to serve web pages directly thanks to the web server built-in.

Simple, Web-Based Set Up
Although the Duo has several advanced server features, you don't need to have a degree in IT administration to set it up or administer it. Thanks to it's easy-to-use, Web-based administration interface, you can easily create user accounts, change user permissions, set storage capacities for each user on your network. The interface, called Frontview lets you configure every detail of the device, as well as check on its health and status. And if you ever run into situations that you need support for, NETGEAR hosts, a knowledge-base site where a community of ReadyNAS users and technicians can help answer just about any question you might have.

RAID for Great Performance and Security
The ReadyNAS Duo features powerful RAID, or Redundant Array of Independent Disks, capability that allows for great performance or security. Basically, RAID means that if one of your disks fails, your data is still available on the second disk. This feature adds a high level of security to your data, ensuring that you'll never lose your valuable data due to a disk failure.

NETGEAR's FrontView web-based control panel makes configuration and administration simple. View larger.
The Duo supports RAID 0/1 as well as NETGEAR's proprietary X-RAID. If you choose to run X-RAID, you can add more storage capacity by simply replacing the two disks with two larger ones, one at a time. The X-RAID will automatically move your files over and expand your disk capacity. The ReadyNAS Duo lets you choose the most appropriate set up for your environment. And thanks to its hot-swappable capability, you can add disks to the ReadNas while it is running, and it will make all the right decisions for you. You simply choose the RAID level you want, and the device will do the rest.

Bring Your Own Drives for Custom Capacities
This ReadyNAS Duo is a diskless version, so you can buy your own drives for installation and create whatever capacity you need. The ReadyNAS Duo can handle two SATA or SATA II drives. If you prefer, there are also versions of the Duo with preinstalled hard drives at 500 GB, 750 GB, and 1 TB capacities.

Compact, Energy-Efficient Design that is Easy to Set Up
The ReadyNAS Duo features a compact design that is quiet and energy-efficient. A low-power function lets you reduce its power consumption to less

The ReadyNAS Duo can serve files to all your computers and compatible media players in your home.
than 20 watts during low use time; you can also schedule the Duo to automatically power down and turn back on, saving even more energy.

A bit taller than a coffee cup, the Duo measures a compact 5.56 x 3.98 x 8.70-inches (HxWxD). It's constructed of sturdy and durable metal. A metal door swings open to reveal two hot-swappable trays onto which drives can be easily installed and slide into the unit.

NTI Shadow Backup Software Included and Time Machine Compatible
NTI Shadow is included with the Duo, making backups a cinch. Every time you save your files on your computer, the Duo backs them up and also lets you revert to previous versions of your files. If you are running a Mac, the ReadyNAS is also Time Machine compatible.

Three USB Connections Let You Plug Additional Accessories
There are three USB 2.0 ports on the ReadyNAS Duo, extending its utility and allowing you to connect virtually any USB storage device for additional storage. You can also connect a USB printer and share printing capability with everyone on the network.

Support Forums and Industry Leading Warranty
A thriving and helpful community at provides support, and NETGEAR backs up the unit with a class-leading 3-year warranty.

What's in the Box
ReadyNAS Duo, two hard disk trays, quick installation guide, warranty card, power adapter, power cable, Ethernet cable, installation CD, ReadyNAS discovery utility, NTI Shadow for Windows and Macintosh.


Customer Reviews:

  • Awesome NAS but too noisy
    This is a fantastic product if you have a separate room or closet for it. It was very easy to set up and I was able to back up my files at decent speeds. I loved the media consolidation features and it seamless with both PCs and Macs. But all these features could not overcome the incessant humming from the machine. It just made our home office unusable so I had to return it. It produces a constant humming sound like an old radio. We might have been able to deal with a loud fan noise, but this was different. I am very sorry to see it go. We tried it out for about a week and just could not stand it anymore. So if you have some out of the way place to stash it, this machine is a fantastic buy....more info
  • This Product Does Not Work Beyond One Week - Poor Customer Suport
    So I purchased the product and it seemed to work excellent. After less than one week the Readynas froze and dropped off the network - so much for back-up. I then called customer support 1-800-Netgear, so after 45 minutes, without exaggerating, I am transferred to "Bob" whom had me reinstall the firmware. After one week the Readynas crashed again, so called customer support with the same run-around. Now after contacting customer support over six times they are unwilling to even exchange the Readynas. My last case number was 9087641....more info
  • An UltraSPARC server
    The Netgear ReadyNAS Duo appears to based on the old UltraSPARC architecture, complemented with a SATA controller. It runs Debian for SPARC and Netgear permits root access to the box to install whatever you want. The box is quiet nice. It does Netgear's own proprietary XRAID mirroring (but not RAID 0). XRAID apparently allows the automatic upgrade to more then two drives, if you would use it in a Netgear box, which supports more then two drives. Unlike with other home office NAS, the firmware is saved in a flash and not on the drives itself. The drives are hot swappable and rebuild themselves automatically unlike with many other personal NAS products. The NAS can share directories via CIFS, NFS, AFP, and HTTP. It also can do FTP and TFTP, which comes in handy in the lab. The ReadyNAS comes with a print server, which is useless as it does not support bi-directional communication, required by most printers these days. You can also share USB 2.0 HD or flash drives, which the ReadyNAS will make available as a share. It can be configured via the WebUI or via standard Linux CLI at your own risk.

    It comes with some "services" pre installed: iTunes server, Logitech Squeezecenter, and industry standard Home Media Streaming server and UPnP AV server. It features the BitTorrent server and some proprietary photo sharing server. Since it is Linux you can run your own Webserver. Apache is preinstalled and Netgear tells you how can activate it via CLI you. You can also use it as DNS or DHCP server but you need to install it via CLI yourself. I would be careful to activate too many services as those tax CPU of course. It is a server, but by modern standards a small one. Performance is decent though.

    I notice some time lack when opening a file but read and writes are just under 9 MB/s, just about under 100Mbps Ethernet. Writes are a bit slower when journaling is turned on. You can also turn off journaling and connect the box to an UPS. It works with the newer home and commercial APC UPS with USB port. You have granular control over rights and quotas in the framework of the EXT Linux file system. You can manage those rights via the WebUI or the good old Unix way via CLI.

    The most important application for me is the built-in backup. It does RSYNC, FTP, HTTP, NFS and a CIFS based clientless backup. You only need to share your files on your notebook/desktop/server, and it will diff it every night and you do not have to worry to loose any files in case your HD should crash. I am still backing up to DVD on regular intervals.

    Basically it is Linux server, based in the UltraSPAR, a top of the line server technology 10 years ago. It is better then just building a Linux server, because the box is small, cheap, and only uses up 20W opposed to 200W or more of a real server, which makes a difference when it runs 24/7. The box is slightly larger the two 3.5" HDs stacked. The ReadyNAS is very quiet. When it first was formatting the drives the fan ran at full speed and was noisy but then they slowed down to 1500 RPM and you hardly can hear it. The box stays cool. Most people will not use the Linux CLI but rather the intuitive and easy WebUI.

