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BitTorrent and Tools Menu

The final major capability that I wanted to check out was the built-in BitTorrent capability. This is also a fairly rare feature to have in a low-end NAS box, but it's a bit of a natural for these types of devices. It seems most of the BitTorrent downloads I do take days to complete. So it's very nice to just fire up a download and let it chug away on its own. Figure 11 shows the BitTorrent configuration screen where a number of parameters are defined.

BitTorrent Settings
Figure 11: BitTorrent Settings

One thing not listed were the ports used. The BitTorrent protocol works better when you open up needed ports through your firewall. Figure 12 shows the status screen as a download is underway.

BitTorrent Status
Figure 12: BitTorrent Status

The "details" button on this display reveals more information such as the current download rate, upload rate, number of peers, etc. My tests showed this functionality worked well. I submitted a few torrents and they all completed with a reasonable download rate.

Along with the administration options, the main menu of the CN-570 offers a number of features included under "Tools". I found it somewhat revealing that there were two different items dealing with rebooting the box. You can either schedule a timed reboot, or you can reboot the box immediately. Having a "reboot now" button is common, but having the ability to schedule a reboot tells me that the box may have had stability issues that could be masked by a nightly reboot.

Other tools in this section provided the capability to back up and restore the configuration, upgrade the firmware, change the administration password etc. I was interested to see a "System Log" feature in this section. Figure 13 shows the information displayed from a log menu.

System Log
Figure 13: System Log

As I monitored the log during the time of this review, the only other information displayed was the NTP message shows above. Nothing was shown regarding my printing troubles, user creation, FTP access etc. So in this respect, the log was of little use.

The last interesting menu in the tools section was an "E-mail Sending" capability shown in Figure 14.

Email Configuration
Figure 14: Email Configuration

This capability is designed to send an alert email when problems occur. The "Send now" button is used for testing purposes in order to make sure the address been set up properly. In my tests, I received email for one of my addresses, but not for another. I suspect the message failed to pass a SPAM filter somewhere along the way.

Note also that there is no option for setting a SMTP server for outbound email. This tells me that either the unit is using some unspecified SMTP server, or it is directly sending the email itself without first going through a central SMTP sever. Note also that there were no options for specifying what kind of events would warrant sending an email. During the time of this review, I got no email other than the test messages.

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