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Aujourd’hui — 9 décembre 2022Flux principal

ASUSTOR et les sauvegardes Cloud

9 décembre 2022 à 07:00
Par : Fx
sauvegarde 300x225 - ASUSTOR et les sauvegardes CloudLe nombre d’attaques ciblant nos appareils connectés a encore augmenté cette année. Tout appareil accessible depuis Internet peut être attaqué, y compris un NAS. Il y a quelques consignes simples à respecter pour éviter ou tout du moins limité l’impact. Toutefois, le risque 0 n’existe pas et nous allons (re)voir quelques consignes pour protéger vos données dans leur ensemble lorsque votre NAS est accessible depuis Internet ou non. Les NAS, une cible de choix ? Nos NAS contiennent souvent une […]
À partir d’avant-hierFlux principal

Asustor AS6704T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS Review

28 novembre 2022 à 17:37

Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS Hardware Review – Worth Your Data?

When was it that six-bay NAS devices became so popular? It’s hard to pinpoint, isn’t it? When it comes to buying/building your own private server, to get away from subscription cloud services, there is always a balance of three key factors for most buyers – Budget vs Scale vs Power. In recent years we have seen HDD capacity limits grow in such an incredible fashion (with 22TB and 24TB HDDs arriving at the end of 2022 across the popular NAS HDD brands), so cracking the 100TB limits whilst still maintaining a 1-2 disk safety net (i.e redundancy) is easier than ever. Add to this, a huge wave of more power-efficient processors and network controllers arriving in the last 3 years and suddenly NAS devices such as the Asustor Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 (AS6706T) are tremendously appealing. This NAS tickets the boxes of EVERYTHING that most modern NAS buyers are looking for in 2022/2023. These include BTRFS support, 2.5GbE, KVM setups with 4K output, USB 3.2 Gen 2 10GbE connectivity, LCD controls, optional 10GbE, FOUR M.2 NVMe SSD storage bays AND all this arriving in a compact desktop form. The 6-Bay entry into the popular Asustor Lockerstor series makes ALOT of sense, but as 6-Bay NAS is still in its relative infancy (when compares to 2, 4 and 8-Bay systems in the last decade), is the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS the system of your dreams or nightmares? Is it all sizzle and no sausage? Ultimately – does it deserve your data? Let’s review the AS6704T 6-Bay NAS from Asustor.

Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS Review – Quick Conclusion

The Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS is a respectable piece of kit! Indeed, the hardware here is almost faultless! Unless you are particularly noise sensitive (and therefore the metal chassis adding a few dBa to the ambient sound), there is almost nothing I can fault here on the device’s hardware. The scaling up of practically all hardware over the Gen 1 Lockerstor, such as Better CPU, Better Memory that goes higher, HDMI 2.0b, USB 3.2 Gen 2, a 10GbE upgrade option and THOSE FOUR M. 2 NVMe SSD SLOTS – you simply cannot fault how much is getting included here at the price point vs it’s competitors. The software is a little less compelling, with a smaller range of 1st party applications on offer, more of a reliance on 3rd party services and the absence of a few AAA+ features that are present on other devices in the market (AI services, Cloud Bolt on live synchronization, 1st Party SaaS native sync with Google Workspace/Office365, etc). That said, ADM does run very well, is clear and still quite user-friendly. The addition of choice of file systems EXT4 or BTRFS, flexibility on the use of those M.2 NVMe SSD bays and the Asustor HDMI portal still bring fantastic flexibility to the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS too. Ultimately, this is a system that is clearly making big waves on it’s hardware more than it’s software, but as long as you keep your feet on the ground and appreciate that this system is more of a 70/30 purchase of hardware vs software, you will come to respect and rely on this Asustor NAS as the backbone of your data storage setup.

