Synology Releases DiskStation DS216+ 2-Bay NAS

Synology officially released the DiskStation DS216+ which is the direct successor to the DS215+ and a NAS unit that I’m sure a lot of people have been looking forward to. The new DiskStation DS216+ has it all and looks like it is a solid server with great features.

The DiskStation DS216+ is built with an Intel Celeron N3050 dual-core CPU that has built-in AES-NI hardware encryption engine among other things. The CPU is backed by 1GB DDR3 memory and the system can provide excellent encrypted data transfer performance at over 113 MB/s reading and 109 MB/s writing. Another really cool feature is the real-time capabilities to transcode H.264 4K Ultra HD video. The DS216+ can handle one channel 4K transcoding or three channels with Full-HD transcoding at the same time. When coupled with the ability to utilize DVB-T/DVB-S sticks and the record function, you got everything you need in relation to media in one place. The Video, Audio, and Photo Stations offer all the media features you need and it also supports DLNA and AirPlay, and even Bluetooth and wireless transmission with the use of dongles.

The DiskStation DS216+ has most things when it comes to hardware and software. The LEDs on the front have an adjustable brightness as well as schedule abilities. There is a USB 3.0 port with one-touch copy button, two USB 2.0 ports, a Gigabit Ethernet connection, and a feature that I personally love to see, an eSATA port. The drives are hot-swappable and feature Synology’s screw and tool-less installation. The 92mm cooling fan located at the rear should also make sure that the NAS works as flawless under controlled temperatures and does so as silent as possible.

Besides the full setup of backup, restore, cloud, and other features that we love from Synology’s DiskStation Manager operating system, the DS216+ also introduces the Btrfs file system. Btrfs has advantages over EXT4 and comes with built-in data integrity check, more flexible Shared Folder/User Quota systems, advanced snapshot technology with a customizable backup schedule that allows for up to 64 copies of shared folder backups, and file or folder level data restoration. The Cloud Station with file versioning also reduces the storage consumption down to half when compared with the Ext4 file system.

So whether you need a full set of media capabilities, an easy backup solution, or business features such as Windows AD and LDAP, Windows ACL, Mail Server, VPN server, or Radius server, the DiskStation DS216+ has you covered. It is backed by a 2-year warranty and comes with an MSRP of £237.00 including VAT or €275.00 excluding VAT.

Feature Highlights

  • Dual-core CPU with AES-NI hardware encryption engine
  • Encryption performance at over 113 MB/s reading, 109 MB/s writing
  • Advanced Btrfs file system with built-in data integrity check
  • Single H.264 4K or triple Full HD video transcoding on the fly
  • Hot-swappable drive tray design for easy installation & maintenance
  • Brightness-adjustable front LED with schedule control
  • A versatile storage server for small offices

We can also spot a new feature within the product photos of this DS216+ NAS and while it is a feature that isn’t present yet, it should be on future models. At the first glance, the DS216+ looks like the previous  Synology 2-bay models. It does have the new power button and one-touch copy button with built-in LED feature, but there’s another thing hiding in plain sight on the front. There is an unused and covered slot on the front that judging from the size could be an SD Card slot. We’ve already seen Synology add an SD card slot to their RT1900ac router, so it wouldn’t be far-fetched that we could see that added to the NAS lineup too.

Synology DiskStation DS416 4-bay High-Performance NAS Review

Introduction


I’ve taken a look at quite a few 2-bay NAS units lately and while they already allow for an impressive 16TB raw storage, that might not be enough for everyone. Today I’m taking Synology’s DiskStation DS416, a 4-bay feature-rich and high-performance NAS server, for a spin on my test bench. The Synology DiskStation DS416 is built around an Annapurna Labs Alpine AL-212 32-bit dual-core CPU with 1.4GHz, floating point unit, and hardware encryption engine. The CPU is backed by 1GB DDR3 memory that sadly isn’t upgradable.

The DS416 is a full-fledged NAS that comes with everything you’d want from a performance system. It features dual Gigabit Ethernet network that supports all types of failover and link aggregation, allowing you to keep your system connected under heavier load or when one connection should fail. The DS416 also features three USB 3.0 ports where one of them is conveniently placed on the front of the NAS for easy access.

With powerful hardware like that, the DS416 is able to deliver an average reading and writing speeds of 220 MB/s and 140 MB/s respectively while encrypted file transfers come in at an evenly impressive 146 MB/s reading and 65 MB/s writing. Those figures naturally depend on what hard disk drives you use as well as the method of data access and your network setup.

The drive bays feature a convenient tool-free drive installation for 3.5-inch drives where as you still need screws to mount 2.5-inch drives. The latter is a rare occurrence anyway and shouldn’t be anything to bother anyone. The drive bays are covered by a removable front plate that gives the NAS a cleaner overall look by hiding away the drives. The drive bays aren’t the only thing that you can swap out in this NAS, the fans are also redundant. The DS416 incorporates a passive cooling design on the actual components and only uses two 92mm fans on the rear to keep everything at an optimal temperature. When the system detects a fan failure, the built-in redundancy mechanism ensures continuous operation until the replacement fan arrives.

The DS416 is naturally powered by DiskStation Manager (DSM), the award-winning operating system from Synology. It has a beautiful and functional user interface and all the features you will need at home or in a small to medium-sized business. It offers all the network protocols you’d want including SMB2, AFP, NFS, WebDAV, and FTP. Server admins don’t need to worry about maintaining two set of user credentials either as the DS416 comes with both Windows AD and LDAP integration. An added convenience factor is the network recycle bin that is featured on AFP, CIFS, File Station, and WebDAV. All files deleted in a shared folder will be automatically moved into the Recycle Bin instead of being destroyed.

The DS416 isn’t just an all in one server when it comes to features, it also has the power to handle it. You can easily turn your DS416 into a mail server with webmail interface, set up a VPN server connect as a VPN client, create a print server for USB printers and much more such as Radius server, Proxy server, and Syslog server features.

Creating your own personal yet comprehensive cloud solutions is no problem either with the DS416 thanks to the Cloud Station package.It is the perfect package to sync files across multiple devices, perform offline edits and later synced them, and keep up to 32 historical versions for easy restoration. You also got all the normal backup features that you’ll want such as 2-way sync between different DiskSations as well as support for commercial cloud services such as Glacier Backup and HiDrive Backup.

The Synology DiskStation DS416 has a comprehensive security package, starting with AES 256-bit encryption but also more advanced setups like 2-step verification. It also comes with AppArmor that can block malicious programs from accessing unauthorized system resources and you can customize the trust level in the package center to only accept apps from certain publishers. The built-in firewall is another useful feature just as the Denial of Service (DoS) protection. Antivirus can also be downloaded and installed for that extra level of security. Overall, everything you need to keep your data safe from malicious code and people.

Synology also offers a row of mobile apps that you can use to easy connection and usage of your NAS from your mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones. The apps include DS note, DS audio, DS video, DS photo+, DS cloud, DS file, DS download and DS cam.

Feature Highlights

  • Dual-core CPU with hardware encryption engine
  • Dual LAN with failover and link aggregation support
  • Over 221.05MB/s reading, 139.51MB/s writing
  • Effective backup solution for all desktop and mobile devices
  • Front USB 3.0 for fast easy access
  • Hot-swappable & tool-less hard drive tray design
  • Running on Synology DiskStation Manager (DSM)

Packaging and Accessories

The Synology DS416 comes in a simple brown package with a sticker for model inside. It has all the relevant features presented as well as an image of the unit that is inside.

The rear of the box has a second sticker with some of the hardware highlights.

