I love this device!
Almost a year ago, I took a photography class from Syl Arena and he mentioned, in an off-hand comment, that he used a PogoPlug to access his files from home while on the road. Now, I’d heard a little about the PogoPlug before that, but not much and with all the cloud storage services, like Dropbox, around, I didn’t really pay too much attention to it. After hearing Syl go on at length about how easy it was to use, I read a little bit more about it. I was suitably impressed, but just didn’t have the time or cash to really go ahead and follow through on a purchase. Then, thanks to Gizmodo, I saw that Adorama had the entry-level PogoPlug on sale for $17.99, including free shipping. The price has since gone up a dollar or two, but it’s still cheaper than full price and, let me tell you, completely worth it!
In brief, the PogoPlug is a network device that allows you to hook up USB-based drives to share on a network and the internet. The device has six connections; one for power, one for the network cable, and four USB connections for storage. I got mine hooked up in about five minutes. Really, all you need to do is connect it to your network, attach storage to it and sign into your free my.pogoplug.com account to configure the device. There’s an option once you sign in to check for new PogoPlug devices and, once yours is found, to configure the sharing services, if you want, or to upload files. And, that’s pretty much all there is to the setup. It really took me all of five minutes, and that was because I had forgotten to turn on the external USB hard drive enclosure I had attached to the PogoPlug. Then, I just started uploading files. And, the next day, to verify that I had done everything correctly, I signed in to the iPhone app while I was at the office and checked to make sure I could see my data remotely. And, I could! It really was just that easy!
I was even more excited when I discovered the slightly hidden ability to upload files directly to the PogoPlug without having to go through their webpage! All I had to do was download and install the companion software which they offer for free. They have both Android and iPhone clients as well as clients for Windows, Mac and Linux. That downloadable software also let’s you do regular backups from any device you load it on to your PogoPlug, even over the internet! Once installed, it makes your entire PogoPlug available to you as if it were a mapped drive with a drive letter and everything, just like any other network attached storage, except, of course, it will let you attach to that PogoPlug over the internet. I’ve tried other things that claim they’ll let you have your own “personal cloud”, but they’ve all had problems when they bump up against the security I run on my network at home. The PogoPlug, however, was even easier than advertised. It was amazing!
There’s only one, small problem I’ve encountered with the PogoPlug and, really, it was only with the Android app. I run a rooted Nook which I often use to read PDF files. When I open PDF files through the Dropbox Android app, they launch right into Adobe’s PDF Reader without any issue. But, when I try to do the same from the PogoPlug app on that rooted Nook, it gives me a message about downloading the file, but it never opens. I hope that bug will be corrected in future versions of the app, but it’s a relatively minor issue, all things considered.
I really cannot say enough about how fantastic this device really is. I haven’t tried just plugging in a regular USB thumb drive yet, or the outer limits on size, though I do have another USB drive enclosure and a 2 Terabyte drive that I’m itching to get hooked up. Not to mention how deeply I want to dig into the software capabilities. Also, I’m hoping I can get another cheap 2 Terabyte drive and figure out how to clone from one to the other to create a backup.
But, again, even if I can’t and I’ve seen all the possibilities of this device, it’s still awesome!
(And, yes, that link to Adorama which has sales information about the PogoPlug is an affiliate link, so I’ll make a little money of it if you buy it that way.)