SOFTWARE - 7/10
HARDWARE - 9/10
PERFORMANCE - 8/10
PRICE - 9/10
VALUE - 9/10


8.4
PROS
👍🏻Hard/Impossible to find this level of NAS Hardware elsewhere at this price point
👍🏻Those FOUR M.2 NVMe 2280 SSD slots are great and turn this 6-Bay NAS into an 10-Bay
👍🏻2.5GbE by default, as well as the option to add further 2.5/5Gb connections over USB
👍🏻The option to scale up the network connectivity to 10GbE down the line (4 and 6 Bay only)
👍🏻$60 increase over RRP of Lockstor Gen 1, but upgrades practically everything 1-2 levels (New Celeron CPU, Better/High Memory Max, USB 10G, HDMI 2.0b, PCIe Gen 3 Architecture)
👍🏻Includes support for either EXT4 or BTRFS
👍🏻Includes KVM Support with Parallel GUI over HDMI, Asustor Portal
👍🏻ADM is better tha nit has ever been, responsive, clear and intuitive
👍🏻Several different setup and initialization options
👍🏻One of very few 6-Bay NAS drives that still feature a fully functional and controllable LCD Panel
👍🏻Full Support of the traditional RAID levels for this scale (RAID 0-1-5-6)
👍🏻Storage can be expanded with TWO of the Asustor AS6004U 4-Bay
CONS
👎🏻Lack of a fluid RAID System (such as Synology Hybrid RAID, Drobo BeyondRAID or Terramaster TRAID) to allow mixed drive media and easier scaling of storage over time
👎🏻Metal chassis and trays is going to result in an increase of ambient noise (hum/vibration) than other plastic casing/tray NAS systems
👎🏻Some apps (such as the Surveillance Center apps) are long overdue an update in visuals and services
👎🏻ADM is good, but lacks the killer apps/AAA and AI service tools that are being offered by other brands right now
👎🏻They were targeted by the Deadbolt ransomware attack at the start of 2022 and although the linux vulnerability that was used has been reported to be closed and they worked with affected users, this is still going to be on the minds of some buyers

Where to Buy a Product
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Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS Review – Packaging

Now, it is worth highlighting that I did review the first generation of the Lockerstor back in Summer 2020, so if you have read that review, you are going to see alot of the same thing in terms of the presentation of the device with the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 from Asustor. Credit to them, one area that in practically every single Asustor review I have ever done that the company always excels on, it is the retail packaging. I have been in the field of technology for quite a long time, as well as growing up as a 90s kid who would admire boxes from afar in my local tech retail outlet. Given the increase on the majority of tech purchases being made online, the necessity for eye-catching retail packaging is pretty low and therefore I am always pleasantly surprised when NAS devices like the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 come along and put that extra bit of effort into to the point of sale design. Arriving in an attractive black and white box, it features numerous images of the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 itself in near 1 to 1 scale, along with lots of highlighted information on the software and hardware advantages of this device. In short, I’m a sucker for a good bit of branding.

Upon opening the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 retail box I’m pleased to confirm that the device is well packaged and partitioned for protection from movement and shock damage in transit, something that is wildly underestimated particularly in the field of data storage hardware. I know I tend to labour this point on YouTube, but silent tech damage is a real thing! I will always give a few extra points to any brand that puts its hand in its pocket and will pay for suitable protection of the unit in transit, as this is a shockingly overlooked area of this kind of technology on the basis that it is sold unpopulated.

The full AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 retail kit contains several items that allow you to deploy the device easily for the very first time. Everything you’re going to need is included here, apart from storage media, as the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 is sold unpopulated. Asustor has always been in the practice of providing solutions without hard drives, so that end users can choose what media and to what extent they wish to populate their NAS on day one. This is, of course, a matter of taste and preference to the end-user, but generally, I always recommend unpopulated solutions, as it will allow you to plan your budget and spending requirements far more fitting to your requirements. The full list of accessories included with the device are:

  • AS6706T NAS Unit
  • 2x CAT 5e LAN Cables
  • Mains Power Cable
  • Setup Guide and Warranty Details (3 Years)
  • Screws for 2.5″ and 3.5″ media and keys

