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NAS device simmers down with quieter, 24 Watt operation

Dec 16, 2010 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — views

Synology is shipping a two-bay network attached storage (NAS) server with a new hardware design touted for its quieter operation. Built around a 1.6GHz processor, the DS211+ can hold up to 6TB of hot-swappable storage, and features a gigabit Ethernet port, three USB 2.0 ports, and an SD slot, while providing 19.4 dB(A) noise levels and 24 Watt power consumption, says the company.

Aimed at the small to medium-size business (SMB) market, the DiskStation DS211+ is designed for general file sharing and centralized backup duty for Linux, Mac, and Windows computers, says Synology. Like other members of the DiskStation line, the DS211+ comes with the Linux-based DiskStation Manager 3.0 operating system (see farther below).

Synology DiskStation DS211+
(Click to enlarge)

The DS211+ incorporates several upgrades from its predecessor, the DS211, which is itself a variation on the DS210+ we covered in May. Unlike the DS210+, it offers a hot-swappable hard disk drive (HDD) design, and it can support 3TB drives, for a total of up to 6TB instead of the previous 4TB storage. The system supports either 3.5-inch HDDs or 2.5-inch solid state drives.

The 9.18 x 6.5 x 4.25-inch (233.2 x 165mm x 108mm) system features a new hardware design: A 92mm low-rotation fan and more efficient airflow provide cooler operation and a lower noise level, says Synology.

A snap-on front cover is said to be built from a special material that absorbs vibration, resulting in claimed 19.4 dB(A) operation, down from a 24db(A) level on the DS210+. By comparison, typical office background noise is said to be about 40 dB(A), says the company.

The DiskStation DS211+ is equipped with a 1.6GHz processor, up from a 1GHz processor on the DS210+. This is likely an Intel Atom, which has been used in other DiskStation models such as the DS1010+.

The system ships with 512MB RAM, and unlike the DS210+, offers an SD card slot, which is said to be particularly useful for photographers. Like the previous model, it also offers a gigabit Ethernet port, three USB slots, and an eSATA port, says the company. The unit also features a one touch Copy button on the front panel.

Rear view of DS211+
(Click to enlarge)

Power consumption is claimed to be 24 Watts, down from 30 Watts on the DS210+, and power draw during hibernation is said to be 13 Watts. Operating temperature support, meanwhile, is said to range from 40 to 95 deg. F (5 to 35 deg. C).

Like the he DS210+, the DS211+ is notable for being equipped with a 256-bit AES hardware encryption engine that can offload security encryption processing away from the CPU. The DS211+ is said to provide encrypted file sharing, HTTPS, firewall, and IP auto-block support.

Meanwhile, those using the system with Windows desktops can apply Windows ACL (access control list) security, offering "finer-grained access control and efficient privilege settings," says the company.

The AES engine is said to enable read speeds that are 200 percent faster than a pure software security engine. The DS211+ delivers an average of 108MB/sec read and 55MB/sec writing speeds under RAID 1 configuration in a Windows environment, claims Synology.

The DS211+ features the latest DiskStation Manager (DSM) 3.0 software found in recent Synology NAS systems such as the USB Station 2. DSM 3.0 features a Download Station 2 app that enables downloads to the device without requiring an attached PC as an intermediary.

A DLNA-certified media server, meanwhile, lets users stream multimedia files to DLNA/UPnP compatible devices, In addition, DSM 3.0 enables users to back up data to sync servers, or sync to cloud storage via Amazon S3, says the company. The DS211+ can also act as a web server, mail server, printer server, and FTP server.


The Synology DS211+ is now shipping globally for "about $400," says Synology. More information may be found at Synology's DS211+ page.

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