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This unit is not what was advertised and not what was delivered. The unit was advertised with 12TB storage but it does not come with any storage and when challenged I was told sorry our advertising is wrong. The unit WILL NOT show or thumbnail all photographic files. (will not display Phase One files) The photo app will not display all size formats. The hardware works OK and as expected but not a fast unit
Previously owned a synology drive, but it was starting to become old. Straight swap of hard drives maintained file system and was able to get the new server up and running with no real downtime. Works well as home media server.
Synology have apparently slightly redesigned some of their enclosures (relative to about 5-6 years ago). There is no front door and the drive trays are exposed but can now be locked. The drawer design has also been changed and is tool-free if 3.5 inch drive units are selected; 2.5 inch drives use the supplied screws.
You will need to download the unit's manual as only a Quick Start Guide is enclosed and optionally the latest version of its Desktop Management Software (it is model specific) although the device can find it automatically once connected to the Ethernet. There are some initial procedures during which the drives are formatted to suit the system and the 'ideal' RAID format for the number of drives installed - there is no choice although apparently RAID 5 was used to best utilise 4 identical drive units! It will take a while, especially as there is a built-in 10 minute delay for the machine to reboot post-format. Some essential apps will be automatically installed but there are loads more that can be installed should you need them; some will be more useful to some users than others.
Although the unit is expensive relative to some with a similar feature set, it remains all plastic (casing and drawers) when some at least have a metal casing. It is well-cooled with two 80mm rearward fans and silent, unless an ear is pinned to the side of the casing. UK and Euro mains leads are provided as are twin Ethernet cables. It supports two USB 3.0 expansion ports (for a printer or other devices) at the rear plus another at the front.
If needed as a full-blown media server that is able to transcribe 4K video on-the-fly, this is not the model for you - the DS418Play is the minimum standard as it has a faster and media-enabled Intel Celeron CPU.
Transferring selected media files was performed at a steady 110-115 MB/s, about a third faster than another brand's equivalent purchased just days previously but later returned after a slew of functional and operational issues. It should prove as reliable as another Synology NAS unit that has run almost endlessly (a few power cuts over time were the sole exceptions) for several years.
Great value systems and reliable - I have plenty of experience with Synology through work and the general feeling is once installed it's more of a set and forget and they run for years on end. The four bay system tends to come into its own when specifying very large storage quantities as it can actually be as good as or better value to spec four smaller drives than two larger ones. With the four bays you also get access to more RAID types 5, 6 and 10 over the basic mirror or no redundancy options.
The only useful thing that I could really add is be aware of noise levels. I made the mistake of pairing one of these with four Toshiba MG series drives and the result was so much noise in my home that no matter where I put it I could still hear it on occasion while trying to sleep. In this case I accept the MG drives are particularly noisy but even with four very quiet drives noise will be a factor with four of them, so be aware of this if you are planning to install one of these where noise is a concern.
At first I thought it was a bit expensive for what it was.Because I am a beginner, I did not yet harness the full power of the device. But at the moment I got what I want.
The software and the options seems overwhelming at first but taking them one step at the time and it just makes sense. The software suit are well designed and you have so so many options. I have to say that I did struggle a bit for the RAID setup, but going through a lot of tutorial and I managed to set it up the way I wanted.
At the end the hardware does not seems impressive at first, in fact the enclosure seems to be a cheap plastic and not a lot inside. But don't let that fool you. the NAS which was in a dusty environment coped very well.
I have this NAS for 4 months now and I am very happy with my purchase.
Lovely bits of kit. I suggest you get two- a good one to work as your main file server and a low spec one to backup to. I suggest both should have 4 disks or so, allowing you to run RAID 5 without wasting too much money on parity disks. In 5 years, demote your main fail server to be the backup and buy a new one to be your main file server. The "Hyper Backup" tool is really effective. It takes a while to do the first backup, then it's really fast after that. It prevents file duplication- if you don't update a file then the backup will point to the old version. I suggest you plan around 3x as much space for your backup server as your main server. The diskstation comes with lots of really nice applications that work without hassle. I've looked into unRaid and Linux, but Synology won for ease of use and working without trouble.