Synology DS411j NAS Honest Review

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by blevins321, Mar 15, 2011.

  1. kas23 macrumors 603

    kas23

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2007
    #51
    For those of you who are more experienced with their Synology DS, which file transfer protocol is best (most stable, fast, secure) for connecting to your DS from your Mac? AFP, NFS, WebDAV? When you're home on your LAN or accessing remotely.
     
  2. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #52
    Install VPN on the Synology and WebDAV is all you need. Simple and everything you need on the Mac side is built into OSX.
     
  3. kas23 macrumors 603

    kas23

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2007
    #53
    Why exactly do I need to install VPN when I can just use WebDAV by itself to communicate with my DS. Is there a benefit? Sorry, I'm new at this?
     
  4. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #54
    You mentioned secure. VPN will encrypt the connection, it's optional of course. You'll also need DYNDNS or something similar, the Synology supports several.
     
  5. rog1981 macrumors newbie

    rog1981

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2012
    #55
    Time Machine Issue

    Hi,

    Pretty much an amateur when setting up networks etc. so bear with me. I have set up my DS411j and it seems to be working fine in all other respects, however when I point the Time machine Back Up on my iMac to the folder I have set up for it on the NAS it fails, stating that the file system is unsupported and should be AFP. I have followed the instructions to enable 'Apple Talk' on the NAS with the correct folder selected and I have checked and rechecked to make sure I haven't missed anything. Can't see why it fails - any ideas?

    Thanks.
     
  6. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #56
    Are you running Disk Station 3.2? All your Synology drives should be formatted to ext4. It should simply work with TM.
     
  7. blevins321 thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2010
    Location:
    Winnipeg, MB
    #57
    Hey, are you sure that your settings are like the first attached image? And is your DSM version the one shown in the second? The firmware didn't support Lion Time Machine until a couple weeks after the release (there was a beta though). Maybe you're on an old version and just need to update?
     

    Attached Files:

  8. AppleDApp macrumors 68020

    AppleDApp

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    #58
    Not all synology NAS support hot-Swapping. Check in the tech specs.

    Thanks for this great review. I'm also thinking of getting a NAS soon. How is the web interface with other browsers? I would've using chrome and maybe safari.
     
  9. blevins321 thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2010
    Location:
    Winnipeg, MB
    #59
    Post above has a couple UI screenshots taken in Mac Chrome. It's a very standard-driven UI. Works basically the same in all browsers. I find it to be pretty intuitive once you play around for a bit.
     
  10. AppleDApp macrumors 68020

    AppleDApp

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    #60
    Thanks I'll be getting DS712+ soon
     
  11. jeff051177 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2011
    #61
    Thanks for this really useful thread!

    I've just had a DS411J delivered, loaded it up with 1TB drives and moved my iTunes library to it. It worked really well: I'm not super-techy, and so was pleasantly surprised to find how simple it was to set up.

    I am having one issue:
    I have the DS411J conected to an AEBS, which then streams (via macbook pro) to my aTV (v1). With larger movies (eg: BR rips compresed to about 3gb) playback starts to hang/stutter about 20 mins in.

    I've googled-around and found some other people complaining of this too - that it may be a bug with 3.2 of the DMS or may have somthing to do with disks spinning down after 20 mins (would the do that during streaming? Surely not).

    Does anyone hve any insights about how I could fix this?
     
  12. blevins321 thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2010
    Location:
    Winnipeg, MB
    #62
    Hmm, I stream all the time via Plex and I can't say I've had this issue happen. In your energy settings (on the 411j), do you have it set to spin down the hard drives? My setting is enabled, but I've never seen it do this when in use.
     
  13. jeff051177 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2011
    #63
    I'm not sure :rolleyes: I'm going to check this tonight, but it wouldn't make sense for it to spin-down whilst the HDDs were in use (would it?).

    First thing I'm going to do is connect the aTV to the AEBS via ethernet, that will determine if it's a wifi streaming issue. Then I'll try fiddling with the settings on the 411j itself.

    Looks like I'll be watching the first 20 mins of Avatar a few times tonight! (my test movie)
     
  14. AppleDApp macrumors 68020

    AppleDApp

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    #64
    Anyone have a good guide to using plex? I'm having trouble.
     
  15. Barty Fartslast macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    #65
    Thanks again for starting this thread!

    After the crash of my 2 x 4TB JBOD media storage box hanging off an iMac, I've decided to get "serious" and put in a real NAS. The Synology seems to be the clear winner in terms of usability and feature set. My household consists of three Macbook Pros, one iMac, one Macbook, an ATV1 and an ATV2, 4 iPhone 4, and 2 iPads. For the network, its a pair of bridged AEBS units (version 2, not the newest ones).

    I'm trying to decide between the DS411 and the DS411+II. From a performance standpoint, my main concern is being able to stream movies either using iTunes (running on the iMac) and Frontrow on the ATV, or hacking one (or both) of the ATVs for use with Firecore.

    As far as file sharing, there will be very little demand on the box other than receiving Time Machine backups from each Mac on the network and hosting a very large (600GB and growing) Aperture library that is accessed by a single MBP.

    Can anyone tell me if the DS411 is sufficient, or do I need to spend the extra $200 and go with the DS411+II?

    I'll be loading the box with 3 x 2TB (5400) and 1 x 1TB (7200) drives from Seagate, because that's what I have already (one of the 2TB drives crashed).

