The Zalman HDD docking station is circular in shape about 6in diameter. The top is a brushed aluminum that is painted black, includes 2 HDD ejects button, and 2 blue led lights that indicate HDD activity. Also written on top of the unit is its description “HDD Docking Station”, with the Zalman logo and their slogan “Cool Innovations”. The 2 HDD bays are also individually labeled as HDD1, HDD2, and are equipped with a spring loaded door to support both 2.5” and 3.5” drives. The outside covering is a black plastic with a section in back for plugging in the USB adapter and Power adapter. This section also included as power toggle switch, and 5 pairs of dipswitches for raid on/off and mode settings, as well as a reset switch to force the PC to recognize the new raid switch settings. Also on the bottom are 5 not so evenly spaced rubber pads (3 on the eject button side and 2 on the other).
Setup for the unit was pretty self-explanatory, plug the USB cable into the unit and the other end into the USB 3.0 port on the machine, plug in the power adaptor to an outlet, then into the unit itself, next all that was required was to flip the power switch and Windows 7 recognized the device immediately. After inserting a drive into the bay it took a few seconds to spin up the drive and it was then shown in the drive listing as the one I used was previously formatted. The manual also gives detailed instructions on how get to the disk management tools in different versions of windows and how to set up partitions on the drive, including a description of the different raid mode configurations and dipswitch settings. The modes supported for this device are…
· Dual: Each slot is recognized as independent HDD
· JBOD: two HDD’s combined and recognized as a single HDD drive
· Raid 0 (striping): Data Striped into 2 HDD’s for increased performance
· Raid 1 (mirroring): Data mirrored so loss of one drive doesn’t affect data