Synology DS509+ yes or No

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Cbdboz, Nov 4, 2014.

  1. Cbdboz macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    #1
    Hi,

    I have been toying with the idea of Central storage for my macs...and new iMac that I am looking to buy.

    In classifieds there is a 5yr old Synology DS509+ with 5xWD 2TB HD. circa $500.

    Is this a good, average or bad deal? Would this be a good first move into a central storage solution, or should I be looking to get something far more modern..and perhaps a WD Mycloud etc...

    Thoughts?
     
  2. ColdCase macrumors 68030

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    #2
    What kind of stuff are you going to put on the central storage? If you plan TimeMachine backups you should use an apple product with or without drive attached or switch to another backup app like CCC.
     
  3. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #3
    Thanks for the reply.

    I will buy a new iMac and most likely SSD so will need external storage for all content. However my goal is to have both new and old iMac as well as mac books reading and writing to a central hub.

    I am buying a Mac mini to act as the hub for my home theatre, and will also look to store all my media file (movies, photo's etc) on the NAS.

    I have a prior generation ATC but am also looking to upgrade to new version....or the ATE ( reason for the latter would be that I can remove and safely store all external HDD...and personal data enclosed, when away for long periods of time...but still have access to router for IP devices such as sling box etc)

    I would ideally want to use time machine....but not sure if this works on the NAS unless directly connected to the the device as opposed to the AE. ...if not I would probably just get ATC, and then can always swap out for old router when away if needed. (May also look into CCC )

    ...hope this gives enough context. Looking to have a connected home, with central storage and backup for data and media distribution.
     
  4. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

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    Virginia
    #4
    If all you are doing is backups and file sharing then it will have plenty of power. The older units bog down when running additional apps on them. I think it's a great intro into centralized storage and the Synology is far better than the WD MyCloud.

    As to how good a deal, I found one sale on Ebay with no drives for $200. I would try to get the price down to $400 or so. 2TB drives aren't worth $75 each unless they are server class 7200 rpm drives.

    I have a Synology DS211 and it has be keeping my time machine backups for over a year with no issues. Still working fine after our Yosemite upgrades. Ran a test on it by restoring my MBP backup to a spare drive in my Mac Pro so I could test Yosemite. Restore worked flawlessly.
     
  5. ColdCase macrumors 68030

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    #5
    So why are you not thinking of putting OSX server on the mini ($30), connect some hard drives to it, maybe in a JBOD enclosure, and let it store your files centrally. No need for a NAS or proprietary disk formats. The mini running OS server is a nice TM target and it will perform way better than any NAS. My old NAS is relegated to windose machine backups and a couple CCC things, if I had it to do over again I would have skipped the NAS and not wasted any money on it...... but you may have a reason to not use the mini... just asking.
     
  6. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #6
    Good question....probably becaus I don't know any better :rolleyes::eek:

    Hopefully my earlier post ( don't know how to copy more than 1 quote) above will provide the background of what I am trying to achieve. If I can use the mini, and directly attach a DAS which then acts as the external hard drive for my imac's and mb' says well as allowing me to access content from my TV/home theatre system...then excellent. Tho in this case not sure if the time capsule would back up the external drives....and also how all the component parts fit together.....eg do I have to connect the ATC directly to mini, or the DAS.

    ...if of course the NAS provides the same capability as a DAS...and it is relatively cheap....then would this not also work?

    Thanks
     
  7. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

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    Dec 18, 2007
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    (Central) NY State of mind
    #7
    I wouldn't get a 5 year old Synology unless it will only be accessible from your local network (i.e. you never want to stream or upload/download files to it over the Internet). They aren't updating the firmware for the 2009 models any more, so any security holes discovered here on out will not be patched
     
  8. ColdCase, Nov 5, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2014

    ColdCase macrumors 68030

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    #8
    Apple doesn't approve Time Machine backups on synology or any third party NAS, but some more technically adept make it work reliably. The NAS would be agonizing slow. So, no, not nearly the same capability and for more money. A brand new 4TB WD elements USB3 drive is less than $100 now. You could get 5x4 or 20TB of storage for less than that $500 10TB NAS. I would suggest using a Thunderbolt enclosure instead of a bunch of USB3 drives, but that may cost you as much as that used NAS. It would be less trouble in the long term, however, and offers much superior performance.

    Folks would typically backup the mini's OS drive to a networked Time Capsule, or an attached drive and separately backup the large media drive to another drive connected to the mini using CCC. But you can use Time Machine to back up everything to a drive in/attached to a Time Capsule or Airport Extreme Base Station or to a local attached drive suitably sized.

