|Hard Drive||32 TB Portable|
|Number of USB 2.0 Ports||4|
Synology DiskStation 8-Bay Diskless Network Attached Storage (DS1813+)
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- Four LAN Ports with Link Aggregation Support.
- Expandable RAM Module (Up to 4GB).
- CPU Passive Cooling Technology and System Fan Redundancy.
- High Availability and Automatic Failover by SHA.
- VMware, Citrix, Microsoft Hyper-V Ready.
- Scale up to 72TB with Synology DX513.
- Powered by Synology DiskStation Manager (DSM).
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|Shipping||—||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping|
|Hardware Connectivity||USB 3.0, USB 3.0||USB, eSATA||Ethernet, USB||USB 3.0, USB 3.0||Ethernet, USB||USB, eSATA|
|Item Dimensions||18 x 12 x 14 in||8.78 x 7.83 x 6.54 in||13.5 x 9.57 x 6.54 in||9 x 10 x 7 in||9.84 x 9.57 x 6.54 in||13.39 x 9.17 x 6.18 in|
|Item Weight||16 lbs||5.03 lbs||13.23 lbs||8.6 lbs||9.83 lbs||11.71 lbs|
With its superior performance, scalability, resilience, and comprehensive features, Synology DS1813+ is the ideal storage solution for your growing SMB. The DS1813+ can help to simplify data management, providing a centralized destination for storage, backup, and sharing - with minimal setup and the freedom to expand capacity at any time. The DS1813+ is backed by Synology's 3-year limited warranty.
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As a home user, I was not excited to migrate from one server to another. Though I consider myself to be technically savvy, I am not formally trained in networking or server administration. However, I was running out of space on WHS and was beginning to experience access issues with the WHS software. So, I spent a great deal of time looking at options for replacement. As I looked at "home server" replacements, it became very clear that the NAS category has taken over this realm in recent years. Synology and several others have floated to the top of this category and many reviews are available discussing this company's products.
I spent time reading about specific Synology products on review sites and on the support sections of Synology's websites prior to this purchase. I also spent time reviewing drives that are appropriate for use in a RAID setup, as I'd not personally owned or setup a RAID before. I made the choice to purchase the Synology 1813+ as it looked like a good balance hardware and software options and has lots of room for expansion. I decided to outfit my server with four (4) Western Digital 4TB SE drives as the home-use "Red" version did not have a 4TB drive (at the time of my purchase).
Setup was rather simple, but was enhanced only by my prior reading on this device. There are essentially no instructions that come in the box at the time of delivery. I placed the drives in the tool-less enclosures, upgraded the RAM to 4GB with a Kingston memory module, connected the unit to my gigabit network and powered up. A few minutes later I was able to access the unit and download the latest software, which also installed without a hitch. The DSM software is outstanding and generally friendlier than the WHS software I've been using. There are many ways to establish a multi-disk volume including all forms of RAID; I chose to setup a single volume on a Synology Hybrid Raid (SHR-2) setup...basically a 2-drive fault tolerance setup. Volume creation and optimization took some time - several days in fact; but I was able to use the volume during the optimization to create users and shared folders.
Using the DSM software, I configured the unit for Windows and Apple networking, setup the free antivirus software, and created shared folders and users. The online Synology Wiki and documentation was a tremendous help here. I also downloaded the .pdf manual to assist with setup.
Network setup for link aggregation (LAG) was difficult, possibly due to my inexperience with complex networking - though I have experience with basic network configuration and wiring. I eventually discovered that my old Dell 24-port gigabit switch was not up to the task due to its lack of LACP support. I did wish to take advantage of a LAG setup using the four gigabit ports on the 1813+, so I chose to purchase a Cisco SG200-26 switch from Amazon. Though it was not listed in the compatibility table at Synology, other reviews suggested it would work well. After moving to the new switch I was able to setup a 4-port LAG with LACP with a bit of fiddling with both the Synology NAS and the Cisco Switch. Though this is not meant to be a Cisco review, the SG200-26 switch impresses me with its ability to be setup in a multitude of ways and eclipses the flexibility of my prior switch.
