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Want an easy way to store, share, access, and backup files over your network? Then you’ll definitely want to check out the LaCie CloudBox. LaCie’s CloudBox is a NAS (network attached storage) device that connects to your router via an ethernet cable, making it accessible over your network within minutes.  It requires very minimal setup and offers lots of configurable options and settings if you want them.

Setting Up the LaCie CloudBox

Setting up the CloudBox is very easy, simply plug the ethernet cable into the device and the router and then plug in the power cord and it’s ready to use.  Once it’s on your network, it should appear in your shared devices and from there you can put files on it.  However, if you want to setup individual users and access the other features, you will need to access the devices control panel by putting the local IP of the CloudBox in your browser.  Once you have the CloudBox control panel up on your screen, you can configure an admin account and then login using the admin account credentials you just created.

If you have any trouble finding your LaCie CloudBox on your network, check the user manual (which is very helpful).  Here’s the specific page you will need to look at to access the CloudBox control panel (dashboard).

LaCie CloudBox Features

After you’ve made your admin account and logged into the CloudBox dashboard, you can add additional users, configure backups (it’s Time Machine compatible), enable remote access, access drive information, and more.

If you add individual users, each user will receive their own personal folder on the CloudBox to store whatever they want.  When it comes to backups, you can easily configure the LaCie CloudBox to work with Time Machine (if you’re on a Mac) or to work with any rsync compatible server to backup directly to the CloudBox.  Additionally, if you want to backup the data on your CloudBox to somewhere else you can do that too with the backup wizard in the dashboard.

By enabling remote access, you will be able to access your CloudBox from anywhere (like Dropbox, but your own).  Just enable port forwarding on your router (it will tell you how to do it), and select whether you want to use LaCie’s My NAS service or DynDNS and you’re ready to go.

LaCie’s CloudBox also has a download manager (they call it a Download Machine), you can enable it and use the CloudBox to download anything (including torrents). It has configurable settings for download and upload speeds as well as the maximum number of concurrent downloads you would allow.  It’s very nice.

The CloudBox also has a web-based file browser where you manage and access your files and folders on the drive all from within a web browser.

Storage Sizes and Pricing

The LaCie CloudBox comes in three different storage sizes: 1TB, 2TB, and 3TB and is available starting at $120 for the 1TB model.  I recommend the 3TB model which you can find on Amazon for $169.

Additional Thoughts

In my usage of the LaCie CloudBox, it worked well.  For the most part it’s quiet, there are exceptions though, such as when it’s coming back on from being asleep, but that’s to be expected.   I put my music library on the LaCie CloudBox and when I click on a song (provided the device isn’t in sleep mode), it plays right away.  Additionally, I haven’t really experienced any hiccups with any songs while they were playing either.

One problem with many consumer NAS devices is that they can be slow and have terrible control panels, that isn’t the case with the CloudBox.  The device boots up from sleep quickly and it doesn’t make you want to pull out your hair when using the web dashboard or file browser.

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