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To appeal to consumers who aren't familiar with NASes and to simplify its marketing message, WD has trimmed down the My Book Live's feature set. You won't find printer sharing, NAS backup, USB drive copy, Domain / AD support or even jumbo frame controls. You do get the following, however:

Updated 11/1/2010
  • SMB/CIFS network filesystems (no NFS or AFP) AFP is supported (has to be for Apple Time Machine). NFS supported only to default Public mount
  • FTP server
  • User level permissions (no groups, no quotas)
  • HTTP only web administration
  • iTunes and UPnP AV / DLNA (TwonkyMedia) server
  • Email alerts (w/ built-in SMTP service for no-hassle setup)
  • Remote access to shares via MioNet Web service
  • WD Photos i0S photo viewer app (requires MioNet service)
  • Apple Time Machine support
  • SmartWare for Windows bundled client backup application, unlimited licenses

Given the media focus of the product, it's odd that WD left off the My Book World's HTTP and FTP download manager. But I suppose they didn't want to get into how customers acquire their content.

Note that photos are the only media type that the Live remotely supports via a mobile app.

There's a slick, although a bit slow, revamped interface that uses sliding AJAX-based panels for configuring your Live. Figure 6 shows the login landing page. The Secure Your Device icon in the upper right will stay there until you change the default login password.

WD My Book Live admin home page
Click to enlarge image

Figure 6: WD My Book Live admin home page

The Let Us Help You panel is always there to guide new users through essential tasks (Register Your Device, Access Your Media, Create Users, Create Shares). Don't click on the WD My Book Live logo at the upper left unless you want to go to WD's website.

Note the panel at the bottom of the screenshot. It's shown in its expanded form, which provides a breakdown on file use by media type. There's no big magic here; just a toting up of files in the Shared Music, Shared Pictures and Shared Photos folders that come configured on the Live. Everything else goes into the Other category.

The Settings section holds five key function areas. The System tab shown in Figure 7 includes the Energy Saver panel, which is enabled and set to 10 minutes by default.

WD My Book Live System page
Click to enlarge image

Figure 7: WD My Book Live System page

The Media Tab (Figure 8) holds Twonky and iTunes panels. WD makes no attempt to hide the fact that they use PacketVideo's TwonkyMedia server and even have a link to the TwonkyMedia site.

My Book Live Media Tab, Twonky panel

Figure 8: My Book Live Media Tab, Twonky panel

The Twonky panel echoes some of the functions that you can get by directly accessing the Twonkymedia server admin page itself at port 9000 (Figure 9).

TwonkyMedia server access

Figure 9: TwonkyMedia server access

MioNet Remote Access (version MioNet looks about the same as the last time I looked at it on the WD ShareSpace. The only feature out of the ones shown in Figure 10 that you get for free is remote access to files stored on the Live. Everything else requires a $8 monthly or $80 yearly subscription.

MioNet Web
Click to enlarge image

Figure 10: MioNet Web

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