NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

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Valdeselad
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NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Valdeselad »

Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.

A few questions as I am finalizing specs:

1) Storage - What hard drives do you recommend? I see the NAS rated ones from Seagate and WD get the most attention online. Any thoughts on speed differences and where it is worthwhile to spend $ (i.e. 5400 vs. 7200 rpm)?
2) Memory - Is a memory (RAM) upgrade worthwhile (base is 2GB, expandable to 6GB)?
3) Anything else I should be considering?

Thanks!
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by jebmke »

You haven’t described what the NAS will be used for. I’m not that experienced with NAS systems but I do know that technology recommendations depend significantly in intended use.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by rob »

It's better to get drives that are design to handle a NAS box... regular drives will work but they sometime fail even though the drives are fine. Don't worry about high speed drives for this purpose - the drive will not be the limiting factor for small home usage.

Also - Think about how you will setup the NAS... Do you want RAID5, just some disks etc. Setup network drops in your windows/mac machines (or timetravel if your all apple). Misc stuff: Some allow you to attach a printer, so a non-network printer can become a network printer.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by JoMoney »

As already said, if you don't know what your baseline needs are, it's hard to recommend what specifications are needed.
I would expect the network will be a bigger performance bottleneck than any aspect of the disks/HD.
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Valdeselad
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Valdeselad »

jebmke wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:47 am You haven’t described what the NAS will be used for. I’m not that experienced with NAS systems but I do know that technology recommendations depend significantly in intended use.
Mostly storage and backups (multiple computers with the potential of a mix between MacOS and Windows). While providing data security, my hope is that it should also lessen the need for large storage requirements on the computers we buy which can be pricy upgrades, especially for Macs.

I won't rule out a future use case as a media server, etc..but this is currently not a significant use case. And to be honest with more streaming services available and convenient, the value of owning my own music and video collections has decreased over time.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by indexfundfan »

If you only intend to use the NAS for storage and backup, you probably don't need additional memory.

I have the Synology DS920+ (4 bays) and I upgraded to 8GB. I run Plex and Omada controller on it, as well as Moments (similar to Google Photos). I also use its app to automatically backup files from the NAS to the cloud (I use BackBlaze).
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by KlangFool »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Callisto »

If you are willing to put in a bit of effort you can find drives retired from smaller enterprise operations on ebay. It requires effort because you have to sift through the drives that are being retired for age, but you can find drives that are completely new or with very low power on hours for a fraction of the price of new.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Valdeselad »

KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Valdeselad »

Callisto wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:25 am If you are willing to put in a bit of effort you can find drives retired from smaller enterprise operations on ebay. It requires effort because you have to sift through the drives that are being retired for age, but you can find drives that are completely new or with very low power on hours for a fraction of the price of new.
This is very interesting...I have not heard or thought of this. Can you provide an example of how I might do a search like this? I was always hesitant to buy a used drive from an unknown entity, but perhaps my concerns are not valid.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by KlangFool »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
Let's says that 4TB drive = $100.

With 2 bays, you buy 2 drives, you only get 4TB. You wasted $100 -> 50% of your capacity

With 4 bays, you buy 4 drives, you get 3 X 4TB = 12 TB out of 16 TB -> 25% of your capacity


" Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?"

It is hidden from you. You just pick your RAID configuration when you format the drive. It is not that hard.

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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by indexfundfan »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
Generally, you would like redundancy for drive failures in a NAS. The typical setup would allow for a one-drive failure.

For the 2-bay NAS to allow for one drive failure, 50% of the total capacity is "wasted" to store the redundancy.
For the 4-bay NAS to allow for one drive failure, (at least) 25% of the total capacity is "wasted" to store the redundancy.

