During share creation you can decide whether to make them public or set read and write permissions for specific users. You can control appetite for disk space by using global quotas for volumes or apply them to selected users. An internal database handles local groups and users for access security but Active Directory authentication can be used instead, where details of a Windows domain controller are provided (and one is available).
Multimedia features are thin on the ground as the ShareSpace doesn’t support UPnP media services for streaming to suitable media players. All you get is the near-ubiquitous iTunes server and the only configurable option is the scan time-interval to check for new music which can range between five minutes and one day.
In keeping with the majority of NAS appliance vendors, the ShareSpace offers a Downloader feature for retrieving remote files using HTTP and FTP, but not BitTorrent. Accessing this feature isn’t well documented at all as you need to set up a destination share and password in the Download section of the advanced mode page. Next, you select the Downloader option in the drop-down Tools menu on the main login screen and enter the username of ‘downloader’. The resultant screen allows you to create download tasks and schedule them to run regularly.
Performance isn’t inspiring as copies of a 2.52GB video clip over Gigabit Ethernet returned read and write speeds of 23.2MB/sec and 15MB/sec. FTP operations were noticeably faster with the FileZilla client utility returning read and write speeds of 36MB/sec and 16.3MB/sec.
The appliance comes with the AnyWhere Backup software which does not support Windows Server operating systems but for workstation backup includes a license for three systems. It’s easy enough to use as you create backup plans for selected files and folders and decide how many versions of a file should be kept. It also offers encryption and if you select the continuous backup option it’ll automatically take copies of any new or modified files in real time.
Compared with the latest NAS appliances from the likes of Synology and Netgear, the ShareSpace comes up short on features and lags behind for performance. However, installation and management has been nicely streamlined so it’s very easy to use and both the 2TB and 4TB models look comparatively good value.