With the Pogoplug networked, connected to a drive or two and powered up, you need to pop over to My.Pogoplug.com to complete the set-up. You'll need to create an account, but it's free and, since you'd need to set up an admin username and password in any case, no great chore.
Access your drive's contents through the web
Logged in, you're presented with each drive's contents and the option to tweak the settings. As web-based content display UIs go, Pogoplug's isn't bad. You have a reasonable choice of file list views, and manufacturer Cloud Engines has included filters to list files by media type and by timeframe: today, last week, last month and so on.
You can rename, delete, download or share any file by click an icon from a set that pop up when you run the cursor over any file icon. That's all well and good, but for many people it's no substitute for their OS' own file management tool. Cloud Engine has thought of that, and you can download - again, for free - apps for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux that will mount the Pogoplug's drives on the desktop.
Videos can be auto-transcoded for streaming...
The same software also features some further settings, but doesn't duplicate the ones on the web UI, so you'll need to use both at least once. The segmentation of controls is logical - the app has file-transfer settings, while the web page focuses more on sharing - but I'd like both tools to offer all the options.
The app is the home for Active Copy, Pogoplugs automatic, in the background media copy tool. It's pre-set for Pictures, Music and Movies files, but you can add specific folders to duplicate. It's not too clever, though, limiting itself, say, to photos in your Pictures folder but not images you've filed elsewhere. You can set it to operate only when you're computer is back on your network.
...but it can take some time
Back in the web UI, you can mark files and folders for sharing, and for sending out update messages to social networks and as RSS feeds. Sharees can be granted file rename and delete rights as well as the view and download rights everyone gets. Sharing essentially sends them a URL that calls up a settings-less web browser view of the shared folder's contents.
It's advantage is the software means you can get to it anywhere, and you can network any USB drive, most people have a few spare small USB drives (the old 120/250GB ) size things that are pretty much redundant now.
I can give you a like to the page you can access anywhere in the world through a standard browser, thats not built into many entry level NAS boxes.
If you in the market for a new NAS, this is not the best price. It your going to be using old USB drives it is.
I'm still waiting...
...for external modular eSATA or other faster interface HDD's you can RAID together. Kind a a stack em and RAID em type of drive. Infinite extensibility (Assuming you have enough power points. Hell make the power extensible too for up to a certain number of drives then you have to add another power point).
I should patent it before it's done by someone else!
Says Cloud Engines: "The link to the shared folder will expire 2 weeks from the time it was generated and sent. If the user it is being shared with has not created an account and password they will no longer be able to access the share. If the owner of the share removes them from the share list and re-adds them, a new link will be generated and sent with a 2 week expiration."
Question reg. security...
Quick question - once a folder is shared then is there any way to expire the url, or any sort of ACL?
ie. is it possible to just share a folder of pics to my family and not worrying should the url get out into the wild?
If you run over to Scan (first place I looked) you can get a Buffalo NAS with 1TB drive built in for the same price. DNLA, USB, Ethernet.. am I missing the point of this device? Regardless it's hard to miss the colourscheme.. nasty.