Hi, Randy. I'm looking primarily for a backup solution for my home computer in the event that my hard drive (120 GB) "goes south." I've been looking at Maxtor OneTouch and Iomega USB 2.0 hard drive products as a solution.

I stumbled across some NAS products (e.g., Buffalo LinkStation products), which sound interesting since we have two additional laptops connected via wireless routers in the house and often need to access music, photos and so on located on the hard drive of our RJ45 router-connected PC.

Would NAS be a usable solution for storing a hard drive backup/image?

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Maybe. A NAS device will allow you to easily backup files. If you do lose your hard drive, you would have to install the OS and then install the software applications you use and then you could copy the files you want from your NAS device. There are a few software solutions that allow you to create a disk image (not just files then) on a NAS device but that is software that you have to buy extra. So if you want a quick restore after a failed drive, you want a disk image backup. Otherwise, you can do the OS and software reinstalls and take the opportunity to "clean up" your system before copying the files. If you want speed, then get the image backup software that will work with a NAS as a target.

This was first published in October 2005

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