Inside the box, next to the NAS itself, you’ll find an AC adapter with power cable for the region where you purchased it, two RJ45 LAN cables, screws for use with 2.5-inch drives, and a Welcome and Quick Installation Guide. Everything you need to get it setup and I like that Synology included two LAN cables so users can get port trunking up and running right away.

Synology DiskStation DS216play 2-Bay Multimedia-Optimized NAS Review

Introduction


Synology’s 2-bay play series has been very popular among users due to its great features and functionality coupled with a low asking price. Today I’m taking a closer look at the newest model in this series, the DS216play, a NAS featuring a powerful dual-core CPU with hardware H.264 and H.265 transcoding support and floating point unit.

Let us dive right into the hardware on this little NAS. The CPU is an STM STiH412 32-bit dual-core processor with 1.5GHz and floating point unit. The hardware transcoding engine is capable of the H.265 (HEVC), MPEG-4 Part 2, MPEG-2, and VC-1 codecs and it can work with a maximum resolution of up to 4K (3840 x 2160 pixels) at up to 30 frames per second. It allows you to transcode 4K videos to 1080p, making them suitable for all screens and bandwidths whether they are local media players or remote mobile devices. In addition, you can also stream original 4K resolution videos to your multimedia player or 4K TV within a local network environment. The CPU is backed by 1GB DDR3 memory which should be sufficient for its area of operation.

With those hardware specifications, the DS216play is able to deliver an average speed of 107 MB/s when reading and 91 MB/s when writing on a RAID 1 configuration from a Windows environment. The built-in floating-point unit enhances the overall capability of the main CPU and it is particularly advantageous in speeding up thumbnail creations when uploading a lot of photos or videos.

One of the main features of a NAS like this is to stream media files to a whole lot of devices. The DS216play can act as a DLNA certified DMS (Digital Media Server), allowing you to stream multimedia contents, such as music, photos, and videos, to DLNA compliant devices. It can also stream to pretty much any other device such as mobile phones and tablets, TVs, and stereos. Synology also offers support for Samsung TV, Apple TV, Google Chromecast and Roku players.

Three of the official and very popular apps on the DS216play are the Photo Station, Video Station, and Audio Station. They provide a streamlined and sleek interface that turn your NAS into an entertainment hub. The Video Station allows you to browse and manage all your movies, TV shows, and home videos and build up a smart video library with those. The Photo Station is the same, just for still pictures, and it also allows you to create web albums or blogs to record and share the exciting moments of your lives with others. The Audio Station can create your own audio streaming service where you can build a personal music center and stream music directly from your Synology NAS to other devices. You can rate your songs and sort music into smart playlists according to the rating. Plus, sharing a playlist with others is as simple as creating a sharing link and sending it to your friends.

Thanks to Synology’s QuickConnect, you can easily access all the NAS functions no matter where in the world you are, as long as the NAS and you both have an internet connection. It is a very simple DDNS service that takes care of all the settings for you. All you need to do is log in. This allows you to create your own personal cloud service where you don’t need to rely on costly monthly plans or storage limits. You can still connect your NAS to public cloud offerings such as Google Drive, OneDrive, Dropbox, Box, hubiC, and Baidu Cloud as well as Amazon S3, Glacier cloud service, Microsoft Azure, SFR, and hicloud.

The Synology DS216play supports plenty of backup methods for both Windows and Mac users with the use of Cloud Station. Whenever you modify a file, the changes are backed up to the DS216play automatically. Mac OS users can also use Apple Time Machine. Backups to and from another Synology NAS is also supported, just as rsync servers, external drives, and cloud services can be used as backup targets.

Speaking of external devices, the DS216play has one USB 3.0 and one USB 2.0 port for external storage devices, printers, or wireless adapters. There is one Gigabit Ethernet port for the network connectivty and the entire unit is cooled by a 92mm fan.

So far I have talked a lot about the media capabilities on the DS216play NAS, but we shouldn’t forget that NAS stands for network attached storage. The DS216play naturally supports everything it needs to here from Samba (SMB2) for Windows and Mac OS users as well as AFP and NFS. Should you use WebDAV for your credentials, then that is supported too. AFP, CIFS, File Station and WebDAV also support network recycle bins for extra safety. An FTP service is also included by default, one of the oldest and most universal file transfer protocls around.

The File Station is a fast and secure feature for sharing and managing your files stored on DS216play. Just drag and drop to upload data from Mac or PC. Advanced filters make it easy to search for documents, photos, or videos and it also has a built-in FTP and email client. IT lets you organize and share files through an advanced web application and you can even share files and folders with others by simply sending a link. Files can be reached on mobile devices via the companion mobile app DS file. Both HTTPS and SSL/TLS encryption are featured for secure transfers and you can even set link expiry dates.

Synology built the DS216play in the well-known two-piece chassis, this time in black. It is simple yet effective with the only downside of not having front-accessible drive bays. On the other hand, home users are the intended market for a NAS like this and it is not like they’re switching and swapping drives all the time.

Feature Highlights

  • 4K Ultra HD video transcoding on the fly
  • Powerful dual-core CPU with H.265 codec support
  • 107.7 MB/s Reading, 91.47 MB/s Writing
  • DLNA certified for media streaming
  • Powered by Synology DiskStation Manager (DSM)

Packaging and Accessories

The Synology DiskStation DS216play comes in a simple brown box with a sticker highlighting the NAS model and its features.

The physical characteristics are detailed a little bit more on the rear where it also lists the hardware specifications.

Inside the box, next to the NAS itself, we find a power cable and AC/DC converter, a LAN cable, screws for the drives and the chassis itself as well as a Quick Installation Guide to get you going.

Synology Releases 3 New High-value NAS Servers for Homes and Businesses

Synology announced not one, not two, but three new NAS units that should provide plenty of features for a moderate price. Three three new NAS units are the DS216se 2-bay NAS, DS216play 2-bay NAS, and DS416 four-bay NAS.

Let’s start out with the biggest model, the DS416. It is the replacement for the DS414 NAS and the new DS4166 features a 1.4GHz dual-core processor (Annapurna Labs Alpine AL212) with hardware encryption engine and floating point unit. It comes with 1GB RAM and features dual Gigabit Ethernet with failover and link aggregation. You also get three USB 3.0 ports where one of them is on the front of the unit.

With Link Aggregation, the DS416 delivers over 221MB/s while reading from an RAID5 array, and over 139MB/s writing. The hardware encryption engine helps a lot when encryption is needed and the DS416 can still deliver up to 146MB/s reading and 65MB/s writing here. That is an easy 90% gain on encrypted file performance over the predecessor.

The cheapest of the three new Synology NAS is the DiskStation DS216se, a budget-friendly two-bay NAS device with the capability to host, share and protect data. This could be a great NAS for people who want to enter the world of NAS users without blowing their budget.

The DS216se features a Marvell Armada 370 800MHz with floating point unit that helps in a lot of scenarios, but especially when creating thumbnails and similar media related operations. However, the built-in floating-point unit generally enhances the overall capability of the CPU. The DS216se only features 256M DDR3 RAM, so you shouldn’t multitask too much with it. The DS216se delivers an average 102 MB/s reading speed under RAID 1 configuration and over 59 MB/s writing.

Two USB 2.0 ports on the rear allow the connection of portable storage drives for easy backup both ways. There is a single Gigabit Ethernet connection that should be plenty for most people’s home NAS needs. You can also connect it wirelessly with optional USB dongles if you should wish to do so.

