Iomega's 4TB StorCenter ix2 NAS device isn't as compact as
other two-disk devices from rivals such as Western Digital, but we appreciate
its sturdy metal chassis. It’s easy to open if you want to replace the disks,
too. Each drive is held in place by two screws at the base of the chassis. Undo
these, and the drives slide in and out on well-designed caddies with runners
that make it impossible to insert them the wrong way up. The back of the device
houses two USB ports and a Gigabit Ethernet port, and there’s a USB port at the
front. It doesn't take up much room but tends to get rather warm even when it's
not doing much.
StorCenter ix2 network storage cloud edition
The installation disc provides an automatic install option
that includes management software. A neat interface prompts you to set a
password for the device and creates six network shares of folders intended for
movies, music, pictures, backups and more. It's a bit excessive, but very
approachable and hassle-free if you don't like configuring such things
Unfortunately, Iomega has made life difficult for
inexperienced users when it comes to taking advantage of its wide-ranging
features. It took a significant amount of searching to find the case-sensitive
username and password needed to access the StorCenter ix2’s administration
interface, as these don't appear in the quick start guide or the online version
of the ix2’s manual. Incidentally, the username and password are ADMIN and
The ix2 offers
remote access over FTP, NFS, TFTP and various other protocols.
Once we’d logged in, it hardly seemed worth the effort. The
management screens are clunky and drab, although everything is labelled
clearly. You can create and assign admin privileges and quotas, set up shared
folders and enable media streaming on existing folders. You can also create
active folders that uploaded content automatically to services such as YouTube,
Facebook and Flickr, control IP cameras on your network and set up the NAS
device as a BitTorrent client.
The ix2 offers remote access over FTP, NFS, TFTP and various
other protocols. It can also be used as part of a personal cloud, providing
access to storage from anywhere via mobile phone apps or browsers. You can even
link your NAS device to Amazon S3 and Mozy Backup services.
Sadly, with small-file transfer speeds of 7.3MB/S in Raid 1
mode and 8.3MB/S in Raid 0 mode, the ix2’s performance isn’t impressive. Its
large-file transfer speeds are better at 26.4MB/S in Raid 0 mode and 26MB/s in
RAID 1 mode, although we noticed some dropped frames in full HD video streams.
At $357, the StorCentre ix2 is a good deal for 4TB of
storage and loads of features, but we didn't like its interface or the way its
setup utility automatically maps multiple shares. Unless you need a USB print
server, we prefer the sleek interface and faster transfer speeds of Western
digital's my book live Duo 4TB.
Verdict: It works, but slow transfer speeds and a drab
user interface make this NAS device a distinctly average option
Network storage device: 2x 2TB hard disk,
10/100/1000Mbit/s network connection, 3 USB ports, UPnP media, iTunes, print,
USB disk, FTP servers