I added the "at least" qualifier because you can have drives of different capacities in Synology. The capacity loss is the drive with the largest capacity.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by indexfundfan »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:35 am
Callisto wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:25 am If you are willing to put in a bit of effort you can find drives retired from smaller enterprise operations on ebay. It requires effort because you have to sift through the drives that are being retired for age, but you can find drives that are completely new or with very low power on hours for a fraction of the price of new.
This is very interesting...I have not heard or thought of this. Can you provide an example of how I might do a search like this? I was always hesitant to buy a used drive from an unknown entity, but perhaps my concerns are not valid.
Personally, if I am using the NAS to store my important files, I would get new drives. For my 4-bay NAS, my plan is also to replace each drive in sequence periodically.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Callisto »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:35 am
Callisto wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:25 am If you are willing to put in a bit of effort you can find drives retired from smaller enterprise operations on ebay. It requires effort because you have to sift through the drives that are being retired for age, but you can find drives that are completely new or with very low power on hours for a fraction of the price of new.
This is very interesting...I have not heard or thought of this. Can you provide an example of how I might do a search like this? I was always hesitant to buy a used drive from an unknown entity, but perhaps my concerns are not valid.
A starting point would be to check Synology for your device's HD compatibility list and search ebay for older generation drives. For example, rather than more modern 16TB drives, you can search for 12TB. Once you have listings, you need to go through and check the drives health. Drives will fall into two categories, those that have been used and are being retired, or those that were spares that were never used.

Never buy the drives that had been used. They'll be sold at a very low price, but they are being retired due to age and may be unreliable or fail in the near future. These drives will have extremely high power on hours, from being ran 24/7 for years. Instead, target drives that are listed as new, or having very low power on hours from being tested. While these drives are never going to be as reliable as drives that are new and recently manufactured, the risks for enterprise level drives that have been sitting in storage is not very high.

I did a search for the "ultrastar dc hc520", for example. It looks like there's a seller that sells drives with low power on hours at a very competitive price/GB. You can sift through and look deeper for better deals, I just searched the first drive I saw on the compatibility list.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Valdeselad »

KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:41 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
Let's says that 4TB drive = $100.

With 2 bays, you buy 2 drives, you only get 4TB. You wasted $100 -> 50% of your capacity

With 4 bays, you buy 4 drives, you get 3 X 4TB = 12 TB out of 16 TB -> 25% of your capacity


" Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?"

It is hidden from you. You just pick your RAID configuration when you format the drive. It is not that hard.

KlangFool
All I see available on Amazon is the DS420+. I assume the DS220+ and DS420+ are basically the same except 2 bay vs. 4 bay. Maybe the DS418 has been discontinued...
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by KlangFool »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 10:25 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:41 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
Let's says that 4TB drive = $100.

With 2 bays, you buy 2 drives, you only get 4TB. You wasted $100 -> 50% of your capacity

With 4 bays, you buy 4 drives, you get 3 X 4TB = 12 TB out of 16 TB -> 25% of your capacity


" Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?"

It is hidden from you. You just pick your RAID configuration when you format the drive. It is not that hard.

KlangFool
All I see available on Amazon is the DS420+. I assume the DS220+ and DS420+ are basically the same except 2 bay vs. 4 bay. Maybe the DS418 has been discontinued...
DS420+ and DS220+ is about the same with 4 bays.

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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Valdeselad »

KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 10:44 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 10:25 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:41 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am

Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
Let's says that 4TB drive = $100.

With 2 bays, you buy 2 drives, you only get 4TB. You wasted $100 -> 50% of your capacity

With 4 bays, you buy 4 drives, you get 3 X 4TB = 12 TB out of 16 TB -> 25% of your capacity

" Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?"

It is hidden from you. You just pick your RAID configuration when you format the drive. It is not that hard.

KlangFool
All I see available on Amazon is the DS420+. I assume the DS220+ and DS420+ are basically the same except 2 bay vs. 4 bay. Maybe the DS418 has been discontinued...
DS420+ and DS220+ is about the same with 4 bays.

KlangFool
Thanks...at that point might as well just get the 920+, only $50 more and includes extra memory.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by KlangFool »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 10:58 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 10:44 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 10:25 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:41 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am

What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
Let's says that 4TB drive = $100.

With 2 bays, you buy 2 drives, you only get 4TB. You wasted $100 -> 50% of your capacity

With 4 bays, you buy 4 drives, you get 3 X 4TB = 12 TB out of 16 TB -> 25% of your capacity

" Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?"

It is hidden from you. You just pick your RAID configuration when you format the drive. It is not that hard.