Internet setup is another adventure that seems to be based upon the router you have, its support of universal Plug-and-Play, and the ability of the Synology software to automatically configure port-forwarding. Personally, I've had some challenges with port-forwarding, which I ended-up configuring manually on my Netgear Router. Once I had manually completed the port forwarding and accomplished the free Synology dynamic DNS setup (a nice bonus), I had no further problems.
I setup share folders similar to those on my still running WHS and began to copy files from one share to another. This was no small task and there are many headaches that can arise (not as the result of equipment). I chose to use GoodSync software as I was able to see errors along the way and files that may have been excluded. This took a number of days for me to complete my file migration as some supervision is involved over time. Once I had moved the files, file sharing on this device is very easy and works seamlessly provided that you've enabled the appropriate services on the DSM. It was also necessary to make sure that the Windows workgroup was appropriately named on the Synology Device in order to see the server on all of my windows machines.
The Synology NAS functions well as a backup target for multiple OSs. Apple Time Machine has worked very well in particular. My setup of this function was guided by the online Synology resources describing this setup; this allowed me to create a Time Machine specific user with a limit on total size utilization of my RAID single storage volume. I calculated the Time Machine user's storage limit based upon size of the drives in each of my Macs with a multiplier. I have three Macs that I've been backing up with Time Machine and this has generally worked well over the network. The only issue I've encountered is that on occasion the backup must be redone if you are not careful shutting down the Mac machine during attempts at a backup. In order to fix the situation you may have to kill an existing connection in the DSM and restart the backup from the Mac.
Windows machines are a bit more challenging, actually. WHS clearly spoiled me with its nearly intervention free background backup processes. I've found that the Synology Data Replicator 3 software is excellent for the purpose of backup of documents and important files; however, it doesn't serve as a "bare metal," bit-for-bit backup of an entire system. Windows 7 backup is well suited to backup the entire system, but is not at all considerate of the amount of space it takes on a large RAID volume. There are ways to get around this with user limitations, but they are not well documented and have involved a lot of experiments in backup setup and folder management. WHS did things well here as it retained only one copy of any given file and was savvy with space considerations during backup. I've considered dedicated backup software such as Acronis, but am still in the process of evaluating use of software that is either included with Synology or Windows 7.
Finally, I recently added a WD 4TB external drive (USB 3.0) as a backup drive to the native share folders using the Syology "Time Backup" app in the Synology package management tool. Many have noted that a NAS with RAID is not the same as backup. Basically, if a RAID fails and you're unable to recover it, life is bad. For those considering this as a backup target, it's OK to use it in that fashion. However, if a share is the primary location of a file then RAID is not an acceptable form of "backup." Synology has abundant backup options including backup to several commercial cloud solutions, backup to other local or remote Synology servers, backup to other network drives, and backup to internal or USB 2.0/3.0 attached drives. The external USB 3.0 option has worked well for me and the Time Backup software is similar in appearance and function to Apple's Time Machine software - therefore it's familiar and intuitive as a current Mac user.
To date I've setup the server with an antivirus scanner, the PLEX media server, the Cloud software, Time Backup, and the VPN server. So far, I've been most impressed with the cloud server, "Cloud Station." This Synology-developed app has moved me completely away from Dropbox, my old "go to" solution. It is surprisingly mature software with setup solutions for mobile devices, Windows, Apple, and Linux. Setup is simple and intuitive. It has a generous maximum single file size of 10GB (for the purposes of sync) that will work well for my needs.
One consideration with respect to software is the processing power of the CPU. With the 2-core processor and abundant network connectivity, the 1813+ is easily able to stream HD video content (without transcoding) to most platforms. Transcoding is also supported on available software platforms; however, transcoding has the potential to be problematic if HD material must be heavily processed prior to viewing on the destination hardware. There are several articles discussing this issue in the Plex forums, and alternatives include an intermediate workstation with the Synology unit as a file server only. I'm still looking at these options, but did not buy this unit for its transcoding prowess.
