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Synology Diskstation DS411 Slim Review (2.5 inch NAS)

Regular readers of KitGuru may want to skip this page as we have covered the DiskManager Operating System many times before. If however you are new to Synology, then this page is going to be of particular interest. This dedicated software is a fully multitasking operating system.

Synology bundle software called ‘Synology Assistant' which is used to locate all Synology NAS systems on the network. As the image above shows, the DS411 Slim was found and it shows a ‘not installed' status, meaning the PAT file needs to be installed.

Synology NAS systems work in a slightly different manner to other networked storage devices you may have used. A ‘pat' file needs to be installed for the operating system to work correctly, this is available on the supplied disc, or from the Synology download site. It is always best looking at the official download site first, as updates are posted here on a fairly regular basis. The install procedure takes about 5 minutes from start to finish.

Once this is finished, you can control the NAS from a browser panel, via the IP address of the product, or simply by double clicking the NAS name in the Synology Assistant software window. All of the main browsers work fine, such as Safari, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome and Opera.

The Synology software supports, JBOD, Raid 0, Raid 1, Raid 5, Raid 5+Spare, Raid 6 and Raid 10. The image above shows a single Intel SSD drive installed, so only the most simple file structures are available.

Wireless dongles can be bought and used with the DS411 slim, for a full list of models, visit the Synology support site.

It is important to note that if you are using more than one Synology NAS system within the same network, then the products will need to be manually set with individual names. All Synology NAS systems default to a name of ‘Diskstation' or ‘Rackstation'.

Once the NAS system is set up with a shared folder, it will be available via the Windows network. Shared folders can of course be mapped to volume identifiers for easy access. The Synology NAS systems also offer full Macintosh networking support and as we use a cross platform network at KitGuru, we always check the NAS units with OS 10.6x. The operation is always faultless.

Once a volume is in place, shared folders can be configured for access from a variety of platforms. The software supports a maximum user count of 2048 with 256 user groups and 256 shared folders. It also allows for up to 128 concurrent connections over CIFS, AFP or FTP.

The DS411 Slim has full support for Jumbo frames as seen in the image above. This can help with larger file transfers, but the rest of the network needs to support it, so be careful or speeds can be negatively impacted.

The Diskmanager software offers drive monitoring panels as well as cache enabling for improved performance with specific hard drives. HDD hibernation, S.M.A.R.T. and Dynamic Bad Sector Mapping are supported.

There is a plethora of media support available from DSM 3.0.

Photo Station

  • Supported Image Format: BMP, JPG (jpe, jpeg), GIF, RAW (arw, srf, sr2, dcr, k25, kdc, cr2, crw, nef, mrw, ptx, pef, raf, 3fr, erf, mef, mos, orf, rw2, dng, x3f)•
  • Supported Video Format : 3G2, 3GP, ASF, AVI, DAT, DivX, FLV, M4V, MOV, MP4, MPEG, MPG, QT, WMV, XviD, RM, RMVB, VOB, RV30, RV40, AC3, AMR, WMA3

Download Station

  • Supported Download Protocols: BT/HTTP/FTP/NZB/eMule
  • Custom BitTorrent Port Range
  • BitTorrent / eMule Bandwidth Control

Audio Station

  • Supported Audio Format: (USB Mode) AAC, FLAC, M4A, MP3, Ogg Vorbis, WMA, WMA VBR; (Streaming Mode) MP3, M4A, M4B
  • Supported Playlist Format: M3U, WPL
  • Internet Radio: SHOUTcast, Radioio

DLNA/UPnP Media Server

  • DLNA Certified
  • PS3/Xbox 360 Support
  • Supported Audio Format: AAC, FLAC, M4A, MP3, Ogg Vorbis, PCM, WAV, WMA, WMA VBR, WMA PRO, WMA Lossless
  • Supported Video Format: 3GP, 3G2, ASF, AVI, DAT, DivX, DVR-MS, ISO, M2T, M2TS, M4V, MKV, MP4, MPEG1, MPEG2, MPEG4, MTS, MOV, QT, SWF, TP, TRP, TS, VOB, WMV, XviD, RV30, RV40, AC3, AMR, WMA3
  • Supported Image Format: BMP, JPG (jpe, jpeg), GIF, ICO, PNG, PSD, TIF (tiff), UFO, RAW (arw, srf, sr2, dcr, k25, kdc, cr2, crw, nef, mrw, ptx, pef, raf, 3fr, erf, mef, mos, orf, rw2, dng, x3f)

IT staff and system administrators can configure messaging, by email or by SMS message. For those who seek maximum security and backup support, the system can also be hooked directly into a UPS device.

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