Design & Hardware
The power transformer block is built directly into the casing, so a simple power cable is all that's needed to hook the DS1010+ up to the mains. Plus, there'll be no bulky transformer block hanging around on your desk or on the floor.
Two 8 cm fans help keep the hard drives cool. Fan speeds can also be set to adjust automatically in relation to the internal temperature, with both 2.5-inch HDD and 3.5-inch HDD modes to choose from for greater cooling efficiency. The 3.5-inch mode is slightly noisier but not too much to be a serious problem.
Installing drives when you first set up the system can take several hours. However, once the system's up and running and the drives start to get full, adding extra HDDs doesn't slow the system down. In fact, previously installed drives remain operational while the new drives are installed.
You can manage your storage space with classic set-ups like RAID 0, 1, 5, 6, 10 and JBOD, as well as the recently developed SHR (Synology Hybrid RAID), which basically makes any other version of RAID completely obsolete. Similarly to Lime Technology's unRAID or Data Robotics' Beyond RAID, the SHR system allows you to pool drives of various capacities, making it easier to replace drives several months or years down the line, or as and when your storage needs grow. What's more, with the SHR system, almost the entire drive capacity is available for use, whereas classic RAID set-ups align drive capacities with the smallest HDD in the system.
It goes without saying that a Gigabit connection is indispensable to get the very best out of this NAS, and in such conditions, working with this NAS feels almost like working with a PC's internal HDD.
Handling & Functions
A file browser system is used to copy or move files and folders quickly and easily. You can even move items between two shared folders and, most impressively, it's almost instantaneous. Other NAS don't seem able to manage this function quite so well, as they associate different shared folders with specific virtual readers, making them impossible to move. You therefore have to copy and paste then delete the file or folder, which takes much longer, and can take hours when moving several hundred GB. Here, a similar operation takes just a few seconds. Plus, this function has been very well integrated into the DSM 3.0 interface.
Other new features in DSM 3.0 include multitasking in the online management interface, the availability of iPhone and Android applications, Surveillance Station 5, IPv6 support and much, much more.
At the time of writing, DSM 3.0 is still only available in a beta version, but it's already perfectly functional and we didn't notice any bugs in it at all. It's already available on the Synology website, but you do have to register on the site before you can download it.
Otherwise, you'll find all the functions that were already present in version 2.3 of DSM, including a multimedia server, photo server, audio server, video surveillance, FTP server, Bit Torrent client with programmable operation times, recycle bin, programmable on/off times, print sever, TimeMachine server for Mac etc. Take a look at our test of the Synology DS209 for more information on version 2.3.
- Excellent performances that almost saturate the Gigabit interface
- Synology Hybrid Raid makes adding/removing capacity easy
- Very good admin interface
- Plenty of integrated functions with more available to download
- Built-in power transformer
- This kind of NAS should really have screw-free drive mounting and metal bays
The DS1010+ is almost perfect. Although it sells for the same price as the Drobo FS, it offers better performances and a greater range of functions.