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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,

I've been looking at getting a NAS box for a while.

Yes I could technically build a cheap PC to do the same job, but its not going to be as neat and tidy/small as a dedicated NAS box.

I'm looking at Synology.

I ideally would be using it to store my Pictures/Videos/Audio & Other files (Documents, installers etc...). I would want it Mirrored for redundancy, and I would keep a spare copy on my PC of important files for backup.

The NAS would be used for streaming my media to my Xbox 360 and also my Nexus Tablet ideally. I believe the Nexus would require media transcoding.

Has anyone got any experience with these?

I was looking at the DS214play to make use of the Transcoding, however they now have a new 4 bay out which is the same specs, but with 2 additional bays for expansion. However I'm not likely to need the extra bays anytime soon. Should I go for the 2 Bay and then eventually buy a 4 bay in a few years time, or go straight for the four bay?

Anyone got any thoughts/advice/input?
Does anyone own a NAS?
 

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Yes I have a NAS. Its a 2 bay one and I don't see why you'd want anything bigger unless it is for an office sortage type job. (By the time you come to expand the technology will no doubt have moved on to probably using electronic "discs" rather than mechanical ones which will no doubt deliver much higher data transfer rates.

I think mine is a netgear one, but really I can't remember and its quite a few years old. (one of the original discs has alreaady failed and the second one is going to go that way soon no doubt too).

It sits quietly behind my telly doing its job and has done for years now. Accessible from TV/Tablet/Laptop/PC (x2).
 

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I haz one.

I use a DNS-323 from D'Link. You can get them for very reasonable costs.

I setup a streaming service to my xbox 360 and torrent client. Very easy to do once you install telnet client on the box, which in itself is very easy to do. Opens it up to a good amount of customisation then too.

It has 2 x 1TB HD's running RAID 1 setup.

Cant fault it at all, very quiet, low power, low maintenance, and very easy to use. It's of course hardlined for max transfer speeds. Its now just over 6 years old, going strong.

Unless your storing an exceptional amount of data or need a huge amount of redundancy I dont see why you need a 4 bay setup, especially for a home user.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yeah,

I know that a 2bay would be plenty, I just can't help but always plan for the future! :lol:

I think I will go down a 2 bay root, probably for 2TB disks in RAID1.

My PC has a 1TB HDD for storage and its got about 500GB free, so think 2TB NAS would last a while, if I can stretch to it, may go 3TB.
 

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Yeah,

I know that a 2bay would be plenty, I just can't help but always plan for the future! :lol:

I think I will go down a 2 bay root, probably for 2TB disks in RAID1.

My PC has a 1TB HDD for storage and its got about 500GB free, so think 2TB NAS would last a while, if I can stretch to it, may go 3TB.
Ive got 3 NAS's at home. Home class NAS's are crappy on performance but easy to setup and maintain.

Some of the QNAPs are pretty good and offer transcoding (or install XBMC on the Nexus and you don't need to transcode.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I had a brief look at Qnap, but not for too long as everything I have read indicates that Synology are the best bang for buck and also their software is far superior to Qnap.

But I will take another look again if they are worthwhile?

We have a small business who rent part of our building at work, we also provide IT support for them. They wanted a NAS box and they bought a Buffalo themselves which was atrocious! Had nothing but trouble. Ended up suggesting the Synology DS214+ and they purchased one, which I set up. So smooth and easy in comparison to the Buffalo.
 

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I have a Synology and 2 Thecus units, the Synology is by far the better unit, performance and ease of setup and management / features. Its is the newest one though. The Thecus units are a few years old and have been 100% reliable though. I have also used the Qnap units at work, although we now have moved over to Synology units (This was only based on cost as we got a better deal)
The only thing I would say about 2 drive units is they can have problems with the drives running too hot, the Thecus 2 Bay I have has had the drives replaced a few times, also a 2 bay Qnap unit I had at work had issues with temperature too. They are often made so small there is little room left decent airflow, well in my opinion anyway.
 

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I run a Synology DS412+ with 4x4TB Seagate NAS drives at home and have deployed several different bay models in the field.

I would agree with the heat issue with both the single and 2 bay devices but if it is going to be spending a majority of its time sleeping then it wouldn't be too much of an issue.

I am not a fan of the latest DSM 5 so continue to run the latest build of 4.3 at home. Lately some internet facing devices have become a targets for hackers and scammers with the likes of SynoLocker and other exploits, so mine is pretty well locked down when not in use and does not use the default ports for access. I have to say Synology support have been pretty slow to respond to some of the threats out there.

I went with 4 bays over 2 for expandability at home but pretty much maxed it out at the time when configuring it, well that and Synology Hybrid RAID.

Also have a look at the Asustor units, while not as mature software wise as others they appear to be rapidly trying to catch up.
 

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If you want something really robust get an enclosure, some trayless caddies and an SP394 raid controller from span.com, run a e-sata cable into your PC and you will have a true hot-swap raid unit with auto rebuild, email alerts, alarm, hot spare, etc. You also won't need any drivers as it's a hardware bridge so no problem with restoring image backups, even if you use it as a boot drive or linux, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
If you want something really robust get an enclosure, some trayless caddies and an SP394 raid controller from span.com, run a e-sata cable into your PC and you will have a true hot-swap raid unit with auto rebuild, email alerts, alarm, hot spare, etc. You also won't need any drivers as it's a hardware bridge so no problem with restoring image backups, even if you use it as a boot drive or linux, etc.
But that means it has to be powered on for my other devices to see it, defeating the purpose sadly!

I have read up on Synolocker and will be using synology DSM 5.0 from the word go to make sure I'm not vulnerable. I also won't be using their DDNS service, as I have a feeling that could be an easy way these hackers have identified publicly facing clients. If I have mine accessible remotely, I will use an alternate method of accessing it.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I don't have that kind of money sadly! (or room for that matter)

I ended up going for the Synology DS214play.

Very happy! It's mostly setup and function perfectly, went RAID1 instead of SHR!
 
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