I've not spent time with hosting e-mail, a blog, a website, CRM software, or other types of options; however, many of these options are available for installation using the software package management tool. Upgrades of installed software are easily accomplished with notification and the click of a button.
RAID VOLUME MANAGEMENT:
About a week into my use I decided to add two additional WD SE 4TB drives to my SHR-2 array. This was incredibly simple - just insert the two new drives into empty bays (no need to turn off the server) and add them to the volume using options in DSM software. Once again, it took several days to add the space into the array, but there were no issues and I was able to continue to use the NAS during the upgrade.
Unintentional loss of power can be a serious issue for any computer, server, or NAS. I purchased a Cyber Power UPS at a local big box store, powered down the NAS, plugged it in to the USB, and restarted the NAS. The Synology immediately recognized the UPS (even though it was not on the supported list) and reported it in the hardware section. I was then able to setup a power-based shutdown plan should power be lost for longer than supported by the UPS. This was the only downtime the NAS has required since I the purchased the Synology unit.
I'm very impressed with the Synology 1813+ NAS. It should last me for a period of time that is at least equal to my former WHS setup. With its expansion options, I hope it lasts much longer. I've had to learn a bit more about networking, but for someone who has been through a prior build and setup of a home server this has been mostly pain free. Clearly when you by a NAS you will have to incur additional expenses for drives and other options that you may choose. Complete setup will take time, especially if you're migrating from another server platform. Some might argue that an 8-bay Synology NAS is overkill for any home user. They may be right. I would suggest that those who have a strong interest in a conservatively setup RAID volume, on a NAS, with multiple expansion options, and multiple backup options will be hard-pressed to find something better than a Synology 1813+.
NAS: Synology 1813+
RAID DRIVES: 6X Western Digital 4 TB 3.5-Inch WD SE (WD4000F9YZ)
RAM UPGRADE: 1X Kingston ValueRAM 2GB 1066MHz DDR3
NETWORK SWITCH: Cisco SG200-26
ROUTER: Netgear R4500
EXTERNAL DRIVE: 1X Western Digital My Book 4 TB USB 3.0 (WDBFJK0040HBK-NESN)
UPS POWER: Cyber Power CP 1350C
NETWORK CONFIG: LAG via LACP (4X Gigabit LAN)
1) Several questions have been answered regarding drive choice and energy/noise specs under the comments section of my WD SE 4TB drive review:Western Digital 4 TB 3.5-Inch WD Se SATA III 7200 RPM 64 MB Cache Bulk/OEM Enterprise Hard Drive WD4000F9YZ[Amazon Frustration-Free Packaging]
2) Reviews of the Cisco switch:Cisco SG200-26 Gigabit Ethernet Smart Switch with 24 10/100/1000 Ports and 2 Combo Mini-GBIC Ports (SLM2024T)
3) Reviews of the external My Book Drive:WD My Book 4TB USB 3.0 Hard Drive with Security, Local and Cloud Backup (WDBFJK0040HBK-NESN)
4) Kingston ValueRAM module:Kingston ValueRAM 2GB 1066MHz DDR3 Non-ECC CL7 SODIMM Single Rank x8 Notebook Memory
I recommend any Synology product to the novice all the way to up the advanced user. The features available to enhance your experience just keep getting better with each new DSM release. Synology is always adding to their OS and enhancing security, improving usability, and increasing versatility. If you need block level storage or just want to store your media in a central location on your network then I'd recommend a Synology DiskStation. If you are thinking of buying a Synology for one specific reason I would recommend making sure something else on the market doesn't do that one thing you need done better. For those that need something rack mountable there are a number of RackStations they offer that will work well in a server room. The rack mountable units offer the same features, but the higher end models support 10Gb ethernet, have dual power supply support, have quad core cpus, support SAS drives, and support ECC ram up to 32GB.
- Easy Setup and Maintenance.
- Great hardware components backed by 3 year warranty.
- Support for virtually any protocol out there: FTP, SFTP, FTPS, TFTP, PXE, Webdav, CIFS (SMB), AFP, NFS, SSH, Telnet, SNMP, Rsync, DLNA-UPnP, more.