    It is cheaper to build your own then by the loaded version. Believe it or not the 500GB version is cheaper then the on without drives. I configured the system with mirrored 1TB drives:

    - Netgear ReadyNAS RND-2150
    - 2x Seagate ST31000340AS
    - Crucial CT12864X335 1GB RAM
    - APC Back-UPS ES BE750G

    The ReadyNAS is reportedly very picky on hardware combinations and you need to check Netgear's hardware compatibility list.
    ...more info
  • ReadyNAS Duo is a great device
    This has been a great product so far. Easily accessible on my network, lots of good features, and easy to use.
    The only disadvantage so far has been that when the device is running and my roommate plays Halo2 online, he experiences network problems, but when the device is powered down, he's fine. ...more info
  • Great network storage device
    I based my decision on purchasing this device primarily on the reviews from this site. As it turns out, it was the correct dicision. I am using it with two XP machines, and one Vista machine. Set up was not that difficult at all, and so far (about a week) it has performed beautifully. I also found out something that I should share... Do not use the same share name on the ReadyNAS as the user name on your computer, or you will get access denied errors. I found this out the hard way by searching the web. I called Netgear but they were of no assistance, and told me that it was a computer security problem. i hope this helps the next person who runs into this proble. Otherwise, this is a good product. I also like the quick and simple backup software that came with the unit....more info
  • Great NAS for the price
    Super easy to install, relatively quick no-hassle operation. The only negative is that it doesn't work well with Windows Vista - you have to modify the MTU settings to get performance up to snuff....more info
  • network drive
    Runs very quiet. Setup is not so easy for a beginner. Liked the backup software....more info
  • Nice product with rooms to improve
    Almost give up on Netgear tech support and return this product but they finally answered my call and resolved my issues. Now I am happy to keep it. Here are problems
    - "media" folder will repeatly shown up to 25 subdirectory deep, you must install new photo add-on to fix it
    - Can't turn off "optimize for OS X" unless you install beta firmware
    - recommand UPS to avoid hd out of sync problem after power hit
    - Tech support is really slow, be ready to be put on hold for one hour before the real tech talks to you.
    - Do upgrade firmware, do read up on their website for tips....
    - USB port can work as printer server but don't expect all-in-one to work with it well,
    - Refresh buttom might not give you real status under Volume info..
    - Do download the Twonky add-on to get better view of itune/Ipod stuff from PS3.
    After all, this is a keeper, can't see any other product at this price range with these many feature. ...more info
  • Unstable
    I've had this product for about 6 months now and I am not impressed. The features are great, but I've had a lot of problems with stability and I am not confident keeping my data on it. When configuring the unit via the FrontView (their term for the gui), the unit crashes often and requires a reboot (yes, I am running the most recent code 4.1.5). When recently upgrading to the most recent code (4.1.5), the upgrade failed and all my data was gone!! Both drives! I called Netgear for support and had to drop $70 just to talk to someone, who didn't know what they were doing. It wasn't until I pushed the issue that I got to talk to someone with some experience. They were able to log into the unit, get it upgraded, and my data was back. But now I have no confidence keep my family photos, music, or video on the device. ...more info
  • Great so far after a month
    I got this a month ago. Setup was easy enough. Ordered a second drive, installed it and had a mirror shortly after. Copied my data, created shares and logins and we're on our way to server bliss. Moved my iTunes library, docs and pictures. The picture software and server to view pictures from the web is a little slow to upload. They should get something like Kodak easy share express upload to make it faster. I thought pictures were viewable from the internet on the device but you upload them to a server at Netgear like kodak. Otherwise great little box that gives a central storage place and redundancy....more info
  • Great NAS
    I bought this a little more than a month ago. I am able to do almost averything that is advertised. I have no problem sreaming media to both Xbox 360's. I still haven't figured out how to get my printer working on it, but since it is a Dell, I don't think it is the NAS. I did have the orginal Seagate hard drive fail. When I found out which drive it was, I swapped the original Seagate with the Western Digital (500GB Each) thinking the mirror would pick up. Needless to say, I shouldn't have switched them because when I did that, the NAS re-formatted the mirror to the default settings and I lost 300GB of data. Customer support was helpful in getting the hard drive replaced, but I think it should be explained in the manual that you shouldn't swap the positions if a drive fails. The only reason I did the swap was because I couldn't see the nas via frontview, but once I isolated the bad drive and inserted the mirror in bay 1, the NAS was recognized and then proceeded to re-format the drive thinking both drives were dead. Ignorance on my part, but I think it should be explained very clearly in the manual about what to do and not do do in case of a drive failure to avoid loss of data.

    All in all this is a great device and I would recommend this to anyone....more info
  • Mac OS X Users Beware
    After reading many reviews of network backup systems I purchased the Duo2150. Netgear claims that it is compatible with Macs, that set up is simple and easy and that internet access to the stored files is straightforward. None of that turned out to be true, at least for me. I advise Mac users to exercise extreme caution before purchasing this device. Initial setup failed when trying to get to the Safari configuration screen. I have a simple home network that has a linksys router running my machine on a direct ethernet connection, my wife's machine wirelessly and a network printer with an ethernet hookup. A Mirra backup server, which finally crashed after years of service, worked seamlessly on the network but was painfully slow. I called Netgear tech support. To make a painfully long story short, they were unable to resolve the issues after six hours on the phone. I worked my way up through the third level of techies. The conversation with the last person began to end when he said he would have to run through a Mac set up on his lab machines. I asked him if he knew how to do a Mac setup. After much hemming and hawing he admitted that he did not. I then asked if anyone else in the shop knew how to work with Macs. The answer to that question was also no. At that point I simply threw up my hands and elected to return the system along with the second hard drive I had planned to install later. I will now buy an Apple Time Machine. That will not provide internet access when away from home, but at least the back up will work seamlessly. ...more info
  • Dead as a doorknob
    Worked well the first 70 days. Now it won't do anything but churn the disks and blink the power light. I don't know why I was expecting more, but I was....more info
  • RAID works like a charm. Lacking knowledgeable support for Squeezebox and iTunes
    I bought this so that my iMac and Squeezebox 3 could be used with the Duo built-in iTunes server, etc. I bought two 1TB harddrives and swapped them with the orginal 500GB drive without any problem! The Duo can send e-mail alerts to update any changes in its status, which is pretty cool.

    Getting the Duo to work with SB3 is another matter. I still can't get it to work. Songs are loaded in the Duo and can be seen on my SB3, but no sound is coming out when a song or album is selected to be played. Unfortunately, Tech support was poor, and the tech support people constantly told me to get help form SB3 and Apple. I gave up trying to get it to work with SB3 for now.

    I also have a Sony PS3, and getting photos to stream to my PS3 has not been sucessful either.

    Others have posted that they can get it to work. I must admit that my engeering background has not helped me much....more info
  • It works as claimed
    Nice box that does the job. Getting the setup utility running in Linux was a bit tricky and required copying the files off the CD and running as root - see websearch for more on this. Changing from the default X-raid to RAID 0 required setting an option on boot after factory reset via the setup utility. That option allows two drives to be considered separate RAID 0 volumes where redundancy is traded for capacity.

    USB handling is good. Tripplite UPS was detected when plugged in - works. Printer, even with Cables To Go - 16898 USB to parallel adapter, was recognized and shared. External drive plugged in was good to go. I suggested on the ReadyNAS support forums that they allow printer shares to stick because its name changes to untitled when the printer is turned off.

