Synology DS207+: Getting NAS Into Your Home

Web Interface And Test Setup

Installing Firmware

After installing the hard drives, you will have to install the NAS device firmware using "Synology Assistant," which is included on the accompanying CD. In order to get the firmware onto the device, you must install the software onto a PC and connect the Synology DS-207+ to the network. After starting the software, an assistant guides you through the installation of the firmware. This only takes a couple of minutes, after which the NAS device is ready to be configured. The Web interface used for setup can be accessed via port 5000. Current firmware versions can be downloaded from the Synology Web page.

Disk Station Manager

Synology has done a good job of developing the "Disk Station Manager" firmware, which is also used on more expensive NAS devices such as the Synology Disk Station DS408. The entire Web interface is based on the AJAX technology, a well-known part of Web 2.0 applications.

The menu structure is well thought out, and users who have never configured a NAS device before will easily find their way through it—all configuration options are directly accessible without complicated sub-menus. When configuring for the first time, you can also get help from several wizards.

Data Storage, Web Server, Blog And More

Besides using the DS207+ for data storage on your network, you can also use it as a Web server. Synology has thrown in a full-strength Apache server, including PHP support. It comes with a MySQL server.

The integrated "Photo Station" function enables you to publish photos and comments. If this is turned on, you can access a full-sized blog and picture administrator through the Web interface, with the ability to create user accounts and manage user privileges.

You can also access files that are stored on the Disk Station DS207+ via Web browser, using the "File Station" function. Access is controlled by entering a user name and password, which must be created in the administrator’s menu first. All services offered can also be accessed over an encrypted HTTPS connection.

Backing Up Local Computers

In order to back up data from a computer on the local network, the DS207+ not only includes its own backup program—Synology Data Replicator 3—but also several other well-known products, such as Acronis True Image, Symantec Backup Exec, and EMC Retrospect.

You can view more images in our Picture Gallery

Test Configuration

Like most new NAS devices, the DS207+ also supports jumbo frames, but we didn’t use them in our benchmarks. The benchmarks were performed on our reference platform. You can find details of the hardware configurations in the following tables:

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Intel Platform 775Asus P5E3 Deluxe, Rev.1.03G
Row 1 - Cell 0 Intel X38, BIOS: 0810 (02/11/2007)
CPUIntel Core 2 Duo E6750 (65 nm Conroe core) @ 2.26 GHz
RAM2x 1 GB Crucial Ballistix DDR3-1600
eSATA ControllerJMicron JMB363
System Hard DriveSeagate Barracuda 7200.9, 160 GB
Row 6 - Cell 0 7,200 RPM, SATA/300, 8 MB Cache
Test Hard Drive2x Samsung Spinpoint HD321KJ, 320GB
Row 8 - Cell 0 7,200 RPM, SATA/300, 16 MB Cache
DVD-ROMSamsung SH-D163A , SATA/150
Graphics CardGigabyte Radeon HD 3850 GV-RX385512H
Row 11 - Cell 0 GPU: 670 MHz
Row 12 - Cell 0 Memory: 512 MB DDR3 (830 MHz, 256 Bit)
Network CardMarvell Yukon 88E8056 PCIe Gigabit Ethernet Controller
Sound CardIntegrated
Power SupplyCoolermaster RS-850-EMBA, ATX 12V V2.2, 850 W
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Operating SystemWindows Vista Enterprise SP1
DirectX 10DirectX 10 (Vista Standard)
DirectX 9Version: April 2007
Graphics DriverATI Radeon Version 7.12
Network Driver9.0.32.3 (Vista Standard)
Intel Chip Set DriverVersion (20/02/2008)
JMicron Chip Set DriverVersion (24/03/2007)

The firmware version was DSM 2.0-0640.

Intel NAS Performance Toolkit

We tested the Synology DS207+ with the Intel NAS Performance Toolkit. You can find a more detailed description of the benchmark in the article Benchmarking With Intel’s NAS Toolkit.

Marcel Binder
  • It should be noted that Synology currently has an issue with their HD hibernation function and that it has not been solved for a long time
    Synology has to iron out this issue soon or stop advertising their NAS's as having HD hibernation!
  • slomo4sho
    To be honest, I don't see any benefits of a NAS device over a budget HTPC build supporting multiple hard drives in raid 0 configuration with dual LAN.

