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Features

There were a few things I really appreciated about the Personal Cloud. Many NASes today come with lots of apps, enough to be server replacements in some instances. The Seagate Personal Cloud also have apps, but the selection is geared almost entirely to backing up and media sharing and those apps were surprisingly good.

The general list includes:

  • BitTorrent Sync
  • ElephantDrive
  • SDrive
  • Seagate Media
  • WordPress
  • ownCloud

Take for instance, SDrive. SDrive is a Seagate application for for Windows and MacOS for accessing the Personal Cloud (and other Seagate devices) remotely using a mapped drive letter. It's much like the Google Drive app if you are familiar with it.

Setting it up was cake. You download it from the Personal Cloud support page and install on your Mac or PC. The only hitch was I had uPnP disabled on my router and the Personal Cloud uses that to open the port for remote access. Luckily, the management pages of the Personal Cloud have a nice uPnP status indicator that showed me uPnP wasn't enabled, which you see below.

Seagate Personal Cloud Port Forwarding Status page

Seagate Personal Cloud Port Forwarding Status page

We usually ding products that rely on UPnP for remote access, so the PC gets a demerit for this. Relying on opening ports in your router's firewall, whether done automatically or manually, means one more attack vector for the bad guys and also inability to work through nested NATs. You will encounter nested NATs if your ISP's modem is actually a router that can't be bridged and you have added your own router.

Once I enabled uPnP, I was able to copy files back and forth to the Personal Cloud remotely with the ease of copying to a local drive. You can see the taskbar icon with its options below. The app makes an S: drive on your computer (or asks for a different letter if S: is used) and from there you just drag and drop.

Seagate Personal Cloud SDrive

Seagate Personal Cloud SDrive

Note that Seagate has two versions of SDrive and only one works with the Personal Cloud. To be fair, Seagate lays this out in this note on the download page:

This version only works for Seagate NAS, Seagate NAS Pro, Business Storage 4-Bay and 8-Bay Rackmount. If you need SDrive for Personal Cloud click here.

The Personal Cloud's Backup Manager includes options to back it up or sync to an attached drive, another Personal Cloud or rsync server or to cloud services including Google Drive and Dropbox.

Personal cloud backups are done via an easy sync wizard, which you see below.

Seagate Personal Cloud Sync wizard

Seagate Personal Cloud Sync wizard

Client backup is supported by the Seagate Dashboard for Windows and via Time Machine for MacOS. Options within the Seagate Dashboard include normal backup, Smart copy where you make selections and the software keeps it synced, mobile backup and social media backup. The Social Media backup saves pictures and video from your social media accounts right to the Seagate Personal Cloud.

Mobile device backup is also supported via Android and iOS apps that are handily linked from Seagate's Mobile Backup App page.

Media options include a Download Manager for downloading Torrents and UPnP / DLNA Media, iTunes and Seagate Media servers.

File security is accomplished by public and private folders for specific users. Users are set up within the management pages and can be given just local, or local and remote access.

Lastly, the Seagate Personal Cloud includes a plethora of file and media sharing services which can be easily enabled or disabled at the push of a button on the management pages. You can see all of the services below.

Seagate Personal Cloud Services page

Seagate Personal Cloud Services page

In all, I was fairly impressed with the applications and management for the Seagate Personal Cloud. The product has really matured over the Seagate Central. The gallery below has screenshots of some of the apps and features I've mentioned.

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