Buffalo Technology LinkStation Network Storage Center
- Low price, versatile, USB print server
- Nothing notable
A great choice for home and small-office users, the LinkStation offers print serving, password security for shared folders, and an expansion bay--all at a reasonable price.
Price$ 599.00 (AUD)
The Buffalo LinkStation does it all, does it well and does it at a great price. This versatile 250GB network storage device has two USB 2.0 ports for an external hard drive and a USB printer. You can use the second drive for either backing up the internal drive or adding storage. The Buffalo is a rare NAS to include a USB print server, a handy feature that lets home and small offices share inexpensive printers. While the competing Linksys EtherFast Network Attached Storage EFG250 includes a parallel-port print server, a significant number of inexpensive printers are now equipped only with USB ports.
We were just as impressed with the Buffalo LinkStation's software and documentation, which got us up and running in less than 10 minutes. The NAS correctly obtained an IP address from our network router, mapped itself as our PC's E: drive and then appeared in My Network Places ready to accept data.
The LinkStation's simple Web configuration software makes it easy for both home users and small offices without IT support to add users, groups and folder passwords.
We also liked Buffalo's Easy Backup utility for automating backups of client PCs to the NAS. You can select any combination of files and folders to back up to the Storage Center at regular intervals.
Performance was the only area where the LinkStation failed to be a star, with only average performance in our speed tests. However, in typical use, where you are copying or retrieving only a file or two at a time, this device's middling performance would be hard to spot.
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PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
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