KlangFool
All I see available on Amazon is the DS420+. I assume the DS220+ and DS420+ are basically the same except 2 bay vs. 4 bay. Maybe the DS418 has been discontinued...
DS420+ and DS220+ is about the same with 4 bays.

KlangFool
Thanks...at that point might as well just get the 920+, only $50 more and includes extra memory.
It might. In any case, for NAS, I would start at 4 bays.

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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Taxedtodeath »

I'm using a DS218+ 2 bay which is the previous version of the DS220+. I'm using it as primary storage and redundant storage. I wish I had gotten the 4 bay version like others mentioned almost immediately. Currently I plan to repurpose it in the future as off site backup for our more important files and one day buy the 4 bay version.

I'm using WD red drives that go on sale periodically.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by wander »

I have a DS-420+ 4 bays with all WD Red-Pro Hard drives, RAID-5 and never have any problem. For home use, I don't see the need of install any extra RAM. I installed Moments App in Cellphone and updates as neccessary to the home cloud. DS Apps are also useful.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by rebellovw »

Anyone using SSD drives now or still WD red type drives? My new WD Red drive failed and Amazon replaced it - but that doesn't give me comfort for the future - though I've had this Synology NAS for way too long (over 10 years.)

I'd prefer SSD for speed especially with time machine backups which are miserable with my current Synology NAS - takes forever to open Time Machine.

I do need to upgrade as I have it secure as possible (encrypted drives with encryption keys stored off the NAS) - but my old Synology has a reset button on the back which resets the admin password - totally unsecure - but w/o the encryption keys the drives themselves are useless other than some brutforce attack which I doubt anyone here would try...

My Synology - DS212J - still alive and kicking after bought new from Amazon back 10 years ago - does its job - dreadfully slow - I've lost one drive in the 10 years - RAID did its job. Pretty good product.

I need to eventually upgrade for speed and better hardware level security. I'll be watching this thread.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by tortoise84 »

"RAID is not a backup", and you can search the internet for that phrase for more info. Basically, RAID protects against drive failure, but there are still many other things that it doesn't protect against like your NAS getting hacked, encrypted and held for ransom, fire, flood, water damage, hurricanes, etc. So I would not be comfortable having only one copy of my data on a NAS, even in a RAID.

Instead, I have a working copy of all my important stuff on each of my desktop and laptop (each have >2 TB SSDs), and I have a QNAP TS-251D NAS to sync the large files like photos and videos (hundreds of GB) through a third copy, or I have around 3 GB of documents in OneDrive and use the NAS to back that up.

My NAS has a 1 TB NVMe SSD, a 4 TB Seagate IronWolf NAS HDD and a 4 TB WD Purple Surveillance HDD. The NVMe SSD is for fast storage, and was one of the reasons I went with QNAP because they had a QM2-2P10G1TA expansion card to add 2 x NVMe slots and a 10GbE port. A 1GbE port can only transfer up to around 120 MB/s. But if this is fine for you, then you can just use HDDs because that's about as much as a regular drive can transfer anyway. You don't need to get a high performance 7200 rpm HDD that can reach 180 MB/s because you'll be bottlenecked by the 1GbE connection.

For HDDs, you should get NAS rated ones which should have a little better reliability under continuous operation, and they should use Conventional Magnetic Recording (CMR), like Seagate IronWolf, WD Red Plus, or WD Red Pro. The WD Red line uses Shingled Magnetic Recording (SMR) which can get bogged down after heavy sustained writes, so don't get those.

I got the WD Purple drive because I also use my NAS as a video recorder for my surveillance cameras. That's another reason why I went with QNAP over Synology, because they include 8 camera licenses with their QVR Pro software. Also, the only reason I had to upgrade the RAM from 2 GB to 10 GB was to run the QVR Pro recording software. Backups and media serving should run fine with just 2 GB.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by TheMightyQuinn »

i think you're headed in the right direction and you've received some good advice so far, i'll throw in my two cents.

DS - Since this is your first NAS, and intended as a file server/backup, the DS220+ would be a fine choice. It's not truly entry level (that would be the DS220j), and the + series is pretty good. You can always upgrade to a larger/better model in the future, but I don't think it will be necessary unless you start doing a lot more with it. Synology is not cheap but it's easier and more polished.