Most of these are fairly standard items, but there are a few elements of this accessory kit that I want to touch on. First up, the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 lacks an external power brick, which I know is an area of contention for some buyers who consider this just another thing to accidentally forget to pack when deploying a NAS in multiple locations. I have always been very much counter to this point of view, thinking that an external PSU makes a lot more sense in terms of ease of replacement in the event of failure and it also allows the NAS not to have to contend with additional heat generated from the PSU in this typically 24 X7 environment. However, somewhere in the move from the 4-Bay to the 6-Bay, the PSU on the AS6706T makes a jump from 90W to 250W!  Now, I can appreciate that a larger PSU does not immediately result in increased power consumption (the PSU rating is about the maximum power, not constant), but this does seem like tremendous overkill! The 250W PSU means that the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 (as an external 250W PSU would be 1) large and 2) expensive). But still, this is quite big PSU increase and that can result in some increases in heat internally, putting an increase on the importance of ventilation.

Additionally, the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 arrives with to RJ45 network cables, one for each available network port. These are cat5e and therefore more than suitable for 1Gbe and 2.5Gbe. Now (and I will touch on this more later), the 4-Bay and 6-Bay in the Lockerstor series arrive with a PCIe upgrade slot that allows you to upgrade to 10Gb ethernet, so for that, scaling up to a Cat 6 would be advisable. 

Finally, it is worth highlighting that the device also arrives with sets of hard drive tray keys, cable clips and screws for installing media into the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2. However, there was an absence of heat sinks for the m.2 2280 NVMe media bays. the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 features four NVMe SSD cache bays (two more than the Gen 1 model and one of the big jumps that the Gen 2 Lockstor brings compared with it’s predecessor), however, I would have expected a couple of NVMe silicone or thermal heat pads included with this device. not a huge problem but just a minor thing I noticed worthy of comment. The other chassis does provide a little more ventilation over the area of the internal hardware where these M.2 drives would live, as well as provide a good amount of room for a 3rd party heatsink (as little as $10), but I am still a little disappointed that 2280 heatsinks were not provided, especially for the eventuality of these drives being used for caching. Overall I am quite happy with the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 retail kit, despite the odd thing missed. However, I am sure many of you I’m more concerned with the build quality of this new Asustor NAS, so let’s crack on.

Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS Review – Design

The AS6706T NAS arrives in very unique and slightly old skool design. When many brands have dropped LCD panels in favour of simpler LEDs and metal screwed bays in favour of plastic click and load trays – Asustor has clearly stuck to their guns. Design-wise, the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 AS6706T is IDENTICAL to the Lockerstor Gen 1 series (That said, there was no 6-Bay in the Gen 1 series, so this is an extensive of the existing design logic found in the 4-Bay and 8-Bay Lockerstor Chassis’). This 6-bay solution features a fantastically rugged casing, that is almost exclusively metal in both external casing and right the way down to the individual drive bays. Typically this is an area where most brands will make economies, for reasons of mass production or for reasons of noise reduction. However, I am well aware that there is a large contingent of NAS buyers who prefer metal NAS systems for added heat dissipation and build quality desirability. For those buyers, the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 is a dream come true, indeed!

This 6-bay features a controllable LCD front-mounted panel that provides real-time information about the NAS when powered on. This information may appear a tad rudimentary, but there is no avoiding that it is useful if you need to know information such as the IP of individual network ports, state of internal temperature and details on notification warnings audibly triggered from the physical system at the touch of a button. Sure, you can access this information by logging in via the client applications or browser-based GUI, but this can take longer than a simple click of a button on the physical NAS and is especially relevant when the alert buzzer is triggered for reasons of storage degradation where the time frame is important.

HOWEVER, an often overlooked fact of the Lockerstor 6 NAS is that you can actually set the whole thing up with just the LCD panel – no desktop or model App needed! You can navigate initialization and single disk redundancy RAID configuration right from the first time power on via the LCD panel. Now, obviously, long-term access is going to be done with desktop/mobile client tools, however, for installers and/or IT Admins looking to quickly deploy these units, this level of fast setup is going to be remarkably handy. Equally, in the event of a system issue/warning (RAID degradation, high internal temperatures, disk health recognized in SMART tests, etc), the LCD panel allows you much MUCH faster means to identify the issue and address the buzzer/alarm than logging in via a client, going through authentication and more. This is especially handy if the issue is network connectivity related. Unsurprisingly, the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 features numerous areas of LED notification. these are considerably less useful and detailed than the LCD panel but still provide minimalist information about system access and activity.

