Freecom DataTank Gateway WLAN 2TB review
Freecom’s DataTank Gateway WLAN comes as a welcome change from the legion of dour, black, workmanlike NAS drives.
Look at the rear and the Freecom reveals a unique talent too: a built-in wireless router. Twin antennas provide 802.11bg wireless with support for WEP, WPA and WPA2 encryption. Four Gigabit Ethernet sockets at the rear are complemented by a WAN port for hooking up to an ADSL or cable modem. The WLAN option makes it easy to access files stored on the Freecom from any wireless-enabled PC.
The web interface is a great example, too. Clean design and a sensible menu structure make it easy to navigate the Freecom’s myriad options, and also allows users to access and download data stored on the DataTank.
The TwonkyVision media server doesn’t come with iTunes support, but the Freecom has very little missing elsewhere. Web hosting is on the agenda, with MySQL and PHP support present, and there’s a BitTorrent client.
It isn’t perfect, though. The twin 1TB drives provide plenty of storage and RAID0 and RAID1 are supported for striped or mirrored arrays. But replacing a faulty drive requires the unit to be shipped back to Freecom. Performance is a problem too. Transferring 3GB of large files to and from the DataTank saw speeds of just 12MB/sec and 13MB/sec respectively. Small files saw those figures drop even further.
Despite this, it isn’t the end of the road for the DataTank: if you can take advantage of its extensive range of abilities and don’t mind the sluggish performance, it just about justifies its price tag.
|Cost per gigabyte||18.0p|
|Wired adapter speed||1,000Mbits/sec|
|Default filing system||EXT3|
|UPnP media server?||yes|
|Other media servers||DLNA|
|HIbernate on idle?||no|
|Dimensions||200 x 96 x 124mm (WDH)|
Security and administration
|Kensington lock slot?||yes|
|Admin support for users||yes|
|Admin support for groups||yes|
|Software supplied||Acronis TrueImage Home 10|