- Synology Hybrid RAID for those that have different size had drives, but want to use them in RAID.
- Expand up to 10 more drives with 2 expansion units (DX510/DX513/DX213), for a total of 72TB of space
- Huge potential for multipurpose uses with Apps and features that are easily accessible for for free.
- Mobile Apps that pair with many of the multimedia features and work fairly well.
- Easy to use operating system that is Web-enabled and allows multitasking, while also enabling advanced users to SSH and configure things.
- Most built in Synology services/apps use ports 5000-5006 so you don't need to worry about configuring your firewall or router for an excessive amount of ports.
- Speed limits for basically everything. You can limit bandwidth on backup jobs, FTP and other applications with ease.
- The DSM Operating system is spanned across all disks for resiliency.
- Price is higher than some other options on the Market.
- Relatively weak CPU, but won't impact normal usage scenarios.
- No hardware encryption for volumes or entire drives, only share level encryption. This is cpu extensive and slower.
- No central management console/application for controlling and managing more than few DiskStations or RackStations.
- No support for more than 4GB RAM on lower end units. Even though it isn't an option sat all, it would be nice to be able to setup RAM disks.
- Cannot write to HFS+ external drives yet.
- No builtin bare metal client backup software. Unlike Windows Server 2012 Essentials.
- No dual power supply option on lower end units.
We run about 30 Synology NAS devices ranging from their 2 bay Disk Stations all the way up to their 10 bay, dual power supply Rack Stations that we run with 10Gb ethernet. When we started using them about 4 years ago, we did so hesitantly. We bought one of their smaller non rack mount units and then proceed to torture test it. After a number of successful tests where we simulated brownouts, blackouts, and UPS failures. We then moved onto booting the system with a drive missing and then took a drive out with the system running and waited for each rebuild process to complete. All tests passed with flying colors and every rebuild completed successfully. We decide to buy more units and use them in our production environment. I find it very surprising that over these last 4 years we have had not one issue with any of the units we use, which are all in a production environments. Software has always installed fine, firmware upgrades have been flawless, RAID rebuilds have gone smoothly and integration with our enterprise environment has been great.
As for the rest of this review I will focus mainly on what I use the DS1813+ for in a home environment because that is where I use this. I'll also talk about the hardware and software that make it my preferred NAS. The list of packages/software you can install with a few clicks is rather staggering. Like previously stated, most NAS options on the market have very similar features, but I have come to prefer what Synology offers over the rest. Generally, Synology has been providing 4 years of OS updates on current units, so you should have their newest DSM version for 4 years after the model was released. The model year is designated at the end of the model number. This is a 2013 model, thus it is named DS1813+. Although this model comes with support for up to 18 drives users can start off with only one drive if they want and then gradually add drives as they need. They also have 2 bay and 5 bay units that would be more than sufficient for most users. The following is not an ALL inclusive source of what you'll get from Synology, but hopefully you find it helpful:
*RAM: The DS1813+ comes with 2GB of RAM, but you can upgrade it to 4GB. You can purchase RAM from here: B007SDHAJ6, which is actually Synology Branded RAM. It takes about 5 minutes to add another RAM module. The second RAM slot is easily accessible and takes about 5 minutes to add
*CPU: The CPU is an Intel Atom D2700 (2C/4T, 2.13 GHz). Although not a powerhouse the CPU is capable of handling pretty much anything you can run on a Synology DiskStation. This is however one of my biggest complaints with most NAS devices on the market, is their poor choice of CPUs. There are low power, and yet more powerful processors that they could use, especially at the price point you are paying for with Synology. Most users won't notice any performance issues with the D2700.
*Enclosure: The enclosures they use are well built and more than sufficient for what these units are doing. The drive trays are lockable and now tool-less for 3.5" Drive, although you'll still need screws for 2.5" Drives. The fans are now easily removable and replaceable. As stated before, access to the expansion RAM slot is is quick and easy. You can also attach two expansion units that will add 5 more drives each.
*Internals: They use quality components on the inside and that show because they offer a 3 year warranty to back it. You will however find that the only user serviceable parts are the RAM and Fans. If you tinker with anything else you risk voiding your warranty.
