Ease of use
How simple is each drive to set up?
Getting each drive up and running proved quite time consuming and even a bit tricky in places, although the Seagate Personal Cloud wins points for both its relatively fuss-free set-up process and user-friendly management interface. This offers a phone-like home screen and smart search tool to help you quickly track the settings you need. The same could almost have been said for the My Cloud Mirror, although we had a spot of bother with setup that forced us to perform a full reset.
Both the Netgear and Synology boxes are naturally trickier to set up as you need to fit the drives yourself. Setup wasn’t particularly onerous, but their user interfaces reflect the complexity of options on offer and will appeal more to techie users. Despite its lack of complex features, the LinkStation failed to impress – AFP sharing was disabled by default, and its interface was confusing in places. Finally, the Zyxel attempts to provide a hybrid interface that doesn’t mesh well and ultimately falls a little flat.