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I also won't detail the features that are common between the two units—check out the TS-101 review for these features, but there are a number of new features to try out. One is support for sharing the drive on the network using NFS, a protocol that is natively used in Unix-like systems such as Linux, Solaris, and Mac OSX. Figure 3 shows the NFS setup page, where access privileges can be set for the shared folders.

NFS Setup

Figure 3: NFS Setup

The one key item missing in this screen is the remote path for the share on the TS-209. Under NFS, the client specifies the remote path when mounting a network share. Fortunately, even though it's left off the web configuration page, the manual specifies that the remote path will be the same as the share name, which should make it easy to remember.

The only difficulty I ran into with NFS was under Mac OS X. By default, OS X uses a non-reserved port for NFS, which usually gets rejected by most servers (including the TS-209 NFS server). There are two ways around this. The first is to skip the GUI "Finder" method of mounting the share and do the NFS mount from the OS X command line instead, specifying a reserved port. The other is to make a change to the configuration on the server side. Once I made the change on the TS-209's server (more on this later), I was able to mount and use the NFS share from my OS X system.

Another new feature as compared to the TS-101 is secure FTP. By default, FTP transfers occur "in the clear," meaning that anyone that has access to your network could watch the network traffic to sniff out your username and password. By using an encrypted transaction, this risk is avoided. Figure 4 shows the FTP setup screen, where secure FTP can be specified, port numbers can be set, throttling can be configured, etc.

FTP Setup

Figure 4: FTP Setup

The TS-209 also adds feature to do what it calls remote replication (backup) to another QNAP NAS on the LAN. Figure 5 shows the setup screen for defining the backup.

Replication Setup

Figure 5: Replication Setup

Note that there are a lot of powerful options, including incremental backup, compressed backups, scheduled backups, etc. Although the documentation stated that this replication was for use between two different QNAP devices on the LAN, I found that the underlying backup functionality was provided by rsync, a powerful open-source utility designed for backing up data across the network. This means you're really not limited to QNAP devices for the destination.

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