With the DSM operating system at hand, you got a lot of useful features such as DLNA streaming, UPnP setup, and much more. A great feature for home users is the scheduled on and off times that help you to save electricity, live greener, and also extend the lifetime of the hardware.

The third and last new Synology NAS is the DiskStation DS216play, the successor to the highly popular entry-level DS214play NAS. The new DS216play features a better processor and comes with a dual-core 1.5GHz featuring hardware transcoding engine and 1GB RAM. The new processor in the DS216play allows for real-time transcoding of 4K Ultra HD source content (H.265) for a perfect multimedia experience on all devices. The CPU is an STM STiH412 dual-core with 1.5GHz that also features both hardware encryption and floating point unit.

The DS216play features one USB 3.0 and one USB 2.0 port on the rear of the NAS as well as a single Gigabit Ethernet connection.

The name suggests play and that is in regards of media playback and not playing games and the DS216play could be a great solution for this. With its real-time transcoding abilities, support for DVB-T and DVB-S sticks and video recording as well as the general file serving options for pretty much all systems, including Windows, Linux, MacOS, iOS, and Android, there isn’t much that the NAS can’t do in that regards. DLNA support is also part of the deal.

 

All three NAS are backed by a two-year warranty. The DS216se has an MSRP of £98.40, the DS216play £186.00, and the DS416 has an MSRP of £330. Prices including VAT and all three NAS units should be available now.

Synology DiskStation DS215+ 2-Bay NAS and All-In-One Server Review

Introduction


Last month I had the pleasure to take a look at the Synology DS715 [review here] 2-bay NAS and today I continue with Synology’s second recently released NAS, the Synology DiskStation DS215+.

The DS215+ is an all-in-one 2-bay NAS server that offers high performance while staying energy-efficient and providing a full set of business features. The dual-core CPU is powerful enough to handle multi-tasking applications and can help small and medium businesses to centralize their backups, protect critical assets, and share files quickly and efficiently – and that on a budget.

Inside the DiskStation DS215+, we find an Annapurna AL-212 dual core ARM processor with 1.4GHz with floating point unit and hardware encryption engine and 1GB DDR3 memory.

There are plenty of connection options on the DS215+ starting with the two Gigabit Ethernet RJ45 ports that allow you to set all modes of failover and link aggregation, including IEEE 802.3ad. The unit has two USB 3.0 ports for external drives and other devices as well as an eSATA port. Readers familiar with my reviews will know that I love it when they add the eSATA port as it is my preferred method of attaching external storage as it doesn’t have the same latency as USB does.

The hardware encryption engine coupled with the other improvements allow this unit to deliver twice the performance over the predecessor when dealing with encrypted storage.

Synology’s drive trays in these units are awesome and allow for a speedy setup as well as maintenance. The screw and tool-less design is as simple to use as pulling the sides off, inserting the drive and putting them back on. The trays are also lockable which is another bonus. You don’t eject them by accident and no false friend runs off with your drives that easy.

The software part is well covered by Synology’s DiskStation Manager (DSM), an operating system that has won a lot of rewards, and all well deserved. It comes with most basic and used features as standard and you’ll most likely find what is missing there in the add-on section. DSM is real easy to use and has great multi-tasking support.

One of the great features of DSM is the File station, a fast and secure way for sharing and managing your files stored on the DS215+. It has built-in FTP and email clients and allows drag and drop of files from both Windows and Mac OS systems. Mobile systems can do the same with the DS file app. HTTPS, SSL/TLS encryption, and link expiry dates also ensure file sharing over the Internet stays secure.

The basic file sharing on your network isn’t any problem for the DS215+ either as it supports it all. SMB2, FTP, NFS, WbDAV, windows AD and LDAP – you’ll find it all. Network recycle bin is also available on both AFP and CIFS shares.

The DS215+ allows for seamless account integration thanks to the User Home feature that automatically creates user folders to minimize effort while the Windows ACL support allows admins to fine-tune access controls and set up privileges through a familiar interface.

This is truly an all-in-one server as it is labeled with everything it supports. From file storage and media streaming over Mail servers and VPN servers, the DS215+ lets you do it all. It can also work as a print server with your USB printers and share them over the network as well as act as DNS server, Directory Server, RADIUS Server, DHCP Server, and Log Center. All that in one tiny box.

With the support of Windows AD, LDAP, and Domain Trust, DS215+ enables seamless account integration. The User Home feature can automatically create a “home” folder for every user account to minimize the administrator’s effort in repeatedly creating “home” folders for all accounts. Windows ACL support on DS215+ allows IT administrators to fine-tune access controls and set up privileges to files and folders on DS215+ through the familiar Windows user interface. With compatibility for major protocols, DS215+ can eliminate server configuration overhead and enhance IT administrators’ efficiency.

 

Backup and storage works in many ways and one very useful is the personal cloud the DS215+ allows you to set up. The Cloud Station allows you to sync files between devices in online and offline mode. The Cloud Station can remember up to 32 historical versions, encrypts the traffic, and can also sync between different NAS stations as well as mobile devices.

Security isn’t just well covered in the Cloud Station and Drives with the AES 256-bit encryption, the DS215+ also supports Antivirus and basic network security. You can also enable two-step verification for your users.

All of Synology’s mobile apps work great with this device, may they be DS note, DS audio, DS video, DS photo+, DS cloud, DS file, DS download, and DS cam. Everything right at your fingertips and on your smartphone or tablet.

 

That is a lot of functionality and features in one little device and one that saves both the environment and your wallet thanks to the low power consumption. When the HDDs hibernate, the DS215+ consumes just about 9W and less than 21 W when accessed. Thinking small can pay off in the long run.

Synology DiskStation DS715 2-Bay Value NAS Review

Introduction


It has been a while since I had the pleasure to review a Synology NAS which makes it even more of a pleasure to take the brand new Synology DiskStation DS715 2-bay NAS for a spin. And while it does look ordinary on the first glance, I can tell you it isn’t.

The DS715 is an expandable NAS server, equipped with a powerful quad-core processor with hardware encryption engine and the ability to expand up to 7 drives thanks to the optional expansion unit. You can’t just expand it with extra bays, you can also connect it with Synology’s High Availability (SHA) technology that combines active and passive servers into one cluster.

The DS715 looks to be a perfect balance between performance, features, and value – so let us take a closer look at it.

The Synology DS715 is built around the Annapurna Labs Alpine AL-314 quad-core processor with 1.4GHz. We’ve previously seen a great performance from just this chip in the DS1515 NAS. The CPU has both hardware encryption engine and floating point unit.

The DS715 comes with 2GB DDR3 memory and the drive bays support hot swapping as it has to be. The unit is rated for 16TB raw capacity on its own, but that limitation only exists based on the drives currently available. Nothing should block you from using 10TB or bigger drives ones they become available.

If that still isn’t enough for you, then you’ll just expand the NAS with the DX513 five-bay expansion unit. It gives additional storage on the fly while being supported as if they were internal drives. You can easily expand your overall raw capacity to 56TB with 8TB drives.

The two Gigabit Ethernet ports ensure the connectivity to your network. You can set seven modes of failover and link aggregation depending on your switching setup and need for redundancy and increased throughput. 802.3ad dynamic setup is just one of the available, but probably the most important of the modes.

The addition of an eSATA port is something I love to see and it is my personal preferred method of connecting external storage. It is also the method of connecting the aforementioned DX513 expansion unit. The two USB 3.0 ports allows you to connect other storage drives, printers, or cameras.