    So say you need 2TB for media and file sharing and another 2TB to backup other devices. There are four USB ports on the Mini. You would buy two 2TB USB drives and attach them to the mini. Set up time machine on the mini server app and point your other devices to one drive, and file share the other drive. Then add a 4 or 5TB drive and use CCC to backup the two 2TB drives to back up to it on a daily basis.

    Although you may be enamored with getting a NAS, that just saved you over $100, is much simpler to set up and maintain, and much simpler to scale up when you run out of drive space. Many here use a $75 AppleTV attached to the TV to watch video instead of the mini and hide away the mini in a closet.

    If you didn't already have a mini, a NAS could make more economical sense, but unless you spend big bucks, they don't provide as much function or performance as a mini server for the home.
     
  9. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #9
    Thanks for the Tip on security.."....sounds like a NO NO then.
     
  10. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #10
    I have an Apple TV as well, but was going to use the Mac mini to hold the iTunes library off the Mac mini which will always be left on (currently my I tunes library is in an old iMac..but I don't want this left on all the time) also Mac mini allows me to take content to my tv from certain content providers who restrict use of airplay due to digital rights etc.....I believe Mac mini via browser and direct had I should be fine.

    ...anyway, back to the network design and components...sounds like for previous mentioned security flaws, and fact that mini can do the job of the NAS....I need to look for external hard drives that I would connect to the mini....and then back these drives up via ATC or another TM drive connected to the AE.

    Sounds like best approach is a thunderbolt enclosure, with 4 or 5 bays....to connect direct to the Mac mini....correct?

    ...also, will my new iMac be able to read and write to these drives with good speed...would I connect over wifif..in which case presume would need new Mac mini and ATC/AE for faster wifi speeds ? ....or do I somehow connect iMac to Mac mini to external connected storage via wired connection??

    ...and finally, in the above example would it make any sense to have an external drive connected to my iMac as well...or instead?

    ...sorry, lots of questions...as trying to get the perfect set up...and this a
    So goes to whether I need SSD only or Fusion drive in my new iMac .....

    Thanks
     
  11. ColdCase macrumors 68030

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    #11
    Good speed is subjective. You won't be able to do real time video editing but file transfer rates would be in the 10-15 MBps range.

    The nice thing is that you have some flexibility, connect a USB3 hard drive to the mini, if you don't like the response from the iMac, move it to the iMac and check response, no reformat needed, plug and play.

    I often use a portable USB3 drive to move large video files from one computer to another for processing. Video files of less than say 3GB are transferred quick enough that I don't bother with the portable files.

    Yes a thunderbolt enclosure and NAS rated hard drives provides good performance and reliability. RAID0 a couple drives and it will support real time HD video editing nicely. Otherwise you use RAID0 to make a couple 4TB drives look like a 8TB drive.
     
  12. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #12

    ...thanks, not sure I fully get the Raid 0-5 terminology and functions...but will drop the idea of the 5 yr old symnology and look into a TB enclosure and poss use a portable USB had as well. ( May look at Drobo 5... But this looks overkill for my needs)

    Cheers
     
  13. jypfoto macrumors member

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    Oct 6, 2014
    #13
    I have a 1813, love it, and really like Synology products. But I wouldn't get a 2009 model, it's a decent price, but I would also question the integrity of those drives and how much wear and tear they have on them. I know I have a set of Samsung 2tb drives which all started to have errors on them that I purchased in 2011, so I swapped out 3 of them for WD Red drives.
     
  14. colorspace macrumors 6502

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    Jul 5, 2005
    #14
    No probably

    Great devices, but given the fast pace of patches to the Synology DSMs lately due to security flaws in the Linux underpinnings, and the age of the 209, I would be vey worried about the unit becoming unsupported/unsafe in the near future. I love the web server features that the synos offer, and would hate to have one that would need to live locked off for only local access.

    If you want to go used I would look for a DSX11 or newer unit. Proud may also want to consider a new dual drive unit with dual mirrored drives 4TBs)- more RAM, longer lifespan.
     
  15. Mikael H macrumors 6502

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    Sep 3, 2014
    #15
    This is good to know for anyone who wants to build a home server or NAS. These questions will arise anyway, either during initial setup, or a short while down the road.


    Essentially, RAID can be had in four relevant ways:.
    RAID 0 means that you put two identical disks next to each other, and let the computer store every other block of data on each disk. Theoretically, you can almost double the throughput, compared to using one drive, and you get disk space corresponding to both disks (i.e. 2 x 2 TB = 4 TB).

    The drawback with RAID 0, is that if one disk would crash (which will eventually happen), your data is gone. You need to restore everything from the backup you hopefully made.