RAM - No need to expand RAM for your intended usage.

CPU - In my experience CPU is the bottleneck. That's why i prefer the + series over the j-series.

Drives - NAS rated are good. I wait until the WD Easystore (or MyBook) go on sale then shuck the drives (WB Red or White label) since external drives are cheaper (they have shorter warranties because external drives are more likely to be mishandled). I'd recommend getting drives that are each twice the size of what you expect your data to be so you'll have room to grow. Drive speed doesn't matter for a home file server/backup.

Backup - you should consider offsite and/or cloud backups of your data. Synology supports several cloud backup providers and it's pretty easy to set up.

I used a DS211j (128 MB RAM!) for 7 years before i upgraded to a DS718+. I upgraded because the DS211j couldn't handle running a plex server. My next DS will be a 4-bay model since i have so many drives and my storage requirements keep growing. I have 16 GB RAM in mine, but almost never go above 4 GB used. CPU is the bottleneck for me, and i wish Synology had beefier processors at those price points.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by HansT »

My DS415+ is still going strong after 6y with its original WD Red drives .. plan on this being a stable piece of tech, so think about future upgradeability.
  1. It's actually critically important to get "NAS" drives because of differences in design. See e.g. this for a discussion.
  2. Assuming 1GB Ethernet, you'll never notice throughput improvement with 7200 drives; get the 5400. (Even if Synology gets around to offering a 2.5GB interface I still doubt you'll ever notice a benefit for 7200.). 7200s can also be noisier.
    • If you get into a use where you will notice differences in latency, then one of two things you can do: (1) Get a 4 bay drive, add two SSD drives (say, 100GB each) and use DiskStation's SSD caching. (2) Upgrade to a machine (e.g. 720+) that provides onboard NVME memory slots. (It's also $150 cheaper than the 920+). Personally I don't think you need 4 bays for backup .. my next NAS (if the current one ever fails!) will be like the 720+.
    • An example needing low latency: if you edit photos on your desktop and store the images directly on the NAS, you will want a low-latency solution.
  3. As an aside, I've tried for years to use TimeMachine to Synology. It can work for months at a time and then invariably the backup file becomes unreadable. I wouldn't try TM on any NAS at this point.
  4. 2GB ram works if you don't do much but backup, but if you start running any interesting apps you will want to increase this.
  5. As noted, Synology's CPUs are generally weak. Definitely get a "+" model if there's any chance you will run a (transcoding) video server or other real-time service.
  6. I'm happy with Synology's "C2" offsite backup service (via Hyper Backup).
  7. FWIW I run owncloud/nextcloud on my PCs and Macs to a server on my DS -- not for the novice to set up and maintain, but in general it's a great syncing service. (And then Hyper Backup will ship everything to the cloud overnight.)
  8. Someone asked about SSDs: they're expensive, and maybe not more reliable than hard drives.
Taking a step back: if all you want is backup, something like the Backblaze B2 service might be a lot simpler and cheaper over the short and long term.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Elric »

I have had a DS220j for about a year now and I'm happy with it. I use it for onsite backup of some files (which are also backed up in the cloud), photos and archived files storage (also backed up in the cloud), and as a music (not video) server. Works fine and meets my needs.

I have two 4 TB Seagate drives in it, designed for NAS operations that I got at a good price from B&H.
Last edited by Elric on Wed May 04, 2022 8:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Valdeselad
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by Valdeselad »

Thank you for all the thoughtful responses - definitely a lot to think about.

I’m still probably 60% convinced the 2 bay is enough for my needs, but will think seriously about upgrading to the 4 bay.

That said, it’s probably an incremental $400 or so in cost so it’s not an easy decision.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by richard.h.gao »

tortoise84 wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 12:20 pm "RAID is not a backup"
This. With 2 bays you already have a backup of the backup. With 4 bays you will have a backup of the backup of the backup of the backup. Maybe overkill.
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enad
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by enad »

KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:41 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
Let's says that 4TB drive = $100.

With 2 bays, you buy 2 drives, you only get 4TB. You wasted $100 -> 50% of your capacity

With 4 bays, you buy 4 drives, you get 3 X 4TB = 12 TB out of 16 TB -> 25% of your capacity


" Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?"

