Airport Extreme Disappointment

My new Airport Extreme (the 802.11n model) is set up and humming, and everything looks good—better range, easier setup, better form factor. So why am I extremely disappointed?

Because it won’t share my RAID disk, and Apple won’t help me figure out how to make it happen. In fact, I had to go to their support forum to find out that the base station appears to have issues with RAID disks.

The good news is that I don’t have even 500 GB of content on the RAID disk, so theoretically I can back up the data, break the RAID set, and rebuild everything on the 500 GB volume.

The bad news: Back up the data to where? Hopefully I can find a way to move the music to a loaner disk or something.

And of course that’s just the first step. Next comes moving the iTunes library file off the old PowerBook, rebuilding it so that it points to the new disk—hopefully without losing all my playcount data this time! Then testing: synching the iPod, ripping a disc, copying music to the remote disk. The real question is, how many iTunes scenarios are bearable with a remote disk across an 802.11g network? And: will Apple or someone else come out with an 802.11n compatible card for the first generation MacBook Pro so that I can actually use the 802.11n features of the base station?

What blows me away, of course, is that this was a completely avoidable thing. The Mac has had support for software RAID for many years, and with a lot of people embracing digital lifestyles thanks to Apple, the likelihood that there are going to be a few people caught by this is pretty high.