    The root ssh plugin made it convenient to move files around to organize shares and see how the system was setup.

    Web interface is OK and does the job for setting up users, groups, shares, and other features. ...more info
  • Great file server, ITunes software? Back to the drawing board.
    As a file server this device is awesome. Set up is easy for both Mac and PC. Webserving is also a snap, as is the bittorrent add-on. The only junk here is the advertised ITunes streaming service. Not only is it unable read many mp3's and mp4's that ITunes has no problem with, but instead of giving an error message or skipping the files, the application completely locks up and has to be removed and reinstalled before you can try again (at which time it locks up again). A quick check to the Redynas forums shows the problem to be pretty universal and, if you have a lot of files in your ITunes library, the fix is complicated, time consuming and involves paying for extra software to repair music files tat ITunes plays with no problem. The software is a beta product but still, it is an advertised function of the device and therefore should work....more info
  • Save some money
    These are great units! The best on the market. Fast, nearly foolproof and backed by GREAT support from Netgear. The ReadyNAS products are the best in their class... but a bit pricey. I've been extremely happy with mine.

    But since they're are a bit pricey here's a way to get a bit more value. With the 1TB version currently about $200 more than the 500MB version you can buy the 500MB version, throw away the internal hard drive and buy 2 1TB Seagate ST31000333AS drives for $99 each (current Amazon price) and create a RAID'd 1TB (2x1TB) device for the same price as buying the pre-configured non-RAID'd 1TB (1x1TB) version. And there is literally NO DIFFERENCE. This is a supported upgrade path by Netgear. Just put the 1TB drive in the second slot and wait until resynch'ing is finished. Then pull out the 500MB drive in the first slot and replace it with the second 1TB drive and wait for it's resynch. Next reboot and choose the volume expand option in the console and there you have it! 2 1TB drives for the price of one. And you can sell the extra 500MB drive on eBay if you want to!

    Upgrading these units like this is almost foolproof and believe me it's as easy as it sounds....more info
    This is one fantastic item. It works exactly as it should and gives me peace of mind that my files are safe. I purchased a second hard drive from amazon and it installed very easily. Setup was a breeze and my printer works on all of my computers. Do not hesitate to buy this....more info
  • Worst user interface and user guide ever.
    I am astonished at the positive reviews for this device. I am not an IT professional, but neither am I inexperienced in dealing with complicated PC systems. After 24 hours I would have to say that I have NEVER encountered a more inept user interface and manual. This has great capabilities, and would probably rate four stars if I could ever figure out how to make it work. I don't even know what to ask of Netgear support, it is that bad. DON'T EVEN THINK OF BUYING THIS IF YOU ARE NOT AN IT PROFESSIONAL. Two stars, optimistically....more info
  • A must have to protect and share your family data
    This is a Network Attached Storage device with 500GB of storage. When you connect it to your network, it will allow you to store up to 500gb of data with any computers on your network.

    If you add a second SATA hard-drive, it will use a technology called RAID to keep a real-time backup of the data on the first drive. Installing a new drive is very easy, and you can get one from for about $70.00.

    If one of either drives fail the unit will e-mail you, you can simply pop out the bad drive and install a new one. The unit will rebuild a backup on the new drive while still allowing access to your data.

    The unit comes with software that will allow you to configure the unit by adding folders and users who each have their own passwords. You can allow anyone to access a particular folder, or limit access to certain users. You can even allow some users read/write access while limiting others to read only. Most configuration options are set via a web-browser and once you are directed to the web-page, you can just bookmark it for future reference.

    The unit also supports a number of streaming protocols, which means that you can store video, music, and more on this device and then access that data from other network devices, including the Xbox360, other media players that attach to your TV made by D-Link, Netgear, and Buffalo, and Logitech's Squeezebox products (which are themselves totally neat ways of having a whole house connected music system).

    If you set it up right, you can also allow access to the device from the internet. However, I don't recommend this, because of the risk that someone may try to hack your system or launch a denial of service attack. If you want remote access, get a VPN Router (Linksys makes a very nice one).

    There are a lot of low end NAS devices around. Many of them are very slow (i.e., Linksys devices) or suffer from firmware limitations that I don't like (see my review of the D-Link DNS-323). Overall, I think that this is the best balance of price, speed, and reliability for the mass market. If you can afford to spent $1,000 on network storage, Linksys makes a 4-drive version that lets you get about 1.3TB of storage, with a single drive acting as a backup called the ReadyNAS NV+, which I also highly recommend....more info
  • Disaster
    I've had to return two of these RMA defective. The only positive thing I can say is that tech support (24/7) was very friendly. After being on the phone one night for 1 1/2 hrs with a level one, I had a level two work with me ufor 4 1/2 hrs longer. I spent at least 30 hours and three virtually sleepless nights trying to get two differnet units working, to no avail. By the way, the issues with the two defective units were entirely different, but the end result was the same - I never got either to work. I'm giving up on ReadyNAS and Netgear based on the worst experience I have ever had with any computer equpment. ...more info
  • Read this before even you plan to buy
    I am writing in this review within a day I got this working. But, I think that its enough time for a techie like me to write a review. Like many of you, I have read the review and brought this product paying $354.I had sea gate USB drive. The USB broke so I decided to get a network drive so that I can store the information on net and things can go smooth.

    With in couple of mins I installed the SATA seagate Baracuda which contains almost 325 GB of information which I collected over 5 years.

    The moment I started the machine I could see nothing on my drive all it showed was 1 disk with 465 GB of free space, and the second drive was blinking. Wait a second, I did swap the primary drive so that I can get mine booted. Bhoommmm all my 5 years of hardwork wiped in 5 milli seconds.

    I called the customer service and waited for 15 mins to get connected to an agent. The agent's name is Sonia and her agent id is 2723. I told her this and she said that "Netgear NAS" expert would call me in 5 mins. I never understood that 5 mins means on NETgear terms is like for ever. I dint even receive call till now and its now 11:55AM EST almost 15 hrs passed.

    I lost and NETgear won. uhooooooo hail this idiot box.

    I tried to access files by getting connected as network drive. Of course its INTRANet not internet. I guess Netgear understand as internet when connected to the router and never responds behaving like a remote server.

    I am lucky to be the most luckiest guy on the face of earth to get sucked by Netgear.

    I don't wish to hear from others that they are lucky like me. so go ahead and make your choices. All the "applauses" to this one is so true that you don't want to buy this junk. They are all made up review. What about me? I am not, since I provided with every detail of the customer service agent and her id too. Call her and you will know...more info
  • Enterprise level product
    This is bar far the best backup storage unit I have ever purchased. Excellent solid build, small, quiet and capable of a ton of features. I use it as a mini server storage station and print server for multiple computers at home. I also purchased a second drive to mirror itself. My only complaint is that the instructions are not the best for setting up a lot of the things that it can do, considering this model is geared toward the masses. But then again, there is always the online forums....more info
  • Nice Product
    I have had the ReadyNAS running for about two weeks now, so I thought I would leave a quick review. I also bought two 1 TB drives, 1 GB of memory and a UPS for this whole setup. All of this dditional equipment was from the approved lists from Netgear. Setup of the ReadyNAS was one of the best I have ever had. I started by loading about a GB of files to the ReadyNAS and then started the upgrade process one item at a time: Memory, one of the 1 TB drives, then the 2nd 1 TB drive. I checked things each time along the way to make sure content made it through the process. No problems at all. Adding drives takes time for them to initialize and then sync. I was a little worried after adding the 2nd drive and was still at 500GB, but then I read in the FAQ that another reboot and the drives will scale up to 1 TB. The UPS works perfect with the ReadyNAS USB connection. The backup process to an external USB drive works without any problem not supper fast, but that could be my USB drive as well.

