Synology NAS DS211 & DS411j Review
Published: 16th November 2010 | Source: Synology | Price: £220 - £270 |
Regardless of where you intend on using your new NAS server, it goes without saying that you would want to conserve as much energy as possible. For those who are more power conscious, you will be glad to hear that Synology have implemented a number of useful features pertaining to this.
The main page offers basic power saving features such as a provision to power down Hard Disk Drives after a given period of inactivity. This may seem like a small deal for many but at least when maxing out the four drive DS411j, every watt counts. Further, from a power and noise perspective it is possible to adapt fan speed settings on the basis of you HDD's physical size.
This particular feature refers to power usage but not so much about energy saving. It is possible to use a USB based UPS with the DS211 and DS411j. Once enabled, the NAS servers can halt all services and unmount all hard disk drives so not to lose any data.
The above feature is probably the most important. Within DSM it is possible to assign a power schedule and thus triggering your NAS server to power up/down at given times of the day. This offers energy savings as well as additional security during hours where clients shouldn't have access to certain data.
On a similar note, we felt it was important to determine the power consumption of these devices. As always, actual power consumption will depend on the number of HDDs installed and their type. For the purpose of testing, we recorded Idle and Load readings. The former was determined through a period of time without any Hard Disk activity while load was achieved through the batch transfer of files from the testbed computer to the NAS servers.
Here we find the DS211 consuming considerably less power than its bigger brother. That said it should be noted that we are squabbling over pennies with less than 5W difference across the board and neither consuming any more than 20W loaded. This is without doubt an area where basic desktop servers will struggle to compete.
With the perks of the DSM operating system and power consumption discussed, lets discuss performance.