    RAID 1 means that you put two identical disks next to each other, and mirror them. It's about as fast (or slow) as writing to a single disk, but if one disk would crash, you still have your data on the mirrored disk. (2 x 2 TB = 2 TB + a full mirror)

    In a RAID 5 system, you need at least 3 disks, where data is striped over all but one of your disks, and then parity information is written to the final disk, in a round robin pattern. If one disk would crash, you can restore the information you had on it thanks to the parity data you had on it. It's a relatively cheap way of gaining lots of disk space with some crash resilience. (3 x 2 TB = 4 TB + parity data - but 4 x 2 TB = 6 TB + parity data - you "lose" less capacity the more disks you have in the RAID set).

    Drawbacks with RAID 5: Writes are relatively slow, since they basically force the computer to write some data, then read back what it wrote, and finally write the parity information. The more disks you have, the higher the risk that more than one disk will crash before you've had the time to re-sync the RAID set after a malfunction (remember that disk longevity is counted as meantime between failures). In a home setting this is usually not a critical problem, but if you set up more than 8 identical disks in a RAID set, this is a factor to be taken into consideration.

    RAID 10 (or 1+0) is a setup that's a bit expensive for home usage, but I want to include it here for two very important reasons: Speed and resilience.
    What you get from RAID 10 is a level of performance only matched by RAID 0, along with a robustness only matched by RAID 1. That's because you stripe mirrored disk sets (4x2 TB = 4 TB + a full mirror copy).

    The only drawback to RAID 10 is cost. You need twice as many disks as you need disk space.



    Summary:
    For a home solution, if you can live with a couple of days of downtime when a disk crashes, a RAID 0 protected by regular backups is an acceptable way to go. In such a case, a relatively slow server (but not a low-end NAS) should be able to push data as fast as your network connection can handle.

    The luxury version of this is to go for a RAID 10. It doesn't eliminate the need for regular backups, but you're unlikely to have to resort to them even if two disks would fail at once.

    If you're only storing data with no particular performance needs on your server (music, films, Time Machine backups, Office documents), then a RAID 5 may be acceptable. Again, keep a good backup routine: If two disks would die for you, your data is gone.

    Synology and other NAS makers have proprietary solutions for maximizing the available disk space. This is usually based on the RAID 5 concept, but applied to logical volumes rather than physical disks. In all likelihood it will be slower even than a pure RAID 5, and it won't be more resilient to hardware failures. Also, if the actual NAS box would crash, you're probably in deep trouble. As you understand, I do not recommend going this way unless you really have to - but since you're on a Mac forum, I don't think your financial situation is quite that bad.
     
  16. pietrov macrumors regular

    pietrov

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    #16
    I'd not place my data in a used device with 5 years old life... ;)
     
  17. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #17
    Thank You Michael H.....much appreciated.

    Best to go for a NAS...or a Mac mini + external tb enclosure ( Drobo or thunder bay etc)

    ...any recommendations?
     
  18. Mikael H macrumors 6502

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    Sep 3, 2014
    #18
    I know too little about your needs to want to give any recommendations, but generally speaking, a general-purpose computer will give you more flexibility in a solution (and most likely higher throughput speeds) than a dedicated NAS - but it will likely be more expensive too - especially if you go the Mac Mini + enclosure way. The important question then, is a) if you'll use it for anything else than as a file server, and b) if you'll use it in a way where throughput speeds will be important to your impression of the machine. It doesn't matter much if a Time Machine backup takes an hour or an hour and twenty minutes, but if you decide to put an iPhoto library on a network share and it becomes impossible to work with, you'll probably be a bit disappointed.

    If you look at the technical specs of a NAS, you can compare the underlying hardware between the Mac Mini and the NAS you're looking at. If you decide to go that way, I suspect you'll want at least an i3 CPU in your NAS to be able to maximize network throughput, if that is one of your considerations.
     
  19. arbrx macrumors newbie

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    Mar 19, 2014
    #19
    I have a Synology 412+ NAS - it works very well and has a great deal of flexibility (number of installable apps including on iOS). Highly recommend getting a newer one since your data is so valuable and updates are still available - worth the money. I have Time Machine running on multiple Mac's in the house - not that hard to configure. Actually surprising how reliable it is (versus an older Drobo Pro I have).
     
  20. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

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    Oct 31, 2013
    #20
    I am keen to get a Mac mini anyway as a hub for my home theatre, and to ensure also that I can see movies direct via hdmi as I sometimes run into digital rights issues when trying to use airplay and see content from an iPad. I will also use the Mac mini as a computer in its own right for my family. In another room I will have a new iMac, and will most likely go for pure ssd and then store pictures and movies on an external hard drive....which ideally I would connect to the Mac mini and also use as a NAS for the whole family...and to provide occasional external access via the net.

    Cheers
     

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