The drive trays are tool and screwless, at least for 3.5-inch drives. If you wish to use the NAS with 2.5-inch drives, then you’ll need the included screws to mount them. Otherwise you just pull off the sides on the tray, place the hard disk inside and put them back. All done. Slide the trays back into your NAS and get started. Plug and Play.

Synology’s operating system is called DiskStationa Manager (DSM) and it is now in version 5.2. It is a really robust system that is easy to use and one that brings plenty of features. It also has built-in NVR server, capable of hosting up to 30 IP cameras (900 FPS @ 720p). Two camera licenses are included and more will have to be purchased separately.

Windows AD, LDAP, and Domain Trust allow for seamless account integration with the rest of your equipment and also feature user home folders and Windows ACL. It doesn’t really matter how you want to connect it, you can.

The DS715 also comes with support for Synology Central Management System (CMS). CMS offers both flexibility and convenience for administrators, allowing them to manage all systems from a single point.

File sharing works with all major system, may it be Linux, Windows, or Mac OS. Included protocols are FTP, SMB2, AFP, NFS and WebDAV among others.

The Cloud Station allows for easy backup from all your system to the DS715 NAS and it also supports Rsync, backup to external drives, other NAS devices, or public cloud offerings.

A minor thing, but one that I love, is that Synology included two RJ45 LAN cables with this unit. An LAN cable doesn’t cost much and it is really annoying to get a unit as cool as this and then have to head out again to get an LAN cable so you can setup your link aggregation. Not so here, everything you need to get started, except the hard drives, is included.

Synology Released Three New NAS Units

 

Synology has just released not one and not two new NAS, they went for a while three while at it. The first new unit is a refresh of an older model and the DS215+ replaces the DS214+ with a new and improved dual-core processor and hardware encryption for up to 80% faster reading and 50% faster writing operations. The DS215+ comes with two Gigabit ethernet LAN ports and 1GB RAM.

The DS715 on the other hand is a brand new unit, and what a unit it is. It is packed in the same beautiful packaging as the DS215+ but has another interior design. The DS715 is equipped with a quad-core CPU with hardware encryption and comes with 2GB RAM. Two gigabit ethernet ports connect the unit to your network and you can expand it with the DX513 unit for up to 7 drives.

The DS715 also supports Synology High Availability (SHA) which ensures a seamless transition between clustered servers in the event of a server failure.

Both the DS215+ and DS715 are backed by a two-year limited warranty and are available now for an MSRP of £252 and £306 respectively. We will have a review of both these units ready for you very shortly, so check back for more. You won’t be disappointed.

The third new unit is designed for enterprises and it is a beauty. The RC1801xs+ together with the RXD1215sas expansion unit provide a great base for your company’s storage needs.

“For today’s businesses, maintaining server uptime is the key to ensuring maximum productivity and minimised costs. The high-availability cluster design of RC18015xs+ and RXD1215sas is the ideal storage solution for enterprises seeking nonstop business continuity, scalability, and comprehensive data protection tools,” said Michael Wang, Product Manager at Synology Inc.

The high availability cluster design combines two computing servers and multiple storage units into a single high-availability cluster. You can scale the unit up to 180 drives and a maximum raw storage capacity beyond 1PB with superior performance. With over 2.270MB/s throughput, 355K IOPS, 8GB ECC RAM (upgradeable), PCIe slot for a 10GbE card and more, you get an impressive system.

Synology RC18015xs+ and RXD1215sas are now shipping globally. While they are separate units, they aren’t intended to work alone but as a high-availability cluster. Two RC18015xs+ and at least one RXD1215sas expansion unit are required to operate normally.

The RC18015xs+ comes with an MSRP of £2802 and the RXD1215sas with £2400, so it won’t be a cheap setup – but it is one that will be worth it.

Synology Displays New NAS Units at Computex

Computex 2015 – We’ve seen the new Router from Synology already, but it wouldn’t be an NAS manufacturer if they didn’t bring those devices along too.

On display is the DS216se, a budget friendly NAS server perfect for home and personal use. The two-bay NAS unit allows for easy drive mirroring, network sharing and it is also DLNA certified for streaming to your TV, consoles and set-top boxes.

Moving up the scale a bit and we get to the DS215+, an NAS unit designed for Small and Medium Businesses. It delivers great performance up to 209MB/s reading and 139MB/s writing thanks to the dual-core CPU and dual-LAN ports with link aggregation and failover support.

You also get USB 3.0 and eSATA ports along to connect extra external storage including the Synology DX513 expansion unit.

The DiskSTation DS715 is a completely new unit and doesn’t succeed any previous units. It is built around a powerful quad-core 1.4GHz CPU that offers hardware encryption engine.

The DS715 SMB NAS comes with 2GB RAM and can deliver a great performance with up to 205.5MB/s reading and 77.62MB/s writing.

The dual LAN ports support failover and link aggregation as they’re supposed to and you can expand the unit with 5 more drives using Synology’s DX513 expansion unit.

Enterprise users are also covered well by Synology’s lineup, especially with their rack units. The RC18015xs+ for example brings a quad-core processor, up to 32GB RAM as well as advanced snapshot technology for flexible point-in-time data backup and recovery.

The RXD1215sas is a high-redundancy expansion unit offering dual high-speed 6Gb/s SAS modules and allows for stacking with up to 15 units for a total of 180 drives.

Synology Release the Final Version of DSM 5.2

After a beta run, Synology has released the latest update to their award-winning NAS operating system DiskStation Manager (DSM) version 5.2. The new version of the system brings a list of fixes but also a list of useful features and improvements on the already great system. Among the improvements are improved security, better network management, and the refined Note Station.

Security is an important factor and Synology gives provides a duality of this with AppArmor and SMB3 encryption for your local network. The AppArmor supports package profiles and can defend against potential security threats while the integration of SMB3 encryption allows DiskStation users a secure file transfer between their Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 systems and their NAS.

The Cloud Station also got an upgrade with a more beautiful and flexible system. You now have the ability to customize the maximum number of file versions according to shared folder, get a totally redesigned system tray menu, and an overall improved and optimized system requiring fewer system resources. You can also sync between your DiskStation and the public cloud and it’s never been easier than now. You can set bidirectional or one-way sync for greater flexibility, encrypt data before sending it to the public cloud services, and you got the choice of Amazon S3, regional services (SFR, hicloud, Megafon Disk, Yandex Disk), or WebDAV cloud storage sites.

The network connections also been improved and the DiskStations now supports ALB Link Aggregation and failover without the need for a costly switch and the hassle of setting up your 802.3ad, which can be a very tricky situation. You simply get more options for a better throughput and speed using your current hardware.

Synology also added the Web Clipper extension for Chrome which allows users to quickly and easily save interesting web content to their Note Station for later reference. The comprehensive task management features will let you organize to-do lists according to different notes, priority, and due dates. This is a feature that really can make your everyday life easier, just as the NAS in itself did when you got it.

The new SSO Server transforms your DiskStation into a Single Sign-On server, helping to streamline the authentication process when logging into various DSM services. In addition, the software containerization solution Docker is available on select Synology NAS models, allowing for the deployment of more packages, such as Redmine, GitLab, and LXQT.

Synology users should be able to download the new Operating System directly from the NAS dashboard and those who participated in the beta program should also check if they are among the reward winners.

Synology Releases RS815 and DS1515 Value-Series 5-Bay NAS’

Synology launched two new NAS devices today and the first of them is the DS1515, a powerful and expandable 5-bay NAS for small and medium-sized businesses – or users who just want a little more than a normal SOHO device. It doesn’t just pack a quad-core processor, but also comes with four gigabit ethernet ports featuring failover and link aggregation for outstanding performance, it also features hardware-based encryption engine and blasting fast speeds.