    I have only two gripes. The first one is that I could not get the CIFS stuff to work to create a user and password protected share. I have not tried this again since I upgraded the software on the NAS from 4.01 to 4.14. It could be it is working now. It could be it worked before and I was doing something wrong, but I found it hard to find answers to questions on this stuff. The second grip is with the uPNP functionality. This application seems to have some bugs in it. I have had times when I have had to reboot the NAS because the uPNP seemed to be dead. I think this could be because I had the Auto Update enabled. It is kind of a pain too to have to rescan the media share after you add content, but that is not too big of deal. The other bug is that the logging of the rescan finishing does not happen correctly, so you don't know it is finished unless you download the whole set of log files.

    I use the ReadyNAS with the Sony PS3 and it really works nicely once you get things up and running. Make sure you update the NAS software as well. I do find that after I do a rescan on the NAS, I have to reboot or research the PS3 to get the new files to show up. I am not sure if this is PS3 or NAS problem in that they don't seem to know things have changed.

    Bottom line is I think this is a great setup. Once you know all the little issues you can work around them without too much trouble. ...more info
  • Easy Set-Up
    Just as described the ReadyNAS Duo is easy o set up and super small. real nice product....more info
  • Great Storage Option for home or small office
    I have had this drive for about a week now and I love it. Not only am I able to use it as a NAS, but now I can use it with my Tivo too and I don't need to use Tivo Desktop to share and move movies around to other computers to watch them. I simply transfer everything I want to keep off the tivo to a machine with Tivo Desktop, then periodically, i will move them from the computer to the nas. After that every machine in the house can watch the shows without any lag or wait, its great.

    There are still other features but my favorite is the ease of setup and that it works, tivo and music streaming, 2bay design for large storage and/or redundancy, built in print server, expandable/backupable to external USB drive.

    I would highly recommend this item to everyone. i only wish it could be cheaper or the NV+ (similar to the dup , but with 4 bays) would come down in price....more info
  • Met and exceeded my expectations
    I have a love-hate relationship with Netgear. My first router was a Netgear that worked like a charm. Wireless NICs worked well. My last two routers were bricks. I was a bit skeptical as to what to expect from the ReadyNAS, and I must say, I was pleasantly surprised.

    This is a great little device that does so much more than other compact NAS devices that I have seen.

    My favorite features are:
    1) Flexibility in multi bay use. I have been looking for a better solution as apposed to having multiple external USB drives that relied on a computer that must remain on. Aside from having two internal bays that can be used in a RAID or JBOD configuration, the device itself can accommodate additional external storage. The fact that its hot-swappable was a huge plus.

    2) Backup of data to external storage with one touch

    3) Setup was simple. I was up and transferring within 20 minutes of opening the box (including time to update the firmware). I installed another 500GB to go along with the Seagate 7200.11 500GB - the DUO formatted and synchronized the little data that I was playing with.

    4) Print server capabilities

    5) Tivo compatibility - I have been streaming music and photos to my TiVo. There is also an update to stream video, which I have yet to setup. The photos and music worked automatically.

    I wanted to use more of the features before I submitted my review but the unit already performed so well and has met all my expectations and more that it merits a 5-star rating even if the other features were mediocre.

    This is an ideal solution for homes where everyone has their own computer, cameras, etc.., and being able to store these centrally makes most sense. Because it can function as a print server as well, this would have been an ideal transition unit before you upgrade to a fully independent server unit. If the Duo was available when I moved to SERVER 2003, I might have put off transition because we were mainly looking for centralized storage, some backup and print server functions. Lastly, I like the fact that Netgear has already validated these units with 1.5TB drives.
    ...more info
  • Terrific solution
    This is really a great machine. I am convinced that those folks who had data destroyed were not following the directions. This machine takes a little time, but I feel so much better with it protecting all of our data/pictures/music/etc.

    I purchased the base model and then added two (2) 1000GB Seagate ST31000333AS for less than the price of the upgraded, 1 drive model. Now I have 1 TB of storage with two drives mirroring each other; the only thing that can bring us down is a fire.

    You just have to take it slow. Install the unit and let it configure (about an hour if I remember), install the 1st big drive in slot 2 which will configure and then mirror the first drive (but only at the size of drive 1, 500GB, took about 4 hours), then slide out drive 1 and replace with 2nd big drive (drives are hot swappable, took about 4 more hours). Finally, it will want you to reboot the unit so it can realize the full 1TB of space. Took about 1 more hour.

    All the while, it e-mails you the status of what it is up to so you know what to do next (if you fill out the proper fields) The Itunes server works well too (it took about 3-4 hours to find all of the 68GB of music I have). I haven't yet tried out the functionality of inviting family to look at pictures, but I find that a much better option then sorting out which pictures to sent to who.

    Very satisfied - Great Machine
    ...more info
  • Great NAS device
    Easy to set up and easy to use. Great for home networks with different operating systems to share and back up files. ...more info
  • Great for families that want to organize and back-up their data!
    I love this device. It is so easy to get up and running. It's a great solution for a family or even a start-up business to organize their data (be it movies, photos, etc. or source code). The user management system probably works better under NFS and UNIX/Linux environments because of the way you can create users and groups with user ids and group ids like in UNIX. But I'm using it at home just fine with Windows under CIFS... in that environment, you can create users with passwords so that when you access \\MyNAShostname\MySharedFolderName, you will be prompted for login credentials if you are accessing a non-public share (you can set up a share to be freely accessed by anyone in the network or you can identify specific machines or users/groups that can access each share). I wish it was easier to tie to your Windows login. But no biggie.

    This device is probably not appropriate for businesses, though (the lack of Active Directory support and the possibility of tens to hundreds of users accessing the device at once are probably not the use case this device was meant to address).

    The two biggest benefits I see are:
    1. Having shared folders available over the network so we can organize our files rather than keeping them in our separate laptops, desktops, etc.

    You can do this with a desktop computer (using it as a file server), but it sucks to leave it on all the time. The RND2150 is much quieter and draws less power than a desktop. The only point at which the device is noisy is for the half-minute or so when you first power it up. It's quiet!

    2. Redundancy. Hard disks fail. With RAID, you can be protected in case one of the disks fails. The X-RAID system is so easy--popping in a new disk was so effortless I was stunned. It's hot-swappable, so you don't even need to power down the unit to stick in a new drive.

    NOTE: I believe that if the NAS device itself (not the disks inside) fails, it may still cost you money to send it in to get the data extracted properly. But there are evidently capabilities to manage back-ups to a USB external drive from time to time. So for full protection, buy this unit, put in an extra drive (to benefit from X-RAID), and also get a USB drive if you're paranoid about the device itself failing. Making it so easy to take advantage of these capabilities in a reliable manner is what I was looking for in a NAS.