It is hidden from you. You just pick your RAID configuration when you format the drive. It is not that hard.

KlangFool
I thought if you had a 2-bay one drive would continue to work if one drive failed.

You can start with a 2 bay box and if you outgrow you can always buy a newer 4-bay drive in the future and the plus is you can transfer you 2 existing drives into the new box along with 2 more drives.

Or start with a 4-bay box and only populate it with 2 drives and if your needs change, you can always pop in 2 more drives.

FWIW, I use WD Gold Enterprise drives. They are designed for NAS and have a 5-year warranty, but I have yet to have one fail and the oldest is over 7 years old now. If money is tight consider the WD Red Plus 7200 RPM NAS drives. If it's still too much consider they Toshiba NAS drives which carry a 3-year warranty but if cared for could last longer
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by rockstar »

I run a 4 bay Synology with wd red plus drives. I love it. Super simple to setup and use. I have a DS920+

My setup is 3 drive RAID with the 4th drive acting as a backup. If two drives in the RAID fail, I'm still good with the backup. I would need to have two drives fail along with the backup. That's good enough for me.

This will help you think it through.

https://www.synology.com/en-us/support/RAID_calculator
Last edited by rockstar on Wed Sep 21, 2022 4:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by enad »

HansT wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 2:51 pm
[*] Assuming 1GB Ethernet, you'll never notice throughput improvement with 7200 drives; get the 5400. (Even if Synology gets around to offering a 2.5GB interface I still doubt you'll ever notice a benefit for 7200.). 7200s can also be noisier.
Western Digital and Seagate (could be others) changed their NAS drive specifications a while back and instead of using CMR (Conventional Magnetic Recording) technology they are using SMR (Shingled Magnetic Recording) technology. CMR is what you want as any piece of data can be erased when it's no longer needed whereas with SMR, data from a region has to copied over and the entire region erased and then made available. Think of shingles on a roof. The write track was wide when written and narrow when read (which can be an issue in aging drives). You can't erase a bit unless you also erase surrounding bits. There was a big lawsuit and at least in the Western Digital space, the SMR drives are the RED and the CMR are now the RED PLUS

I have been using 7200 RPM WD Gold Enterprise drives for 7+ years in 4 different NAS boxes (a pair of 2-bay, and a pair of 4 bay) and the only time I hear them is when they wake up at midnight on some nights and run their SMART tests but since they are in a Den, no one in the house hears them in the bedroom. During they day they are accessed by the entire household and are not "noisy", but I suppose if I put my ear next to one I might hear it as uncomfortable as that would be.

The 2.5GB interface or 10GB interface are great, but all of our switches and computers are 1GB so I see no reason to use 2.5/10 GB now
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by enad »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 4:49 pm Thank you for all the thoughtful responses - definitely a lot to think about.

I’m still probably 60% convinced the 2 bay is enough for my needs, but will think seriously about upgrading to the 4 bay.

That said, it’s probably an incremental $400 or so in cost so it’s not an easy decision.
If you haven't pulled the trigger yet or are thinking about it consider New..g especially when it goes on sale. If you prefer Ama..n they will match the Egg's price even their sale price. WD Gold Enterprise are great drives, so are Red Plus, then Toshiba NAS. I would avoid desktop drives since they don't have the software for a NAS environment (they will work but may not last as long).
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by international001 »

KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:41 am

Let's says that 4TB drive = $100.

With 2 bays, you buy 2 drives, you only get 4TB. You wasted $100 -> 50% of your capacity

With 4 bays, you buy 4 drives, you get 3 X 4TB = 12 TB out of 16 TB -> 25% of your capacity


" Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?"

It is hidden from you. You just pick your RAID configuration when you format the drive. It is not that hard.

KlangFool
My newbie question.. how can one drive backup 3 ?
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by KlangFool »

international001 wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 4:08 pm
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:41 am

Let's says that 4TB drive = $100.

With 2 bays, you buy 2 drives, you only get 4TB. You wasted $100 -> 50% of your capacity

With 4 bays, you buy 4 drives, you get 3 X 4TB = 12 TB out of 16 TB -> 25% of your capacity


" Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?"

