Set it and forget it

When in San Francisco a few weeks ago, I bought a Buffalo Linkstation which I finally got around to install. Before buying it, I had a lot of trouble finding out whether it would work in a European context, even calling tech support at Buffalo. They said it needed a 110V connection, so I resigned myself to having to get a transformer. Then it turns out that it is 110/220 autoswitchable, so basically it was just plug it into the power slot, connect it to the router – and presto, 120Gb of file server. Truly a set it and forget it device, now hidden away in my home network closet. Excellent.
I haven’t tried out its print server facilities yet, but will do shortly. In the meantime, European friends, this is the thing to get for your small network the next time you are over in the States. It is not available this side of the pond – or at least not in Norway, as far as I know. And Buffalo said they were not going to sell it in Europe (then again, they told me it only would work in the States…..).
This is, incidentally, my first “production” Linux computer – that is, the Linkstation runs on (as far as I know) a limited version of Linux. (I have had a few PCs with Linux to play with, but haven’t really used them.) At the recent CIO Staff call on Open Source, this way of using Linux – device frosting – was seen as one of ways Linux will make it into the mainstream. The TIVO is running on Linux in the same fashion – so you may run Linux and not even know it.
Ahhh. Technology. Sometimes it Just Works.

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