The Buffalo LinkStation Pro Duo is a network-attached storage (NAS) device with RAID 0 and 1 capabilities from two hard disks, up to a capacity of 4TB. It's reasonably easy to set up on your home network and has a wealth of features for users to tinker with.

To get started with the Buffalo LinkStation Pro Duo, we downloaded the latest version of the Buffalo NASNavigator2 software from the company's website. In Windows you can map the drive to your computer to access and store content in a jiffy.

The NAS is setup like most, with a webpage-style configuration page. It isn't pretty, but it has plenty of features. Like most NAS devices these days, you can create folders, users and groups, and set folder attributes. You can also enable a media server, check status of the RAID, access a built-in BitTorrent client, enable web access and set up a print server. The drive includes webserver and MySQL server capabilities.

The Buffalo LinkStation Pro Duo is a black, metal-cased drive about 21cm deep and 13cm tall, and it's reasonably inconspicuous when mingling with the other devices on a desktop. In addition to a gigabit ethernet port, it also has one USB 2.0 on its rear, which you can use to either attach storage or a printer. A panel on the front lets you easily access its two internal hard drives.

We tested the Buffalo LinkStation Pro Duo with a pair of 2TB Seagate Barracuda Green drives, which, despite their low-power credentials, made a fair bit of noise when seeking and writing data. The fan in the NAS also meant that there was a constant whir coming from it.

Performance was not tested so we can't comment on how fast it can actually handle everyday file transfers.

We liked the overall usability of the Buffalo LinkStation Pro Duo. It doesn't have a perfect interface, but we soon got the hang of it; we were able to use most of its features in no time at all. Torrent files can be downloaded directly to the NAS, but you have to open the torrent Download Manager from the drive's interface, which opens in another window. To download files, just copy the torrent link into the download manager.

Setting-up the Buffalo LinkStation Pro Duo up for web access was easier than we expected. We were able to make files accessible over the net in a minute by using the BuffaloNAS.com dynamic DNS service. We didn't have to sign up, but simply came up with a name for our drive and in a few seconds a URL for us was created.

Next page: Our expert verdict >>

See also:

Storage hardware reviews

Network storage reviews

Upgrade Advisor

NAS tips for small and mid-sized enterprises

Buffalo LinkStation Pro Duo 4TB: Specs

  • Two-bay NAS drive
  • 2 x 3.5in SATA hard disks
  • BitTorrent client, web server, MySQL server, remote access, UPnP, DLNA
  • SMB/CIFS, AFP, FTP, HTTP, HTTPS protocols
  • gigabit ethernet
  • USB 2.0
  • RAID 0 and 1 capability
  • 86x127x204mm
  • 1.7kg
  • Two-bay NAS drive
  • 2 x 3.5in SATA hard disks
  • BitTorrent client, web server, MySQL server, remote access, UPnP, DLNA
  • SMB/CIFS, AFP, FTP, HTTP, HTTPS protocols
  • gigabit ethernet
  • USB 2.0
  • RAID 0 and 1 capability
  • 86x127x204mm
  • 1.7kg

OUR VERDICT

The Buffalo LinkStation Pro Duo offers plenty of storage potential, and you can dedicate some to back up your computers (Mac users can use it with Time Machine).

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