It’s not always easy accessing your own files remotely and there are also times when you want to have a selection of media available over a home network but you just don’t want to keep them on whichever PC is acting as a server. That’s where Western Digital’s MyCloud 2TB cloud storage solution comes in.
The MyCloud 2TB is designed to connect to your wireless router and give you access to whichever files are stored on it from wherever you are. That means it can be set up to allow for media streaming from every device in your home or you could just as easily flip through your files from a whole other location, though slower internet connections will stop you from streaming Breaking Bad to your smartphone from the Karoo.
Setting up the MyCloud, from box to fully functional, doesn’t take long at all. Western Digital have opted to not include any software with this cloud storage device so users will need to have access to an internet connection for the initial setup at the very least in order to assign client machines to the MyCloud (and enable remote access). Connecting to the MyCloud via its IP address lets you complete the initial setup and then PCs and Macs alike can leech off whichever files you consider important. Mobile devices also have an app that will allow you to access the contents of the MyCloud.
Basically, it’s like having your very own DropBox (but this one also integrates with DropBox so you can send files to DropBox is need be. Traffic doesn’t go the other way, sadly). DropBox integration is almost the extent of the extra features, if you don’t could the ability to stream the same video to six different devices on the same local network at the same time as impressive. Other cloud drives feature BitTorrent servers and similar configuration options, the MyCloud isn’t that technical.
The lack of these extras means that it’s relatively simple to configure for multiple users, even if you’re not going to be going all Network Administrator on their permissions. Once a computer has been set up to access the MyCloud, access to files is split between the user’s own files and those that are publicly available. TimeMachine for Mac is also enabled from the outset so backups can be done immediately.
If there’s a problem with the MyCloud 2TB, it would be in the interface that users require to access their files. Users are restricted to a list view that should be easy enough to navigate for those used to Windows Explorer and similar setups but it does mean that poorly-named files will cause headaches when the time comes to select whatever it is you’re after. The MyCloud also lacks a search function, something that it really could do with.
That said, the MyCloud 2TB is so simple to use that it is ideal for those who aren’t interested (or capable of) the technicalities that characterise similar devices. It’s cloud storage for the everyday person. And, at the end of the day, that’s what you really want.