“Growing SMBs expect a storage solution that is versatile and scalable for their future needs while minimising the initial investment. The DS1515 is engineered to address such needs, and provides the performance, reliability, and scalability to manage, protect, and share data,” said Jonathan Wang, Product Manager at Synology Inc.

The DS1515 can achieve 421 MB/s writing and 403 MB/s reading when using a RAID 5 configuration in a Windows environment, and even with encryption turned on, it still performs impressive speeds of up to 296 MB/s reading and 150 MB/s writing. It also supports the SSD read/write cache support that will boost the throughput considerable while minimising the overall costs per gigabyte of storage. The two eSATA ports allow you to scale the DS1515 for up to 15 drives with the use of the DX513 expansion units, with 6TB drives that would be 90TB raw capacity.

The new Synology DiskStation DS1515 is shipping globally now and should be available in your area very shortly.

The second new NAS from Synology is the 19″ RackStation RS815, a scalable and compact 1U 4-bay NAS. The RS815 is very short with its 12″ depth, 37% shorter than its predecessor. It comes with a dual-core 1.33GHz MARVELL processor with floating point unit and 1GB RAM.

“More and more small businesses need a compact server that can handle a variety of workloads,” said Jonathan Wang, Product Manager at Synology Inc. “With RS815, we want to demonstrate how uncompromising performance and functionality are achievable even within a small footprint.”

The MARVELL Armada XP MV78230 processor coupled with the dual Gigabit ethernet ports can provide great speeds that exceed 216MB/s read and 121MB/s write speeds. With failover and link aggregation you’re covered whether you want higher bandwidth or extra security and you can also extend this unit. The 19″ RX415 expansion unit connects through the eSATA port and provides another four drive bays.

The Synology RackStation RS815 is also shipping globally now and should arrive at your local reseller shortly.

Both new NAS devices are powered by the award-winning DiskStation Manager (DSM) that provides all the features and functionality you could want from a NAS. They also both come with USB 3.0 ports for easy and fast storage expansion as well as backup jobs.

Synology DS1515+ 5-Bay SMB NAS Review

Introduction


NAS devices are the perfect addition to pretty much any company, but small and mediums businesses more than anyone else. It’s a cost-effective and versatile solution to keep all your data centralized with easy to use backup mechanisms, just to name one function. Today I’m taking a closer look at the Synology DS1515+ that is a perfect NAS for any Small or Medium Business (SMB) setup with its features, functions, and performance.

The DS1515+ is a 5-bay SMB NAS, and that 5th bay comes with more benefits than most people think of right away. A four-bay unit is pretty much what we consider standard these days with its possibilities of RAID 0, 1, 5, 6 and 10. The 5th bay gives us the added safety of being able to have another hot-spare drive in our system for automatic recovery in case one of the other drives should fail. Or you could just use it for extra storage, the choice is really yours.

Synology’s DS1515+ is a premium device in its class, offering 4 Gigabit Ethernet ports that support failover and link aggregation to maximize the transfer speeds and reliability. Having four LAN ports also allow for more users to access the device at once, without the risk of package bottlenecks.

It also comes with four USB 3.0 ports to connect external storage for backups or for the added storage capacity. The USB ports also bring along added functionality for a wide array of other devices such as printers, scanners (requires 3rd party add-ons) and surveillance cameras. The two eSATA ports on the rear allow for the Synology DX513 expansion units to be used to increase the storage even further, but normal eSATA enclosures and drives work just as great when connected through them.

The front of the NAS is kept very simple and doesn’t feature much besides the drive bays, LEDs, and power button. There are no front USB connectors like we see so often on NAS devices, but they are probably more a thing for home users and not businesses. The device will be setup and will more or less have to do the rest by itself – and spoiler alert: it does.

The built-in power supply comes with an inward plug to make sure the power is safely connected, but also to allow you to move it closer to a wall or other objects without interference. This feature is mainly for a secure power connection as the fans will need room to push the hot air out and your network cables most likely prevents you from moving it closer to the wall anyway.

We see the two easy removable outtake fans in the image above. Fresh air will be pulled in through openings between the drive bays and the sides where the Synology logo acts as air vents. A clever use for the branding and it looks good every time.

The DS1515+ NAS stands firmly on its four big rubber feet that should absorb any vibrations that might occur from the spinning hard drives. The drive bays can all be locked to prevent accidental opening as well as tampering with the setup. Of course, the drive bays aren’t just hot-swap able, they’re also tool-less for 3.5-inch drives. This makes the installation and setup quite a bit easier. The NAS also supports the use of 2.5-inch drives, but they will have to be mounted in the caddies with screws.

Inside the Synology DS1515+, we find a 2.4GHz quad-core Intel Atom C2538 processor with Floating point unit and Hardware AES-NI encryption. There is plenty of power in this device to make sure that transfer speeds and performance aren’t affected, even when encryption is enabled. It comes with 2GB DDR3 1600MHz memory, but is upgradeable to 6GB without too much hassle.

The SSD cache function can speed up your transfer speeds significant and allow much faster access to hot files. You’ll easily be able to max out all four LAN ports without too much trouble. The downside is that it requires two SSDs and thereby two drive bays, but it makes a lot of sense when the expansion units are used. Another feature that administrators will love is the easy integration into almost any environment with VMware, Citrix, and Hyper-V support. It also offers the Central Management System to easy manage all the Synology devices on your network from one location.

Personal and commercial cloud integration is just as easy as anything else with the Synology DS1515+, a NAS that doesn’t seem to leave many wishes open.

Synology DiskStation DS215j 2-Bay NAS Review

Introduction


It isn’t long since I had the pleasure to review the new Synology 1-bay NAS for home users, so I’m really looking forward to giving the 2-bay version a spin in form of the brand new Synology DS215j.

The J series, or Junior as I tend to call them, is aimed at average home-user. But since there really isn’t such a thing as an average home-user, Synology has created a cost-effective NAS that still covers all the important aspects, features, and functions. This might very well be the a perfect entry device into the world of NAS.

The DS215j is built around a powerful dual-core Marvell Armada 375 (88F6720) processor with floating point unit and hardware encryption. These are already some impressive features and will help to accelerate media decoding as well as encrypting your sensitive data. It has 512MB DDR3 memory to run everything and that might not sound like much. It should however be enough for you to run your download manager, stream media to your TV and/or computers and backup your files on a regular basis with enough to spare for additional plugins of your choice.

This small 2-bay NAS doesn’t offer a hot-swap feature or an easy tool-less mounting of your drives. But both aren’t really needed in our normal home environment as we don’t run around and replace our hard drives on a regular basis nor does it matter if we have a downtime of 20 minutes while we replacing a drive. It still only takes 2 screws to open the enclosure and another 4 per drive, so it isn’t a big task no matter what.

The DS215j takes two 3.5-inch drives as it is, but it does require adapters to work with 2.5-inch drives. This is simple due to the method of floating drive mounts and not a big issue. When it comes down to it, 99% of everyone will use 3.5-inch drives in an NAS like this anyway. If you want that extra bit of speed, the DS215j, of course, also supports the use of solid state drives.

There will come the time where you’ll want to attach other devices to your NAS. This could be storage devices to backup files in one direction or the other, it could be your printers, and it could be your security IP cameras. The Synology NAS lineup can  also act as print-server and surveillance station. Every Synology NAS comes with a 2-camera license, making it ready to go.