    My chief complaint is that it can be difficult to find information on good compatible disks. Their support community website publishes a short list. But most of the drives listed are either Seagate (which a lot of people are avoiding until they prove they've resolved their quality issues) or obsolete versions from other vendors. NetGear really needs to get their certification testing act together. Why certify so many Seagates when there are many questions surrounding it? I saw in a random forum somewhere that people had been using Western Digital 640GB drives without issues (WD6401AALS), so that's what I just stuck in there a minute ago. So far so good... will take about 5 hours and 40 minutes to initialize.

    I'm really quite happy with this purchase. It's also sturdy and doesn't take up much space....more info
  • ReadyNas Is Great, Amazon on the other hand...
    The product works as advertised. Has a great forum and customer support. However the price dropped, within 2 week and Amazon would not refund the difference.

    I think amazon should seriously reconsider reinstating their price guarantee...more info
  • Transparent but a little flaky
    I selected this product as a replacement for my dead network file server in my small home-based office. I read lots of reviews and settled on the NetGear over the Buffalo line of products in large part because some of the Buffalo reviews complained of things disconnecting from the network. That was a problem that I never had with my old file server and didn't want to deal with now, so I went with the NetGear. Unfortunately, it has been a problem even with the NetGear. The NAS drive has dropped out of the network once, but I have had individual workstations drop out repeatedly. I'm not happy about that and don't know what to do to stop it from happening again. But the NAS drive itself performs quietly and efficiently. If it weren't for the disconnection problems, I would give it 5 stars....more info
  • Just the ticket
    I had another RAID 1 hard drive enclosure that failed and was looking for a replacement. I was going to have to void my warranty with the previous one to get my data off of it, so I wanted a new one that made it easy to swap drives. I learned, when I got the old enclosure apart, that one of my drives was bad in addition to the old enclosure itself. Luckily, the software RAID in the old enclosure worked well enough so I didn't lose anything. However, with the replacement, I wanted pain-free, reliable RAID 1. I didn't want to pay a fortune to get it, either, since I'd spent so much on the last enclosure that didn't work.

    After a LOT of research, this is the product I decided to buy. I am absolutely thrilled with the results. The only general complaint about this unit was the user interface for configuration, but I found it fairly straightforward and had my unit set up in less than five minutes. After copying my data from the old drive, I installed a drive in the second bay (which took seconds to do) WHILE IT WAS POWERED UP AND RUNNING, which was a huge selling point. The mirroring started automatically, finished within a couple of hours (for ~170GB) and e-mailed me when it was done. I immediately took out the first drive to test the RAID and could see and use my shares and files from the second drive without any disruption whatsoever. When I plugged the first drive back in, the second drive mirrored to it automatically.

    This product does exactly what it is advertised to do, does it at a great price and has an excellent warranty as well. I can't imagine a better experience. I rarely write reviews (although I know I should), but this is one of the best products I've ever bought and I thought others might be able to benefit from my experience. I traditionally buy from one of Netgear's competitors for network equipment, but will absolutely look at Netgear in the future....more info
  • Awesome NAS
    Very well designed and full-feature NAS: Simple to use and configure, supports expandable mirroring, integrates well with Linux and Mac computers. ...more info
  • Best NAS I've owned.
    I've owned 3 NAS (HP,Buffalo, and this). This is the best one for many reasons. First off, it's tiny, and quiet. About the size of 3 bare drives in width and about 1.5x the drive in length. Construction is out of metal and looks very sturdy. Metal should help with heat dissipation as well. The hot swappable drive is unique in this price range. I do wish that the drive's status light is a bit bigger.It's like a tiny dot.

    The reason that I like this drive the most is that it's the first one I've used that is completely trouble-free in setting up. Adding a second drive is as simple as popping in another HDD. It recognizes the drive and automatically builds a mirror. Software works great. It detects the drives right away and every function works without a flaw. I've had all sorts of set up problems with the HP and buffalo. Transfer rate is as good or better than all my current NAS.

    I've had the 500g drive for a couple of months and it served my 8 station music system without a hitch. I bought 3 more for use in the office as a file server, and it's a hit. Tiny, silent, cool running and totally reliable up to this point....more info
  • Nice Product with a few potential improvements possible.
    This was pretty easy product to setup and worked flawlessly with my desktop PC delivering transfer speeds of 12-15MB/s when connected via a D-Link DGS-2208 Gigabit switch. There is a bit of low pitch whine from the fan and it's scary noisy when you first boot it (it calms down after it is done booting) but overall it's very quiet.

    I had some trouble setting it up until I realized that you have to create a DLNA media share directory in order for the PS3 to see the files. Confusing because the bittorrent samples were visible, albeit the PS3 played them without sound for some reason. Needless to say the manual is non-existent and the help is pretty useless if you don't know what you are doing. I'm a computer engineer and managed to figure it out, others might not be so lucky.

    It works well with my two Playstation 3s with the exception that when you add new music or video the PS3 won't see it until you go into services and run 'rescan' under UpNP. Annoying because that takes about 10 minutes on my collection and odd because I thought the PS3 was a DLNA device.

    The down side is my Yamaha RX-V3800 doesn't see it at all. Not a major problem because navigating a large music collection on the Yamaha is like doing butterfly through the red sea but it would have been nice if it worked. Their higher end models have third party drivers for the Yamaha but the Duo seems to be out of luck.

    Power wise it's very good, with plenty of options for putting the drives into standby and even shutting the unit on/off at fixed times. I just don't get their rationale for not allowing two drives to be used to double capacity, even if it's two volumes it would be better than nothing. Sure, RAID 0 is dangerous if one drive goes down you lose the lot but give me a choice, I know what I'm doing and my data is already backed up elsewhere.

    Lastly their pricing is stupid, I bought the 500GB for $359 but I would much rather have gotten the 1GB. At $600+ though it's cheaper for me to buy a ($180) WD 1TB Green Drive and put it in than buy their 1TB configuration - and then I have to throw away what is at least $100 worth of 500GB drive (because they cleverly prevent me from using it in the second slot). Dear Netgear Marketing department, please get a clue....more info
  • Nice unit
    This is a nice little unit; I purchased this diskless unit (RND2000) and added Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB Bulk/OEM Hard Drive 3.5 Inch, 32 MB Cache, 7200 RPM SATA II WD1001FALS (although it is not on the Netgear compatibility list). Works just fine, and was more cost effective to do this, as opposed to purchasing the RND2110 (with the 1Tb drive). Both units showed up the same day - I popped in the drive, plugged in the network cable (provided) and powered it up - after about 30 minutes, the pulsating blue light turned to a steady blue, indicating the setup process was complete, and I was ready to go! On my home network I have Mac OSx, Linux (SuSE), Windows XP and Vista, all connecting to it and sharing files with no problems....more info
  • ReadyNAS Duo
    The more familiar I become with the product, the better it becomes. The only downside is the lack of a clearly manual. BUT their Tech Support makes up for it again. I just love the product. I use it with my Logitech Squeezebox Boom and no longer need to run my computer to listen to all my MP3s. I can also access it any where in the world and show my pictures stored on it via my laptop....more info
  • Getting out while the getting is good.
    My bro recommended this and overall it's a great concept, I like Netgear hardware typically, but I am already on strike 2 with this sucker and I have no intentions of risking strike 3 and losing some of my most important files. My first shot with Netgear Ready NAS was plugging it into the wall right out of the box, finding it was defective. The power supply wouldn't stay connected. Yes, I had it seated as far in as it could go. I sent it back and ordered NAS 2. Take it out of the box and it's not as sensitive to touch as the other one but AGAIN touch the power plug the wrong way and poof - lights out. #1 LINUX hates being shut down ungracefully and #2 I have lost all faith that this is my answer to fears of losing data, which is what it is meant to be used for. Heaven forbid I am moving files across the network when I sneeze and I'm completely hosed.

