Once the Central is set up, you have several different options on how to get data over to it. The first is to simply use it as you would any other NAS or file server, i.e. ppen Windows Explorer, drag and drop files. This worked well. While there is no Windows account authentication, there are users configurable on the Central itself. The Central has public folders open to everyone and private folders that are set up per user.
The second way to get files over to the Central is with the Seagate Dashboard, which is a free download. I went to get the Seagate Dashboard and was surprised to see the download was 629 MB! Hopefully, you've got a fast internet connection if you want to download the Seagate Dashboard.
On my PC, the Seagate Dashboard also wanted to install four prerequisites shown below, which also gave me pause.
Seagate Dashboard Prerequisites
Once in the Dashboard, you have three options, Protect (set up a Backup Plan), Share to social media, and Save (backup from social media), which you see below. The Social Media option is an addition from when I tested the Seagate Wireless Plus. I tested it via the Central's web admin GUI and downloaded all of my Facebook pictures, which was a nice feature. For some reason, when attempting to do it through the Dashboard it said my account was unavailable.
Seagate Dashboard Entry Page
I was more interested in backing up my media and data though, so I went to the Protect option, which is shown in the image below. In there you have two initial options, Protect Now and New Backup Plan. Protect Now backs up all of your non-system data files in realtime continuously.
I was a little concerned about how the resources this would take, so I watched Average disk queue length and CPU on my Windows system while the Seagate Dashboard protected continuously. The disk queue showed almost no change and neither did the CPU. Memory consumption of the Dashboard was around 100 MB. For protecting in realtime, it was not very intrusive.
Seagate Dashboard Protect Options
If you don't want realtime protection, which I probably wouldn't want over a network, you have several other options to choose from. Snapshot, which takes an instantaneous copy of options you select, monthly, daily and weekly, which are pretty self-explanatory. You can see these explanations in the image below.
Seagate Dashboard Protect Interval Specifics
The Seagate Dashboard has a couple of good options, such as the Continuous sync if you want something like that, and the social media aspects. If you don't need those options and want a freeware option that is more powerful in other ways and much more space-friendly, I'd suggest checking out Karen's Replicator instead.
The last way to get media over to the Seagate Central is with the Seagate Media App. When I looked at the Seagate Wireless Plus I had a few frustrations with the Seagate Media App. The biggest frustration was the inconsistencies between the Android and iOS apps and the browser interface. I fired up the app again thinking it would be different, but I was disappointed.
I first went to my iPad. The Seagate Central marketing literature speaks of moving content back and forth from the Central to the iPad. I knew there had to be a way, but I couldn't figure it out. It took reading FAQs on Seagate's site again to figure out how. It should never be that complicated.
Before you dismiss me as a big dummy, let me show you what I'm talking about. First I'll show you the iOS screen. Before reading anything, see if you can figure out how to upload media.
Seagate Media App iOS Screen
You probably saw the red circle, you select the media and then push the button that looks like a square with an arrow pointing right. When I first saw that icon I thought it meant "forward".