By any measure, Jason and I are nerds. Huge, techy nerds. We’re both in nerdy jobs, we have obscenely nerdy amounts of computer hardware lying around the house, we play nerdy games and buy nerdy toys, and we are actively turning our son into the nerdiest of nerd children.
With that background, it’s more than a little surprising that we haven’t gotten our act together when it comes to protecting all the digital content our nerdy lifestyle generates. As a designer, I’m constantly producing gigantic files that rapidly fill up the limited hard drive space on my computer. We cut the cord on cable years ago and buy digital copies of movies and TV shows almost exclusively. We take copious amounts of photos and movies, especially off our offspring. We scan all our paperwork – receipts, contracts, the works – into a digital library so we don’t have a house filled with filing cabinets. And we’re constantly working on development projects that we pass back and forth to each other. Right now, the process of preserving and sharing all this content is laborious. Our house is filled with thumb drives, external hard drives, old CDs and DVDs… and the virtual storage solutions we’ve paid for could fill another room all on their own. Each and every solution is in some state of disrepair or abandonment because they haven’t been quite right for the way we use our content.
At last, we have a single device that meets all our needs for storing, transferring, viewing and sharing all the piles of creative content we’re generating every day in a centralized location. These devices are made for creative professionals and prosumers like us, who need a more than a simple external hard drive can offer. In one little box, we can get up to 16 TB storage – plenty of space for our HD movies, our photos, our development projects, my huge design files, and anything else we want to save. Between specialized high-performance hard drives and power supply redundancy, we never have to worry about losing our drives, and plug-and-play compatibility with the media and other services we’re already using means we can get to our content anytime, anywhere.
Everything you need to get your My Cloud Expert Series NAS up and running is included in the box – your NAS box and its drives, a sturdy power supply, and an ethernet cable so you can plug the drive directly into your home network router. Then you can access your My Cloud Storage from a computer on the network to set it up for your intended use. Do you want to combine the two drives in to one large drive, or treat them as RAID array to protect your content with redundancy? Will you predominantly use the NAS for storing files or streaming music? Any use you can imagine can be accommodated and managed in the easy to use My Cloud interface.
But don’t be fooled by the My Cloud Expert Series’ ease of setup and use. There are a host of high-powered features under the hood of this little box. Some of our favorites:
Backups. We’re both on Macs, so we can both use the NAS as our Time Machine target. And our cloud storage services still come in handy, because our My Cloud Storage backups can then automatically back up to Dropbox or somewhere else in the cloud.
Recycling. Sometimes things get deleted accidentally, or even intentionally, but need to be found and recovered later. The My Cloud Expert Series NAS “hides” these files in a recycling bin we can access later to prevent unhappy accidents.
WD Red. The special NAS-specific drives that come standard in our WD EX2100 are optimized for constant uptime. They’re engineered to compensate for vibration, optimize power use, and protect data from power loss, so we’re never worried about system performance.
No middleman. Need to quickly back up a digital camera filled with photos? Forget connecting to your computer, downloading everything, and then syncing to a drive. Just plug the camera directly into one of the NAS’ USB 3.0 ports and instantly copy the photos to your drive. You can do the same with content on a thumb drive or any other USB storage device.
Run the world. Okay, not really. But the NAS can act as a public-facing web server, even hosting a WordPress website or phpBB message board.
We’re excited about the potential for our little My Cloud NAS. And we hope you are too, because…
You have a chance to win a NAS device of your very own – a EX2 4TB device (valued at $349.99).
To enter, visit the My Cloud Expert Series landing page and come back here to share the My Cloud feature you’re most excited about in the comments on this post. The giveaway will close at 11:59PM MST on May 4th, and we’ll randomly select a winner and contact them via email to arrange the delivery of their prize (so make sure your comment includes a way to get in touch!). Sorry, international friends – because of shipping requirements, this giveaway is only open to readers in the United States.