    That wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't slower than a turtle with a pile of bricks on its back, but this thing is so slow, I can't use my audio software to stream my MP3s off the mapped drive. The songs play jerky and when my software adds music to it's collection it crawwwwls as the counter ticks up each song it discovers. On my local drive it goes about 0-550 songs in 5 seconds. Through the mapped network drive..... it took hours. I had to leave it to go to bed at 2am because I couldn't wait any longer. It is the current firmware 4.1.5. I'm done. sending it back before I'm really sorry. My brother had better luck with his, but why tempt fate. ...more info
  • Very disappointing, slow drive
    While I agree the drive looks nice, appears to have a solid case, and a lot of great functionality; mine is just painfully slow to use. Periodically I've had to reboot it just to get it to respond at all. It seems at times it gets so hung up with some internal process that it just doesn't have the bandwidth to respond at all. (The disk light was flickering constantly.) Even when I asked it for some very simple information, like right clicking on "properties" over a few folder to see how big they were, even that took forever. So, I know it's not my machine because that process should happen locally, and the connection speed shouldn't affect how fast the drive can count up its own files. Even worse, a few times I went to move some large files within the drive - i.e. I wanted to move the large files that were already on the ReadyNAS to a different folder, also on the ReadyNAS. Instead of this taking 3 seconds like it does on a normal drive, it took 3 hours. The ReadyNAS copied the files from one location on its own drive to another. This has been an extremely disappointing and time-consuming purchase for me. If you're considering buying a NAS device, think long and hard about how you might do it a different way; and research your options thoroughly. I'm returning mine....more info
  • Almost perfect storage.
    The product has performed almost flawlessly. I did note that when you first put the second drive in for the array that while it is formatting and setting up the new drive that the device will disconnect from the network. After it has completed setting up the second drive, however, it has worked perfectly. We use it for accessing our documents, music, photos, and videos. It also streams media to our PS3. No complaints at all....more info
  • Netgear NAS Duo 500 GB
    This is a fantastic product! I did a couple of weeks of on-line research before settling on this as my home network backup device. This is one of few products I've ever bought that works exactly as advertised. It installed and set up with no problems. It is an extremely well designed device - very solid. I ordered the 500 GB unit and a couple of weeks later decided to install another 500GB drive for full redundancy. I attached the new drive to the tray, slid it in place, and true to their word, the new drive formatted itself, then built a mirror image of the existing drive, all without powering off. There are many adjustments that can be made, so one must be a little computer savvy for the initial set. The on line setup guide comes in handy for this. I haven't explored many of the features, yet, such as FTP hosting, etc., but they're there. I also haven't tried streaming video from it, so cannot comment on that aspect. We do have our entire music library stored on it, and stream from this to a Sonos unit, and it works flawlessly. I highly recommend this device. (I also highly recommend the Sonos product for a wireless, whole house music solution; check it out.)...more info
  • Great for storage, not so great for streaming (Mac perspective)
    I bought this to replace a 10-year-old iMac DV that had kept our music collection networked for many years until it died recently. I knew I wanted to get an NAS with mirrored RAID because the thought of having to rip so many CDs again was not pleasant. We are an all-Mac household as well, so we needed something that did not require a PC for initial setup (I'm looking at you, HP Media Vault).

    What's good:
    -Very fast reads and writes to the ReadyNAS Duo. I now keep my iTunes Music folder on the NAS and the iTunes Library file on my Macbook Pro, and the performance is great.
    -Fast network speeds using AFP (the standard network protocol for a Mac).
    -Fairly easy to setup the basics using their wizard.
    -Lots of advanced options if you need it (password-protected accounts, Internet access).
    -Easy printer sharing. Just plug in your USB printer! (And no Mac limitations like the Synology.)
    -Recognized my APC-brand UPS; it can monitor the UPS and automatically shut down during a power outage when the battery drains to a certain level (you can set the remaining battery level to your liking).
    -Built-in backup software allows you to backup to an external USB drive at the push of a button (though I haven't tested this yet).
    -iTunes streaming server works very well; it's very fast over the local network. It shows up in iTunes under the "Shared" section as "Itunes Server."
    -Small and quiet.
    -Uses less energy than the old iMac.
    -Adding a second hard drive (like I did) gives you peace of mind with data redundancy.
    -Solid construction.
    -Hot-swappable drives on trays (you can also purchase extra trays to rotate drives).
    -Easy to expand the storage by swapping in larger hard drives one at a time (though I haven't tested this).
    -Great widget for the Mac to monitor the Duo (available capacity, temperature, UPS condition, fan speed).
    -Configuration is done through a web browser.

    What's bad:
    -The UPnP streaming is really poor. Previously I used Connect360 on the old iMac to stream music and movies to an Xbox 360, and the iMac was many, many times faster than the Duo. It can take 20 seconds or so for the Xbox 360 to fully load any one of the music lists (Albums, Artists, etc.). By comparison, if I turn on Connect360 on my Macbook Pro and stream the same 93GB iTunes Library from the Duo, the performance is great! (Then again, the Videos folder on the Duo does not have a lot of subfolders and it loads fairly quickly.) Obviously I'm not an expert on UPnP servers, but if streaming media is your absolute top priority, this might not be the box for you.
    -The documentation is really light. You'll need to go to the ReadyNAS forums to get answers at some point. As far as forums go, they are very helpful.
    -You will need some knowledge of networking terms. Not hard to learn, but the software was clearly not written by anyone from Apple.
    -Expect to spend at least 30 minutes with the initial setup, not including any file copying that needs to be done.
    -Too little RAM. I upgraded to 1GB (available through Amazon).
    -Small list of approved hardware upgrades, including RAM, UPS and hard drives. There also seems to be a lag in approving new items.
    -Not all brands of UPS are supported.
    -Approved hard drives are server-grade, not consumer desktop models. Expect to pay about 50% more (but theoretically they should be more reliable). I purchased a second hard drive from Amazon from the approved list (a Western Digital 500GB) for ~$90.
    -Not the cheapest NAS out there.

    What's needed:
    -Better UPnP streaming. I'm not sure if this is a software limitation or a processor limitation.
    -More base RAM.

    To sum it up: My only real knock against it is the UPnP streaming. As an NAS, it offers reliable and redundant storage combined with fast network speeds; works with different operating systems (and works very well with Macs); and it's very energy efficient. Unless media streaming is at the absolute top of your list, the ReadyNAS Duo offers great performance for the price.