It is hidden from you. You just pick your RAID configuration when you format the drive. It is not that hard.

KlangFool
My newbie question.. how can one drive backup 3 ?
international001,

Because there are enough redundant bits recorded in the other 3 drives to recover that data lost in drive number 4.

https://www.pcmag.com/news/raid-levels-explained

Check out Raid level 5.

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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by BobTexas »

With so many cheap cloud options why would you build a NAS for “storage and backups”?
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by rockstar »

BobTexas wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 4:22 pm With so many cheap cloud options why would you build a NAS for “storage and backups”?
I only have 10 Mbps up and a data cap of 1.2TB. Blame the ISPs.

Here's an article about it and how ridiculous it is:

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/202 ... -avoid-it/

Now, I use the iCloud for my pics and videos from my phone. But I can't really put my media into the cloud.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by EnjoyIt »

TheMightyQuinn wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 2:02 pm
Drives - NAS rated are good. I wait until the WD Easystore (or MyBook) go on sale then shuck the drives (WB Red or White label) since external drives are cheaper (they have shorter warranties because external drives are more likely to be mishandled). I'd recommend getting drives that are each twice the size of what you expect your data to be so you'll have room to grow. Drive speed doesn't matter for a home file server/backup.
I have been using a Synology NAS for years. It is used as an internal server for our house. Stores a lot of data for regular streaming. Many read and write cycles. All my drives come from shucked WD easy store drives bought from Best buy. Yes, drives do fail after many many years of 24/7 use, but that is why they are in a RAID array (I use Synology's RAID) and just replace the busted drive with a new one. WIth Synology you can easily Hot Swap the busted drive and the RAID array repairs itself. I started off with a 4 bay unit and placed 2 hard drives in. Years later I added 2 more drives for increased storage. Eventually one of the older drives Failed and I replaced it which left behind 1 old drive that was the smallest in size. Later that year when Best Buy had a sale I replaced it as well to match the newer HD size. I'm sure eventually another HD will fail and I will repeat the process.
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by squirrel1963 »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
With 4 bays you can do RAID5 which is more cost effective. It really depends whether you care or not and if 2 bays give you enough for your requirements
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by BuddyJet »

I run an 8 slot synology with WD Red.

Like others, I'd suggest at least a 4 slot unit. I'd suggest at least 3 of the largest drives that you have budget for, 5200 is OK. With synology, you can add a fourth drive later and grow your raid. The larger 10tb+ capacity WD Red drives are usually CMR but verify before you buy. A good price is about $17/tb.

https://kb.synology.com/en-uk/DSM/help/ ... ?version=7
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by 9Iron »

I’m running a 214 play with 2 Western Digital red drives. it has been rock solid.

I basically use it as a Music Server for my Sonos system, for older photos and videos that are not on icloud, and time machine backups for 5 Macs. I haven’t had issues with time machine, and have successfully restored from these files.

Don’t underestimate the amount of disc space you will need!
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by dan7800 »

While I know that it is not a true NAS, I use a raspberry PI with a few TB SSDs connected to it for file sharing/storing. Works great.

Dropbox and Google drive are also great (although Im sure that you already looked at those options.)
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by audioengr »

squirrel1963 wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 5:45 pm
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
With 4 bays you can do RAID5 which is more cost effective. It really depends whether you care or not and if 2 bays give you enough for your requirements

I was waiting to see if someone would mention the folly of using RAID 5 with spindle hard drives (spinning rust).
RAID5 and RAID6 have not been recommended for spindle (non SSD) drives for many years.

Quick Primer -
RAID 0 - very fast, all data striped across both drives - no redundancy - any drive failure, no data
RAID 1 - mirror, all data is written on one drive, then copied to the other. 1 drive failure, no data loss
RAID 5 - 1 redundant drive - basically you can lose one drive and still have a functioning array - 2nd drive failure, all data lost
RAID 6 - 2 redundant drives - basically you can lose 2 drives and still have a functioning array - 3rd drive failure, all data lost
RAID 10 (RAID 1 +0) - mix of mirror and stripe, best for spindle drives - 2 drive RAID 10 is RAID 1

The biggest problem with RAID 5 & 6 is rebuild - when you replace the failed drive, the array begins to rebuild, this is VERY Stressful on the remaining drives and it is very common to lose an additional drive during this process.

