Pros Kind of Affordable? Small desktop design.
Cons Not compatible with a Mac (advertised that it is). Very, very, very Slow.
Summary Warning Mac users! This device will not accept certain file names containing some characters you can use on a Mac. Result= WD will change your file name after copying to something unidentifiable or worse - skip it during the copy.
There is nothing you can do to fix this, WD tech support told me it is Apple's problem.
The Remote access for Mac users is still in "Beta" (as of 09.20.09) . And is "single" file web based access.
I was prepared for slow, but not this SLOOOWWW.
Pros Simple, Cheap
Cons No tools at all for data recovery, poor technical support
Summary A power surge gave me the opportunity to learn the hard way that planning for data redundancy doesn't stop at implementing RAID5. This unit simultaneously marked all four drives "failed". Not too likely that they were all actually bad. So I tried each in a PC. Each one was just fine. Lost a superblock or something. So, you'd expect tools to help, right? Or tech support would have a process to follow? Wrong on both counts. They quickly volunteered an RMA on the unit, reminding me I'd loose all my data. The WD forums seem full of people really annoyed with this unit, and really annoyed with tech support but some of the posters have experience with Linux commands, and the Sharespace is based on Linux volume groups. I tried a whole bunch of things by connecting to the unit with SSH and issuing commands, and just when I was about to give up and opt for the $2000-$5500 quote for file restoration from a disk recovery joint, I found a way to check and mount the volume. Thankfully I didn't loose 3 TB worth of valuable data. Do you want to face this kind of situation? No? Don't buy this unit. Really. I also have an Iomega StorCenter Pro and it's much more graceful about restoring itself; as I write it's rebuilding itself -whilst remaining available for read and write- even though I swapped in a new drive (to keep them new).
Pros cheaper than others
Cons painfully slow, not reliable, not expandable, poor technical support, awkward design, only WD hard drives, does not recognized USB HDs, firmware 2.2.9 completely screwed up
Summary Let me tell you other weaknesses that not easily seen from reviews:
1. On manual, it said you have to use WD hard disk, although I didn't try
2. Agent will tell you it is not design for disks with mix sizes. Although I got it work, but they won't garentee and I am on my own
3. You cannot expand by replacing disk one by one as supported by Netgear X-RAID or Drobo Beyond RAID. That means, if you have 4 disk and run out of space, then you need to copy your data somewhere, replace all 4 of them, then copy the data back. Imagine you have 3 TB of data, and the auto back up button not work.
4. Painfully slow
5. Awkard design that you have to take out the whole cover to change disk, instead of just flip open a door. So, it needs to be put in an open space
6. I have 4 external hard disk and the auto backup function only work on one of them, that means, I have to rely on the slow network interface
7. I have one of the disk failed after 9 months
8. Poor technical support agents who know nothing but read out the answer from the knowledge base
9. Firmware 2.2.9 completely screw up. And take them a long time to release a patch
10. Doesn't seem reliable. Read the WD community link and you can see other people's problem. (http://community.wdc.com/t5/WD-ShareSpace/bd-p/sharespace)
Pros Nice form factor. Good value.
Cons NTFS formatted drives do not appear as a share.
Very slow transfer speeds even with Gigabit Ethernet network.
Summary Very disappointed that the sharespace does not work with external USB drives formatted in NTFS. I?ve had two different sharespaces?s and both exhibited the same problem. Neither sharespace was able to share out a NTFS formatted USB drive. After hours of working with WD tech support and receiving a second sharespace from WD RMA department I?m left without this so called feature! The sharespace also has very slow transfer rates.