Can you ever have enough storage? It seems that every year we need to add more to hold all of those great media files, backups and who knows what next. At CEDIA this year I was walking by a small booth on the floor and noticed a nice looking little box sitting on the counter so I foolishly asked what it was.

Chief Manufacturing

The next thing I knew … I had one to test and low and behold it has now become an integral part of our system used for storage of music, photos and movies as well as the main backup set for all of the business and personal files we have.

Why? Because it’s 1 terabyte of network storage available to every PC in the system and it’s made by a well known reliable company. 1 TB Storage capacity stores 320,000 photos, or 1,000 hours of DV video, or 16,660 hours of music. I haven’t even made a dent in that yet.

Unlike network storage systems I have used in the past … this one needs no client software running to use. I just appears as another hard drive on the network when you plug it in and set it up from one PC in the system. All of the other PC’s can find it on the network and use it just like any other drive.

If you wish, you can even set it up as 2 – 500 GB RAID drives which automatically mirrors a copy of your data on each.

The weakest link here in my opinion is the software used to manage the drive. It’s quite limited in function (which may be a good thing come to think of it). Once the system is set up the only thing I use it for is to schedule backups and that could be done with much more flexibility using other backup software.


Sharing – Access files including digital video, music, and photos from any networked PC or Mac for enhanced productivity, seamless workflow and easy file sharing and printing.

1 TB Storage – 1000GB capacity stores 320,000 photos, or 1,000 hours of DV video, or 16,660 hours of music.

Automatic Back Up – No hassle back up. Back up all the computers on the network automatically to a single location.

Automatic Data Mirroring – RAID 1 automatically mirrors a copy of your data for an extra level of security (up to 500 GB).

Media Streaming – Play back photos, videos, and music to your networked home entertainment center* for more enjoyment. (*Requires UPnPAV certified adapter)

Drag and Sortâ„¢ – Just drag documents onto the Shared Storage II icon and Maxtor’s Drag and Sort organizes your files, placing them in appropriate shared folders.

Maxtor Simple Viewâ„¢ – Provides at-a-glance views of back up and storage status for all users.

Password Protection – Set privacy levels on shared folders for full public access or limited access for an extra measure of security.

Simple set up – Plug it in, connect the Ethernet cable, and the Maxtor Shared Storage II automatically configures to your network. Within minutes you can set up the Maxtor Shared Storage II to appear as a local hard drive on every configured PC and Mac on the network.

USB Expansion – 2 USB ports make it easy to add a printer for sharing or connect additional drives for even more storage.

So now when I go on a business trip all I do is grab this drive and throw it in the trunk of the car. I now have a backup of everything … whether I need to use it or just to feel safe having it all with me. After the wildfires here in San Diego recently I think we can all relate to the need to have a backup of your stuff that is easy to grab and run with. Perhaps the manufacturer should consider putting this thing in a waterproof and fireproof box. Now that would be a nice bit of insurance that would make us all feel warm and fuzzy don’t you think?

MSRP for this unit is about $500 (a smaller 500 GB unit sells for $300).