    For added research, check out the charts at,com_nas/Itemid,190
    There's a great feature to sort by Price vs. Performance. Highly recommended!...more info
  • Data loss; recursive MEDIA folder
    I bought my ReadyNAS Duo 1 month ago. I wanted a product that will
    1) protect my data
    2) allow me to access it from my various devices within my home wireless network (laptop, PS3, mobile phone)

    Less than 1 month after using the Netgear ReadyNAS, this is the consequence:
    * I now have lost 400GB+ of data stored on Netgear ReadyNAS, including pictures and videos of my precious baby boy -- something which is now forever lost
    * In that one month, I had to put up with a ReadyNAS that is very unstable and very often, i lost the connection to ReadyNAS in the midst of trying to access data

    Other things that you should consider:
    - ReadyNAS has a "media" folder, which recursively reproduces everything within itself, including all the content (I'm not sure if it actually occupies that same amount of disk space). I tried deleting it, but it keeps coming back, like Freddy Krueger. It is a mess to deal with. You can find countless consumer posts about this problem online. Unfortunately I didn't know till I've bought the ReadyNAS

    - ReadyNAS makes loud whirring noises after a period of operation, and then I'll have to reboot it

    - I called international IDD to get help from NetGear ReadyNAS tech support and their advise caused me to lose all my data (I was told, if I hold the RESET button for 5 secs, it will perform a normal reset. But I was warned that holding the RESET button for 30 secs will cause all data to be erased. I figured I have a 25-second buffer before data erasure occurs --- quite a safe margin, so I performed a reset over the phone with Netgear Tech Support's guidance; to cut the long story short, I realized I still couldn't access my drive, and after several calls to both local and international Netgear helplines, I finally was escalated to Level 2 support where a guy apologized and told me I've to seek help from a local data recovery center. I had to pay the cost of the data recovery myself. It was hinted that the previous Tech Support guy gave me wrong information --- data erasure happens after SIX seconds of holding the RESET button, not 30 seconds as I was told. I spent > 3 hours on IDD phone calls with Netgear tech support, plus additional time spent following their instructions which mostly didn't work for me, and in the end, I lost all my data)

    I understand there are many other good reviews of this product, so consider carefully. Netgear has offered me a replacement product, but I'm not taking it...more info
  • Useless for backups
    I tried for several weeks to backup my web Windows 2003 server, but to no avail. Four different backup software products started, but failed to complete a backup to this device. Netgear blames the software and refuses to help. So now I am stuck with a useless $400 piece of equipment.

    If you have experienced IT staff around, you might be able to get this expensive clunker to work. Otherwise, stay away from it....more info
  • Empty Promises
    The ReadyNas duo is supposed to be for home and small office use but setup is way too complicated for the average user. I bought it so I could access my files form anywhere on the internet but in order to make that work you'll need a static IP and will need to register a DNS to point to the unit, neither of which most folks have. I have some other Netgear products that were very easy to setup and I'm extremely disappointed that netgear advertised a feature that is not really available to the average user. Just know that if you want to use this to access your files over the internet you better have system admin credentials....more info
  • Best Home NAS Solution for Mac Users....Period!
    I purchased this device a couple weeks ago and can't believe how impressed I am. As a Mac user exclusively at home, this device exceeds my expectation. I have several Mac's in the house that can connect to this NAS effortlessly, with no incompatibility issues. Further, no naming convention issues like I've found on other NAS devices that only use the SMB/CIMB protocol.

    Best Features:

    1.) Can use AFP protocol exclusively for all connected Mac users. This means when I pull up the finder, there it is with no constant logging in or SMB issues. There it is, no fuss.
    2.) Speed. Once I enables the Jumbo Frame option, this thing is like copying from Mac to Mac over the network at true gigabit speed. Wireless is not to shabby either.

    3.) Can setup an iTunes server using the Firefly add on (comes with) so I can connect all Macs and my Apple TV to pull from this one resource. No longer have to keep track of multiple iTunes libraries on multiple Macs...and constantly having to keep iTunes App running on the requested computers.

    4.) Set this thing up in like 15 minutes.

    5.) Backup Redundancy - I use a second hard drive in the NAS to mirror the first hard drive. So I can now pull out the second hard drive and replace with another to store away from home... my own home disaster recovery.

    One Negative Comment:

    1.) Cannot configure Time Machine to use with this NAS or rather no documentation explaining how to do it...even when I Google it. However, it does come with it's own Mac Native backup program that will schedule jobs to copy your Home folder and at specific times. To tell you the truth, this is an Apple Mac OS limitation and not a Netgear ReadyNAS Duo issue. I suspect in the future this will be corrected.

    Finally, I couldn't ask for a better device. Netgear, you did a great job designing this product. This should be considered by anyone who is looking at Apple's Time Capsule as it does a whole lot more and staggeringly faster speeds. Sure, no Time Machine, but it does have scheduled backups and e-mails me when complete, and / or if there are any issues. ...more info
  • One of my favorite devices to come along in a while
    Sweet little box. This is the diskless version...didn't want to overpay for the drives. Popped in a pair of Samsung 1tb drives. Newest firmware adds Apple Time Machine support. Everything was simple...plugged in a UPS and it detected it right away. Added a PIXMA multifunction printer which can be a huge pain to share on a USB perfectly across XP, Win 7 beta and Macs (Macs took installing the latest GIMP drivers, free).
    ...more info
  • Great little NAS
    There has been some pretty thorough reviews on this product, so I'm not going to bore you with another uber detailed report. I just want to mention a couple points.

    I have one of those sweet little devices called a SqueezeBox and when I read that this had SqueezeCenter (a.k.a. SlimServer) installed, I new this was the one. So far it works fairly well, though it does respond nearly as quickly as the a PC based setup. Obviously the the ReadyNAS Duo is a tad weak on processing power for stuff like this, but it is a NAS and not a PC after all. Still, the ability to play my music collection with out turning on a single PC in the House is very very nice.

    The only other thing I wanted to mention was the power configuration options in this. NetGear obviously put a lot of thought into this and I don't think there is anything else like it. Not only does it offer a lower mode when idle, you can actually set specific times each day to turn it off and back on. I've set it up to turn off at 10 p.m. and flip back on again at 8 a.m. during the week days. I leave it on over the weekends. Way cool!

    Great little product!...more info
  • Comparison of ReadyNAS Duo, Iomega ix2, LaCie, HP for small office use
    This product is one of a number of network attached storage (NAS) devices on the market targeted at small offices and home users. If you're not familiar with NAS devices, the concept is simple: A NAS device contains one or more hard drives and plugs directly into your network (i.e., your router). When compared to simple USB hard drives that plug directly into a computer, a NAS offers a number of advantages:

    1) It is accessible to any computer on your network. This is convenient at home, since you can use the NAS as a central repository for files (documents, photos, music files, etc.) that you might want to access from any of a number of different PCs. In a small office, having a central storage location for key files (client documents, contact lists, etc.) can be critical.

    2) In principle, you could achieve the same benefit by attaching a big USB drive to one PC, setting that PC up to share its files, then leaving that PC on all the time. But these NAS devices are better optimized for file sharing, use far less energy, and take up far less space than a full PC.