*Network Ports: There are 4 network ports available. You can set these up a few different ways. You can use them independently of one another and control what apps use which ports, where each port will have it's own IP Address. This is nice for those that don't have a Layer 2 or 3 switch. For those that want more bandwidth or fault tolerance you can aggregate ports for fault tolerance or NIC teaming, but keep in mind you need a switch that supports this.
*Expansion: If 8 x 4TB drives isn't enough for you then you can add up to a max of 10 more drives. You're options for expansion are the DX510 / DX513 or the DX213. The DX510 and DX513 both offer 5 more slots for drives via eSata, while the DX213. You can mix and match which expansion units you want, but you can only use two at the same time. The DS1813+ allows you to dynamically expand your existing RAID volumes using their expansion bays; however you can decide to use them for standalone volumes and then run backups to them as well. These expansion units come with eSata cables that screw into the back of both the expansion unit and the main unit for a tight and reliable connection.
*RAID Made Easy: You can always use the vanilla style RAID, of which this unit supports RAID 0/1/5/6/10. You'll also be able to use your drives in a JBOD setup as well. Most users will be happy with using Synology Hybrid RAID, which allows for creating RAID volumes using different size disks while utilizing all the space on each disk for parity. Synology Hybrid RAID allows for 1 or 2 disk fault tolerance and easy volume expansion. Normal RAID will limit each drive to the smallest drive size in your RAID volume. Expanding RAID volumes is simple and relatively fast. In most cases you don't even have to wait for a volume to finish being created to use your system while the OS manages everything in the background for you and you'll be notified when things complete. If you are worried about not being around if a drive fails then you can just configure a global hot spare to auto rebuild if a drive is flagged offline in your RAID setup.
*Setup and Management: Setting up one of these is quick and easy. Each unit requires the OS to be installed before it can be used, which is done with their Synology Setup Assistant software, although if you can find the IP address you can do so with the Webpage as well, completely bypassing the setup assistant. Be aware that the Synology Setup Assistant only works if the unit you are trying to setup is on the same subnet you are on. User and Groups management is made easy for those that have difficulty understanding UNIX permissions. You can just create and manage permissions in the GUI. Managing permission for applications, files and folders is done with just a few clicks. My biggest complaint is that there is no dedicated central management application to manage multiple devices easily. It would be ideal to be able to update firmware, restart, shutdown, wake and do other tasks straight from an application.
*Packages/Apps: There are literally dozens of apps/packages that you can install with their built in Packages manager. It's basically a one click install affair. Most things are easily configure in no longer than a few minutes after installation. You can find 3rd party apps or "community" managed repositories where a good amount of non official apps are hosted. You can also install non-supported applications using terminal access via ssh, but unless you know exactly what you are doing it is not recommended.
*Built in Functionality: The stock functionality is fantastic. Out of the box with no need to install any apps you can run backups via rsync (on a schedule), setup email/sms/push notifications for various purposes, setup your preferred DDNS service or use Synology's DDNS service for free, schedule cron jobs with the GUI, setup a syslog server, configure NIC link aggregation or fault tolerance, setup logging for virtually everything, enable a web server with virtual hosts, manage application privileges, and then setup access via the following protocols: FTP / SFTP / FTPS / TFTP / PXE / Webdav / CIFS (SMB) / AFP / NFS / SSH / Telnet / SNMP. The list goes on...
*Mobile Apps: I don't' use most of the mobile apps much, but they have a a selection of apps that handles multimedia and one that can be used for basic management purposes. Overall they work well and are nice to have if you use the services that require them.
*Enterprise/Business Features: There are a number of great features that home users probably won't take advantage of, but are here if you need them. Integration as an LDAP Client is available. You can easily join your DiskStaiton to an ActiveDirectory environment with a few clicks. iSCSI LUNs or Targets are also very easy to setup and accessible from any platform that supports using LUNs or Targets. If you have two SSDs you can setup an SSD cache to accelerate your I/O, although you won't likely need one in a home environment. Yet more click to install apps will let you run your own Radius server, VPN server, syslog server, DNS server, directory server, or a DHCP server. You can even setup your own email server if you want.