Another physical feature of the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 that I’m pleased to confirm is still present in this 2022 NAS drive is a front-mounted USB port and copy button. Though in the case of the Gen 2 system, they have upgraded this to USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10Gb/s), so twice the locally connected bandwidth of its predecessor. More and more brands are removing this feature in favour of a stand-alone USB port that can trigger backups automatically when a given external drive is connected. The Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 has both a physical button that can manually instigate multiple types of NAS to USB backup, as well as an automated trigger system too – better to have both than either, as if you are going to the trouble of connecting a drive physically to this NAS the extra steps in assurance to simply click a button and the first-hand witness the backup begin is just an extra layer of peace and self-assured security that for me is vital, to have confidence in your backup strategy. Plus, the featured support of the USB 3.2 Gen 2 protocol means that you can take better advantage of external RAID storage drives and external NVMe SSD backup enclosures with a 1,000MB/s bandwidth to saturate!

BAYS / TRAYS CLOSE VENTS

Carrying on with the theme of rugged design, the drive trays featured on the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 are particularly good quality. Each tray has a dedicated switch-based locking mechanism, plenty of ventilation and is even spring-loaded, something we are seeing less and less these days. Each tray supports a 3.5-inch or 2.5-inch SATA media drive, as well as allowing you to deploy this device with a single drive if you choose. However, as these are metal trays, that is going to increase ambient noise when it comes to larger scale HDDs of 10TB and above (predominantly all 7200RPM, 7+ Platter and helium sealed – in other words, industrial and prone to noisy operation to start with).

TRAY HDD MONTAGE

Of course, this device is designed with the utilisation of a RAID configuration ideally in mind and as this device supports both the very latest 20TB and 22TB drives, as well as numerous RAID configurations in JBOD, RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID5, RAID 6 and RAID 10. This means by current storage drive standards, this device can support up to 132TB of storage, and can even be expanded with an official Asustor expansion device over USB.

The abundance of metal design on the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 nice will certainly assist heat dissipation, but there is no avoiding that it will also play its part in increasing general sound levels negatively. Alongside this, the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 features less typically visible ventilation than what you see on most desktop NAS solutions. Alongside the rear-mounted active cooling fan, the only other passive cooling to assist airflow is via a minimal ventilation slit on the side and what ventilation is available on each drive tray. Once again, this system requires a little less ventilation than more plastic-based NAS casing and is therefore excusable to a degree. Next, we discuss the ports and connections available on the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2

Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS Review – Ports and Connections

The ports and connections on the rear of the Asustor Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 AS6706T NAS are comparable to that of the original 2/4/8/10 Bay systems from 2020, but a few tweaks for the new refresh have definitely been made. That said, one thing that has remained between the revisions is the inclusion of 2.5GbE connectivity (Asustor were the first to unveil commercial 2.5GbE NAS right the way back in 2019 with the Nimbustor series).

These Ethernet connections, both of which feature 2.5GBASE-T/Coppe (2.5x that of traditional ethernet speeds) allow you a much better opportunity to fully take advantage externally of that RAID of HDDs inside. Additionally, these ports can be combined (via link aggregation/port trunking) to allow up to 5 Gbe combined bandwidth. There are, of course, numerous factors to consider before reaching these speeds such as making sure the rest of your network environment is 2.5Gbe and above compatible, as well as the storage media inside providing that level of performance. However, it is still impressive that the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 can arrive at a lower price tag than the Synology DS1621+ (with its 4x 1GbE connectivity) and even slide under the price point of the QNAP TS-664 NAS, yet still arrived with some great prosumer hardware.

