Linksys NSLU2 NAS

I picked one of these up on closeout from Wal-Mart.  I didn’t know what I was going to do with it at first, though.  Unlike my D-Link NAS, the Linksys NAS has no internal storage.  What it has is 2 USB ports for connecting external drives.  Both can be used for external hard drives, but the second one can also be used for USB thumb drives.

By default the Linksys formats drives with the EXT3 file system, although I read later firmware versions allow FAT32 and NTFS.  Drives connected to the Linksys are not hot swappable meaning the drives must be connected before the Linksys is powered on.  I connected a Seagate 500GB external drive to the Linksys and formatted it with EXT3.  Although I read on Linksys’ site something about people reporting problems connecting larger hard drives to the NAS, I have had no issues with mine.

Once I browsed the Linksys manual on the NAS, I figured out what I would use it for.  The Linksys NAS comes with backup software that can be used to backup drive 1 to drive 2 (if 2 drives are connected to the Linksys NAS) or can be used to backup to/from an external source.  I used the second option as a perfect way to keep my D-Link NAS backed up.  With the Linksys backup you can perform incremental, full, or synchronized backups.  I chose synchronized backups on a daily basis which I felt would provide the best protection for my data.  It was a little tricky getting the backup to work (I couldn’t get a user to connect to the D-Link and you have to create a share on the Linksys to backup to), but I eventually got it working.  The help and instructions did not give good examples, but trial and error should get it working.  The backup log helped as well to determine where I was having probles.  One annoying thing, though, was that the radio button for backing up kept resetting to “backup from Linksys” even though I kept setting it to “backup to Linksys.”

The Linksys NSLU2 has proved to be a nice addition to my network as a backup for my primary NAS.  If this is your only NAS device, connect a second hard drive for daily backup/synchronization of your primary drive.  I think the backup software, although simple in nature, makes this NAS a winner.

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