I decided to jump on one of the new AirPort Extreme Base Stations primarily because both my wife and I now own MacBooks, and we both have varying levels of success at maintaining any kind of steady backup schedule. Now when I say 'varying level of success,' I mean: my wife pretty much doesn't, and I did a fairly good job back when I had an Intel iMac set up on the network to which I used ChronoSync to do incremental over-the-air backups. So what does a new AirPort Extreme Base Station have to do with our backup habits, you ask? Well, aside from the new 802.11n speeds (for which I have not quite gone ga-ga just yet), I am most interested in the new AirPort Disk feature, which allows you to plug a USB hard drive into the station for automatic mounting whenever connected to the network. Now I can have one large drive to which I can back up both mine and my wife's essentials, as well as a repository for my iTunes library to free up space for Final Cut Studio and even tinkering with Linux and (yes, sadly) Windows in Parallels for my work at our sister blog, Download Squad.
I picked up the new base station Wednesday night, which I set up to relieve our trusty AirPort Express from its duties in the living room (now we have 'tunes in the basement office! hooray!). Since it's only been a few days and I'm still waiting for UPS to bring me a bouncing baby external hard drive, I thought I would post some general first thoughts on the setup experience thus far. A more detailed report is pending, and I plan on writing up how-tos for wireless backups and using this setup for a wireless iTunes library. Until then, read after the jump for some general thoughts on my initial experience with Apple's slick new base station.