It's also not a terrible idea to buy the drives from different sources.
Always the same make/model/size drive, but ideally built at different times, in case there was a hardware issue in the batch.

The questions you have to ask yourselves are:
What is my data worth to me?
How impactful would a data lose be?

I've seen (this year) other peoples' research lost due to picking and building the wrong RAID group.

https://www.askdbmgt.com/why-raid5-shou ... costs.html
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by EnjoyIt »

audioengr wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 9:00 pm
squirrel1963 wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 5:45 pm
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
With 4 bays you can do RAID5 which is more cost effective. It really depends whether you care or not and if 2 bays give you enough for your requirements

I was waiting to see if someone would mention the folly of using RAID 5 with spindle hard drives (spinning rust).
RAID5 and RAID6 have not been recommended for spindle (non SSD) drives for many years.

Quick Primer -
RAID 0 - very fast, all data striped across both drives - no redundancy - any drive failure, no data
RAID 1 - mirror, all data is written on one drive, then copied to the other. 1 drive failure, no data loss
RAID 5 - 1 redundant drive - basically you can lose one drive and still have a functioning array - 2nd drive failure, all data lost
RAID 6 - 2 redundant drives - basically you can lose 2 drives and still have a functioning array - 3rd drive failure, all data lost
RAID 10 (RAID 1 +0) - mix of mirror and stripe, best for spindle drives - 2 drive RAID 10 is RAID 1

The biggest problem with RAID 5 & 6 is rebuild - when you replace the failed drive, the array begins to rebuild, this is VERY Stressful on the remaining drives and it is very common to lose an additional drive during this process.

It's also not a terrible idea to buy the drives from different sources.
Always the same make/model/size drive, but ideally built at different times, in case there was a hardware issue in the batch.

The questions you have to ask yourselves are:
What is my data worth to me?
How impactful would a data lose be?

I've seen (this year) other peoples' research lost due to picking and building the wrong RAID group.

https://www.askdbmgt.com/why-raid5-shou ... costs.html
Thanks for sharing. Do you know how Synology's proprietary RAID compares to the above?
It takes overnight to re-build an array when a drive is replaced.

EDIT: disregard. I found a youtube video that explains the difference between synology RAID and RAID 5
https://youtu.be/r7du3Qp-fyo
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by squirrel1963 »

audioengr wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 9:00 pm
squirrel1963 wrote: Wed Sep 21, 2022 5:45 pm
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:34 am
KlangFool wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 8:14 am
Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.
Valdeselad,

Don't buy that. It is an expensive option. If you are interested in redundancy for your drive, the 2 slots waste 50% of your disk space and that is a lot of $$$. So, with 2 drives, you only get 1 drive of space.

You should buy a 4 bays version of Synology. I have a DS418.

KlangFool
What advantages does that 4 bay provide over the 2 bay for my use case? Is there any increase in complexity going from a 2 bay for a 4 day (i.e. different RAID configurations)?
With 4 bays you can do RAID5 which is more cost effective. It really depends whether you care or not and if 2 bays give you enough for your requirements

I was waiting to see if someone would mention the folly of using RAID 5 with spindle hard drives (spinning rust).
RAID5 and RAID6 have not been recommended for spindle (non SSD) drives for many years.

Quick Primer -
RAID 0 - very fast, all data striped across both drives - no redundancy - any drive failure, no data
RAID 1 - mirror, all data is written on one drive, then copied to the other. 1 drive failure, no data loss
RAID 5 - 1 redundant drive - basically you can lose one drive and still have a functioning array - 2nd drive failure, all data lost
RAID 6 - 2 redundant drives - basically you can lose 2 drives and still have a functioning array - 3rd drive failure, all data lost
RAID 10 (RAID 1 +0) - mix of mirror and stripe, best for spindle drives - 2 drive RAID 10 is RAID 1

The biggest problem with RAID 5 & 6 is rebuild - when you replace the failed drive, the array begins to rebuild, this is VERY Stressful on the remaining drives and it is very common to lose an additional drive during this process.

