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Diskless NAS shares USB storage via WiFi

Jan 8, 2010 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 3 views

EMC subsidiary Iomega is readying a WiFi-enabled, Linux-based network-attached storage (NAS) device that costs $100. The Iomega iConnect Wireless Data Station has no storage of its own, but acts as a wireless hub that shares data stored on devices hooked up to its four USB 2.0 ports.

The iConnect Wireless Data Station is built around an unnamed 1GHz CPU with 256MB RAM. Equipped with 802.11b/g/n WiFi, the device offers a gigabit Ethernet port and four USB 2.0 ports.

The iConnect runs on 100-240 VAC AC voltage, and consumes about five Watts, says Iomega. The device is also said to offer a front panel "QuikTransfer" button for copying selected files directly between networked storage devices or with an attached Windows, Mac, or Linux PC.

Iomega iConnect Wireless Data Station

That's about it, as far as hardware goes. The rest is all software, namely LifeLine, which supports access from Linux, Windows, or OS X Mac-based PCs. LifeLine was developed by Iomega parent company EMC, and billed as being a "fully-developed Linux operating environment and suite of information management, security, and sharing software applications."

iConnect (rear view)

LifeLine supports Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) and Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA), enabling users to save, store, and play back music, photos, videos, and other digital content. The software is also said to offer an integrated iTunes server, as well as a torrent download manager for managing peer-to-peer file transfers. In addition, users can remotely access and administer the device through a personalized web address, says the company.

iConnect in the middle of a typical configuration with connected USB drives and printer

Other touted LifeLine features include Time Machine support for Apple users, device-to-device replication for data protection, and print serving to the network. The software also incorporates "BSAFE" malware and virus protection from EMC's RSA unit.

Other Iomega NAS devices based on EMC LifeLine include the 1-2TB StorCenter ix2 and the recently introduced Iomega ix4-200d, which comes in 2TB, 4TB, and 8TB versions. In October, Iomega announced the StorCenter ix2-200, a scaled-down home oriented version of the StorCenter-ix2 NAS.

Stated Jonathan Huberman, president of Iomega and the Consumer and Small Business Products Division of EMC, "For computer users with plenty of USB-connected storage devices, the new Iomega iConnect Wireless Data Station is great way to save money and make your USB storage drives 'smart' at the same time."


The Iomega iConnect Wireless Data Station is being demonstrated at the Consumer Electronics Show at Booth #31823, South Hall 3, through Jan. 10, and will be available worldwide in February for $100, says the company. More information may be found here.

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