"novel idea, needs plenty work"1.5 starson by y0Lorenzo
Pros: nice idea in theory
Cons: not good in practice
Summary: I cannot believe cNet gave this 8.4 and editors choice... They've been wrong before but GOSH!
The worst offender of this products design is the tacky software that must be installed on each PC that wants to use devices connected to the hub. The balky software loads and slows down your PC at every startup. It "manages" devices connected on the hub requiring PC1 to approve a handoff of the device to PC2 if PC2 needs it while PC1 was using it... I'm pretty tech savvy but the software concept on this thing just really rubbed me the wrong way.
I got this for a Lexmark X73 USB-Print/Copy/Scan/Fax. The printer was old and requires a host pc for every function. WinXP drivers, but would not work when used with this unit. It worked tethered to the PC, but the whole point of this unit was to put it on the network without using XP f&p sharing.
I thought about attaching my WD 500GB usb My Book drive to it... but the computer its on has a gigabit connection and we have a gigabit router and switch... why slow it down to 10/100?
When you consider USB2.0 is 480Mb/s and its networked with 100Mb... well then you have a slow down. Not good for a hard drive, and wouldn't work period for the printer I had.
I couldn't justify purchasing a network printserver for an old printer that I never really liked anyway... but for $67 more, I got the HP Office Jet 6310. That printer is a BEAST.
Print, Copy, Scan, Fax, Ethernet, PictBridge. Every function (except scan i think, because the scans have to go somewheree...) can be performed without a host PC or a print server. I just plugged it into my router and installed the printer sofware and boom. I manage 3 computers at my house and just buying a networked printer really was the way to go for considering it really wasn't that much more than the Belkin itself. So I returned it the day after I bought it.