It's also not a terrible idea to buy the drives from different sources.
Always the same make/model/size drive, but ideally built at different times, in case there was a hardware issue in the batch.

The questions you have to ask yourselves are:
What is my data worth to me?
How impactful would a data lose be?

I've seen (this year) other peoples' research lost due to picking and building the wrong RAID group.

https://www.askdbmgt.com/why-raid5-shou ... costs.html
The use of HDD is still fairly common for archival usage, and the enterprise class HDD are of good quality. That said RAID rebuild time is a huge concern on a multi terabyte drive, I'd use RAID6 all things considered which increases costs and reduces performance.

Still my preference at this point for 8 Terabytes or less would be to simple use a single SSD drive and do regular monthly backups on HDD backup drive. It will definitely be faster and might be cheaper than getting a specialized NAS, my Samba4 NAS uses a cheap Qotom fanless PC and provides 7.6 TB of data. I rotate backups between 2 HDD backup devices.
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enad
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by enad »

Valdeselad wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 7:42 am Hi folks,

It is time for our home to invest in a NAS, and I am leaning towards the Synology DS220+. While I realize this is their entry level NAS, I think it should fit the bill for my use case.

A few questions as I am finalizing specs:

1) Storage - What hard drives do you recommend? I see the NAS rated ones from Seagate and WD get the most attention online. Any thoughts on speed differences and where it is worthwhile to spend $ (i.e. 5400 vs. 7200 rpm)?
2) Memory - Is a memory (RAM) upgrade worthwhile (base is 2GB, expandable to 6GB)?
3) Anything else I should be considering?

Thanks!
Whatever NAS you end up with, make sure it has at least 1 USB 3.0 port on the unit (preferably on the front) so that you can backup the NAS as the NAS is a central server that all devices can access and if using at least 2 drives can be mirrored for redundancy in case one drive fails but it's not a substitute for backups (common misconception), but having the ability to backup the NAS itself gives you some piece of mind in the event that the NAS drives fail. Check the S.M.A.R.T. Health Info of the drives (Main Menu -> Storage Manager -> HDD/SDD (highlight the Drive, click on Health Info)). The Overview will give you a quick picture of the drive's health, the history on previous tests and the S.M.A.R.T. tab the ability to run a quick or long test. Usually when one drive is failing or about to fail, the other is not far behind. It helps if you have 2 spare drives for this purpose (but you don't have to buy them at the same time). If you have a Linux PC, you can easily back the NAS up onto local USB attached drives on the Linux machine, you could do it with a PC but you'll have to buy software to do that i.e. think Acronis)

Our smallest NAS is a DS216J which uses a Marvel Armeda 385 dual-core processor with 512 MB of memory and it works great for streaming music, streaming movies/TV shows, sharing family photo's. It has a pair of WD Enterprise (Gold Series) 4TB 7200 RPM drives running Symbology RAID. Just checked the health and 0 errors after 6+ years.

We have other more powerful NAS that are on the home's private network (no access to the Internet).
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by abracadabra11 »

HansT wrote: Wed May 04, 2022 2:51 pm My DS415+ is still going strong after 6y with its original WD Red drives .. plan on this being a stable piece of tech, so think about future upgradeability.
  1. Assuming 1GB Ethernet, you'll never notice throughput improvement with 7200 drives; get the 5400. (Even if Synology gets around to offering a 2.5GB interface I still doubt you'll ever notice a benefit for 7200.). 7200s can also be noisier.
Take note that 2.5Gbe USB-to-ethernet adapters are a trivial and cheap upgrade for any Synology NAS, so I would not default to the assumption of 1Gbe throughput restriction when purchasing HDDs. 7200s are certainly noisier, so consider on where you plan on placing your NAS in your home..
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Re: NAS (Network Attached Storage) Questions

Post by crefwatch »

I had an older WD NAS (that came with an HDD), and after ten years, when the HDD gave out, I replaced it with a plug-compatible SSD, which worked with no modifications. Has been running fine for a year.

Under Windows 10, I've found that the NAS works better if it has an permanently assigned network address, not a DHCP address.
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