The DS215j has one USB 2.0 port for the printers and other devices that don’t need the high-speeds that the USB 3.0 port can give. The USB 3.0 is also present for those who have blazing fast external SSDs and thumb-drives and wish to connect them to their local network via the Gigabit interface of the DS215j.

The upgrade Synology gave the 2-bay junior series is impressive and it is said to achieve speeds 19% higher than its predecessor. With measured speeds of over 111MB/s while reading and 87MB/s while writing it performs just as well as many SMB units. And it does that at a low power consumption of just 13.42 watts during access and 5.28 watts during hard disk hibernation.

Once you have all your media files stored in a centralized area, you’ll want to be able to access them in the most convenient way possible. Synology offers a wide variety of options and it has a DLNA media server built-in that can stream directly to your TV or other DLNA capable devices as well as specialized streaming to Samsung TV, Apple TV, Chromecast and Roku.

Synology also created the QuickConnect that allows you to easily connect it with the internet without having to configure your local network and router for it, nor any need to set up dynamic DNS addresses or similar. This will allow you to easily access your files from any device anywhere while still keeping all your files secure.

The QuickConnect also helps with the comprehensive cloud services Synology offer. You can easily create your own personal cloud using this NAS and save yourself the trouble, costs, and privacy concerns with commercial cloud services. The Cloud Station lets you synchronize files among your DiskStations and multiple devices including Windows, Mac, and Linux PCs as well as iOS, Android, and Windows mobile devices. You can also sync files between multiple Synology DiskStations as well as Google Drive, Dropbox, and Baidu for hybrid cloud storage.

Synology Teams up with ioSafe to Create Disaster Resistant Storage Solution

Disasters can strike anywhere at any time and that is something everyone has to take into consideration about their data, but especially small businesses and medium businesses that don’t have the financial backup to recover from unforeseen events. There is the option of onsite back, offsite back the manual way with portable drives or offsite backup via the internet. But these aren’t always optimal solutions. bad internet connections are common everywhere

But these conventional methods aren’t always optimal solutions. Bad internet connections are common everywhere in the world and transferring huge amount of data simply isn’t possible before it’s outdated and needs to be replaced again. Manual offsite backup requires man power and hours which isn’t always an option either and onsite backup will suffer the same consequences in case of a disaster.

Synology has teamed up with ioSafe to create the ioSafe 1515+ Private Disaster Recovery NAS designed to meet just these situations with a fire and water resistant device. The new NAS is powered by Synology’s award-winning operating system and protected by ioSafe’s technologies.

The PDR NAS can protect your drives in fires up to 1550°F/843°C for 30 minutes. An average fire produces less heat than that and it rarely peaks above 705°C  for more than 10minutes. Another risk is flooding as our weather gets more and more extreme all around the world. The PDR NAS also protects your data in these cases and can withstand a water immersion of up to 3.1 meters for up to 3 days. Of course, this also protects against water damage from fire extinguishers and similar equipment in case of the fires.

Pricing depends on pre-configuration setup, but the whole thing starts at $1,999.99 as diskless unit. Available capacities go all the way up to 90TB, but prices on those are only available on request.

Thanks to Synology for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of ioSafe

Synology Introduces New 8 and 12-Bay SMB NAS’

Yes, more speed is what we like. Synology has launched their latest two NAS models targeting the Small and Medium Businesses (SMB) as well as large-scale businesses with their 8 and 12 bays respectively. The two new models, DS2015xs and DS3615xs, are aimed to bring 10GbE SFP+ ports to the mainstream and can be scaled up to a raw capacity of 120 and 216TB respectively by connecting DX1215 expansion units.

The 8-bay DS2015xs is powered by an all-new ARM Cortex-A15 quad-core CPU and can take up to an 8GB RAM module to deliver an amazing 2,090MB/s throughput. Both the two built-in 10GbE SFP+ and the two 1GbE RJ-45 ports provide support for Link Aggregation and failover.

The 12-bay DS3615xs is equipped with a 3.4 GHz dual-core x64 processor with an AES-NI hardware encryption engine and ECC RAM expandable up to 32GB to give it a throughput at over 2,350MB/s and over 268K IOPS. It has four Gigabit LAN ports along with a PCIe 3.0 slot for expansions. In addition, backed by read/write-optimized SSD cache and SATA III support, the model is designed to unleash the full potential of blazing fast SSDs while minimizing the cost per gigabyte.

Synology’s new DS2015xs and DS3615xs are backed by a 5-year warranty, as well as next-day Synology Replacement Service in selected countries. The specification pages weren’t online at the time of writing, but that should change very soon for both the DS2015xs and DS3615xs. The pre-order prices at Scan UK are £1081.50 for the 8-bay DS2015xs and £2055.18 for the 12-bay DS3615xs at the time of writing.

Thanks to Synology for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Scan UK

Synology Diskstation DS115J 1-Bay NAS Review

Introduction


When we’re talking network attached storage in our own homes, it isn’t everyone that needs a large server with 4, 6 or 8 bays. Sometimes one bay is enough, if the features and functions still match. We’re also seeing a hard drive size that keeps growing with 6 TB consumer drives and 8 TB enterprise drives already available and the 10 TB drives aren’t far in the future. This might be a smart route to take for people who get into the NAS area now and need both a new device and drives for it, but also for those who just want to cut down on the running costs.

Today I’m taking a look at a device for just this situation, the brand new Synology DS115J Disk Station. A compact, lightweight and energy-efficient NAS that is perfect for the budget-conscious home users looking for a simple, yet feature-rich NAS server. You can easily back up documents, monitor live surveillance feeds, build a personal cloud to share files with friends and family or just use it as a media location.

The performance doesn’t need to suffer when thinking in these directions and Synology shows that fact with this device. It promises speeds of up to 103 MB/s when reading; that is a 28% increase compared to its predecessor. This is achieved by using a CPU with built-in Floating-Point Unit (FPU), the Marvell Armada 370 that runs at 800 MHz. The NAS has 256 MB DDR3 ram which should be sufficient for a 1-bay device like this. Of course the device has been tested to support the newest 6 TB NAS drives and it should work just fine with any other 3½ inch SATA drive as well. It also supports 2½ inch drives, but that requires an optional Disk Adapter.

This new 1-bay NAS is powered by the same familiar and award-winning DiskStation Manager (DSM) we know from their other models. The intuitive user interface makes managing your NAS a breeze, even with all of its functions, and it doesn’t lack any of the functionality its bigger brothers have, from personal cloud services to media streaming and surveillance; the Synology DS115j does it all.

Besides the great and functional operating system itself, you also get access to a wide array of mobile apps for the most popular platforms as well as systems such as Samsung TV, Apple TV, Chromecast and Roku. Overall, the DS115j should cover any function you could want from such a device.

There aren’t that many devices that are designed specifically for the home environment, most of them cover a lot of business functions as well to increase the potential market. The DS115J is one of the few devices that breaks with this and is designed specifically for the home environment. It’s power saving features will allow it to perform its duties at just 13 watts under full load and barely 3.85 watts when the hard drive enters hibernation mode. Synology also applied noise dampening designs in order to make this NAS as quiet as possible, bringing it down to just 18.1dB(A).

There isn’t a whole lot in the box, but we get everything we will need. Besides the NAS device itself, we get a power brick and cable, screws for our drive, a network cable and a quick-start guide. One couldn’t ask for more as everything is covered.

Synology Unveils New 5-Bay and 8-Bay SMB NAS’

We’ve been expecting the launch for some time and some information about the two new NAS server could already be found on the official website. But now we got the final introduction to the DS1515+ 5-bay and DS1815+ 8-bay NAS designed with small and medium businesses in mind.