    Thansk!
     
  16. blevins321 thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2010
    Location:
    Winnipeg, MB
    #66
    I think the DS411j would be sufficient for your needs. I'm in the process of upgrading to the 411+II right now because I'll be doing a good amount of online photo hosting with my NAS now. Pretty much any home use would be fulfilled nicely by the 411j, though.
     
  17. Barty Fartslast macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    #67
    Thanks. I ended up buying the DS411 so I could get more performance. So far I'm really happy with the ease of setup and usefulness. I'm having a problem though where 3 of the old disks that came from the JBOD array all have cached S.M.A.R.T. information saying that they have all failed (which is not the case, only one of the drives failed in the array). The problem is that its not possible, AFAIK to erase this information from the drives. As a result, when I popped them into my DS411 along with one new drive, they are all showing up as "abnormal" in the SMART tab, though in the volume and disk displays they are showing up as "status: normal" (green). Annoying, but not keeping me from using them. The time machine backup solution ROCKS. It is so easy to set up. I created a separate 1TB volume and then a single shared folder on it called "Time MAchine". I pointed all the Macs in the house to this (and created a user account for each member of my family on this folder). Then opened up Time Machine on each laptop, selected this volume as the disk, and away they went. So far its working flawlessly.
     
  18. TheRocketmac macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2011
    Location:
    Texas
    #68
    Ditto.
     
  19. alexkoo1812 macrumors newbie

    alexkoo1812

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2012
    #69
    Great thread!
    I've been comparing Synology D411+II and QNAP 439II+PRO recently.
    And I heard that Synology has slow transfer issue when using external USB drive coping NTFS files. Does any body meet this problem?
    By the way, I've several Macs at home and want to know which one works best with OSX? My main requirement is iTunes server/streaming movies/photo sharing and etc...

    Thanks a lot!
     
  20. blevins321 thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2010
    Location:
    Winnipeg, MB
    #70
    Can't speak to the others as I haven't dealt with them, but be aware that no NAS can do iTunes video streaming. They all use the same implementation of the "hacked" Airport Extreme AirTunes protocol, and the ATV2 only supports videos via AirVideo.
     
  21. monsieurpaul macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2009
    #71
    I have a Syno DS212j and I am very happy with it. However, my main complaint is about USB backup:

    - There is a lot of compatibility issue depending on which USB enclosure you are using. For example, I had problems with a Mediasonic 4 bays enclosure and Thermaltake BlacX and BlacX duet enclosures. I am using now Mediasonic USB 3.0 enclosures (even though the syno is USB 2.0) and it seems to work fine.

    - I think you're better off if you format your USB disk in ext4.

    In addition, be careful about streaming movies: do you really want to stream movies (the syno is the player) ? or to share movies (an external player, a Mac or a WD TV Live for example, is playing the movie from the syno) ? In general, streaming capabilities are not very good in NAS due to CPU limitations, especially if you have 720p or 1080p movies.
     
  22. Barty Fartslast macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2009
    #72
    I wonder if there is a long thread on the Synology forums about the various ways to get music, photos, and movies to stream from the NAS. I"m still loading all my content and waiting for the DS411 to index all the files (its been churning at 90% CPU utilization for a couple days now! :D ).

    I played around a little bit with it and it looks like you can open the itunes library from across the network on another mac running itunes, just like I used to do with a directly attached HDD array. However, I'm hoping to eliminate the dependency on a Mac being online all the time to do the rendering and streaming to the ATV2.

    I've jailbroken my ATV2 using Seas0nPass and Firecore, and installed XBMC. I'm hoping to be able to stream movies from the DS411 using AFP on the DS and XBMC on the ATV2. Need to read up on the way to set that up in XBMC, though, since the setup is not intuitive (to me) poking around in the screens.
     
  23. alexkoo1812 macrumors newbie

    alexkoo1812

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2012
    #73
    Thanks for the heads up. Actually I use PLEX to manage and play my movies like you. And am about to buy the ATV2 for my parent's room.

    ----------

    That's what I'm talking about. External disk better to be ext4 otherwise there's some compatibility issue with it. Sorry I didn't make myself clear about movie streaming. What I meant is just store movies on NAS and use my Mac Mini/Macbook Pro to play movies on NAS via PLEX. Anyway, I think that should be no problem for the NAS to handle it.
    Thanks for sharing your experience.
     
  24. monsieurpaul macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2009
    #74
    Not only the drive should be formatted in ext4, but you must also have the right USB enclosure with right USB controller. You should check Synology forums for that.

    I'm playing movies from my Syno with a WD TV Live and it works really well, even 20 GB 1080p movies.
     
  25. frogstomper macrumors newbie

    frogstomper

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    Location:
    Gold Coast, Australia
    #75
    Need help with Synology DS212j

    I just bought a Synology DS212J (my first ever NAS!!) and I have no idea how to set it up etc, and I am WAAAAY too busy at work to spend hours reading through the manual. I'm looking to pay $$$ to somebody to connect with me via Skype / Logmein to give me some lessons in how to set everything up. I have installed 2 hard drives already so I mainly need help with the software.

    Please let me know your hourly rate and what time zone you are in so we can schedule it. I can pay by Paypal if you're overseas, or other methods if you're in Australia. Feel free to contact me via PM or directly from my website: http://www.whitepearlphotography.com.au

    Thanks heaps,
    Josh.
     

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