*Resiliency and Data Protection - Backup/High Availability: You can backup your data with the built in backup protocols which use Rsync. Or you can use any number of third party cloud storage apps that integrate into paid services for offsite backup. You can use their built in backup features to maintain a backup of your data onto a volume located on an expansion unit or a secondary internal volume. If you have a second DiskStation you can just use High Availability and your entire unit will be mirrored to another disk station, this includes settings and services, software, data and even LUNs; according to what you configure it to sync.
*Log - Audits: You can have logs for virtually anything. This is extremely nice for a System Admin to be able to audit certain things because you can have a trail of what was done by who and when. You are presented with current active connections as well which you can see for CloudStation, Network Shares and HTTP/s connections that are active. You can even kill said connections with the click of a button. You are also given a great log of who has been blocked and what IP they used when they were block, but I'll touch more on this later.
***What I use the most***
*Cloud Station: My preferred replacement for any paid cloud storage company out there. You can have your own personal cloud server with very few limitations. Sync your files and folders to Windows, Mac and Linux. Allow multiple users to share and collaborate on files with different logins and access permissions (3rd party app called OwnCloud is worth a mention as well).
*Photo Station: I use this to organize all my picture. Each user can have their own instance of Photo Station or you can setup on and then setup access level permission for all your folders.picture.
*iTunes Server: I have about 65,000 songs that are hosted on my DS1813+ via the iTunes server. It hosts my entire music library and it is accessible via iTunes on any computer on my network.
*DLNA/UPnP Server: If you have any devices that support streaming music or video like an Xbox 360/One or Playstation 3/4 you'll be able to stream to them. I use a bunch of Sonos players that I have setup in my home. You can configure it to transcode audio so that devices that don't support native playback of certain file types can play transcoded copies.
*Auto Block: If you've enabled SSH or any other service that makes your disk station available over the internet then you'll want to be wary of malicious attempts to gain access to your server. Just turn on auto block and now you can auto block their IP addresses from attempting to access your server if they have N number of login attempts of N Minutes, where N is configurable by you. You are presented with a log/list of all IPs that have been blocked and you can keep them there permanently or set an interval for the block to expire. If you don't want certain IP addresses to get ever get blocked then you can add them to a Whitelist or even import a list of safe IPs.
*Antivirus: Being based on linux Synology's OS isn't very susceptible to viruses, but the computers you conned to it are. There are two options for antivirus currently. The free one based os ClamAV. Or a paid one from McAfee. I use the free one, which is listed in the Package Center as Antivirus Essentials.
*Backup and Restore: I run backups of my data, excluding media, using Rsync to another server that is my running rsync. This happens on a daily schedule. My media is replicated, using rsync, onto a server that is hosting Plex Media Server. All my files and media are automatically backed up and replicated where I need it. You can run your backups to any rsync compatible server or you can replicate entire shares or even LUNs between Synology DiskStations with ease. Backup to external drives are also easily setup and scheduled. Client backups are a different story. TimeMachine works well for Macs and is easily configured, but bare metal backup for other operating systems don't exist.
*Surveillance - Security: We have a few IP cameras that are used to monitor our home and property. The Surveillance Station software is fantastic and works great with a large list of officially supported cameras and some that are user reported supported as well. We login and can view a live feed from any of our cameras. You can have the software track targets and trigger recording when a suspicious event occurs. Depending on your camera the software can be setup to have your cameras run on a patrol that automates panning tilting and zooming according to presets enabled by you.
There are plenty of ways to manage power, and even some 3rd party apps for this. You can setup a "Power Schedule" that allows you to shutdown and startup on pretty much any schedule you'd like (especially with a 3rd party app). You can set the HDD Hibernation time for both internal or external drives, with logging as an option as well. Most mainstream UPS units are also supported for auto shutoff when your unit starts running on UPS power
I'll do my best to respond to questions if you have any.
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It's just one solid device that has fully exceeded my expectations.Read more