Built around the Intel Atom processor C2000 2.4GHz quad-core processor with Intel AES New Instructions encryption, as well as a RAM module expandable to 6 GB, these NAS models are sure to deliver the robust performance required for businesses’ mission-critical tasks, including encrypted file transfers.

The four Gigabit LAN ports supporting Link Aggregation and failover also ensure writing speeds exceeding 410 MB/s for DS1815+ and 390 MB/s for DS1515+ which is almost double that of their predecessors. Reading speeds are said to exceed 450 MB/s making them capable of handling requests from a lot of simultaneous users. The two models support Synology High Availability, taking advantage of their multiple LAN ports to ensure the highest uptime and resiliency.

Both models are of course expandable with the DX513 unit as we’re used to from Synology, which in return would allow for up to 90 and 108TB of storage respectively. Another great feature is the SSD read/write cache that allows a considerable boost in throughput while minimizing the cost per gigabyte. The SSD cache feature however requires two SSD’s and thereby 2 bays.

The two new NAS servers are certified by VMware, Citrix, and Microsoft Hyper-V To allow for a seamless integration into a company’s virtualization environment. Both devices have started shipping globally and should be available shortly.

For more information, please visit the product pages for the DS1515+ and DS1815+ on Synology’s website.

Thanks to Synology for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Synology

Synology Releases DiskStation Manager 5.1 OS

Synology has just released their DiskStation Manager (DSM) version 5.1, the latest version of Synology’s NAS operating system. After about 6 weeks of public beta testing and user feedback, Synology was ready to roll out the update without the beta tag.

I’ve tested the DSM 5.1beta myself and it is awesome. Synology have added a lot of new features and improvements, enough that many other companies would have gone up a whole number on the version to 6.0 instead of just a fraction and going from 5.0 to 5.1.

Synology have added a lot of improved security features such as the Security Advisor that analyzes your settings and will let you know if you got any weak points. Another added feature is the AppArmor that checks for malicious programs and blocks them from accessing unauthorized resources as well as the introduction of digital signatures on packages, to check against tampering.

Having a private cloud-service is great, but sometimes you’ll want to sync with public offerings as well. Synology now supports OneDrive, Box, hubiC, Azure, SFT and hicloud. Additionally, the new explore feature in Glacier Backup allows you to browse and retrieve single files from Amazing Glacier.

While speaking of online functions, DSM 5.1 also has a built-in Proxy Server to increase security and speed up your local internet browsing by  caching and filtering as well as authentication options. The File Station also allows for remote FTP and WebDAV connections and the new CardDav server allows you to synchronize all your contacts across compatible devices.

Another noteworthy new feature is the Note Station and DS Note. A web-based note system stored on your own NAS that allows you to have a synchronized location for all your notes and access them from all devices either via the web or one Synology’s apps. Video Station, Photo Station and Audio Station also got upgrades and updates on the functionality and their mobile apps.

Enterprises can look forward to the NFS Full File Clone and NFS Reserve Space to dramatically boost virtual machine storage performance. SSD reading cache is supported all the way down to one disk that increases the cost efficiency of your storage device.

Synology DiskStation Manager 5.1 is available for download now and of course it’s a free upgrade for anyone. The new DSM version is compatible with DiskStation and RackStation x11 or newer. If you’d like to test it before you apply it to your own NAS, you can head over to the official page and try out the live demo, or just download it right away.

Thanks to Synology for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of Synology

Synology Launches DiskStation DS415+ 4-Bay Quad-Core NAS

Synology has launched their newest NAS today, the DiskStation DS415+. This is a 4-bay NAS targeted at small and medium sized businesses as well as enthusiast home users. Built with a Quad-core Intel Atom processor that runs at 2.4GHz and a hardware encryption engine, this NAS should deliver in all situations. This is Synology’s first desktop DiskStation model to include both a quad-core processor and AES-NI hardware encryption engine.

“Thanks to its best-in-class combination of hardware specs and DSM software integration, DS415+ handles data transfer and encryption at blazingly fast speeds, bringing peace of mind to businesses or individuals who wish to safeguard their data while maintaining excellent performance,” said Michael Wang, Product Manager at Synology Inc.

The new 4-bay NAS has 2 GB DDR3 memory that runs at an unspecified speed. It has two USB 3.0 ports on the rear side and one USB 2.0 port on the front. It also has an eSATA port, and that is a big bonus in my opinion. Many manufacturers have started to cut it away, but I use it quite often on my own NAS’ and miss it when it isn’t there.

It wouldn’t be a NAS without the network ports and as such it has 2 Gigabit RJ45 ports that support Link Aggregation and Failover modes. It of course supports the current 6 TB Hard drives to give you the maximum storage capabilities and it can handle both 3½ and 2½ inch drives. The file system itself allows for a size up 108 TB, but that requires the extension devices.

This NAS promises performance you’d otherwise only find in the enterprise series of servers. The Synology DS415+ can archive read and write speeds that exceed 228 MB/s and 233 MB/s in unencrypted mode. With the hardware encryption enabled, the NAS still performs great at reading and writing with 232 MB/s and 206 MB/s.

The DS415+ doesn’t have a heavy power consumption either, so you don’t have to compromise between running costs and performance level. It only requires 17.3 watts with the hard drives hibernating and peaks at 46.2 watts during maximum usage. The two 92mm system fans should barely be audible at 20.2 dB(A) and the devices come with a 2-year warranty.

The new Synology DS415+ NAS is shipping globally now and local retailers should have stock soon. Having a look around the different web shops, some have started to take pre-orders already and have set the estimated time of arrival on three weeks. As usual, the German shops and the Geizhals price-comparison site are some of the first to list the new products, and as such it can be found on German e-Tailors for just €420.

We aren’t so lucky here in the U.K, unless you want to get screwed from the looks of it. Amazon UK has the device in stock via a couple of third party merchants, it however costs a heavy £543.13 and up. I’m sure we’ll see some more reasonable prices as soon as the stock arrives at the other shops too. This might just be a few trying to take advantage of the situation. I couldn’t find it at any of my known U.S. sites at the time of writing.

As a little bonus information, I can add that Synology have also released the latest Beta version of their DiskStation Manager today. Version 5.1 Beta can be downloaded and tested from the official page, however users should keep in mind that it has the beta tag for a reason. It might contain undiscovered bugs, but also a long range of new features and apps that will enrich every Synology owners experience.

Thank you Synology for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Synology

Synology Launches New DiskStation DS115J 1bay Quiet NAS Server

Synology has launched a new NAS device, the DiskStation DS115J. A compact, energy saving and quiet 1-bay NAS server dedicated to serving as your private cloud and smart network video recorder. A device that promises a budget-friendly price tag without compromising the performance.

The DS115J is one of the few devices designed specifically for the home environment. Its power saving features allows it to perform at just 13 watts under full load and 3.85 watts when the hard drive enters hibernation mode. Synology also applied noise dampening designs in order to make this NAS as quiet as possible, bringing it down to just 18.1dB(A).

“With DS115j, home users can now enjoy the rich data sharing and multimedia streaming features offered by Synology at an entry-level price point,” said Nicole Lin, Product Manager of Synology Inc.

The performance doesn’t suffer though, as the device promises read speeds at 103 MB/s, this is an increase of 28% compared to its predecessor. This is achieved by using a CPU with built-in Floating-Point Unit (FPU), the Marvell Armada 370 that runs at 800MHz. The NAS has 256 MB DDR3 ram which should be sufficient for a 1-bay device like this. It supports the new 6TB drives and any other 3½ inch SATA drive. It also supports 2½ inch drives, but with an optional Disk Holder. On connections, the DS115J offers a Gigabit Ethernet port and two USB 2.0 ports.

