A number of Intel Atom D27xx-based NAS systems have been evaluated in our labs, even though we formally reviewed only one earlier this year, the LaCie 5big NAS Pro. The Thecus N4800 has made its appearance in a some benchmarks presented in our SMB / SOHO NAS testbed article. Synology is one of the well respected vendors in the SMB / SOHO NAS space, and we have reviewed a number of units from them in the previous years. They recently refreshed their 8-bay SMB / SOHO NAS lineup with the DS1813+. Based on the same platform as the DS1812+ (Atom D2700), it added two extra network ports. However, due to the similarity in the underlying platform, the performance can be expected to be similar to last year's version (except when all four links are teamed together when compared to dual teaming), the DS1812+. The Synology DS1812+, a 8-bay desktop tower form factor offering, has been under stress in our labs since the beginning of this year.

In our experience with Synology NAS units, we have found that they typically manage to tick all the right boxes for the perfect consumer NAS (except for the pricing factor). Does the DS1812+ carry things forward, or do we have something to complain about?

The specifications of the Synology DS1812+ are provided below:

Synology DS1812+ Specifications
Processor Intel Atom D2700 (2C/4T, 2.13 GHz)
RAM 1 GB DDR3 RAM (Upgradable to 3 GB)
Drive Bays 8x 3.5"/2.5" SATA / SAS 6 Gbps HDD / SSD (Hot-swappable)
Network Links 2x 1 GbE
USB Slots 2x USB 3.0 / 4x USB 2.0
eSATA Slots 2x
Expansion Slots None
VGA / Display Out None
Full Specifications Link Synology DS1812+ Hardware Specs

In the rest of the review, I will cover some unboxing and setup impressions. A detailed description of the testbed setup and testing methodology is followed by performance numbers in both single and multi-client modes. As requested by multiple readers, we will also briefly cover performance with encryption enabled. In the final section, power consumption numbers as well as RAID rebuild times will be covered along with some closing notes.

Unboxing and Setup Impressions
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  • SirGCal - Friday, June 14, 2013 - link

    Ohh, and you could do it with ZFS, I just like RAID and am more familiar with it over ZFS
  • SirGCal - Friday, June 14, 2013 - link

    Or you're talking ZFS compression over RAID? I was thinking about something completely different... haven't slept in 36 hours... Twins teething... fun... sorry. But that should work fine on any of these RAID cards.
  • Peroxyde - Friday, June 14, 2013 - link

    @SirGCal Thank you for all the info you gave. Coincidentally, I have decided to go with the Fractal Define R4 for silence, exactly as you stated. Regarding ZFS, I think this article might be of your interest, in particular the section "What ZFS Gives You that Controllers Can't"
  • SirGCal - Friday, June 14, 2013 - link

    I have two of those cases myself. Three in the office. It's so quiet. Love it. Mine has windows too. Still very silent and cool with 8 drives running 24'7 (add more fans).

    As for the RAID-Z, they only compare it in that article to RAID5. while I agree in that case sure it's better. Much is. They don't compare it to RAID 6 where I think it's performance and failover won't keep up. But this particular method I'm not familiar with so I'd have to play with it to know for sure to run comparisons. I am not a RAID 5 fan at all since arrays have grown beyond the 4 TB range overall size to be honest. In those cases, this would likely be my choice.
  • JDG1980 - Friday, June 14, 2013 - link

    The appropriate comparison would be RAID-Z vs RAID-5, and RAID-Z2 vs RAID-6. In each case, ZFS wins if you're dedicating the same amount of space to parity data.
  • SirGCal - Sunday, June 16, 2013 - link

    I'll check out RAID-Z2. My only immediate pause would be moving it to another RAID card from a card failure... That is something worth considering if you run a large array. But other then that. When I get ready to build this next array, if possible I will run some tests.
  • danbi - Monday, June 17, 2013 - link

    You could also look at raidz3 which is triple parity.

    ZFS works file for small number of disks, but it really shines with larger numbers. Avoid "RAID controllers" as much as possible -- "simple" HBA is way better choice -- performance wise.
  • Hakker9nl - Friday, June 14, 2013 - link

    god glad I made a ZFS server. This thing is expensive, slow and more power hungry than my system.
    For reference I built mine for a third of the prices. Reach internally 300 MB+ speeds externally limited to the 1 Gbit port and uses 60 watt when resilvering.
  • SirGCal - Friday, June 14, 2013 - link

    EXACTLY my point above. Thanks for help me illustrate it. I tend to be long winded trying to explain things completely...
  • t-rexky - Friday, June 14, 2013 - link

    A word of caution for Mac users. I researched a NAS "to death" before purchasing the DS1512+ about six months ago. I have a large number of computer systems including vintage Unix based machines, OS X, Linux and Windows. SAMBA and NFS appear to work reasonably well with the Synology DSM, but there is a fundamental issue with AFP support that remains uncorrected in the latest DSM 4.2 build - the support for Unix style file permissions is broken and DSM overrides the OS X permissions with default values.

    Synology did improve the behaviour in DSM 4.2 and at least the execute bit can now be correctly set on the remote mounts, but the read and write permissions still do not work. I was extremely disappointed to find such a fundamental issue with a system that is advertised as fully OS X compatible and also widely recommended for Mac users.

    For anyone interested in more details, here is the full story:

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