Once you’ve added an additional hard disc (if you require one) and powered up the device, you can run the Windows-only configuration utility to find the device on your network and setup default folders on your computer for you. Or, if you know what IP your network has assigned the unit, you can just access the web interface directly – by typing the unit’s IP into your browser – and start setting it up from there.
Once you’ve installed the software and started it up you are greeted with the following screen.
The Start Browsing option just opens your Media Vault folder in explorer. The second option brings up a custom interface that enables you to assign a drive letter for your network folders (otherwise known as mapping a drive). The third option opens the web interface configuration utility.
Moving to the Backup tab, you have the option to backup individual files, your entire hard disc, or restore your entire hard disc. The first option just opens the NTI Shadow backup utility, which is a separate piece of software that you can access from the start menu. Likewise, the other two options just open the NTI DriveBackup software.
NTI DriveBackup creates full backups of an entire hard drive and enables you to create a boot disk so you can recover your system drive, should disaster strike. The data is stored as a single file which you can choose to have compressed – this obviously saves space but the compression procedure will take some time. NTI Shadow deals with files, rather than whole discs, and includes a Previous Version option that enables you to specify up to nine previous versions of a file to be kept in your backup. Both pieces of software are very easy and intuitive to use and offer comprehensive scheduling options so, once setup, you don’t need to touch anything again – at least until you need to perform a recovery.
The Help & Support tab does exactly what it says on the tin; provides access to the user’s guide, an online support page, a registration site, and the HP website.
Most users will be happy to let the various wizards and applications take care of things but, if you need to do anymore in-depth configuration you will need to use the web based configuration utility. This allows you to fully configure your NAS box, from changing its IP address to creating a RAID. It’s too much to cover the options in depth in this review but I will give you a brief overview.