DS115j also serves as a full-featured network video recorder to leverage Synology Surveillance Station. DS115j comes with 2 free IP camera licenses and supports up to 5 cameras, making it an ideal surveillance solution for homes and SOHOs. All the other features we love from Synology’s DiskStation Manager are present in this device too and it’s a familiar surround to return to for any previous Synology user. This includes the QuickConnect feature that is similar to Dynamic DNS (DDNS) with the key difference that you don’t need to configure anything for it to work and you don’t even need a public IP address, something fewer and fewer have these days.

Synology DiskStation DS115j is now shipping globally and should start out with a price tag around €90,00, £78,00 and $117,00 based upon the prices I could find at the time of writing and the RRP. That is about a fourth of the price less, compared to the previous model.

Thank you Synology for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Synology.

Synology DS414slim 4-Bay NAS Review

Introduction


When looking at bulk storage and consequently network storage, the generic blueprint that virtually every vendor follows is a desktop or rackmount system with an even number of drive bays, each with the capacity to hold the largest drives that can be bought on the market today – which come in a 3.5″ format, although we do find a few situations where 2.5″ SSDs are used based on the application of the storage array. Whilst this blueprint is perfectly fine, on the consumer end of the market where we are not always looking at jaw dropping capacities and performance, a typical 4-bay system is not exactly the easiest of things to tuck away under the desk or in the closet and then we have to factor in the cost of getting up and running. 3.52 drives are the only way to go if you want large amounts of storage on hand, but if you want a more modest setup with a system the doesn’t end up acting like a foot rest under your desk, there are barely any options out there to choose from.

2.5″ drives are, for the most part, forgotten about when it comes to mass storage. Unless you are talking about solid state drives, we generally find people taking the 3.5″ route, without even considering 2.5″ spinning platters, which are left for the entry-level notebooks and budget ultra-SFF systems and this is reflected [as highlighted above] in the NAS market from bottom to top. Wanting to break away from this generalised blueprint, Synology have made an ambitious move to shrink down their popular DS414 line of systems into a tiny, baby-NAS like package which runs solely on 2.5″ drives, making the presence of a NAS in the home a lot more subtle than before.

With a top end raw capacity of only 4TB, Synology’s DS414slim is not going to be a storage monster for those who have tons of films, music and photos to store, but for the average Joe who is looking for a tidy, compact system to blend in with their minimalist desktop setup with a nice and reasonable storage capacity of 3TB (when in RAID5), the slim does start to sound like an interesting investment. It’s size is not a sign that we are working on skeleton features either. Whilst we only find a pair of USB3.0 ports and a pair of GbE ports alongside four drive bays, the number of software features that are at your disposal are virtually the same as those found on a full-on NAS such as the DS414 which this is related to. By the time we factor in the lower cost of drives; around £55 / $76 each for one of Western Digital’s 1TB Red drives which are build primarily for the consumer NAS market and what you can have here is a tidy little system that offers just as much as its larger siblings.

Whether or not this move turns out to be a successful move by Synology comes done to the build, features, ease of use and ultimately the performance. After all there is not point in getting such a tiny system if the performance is not worth the cost.

Packed in to the relatively tiny box, Synology provide a power adaptor with regional mains plug, a pair of patch leads, a set of screws, a quick installation guide and something a little bit different – a base on which the unit sits.

Synology DS414j 4-Bay NAS Review

Introduction


Throughout the Synology product range each other models available can come in one of three variations the first of these is the standard series and this has no indicator after the name giving us a model name such as DS414. The second option, which is indicated by plus after the model number indicates that this is a performance system offering the best features that Synology have to offer, whilst the third option indicated by a ‘j’ indicates that a model is geared for the entry-level user whose focus is more on getting the largest capacity as possible was not worried about performance either things too much. Typically, ‘j’ series systems have tended to come with a single core processor and by doing so this has kept the price point down, which for the entry-level user is more important than performance.

All is about to change however, the system that we are looking at today – the DS414j – is Synology’s first system to offer a dual core processor on an entry-level-based system. in addition to a dual core processor we also see for the first time USB 3.0 been featured and once we take the latest version of DSM into account solution for users in a small office and home office environment as well as home-media enthusiasts who want a centralised and highly accessible storage solution for an affordable price.

This is not all although, as we have seen over the last few months there has been more of a demand for cloud based storage solutions and when we look at systems like Western Digital’s My Cloud, EX2 and EX4, which are directly aimed for cloud users, it is easy to see why, in general, the home based user is moving over to this form storage. Where the DS414j differs however, is that its primary role is as a local storage device and then secondly it offers the cloud features; rather than the opposite way round.

Aside from a typical feature set which we would expect from a Synology NAS, we also find support for 5TB drives allowing for up to 20 TB of raw storage, along with read and write speeds of around 100MB/s and 80MB/s respectively. Rounding all of this up into a package that is set to retail for around $390 in US and £260 in the UK, it looks like Synology may have just hit the proverbial nail on the head for the home or entry-level user.

Like most Synology systems, the DS414j comes in a brown monochrome box and aside from a power adapter, CAT5e patch lead and a quick setup guide, we have three sets of screws one each for 3.5 inch and 2.5 inch drives, with the third set the locking each drive trays into place once installed into the system.

Synology DS214Se ‘Special Edition’ 2-bay NAS Review

Introduction


Synology have been hot on the market recently with the release of the DS414 4-bay NAS – the latest revision to their popular 4-bay desktop range as it replaces the top-selling DS413. One of the main focus points of the DS414 is the price point for a pretty good level of performance. As we saw it may not be the fastest 4-bay system available, but when it’s priced considerably lower (>£100) than some of its rival units, it’s a bit of a no-brainer for anyone who is focussing more on raw capacity over performance.

Keeping on the same line, every NAS vendor has a few budget units in their product catalogue, however Synology have a more equal distribution across their range in the terms of performance and cost. As a brand Synology are not afraid to advertise that they build cheaper systems that offer lower performance figures and there is a good reason for this. When you take into account the overall cost of a typical 2 or 4-bay system with the cost of hard drives on top can easily tip over the £500 mark (or more if you go far a higher performance system); that price tag for some people does equate to a substantial chunk of money. For a number of users, the cost is simply too much to churn out. Typically those fighting the battle of cost is the home user, especially with today’s credit crunch here in the UK – where the cost of living when marked against your income is a bit out of proportion. As a result the goal is to get as much raw capacity as possible and for as little as possible.

As we’ve seen before, Synology use a simple naming system for their products, and those ending with a ‘j’ are built with capacity over performance in mind. To take things a step further, Synology have now re-written the rule book as they create a 2-bay system that is more budget conscious than ever. Bring forth the DS214Se. In the same way that the DS414 is the successor the DS413, the DS214 is the new model to the DS213 and the Se (Special Edition) marking puts this model in a position where it is even more budget friendly than before.

With the aim of the game keeping the overall purchase cost down, Synology have removed a number of features from the DS214 specification and have been more ruthless than ever. As a result, the DS214Se is going to be ideal for anyone who is a) on a very tight and b) not needing to run multiple features at the same time.

Whilst the systems specification has been cut down, the bundled extras include everything that you’ll ever need. Alongside the NAS, there is an AC power adaptor, Ethernet cable, a quick installation guide, warranty leaflet, and finally two sets of screws for fitting the drives and for holding the enclosure together.