    3) Most of these NAS devices have something called RAID. They have (or allow you to install) multiple hard drives in the same unit, then they write every bit of data to multiple drives. This way, if one drive fails (as they are prone to do), the NAS can automatically switch over to the other drive and you don't lose any data. One HUGE warning, though - RAID only protects you from drive failure. NAS devices still have plenty of "single points of failure," including the power supply, controller, etc. I lost all of my data on a LaCie Network Disk because of a software glitch in the unit, even though all the individual drivers were fine. RAID reduces your risk of losing files, but it does not eliminate it.

    4) Because the NAS is always available to any PC on the network, it's a great solution for backing up individual PCs, in addition to operating as a file server.

    I am currently using a number of different NAS products in both my small business and my home. Here is a summary of the pros and cons of the three models I am currently using: Netgear's ReadyNAS Duo, EMC Iomega's ix2, and LaCie's Ethernet Disk RAID NAS. I'll call out only areas in which I see significant differences between the products. Also, this review is intended mainly for small office users - the features you might care about for a home NAS are likely to be different (e.g., you'd probably care about how well it works as an iTunes library or for streaming movies, neither of which is key in our office setting). Here goes:

    1) Netgear ReadyNAS Duo. This is a smaller, two-drive version of Netgear's ReadyNAS product (originally developed by a company called Infrant, which Netgear acquired). It takes up very little space, uses relatively little power, and is fairly quiet. Reads and writes to this device are very fast, which is important when running backups. The ReadyNAS has a particularly robust feature set when it comes to backing up the NAS to another device on the network. This is important, since even with RAID, it's possible that the whole device will fail (e.g., if the power supply goes bad), so you want to make sure you back up your NAS regularly. Setup isn't hard, but you have to know what you're doing - this device is clearly targeted at somewhat technical users who know the terminology and are willing to work through all the configuration menus. This is our primary file server in our office, and it has been a reliable workhorse. About once every 2-3 months, I need to log on to fix something that has glitched - other than that, the ReadyNAS Duo has required no effort beyond setup. It's one of the best small NAS products I've used.

    2) Iomega ix2. Iomega is now owned by EMC, the company that creates the monster-sized storage devices for big corporations. The ix2 is incredibly small - it takes up about as much space as a tape dispenser. Of the small office NAS products I've installed, it has the easiest setup - the configuration menus aren't quite Mac-like, but they're the closest of any NAS I've used. The ix2 does the best job of setting up multiple users - it automatically creates private folders for each user and makes it very easy to control permissions to shared folders. The ix2 is by far and away the lowest cost NAS I've used, at under $200 for a 1TB configuration. The ix2 comes with two drives preinstalled, but the drives are not user replaceable; I would have liked replaceable drives, but I'm willing to live with this tradeoff since it yields a very small and cheap unit. (Some users think non-replaceable drives are a show stopper. Personally, I'm just counting on my RAID to prevent loss of files if a drive fails. If a drive does fail, I'm more likely to replace the whole NAS, given the rate at which features are improving and prices are dropping, rather than just replacing the drive.) The ix2 excels as a backup solution for PCs - it comes with software to automatically backup any PC on the network to the devices. One important missing feature, though, is the ability to back up the NAS to another storage device on your network - this is very important in an office setting if you are using the NAS as your primary file server, rather than as a backup for your PCs. Because of this missing feature, we use the ix2 as our backup storage device, not as our primary file server. The ix2 has proved highly reliable and trouble free - like the ReadyNAS Duo, it runs for months at a time without anybody having to tweak anything.

    3) LaCie 301160U 1TB Ethernet Disk RAID Network Attached Storage. If you've gotten the impression that I love the ReadyNAS Duo and ix2, you're right. Balancing the cosmic scales is the LaCie Ethernet Disk, which caused us nothing but headaches. The LaCie NAS configuration menus are opaque, even to a reasonably knowledgeable person. The device is hard for users to find on the network. The device is painfully slow - backing up large numbers of files to or from the device takes forever. It does not come with software to back up PCs to the device, and it lacks the feature to back itself up to other devices. It's big and noisy. And, most importantly, it's unreliable. On multiple occasions, the device simply disappeared from the network, forcing us to reset the device (which takes a while). The last time this happened, the device couldn't read its hard drives when it rebooted. I spent hours with LaCie tech support, but nothing worked. We ended up losing ALL of the files on the device. LaCie ended up replacing the device, but that didn't save our data. Having read other reviews with similar complaints, I know my experience wasn't a fluke. This is not a reliable product.

    4) HP MediaVault. I have a MediaVault 2100 installed at home, and I really like it. It has more consumer-oriented configuration and usage menus than the products reviewed above. It also does a nifty job of handling media files, which is more important at home. In particular, it works as a great central iTunes library, automatically sweeping music files from my individual PCs up to a central shared folder on the NAS. The individual PCs in turn can then access the NAS folder (as if it were an attached iPod). This means that everybody in the house has access to any songs anybody else has downloaded. I tried using the MediaVault briefly in our office, but it didn't work nearly as well as the ReadyNAS or ix2. It wasn't fast enough and (true to its name) the setup options seem clearly designed for a home multimedia environment rather than an office file environment.

    5) Buffalo. I haven't used a Buffalo NAS since I installed the Netgear ReadyNAS and EMC/Iomega ix2 devices, so I can't offer an up-to-date comparison. The Buffalo device that I replaced was OK, but it wasn't nearly as fast, compact, or feature rich as the Netgear and Iomega products.

    In a nutshell, I've been very pleased with my Netgear ReadyNAS Duo and Iomega ix2 in the office, and with my HP MediaVault at home. The LaCie NAS was very bad, and the Buffalo products I've used have been OK but usually not the best in class. I hope this helps....more info
  • Great Backup Option!
    Wow, where to start. I've had this since August and so far, so good. I purchased an additional 1TB Seagate drive so I'd have the security of RAID. The drives are hot-swappable so just pop it in and it automatically detects and synchs it. This is connected to my wireless router via ethernet cable. I use it to wirelessly back up my two Macbooks with Time Machine. This takes some configuring but once it's done it works great! There is an entire ReadyNAS forum which contains directions on how to do this (Google it). I also have my Samsung laser printer connected to the ReadyNAS via USB and my laptops can wirelessly print to it. Of all the network storage devices I researched, this one had the best reviews and most features for the price. You won't be disappointed....more info
  • Excellent Machine but a little slow for some tasks
    I have had my readynas duo 500g for almost a year. I am VERY happy with it especially with the newest firmware which was released on April 11th, 2009. This firmware makes the system much more responsive when streaming music/videos to my Xbox 360. It used to take a long time to load up artists, albums, it is almost instant.

    I use the readynas to backup two computers and also use it to synchronize my documents folder between the two computers with NTI Shadow 4.0

    I don't know what I would do without my readynas now that I am so used to it. I feel 100% confident that my data is safe barring my house burning down. But, the new firmware allows you to auto backup to a netgear storage server via the internet which adds to your data protection.

    The only reason I don't give it 5 stars is that it is a tad slow. The new firmware has helped and in all fairness I haven't done much speed testing since it was released. In my use cases, speed doesn't matter much since Shadow makes my incremental backups nightly when I am not using the computer but it would be nice to be able to acccess my data a little faster. Maybe one of the the big brothers to the readynas duo would have some more speed.

    Summary: Buy this. It is awesome. ...more info


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