    This is the third NAS write-up with a months time frame. How about a write-up of direct comparison between these NAS devices and a budget built HTPC configuration?
  • This thing is over $300 withOUT HDDs! Why would I pay that much when a MiniPC goes $250? This thing is a box with a chipset. Let me know when the price is sub $100.
  • aapocketz
    I agree with previous sentiments about the value of this at $300. You can go out and buy something like uATX or ITX board and a small case for similar money. There are drop in linux distros that will act as NAS boxes and provide web interfaces, rolling your own isn't that hard. Or pay a bit more and get something like the HP mediasmart home server for only $100 more. Lots more configurability.

    However I purchased a Maxtor Shared Storage II single drive unit for about 100 a couple years back (with built in 320GB, awesome deal). I like the simplistic nature of it, low power use, flawless drive standby, and it runs a USB print server reliably so I can print from any computer. I didn't want RAID since I "rsync" the data over the network for redundancy when my main computer is on (good thing too, I had to have the hard drive replaced under warranty). I didn't need gigE though I may look to move to it at some point.

    So for the right price, these things can be nice, but are limiting. For instance my brother has a squeezebox and while the NAS had a itunes server, it cant run the slimserver. That would be no problem on a HTPC type build with linux or WHS. Other NAS have slimserver capability but I still posit that they are less flexible than a full buildup. I can live with that, but not for $300+ dollars.

  • I agree with Slomo4sho. There have been myriad writeups of these devices, and I suspect that the more avid readers of Tom's would probably prefer to build their own solution. How building one to trounce these purpose-built jobs while saving money? I'd be very interested to see what you can come up with. And why not do it with all Newegg parts, so we can all check it out?
  • malveaux
    Good heavens,

    Another NAS writeup. Tom's. We don't need to see these. Folk who actually want/use NAS don't care about these expensive little cute "home/office" NAS boxes that cost as much as a computer minus the drives and minus, well, the computer. These little NAS boxes are basically targeting those `we know nothing and won't hire an IT guy' small office/groups thinking about what they overheard another group's IT junkie saying and figured it'd be easy cause they think they know everything; get home only to find out they just wasted money and have no clue what they're even going to do with the NAS.

    But, whatever. Meh.

    Anyone interested in NAS, this is __NOT__ the way to go about it. This is an expensive silly approach to it. NAS needs to be EXPANDABLE to add more drives to, it needs to have options for OS (Why use this thing when FreeNAS is free, or if you wanted something like windows server).

    You can build a great little computer into a very nice case for this cost.
  • aapocketz
    Geez malveaux.

    I don't disagree that these are kinda expensive, thats the listed retail price, they are consumer products and get marked down quickly.

    But its not like its only market is stupid and ignorant people.

    having a plug-in simple way to add basic storage to a network has value. Just like people go out and buy consumer routers (d-link, netgear, linksys).

    Also I would like to be able to put freeNAS on a consumer dedicated NAS hardware, kinda like putting openWRT or tomato on a linux capable router.

  • snarfies1
    aapocketzGeez malveaux.I don't disagree that these are kinda expensive, thats the listed retail price, they are consumer products and get marked down quickly.
    The problem is that this is NOT a new product - I remember looking these over almost a year ago when I was looking into a NAS setup. I'm not at all sure why this is being reviewed now. The price has not, in fact, gone down.
  • aapocketz
    The problem is that this is NOT a new product - I remember looking these over almost a year ago when I was looking into a NAS setup. I'm not at all sure why this is being reviewed now. The price has not, in fact, gone down.

    yeah, did a google search, you are right, it was released about a year ago. I feel like i just wasted my time reading this. Tomshardware has become disturbing in the last couple years.

    wasn't there a dedicated small home networking subsite on toms a while back? Where did that go?
  • I have a 207+ and love it. It does exactly what I wanted it to do. Power efficient and set and forget. Not everyone wants a dedicated pc to do something as simple as file hosting. These use less power, take up less space, and in my opinion, more dependable.