Additionally, this system also features an HDMI out that can be used in unison with the dedicated parallel GUI, Asustor portal. This separate user interface and means to interact with the data on your NAS in a far more graphical level is something currently only QNAP provides. The visual out used in conjunction with the two additional USB 3.2 ports opens up numerous KVM (or keyboard video mouse) applications, such as a stand-alone surveillance system, a stand-alone desktop computer used in conjunction with the virtual machine software, direct output of your movies and box sets from your collection, a retro arcade machine with support for controllers and numerous other first and third-party software options.

Additionally, the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 has scaled things up over the previous model by adding HDMI 2.0b, which is a 4K 60 frames per second visual output, but also is much more efficient at handling HDR and SDR using available bandwidth. That means that you will be able to enjoy particularly dense 4K top-end media with close to zero playback and browsing latency time, by connecting the NAS directly to your TV, as opposed to streaming such large media over the network.

The USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports that are featured on the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 can also be used by numerous supported hardware peripherals and storage devices by the core NAS system, such as UPS devices, printers, expansion chassis, remotes, external storage and wireless dongles. There are even 2.5Gbe and 5Gbe USB adapters that allow you to add further network interfaces to this NAS and increase the available bandwidth to multiple users(and apps) accessing the data on the lockerstor NAS for their own needs. The 6x SATA Bays and 4x M.2 NVMe SSD Gen 3 Bays are going to provide a tremendous level of throughput, which those two 2.5GbE ports and the option to add two more 2.5/5GbE connections via USB will go a long way to externally support. But that is not the only option in this 6-Bay NAS.

The Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS also has a PCIe Upgrade slot that allows you to install Asustor’s AS-T10G2 10GbE upgrade card and add ANOTHER 1,000MBs (10Gb) external connectivity to your total network bandwidth on offer! So, once again, we are seeing a whole bunch of upgrades in the Lockerstor Gen 2. Let’s move on to the internal hardware that is on offer with this system.

Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS Review – Internal Hardware

Much like its predecessor, once I removed the external casing of this NAS drive, we find that the bulk of the main controller PCB is covered by a layer of heat-reflective plastic. Under this, we find the main CPU and memory of the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 system.

LID OFF

The CPU featured in the Asustor Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS has scaled up from the Intel J4125 in its predecessor to the much newer Intel Celeron N5105, a processor that has become exceptionally popular this year in most mid-range NAS solutions with its excellent price vs featured chipset support. This has become especially true since some brands have started moving away from integrated processors like the Intel Celeron series and switching to more traditionally ‘file processing’ focused chips. The presence of a Celeron in the Lockstor Gen 2 will be of particularly good news to those who take advantage of Plex media server and similar (Emby, Jellyfin, etc) to playback denser HEVC/H.265 media and are reliant on client-side conversions. This CPU features a 2.0Ghz clock speed that can be upped to 2.9Ghz when needed, on each of the 4 cores.

This CPU also allows the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 to take advantage of fast and large quantity memory when compared to the 2-Bay and 4-Bay systems, with this NAS arriving with 8GB of DDR4 SODIMM 2933Mhz memory that can be upgraded to 16GB as needed. For those running larger camera/surveillance operations, VMS and containers or larger-scale sync tasks, this will be great news!

Then there is possibly one of the most popular hardware upgrades in the Lockerstor Gen 2 over the Gen 1, the inclusion of FOUR M.2 NVMe SSD slots. These can be partially or fully populated with M.2 SSDs of upto 2280 length and are Gen 3 in architecture. I am still investigating if it’s PCIe 3×1 or 3×2 (I suspect the former, given the scale of hardware here that is running on this architecture/chipset).

Now, this means a possible bandwidth of 1,000-2,000MB/s. This does present the tiniest bottleneck when connecting more modern PCIe Gen 3 x4 NVMes (Seagate Ironwolf 510s, Samsung 980 and WD Black SN750 for example) that can hit 3,000-3,400MB/s at peak, but you will still see great performance benefits (particularly in file operations that require smaller and more frequent files in high quantities) and the benefits of SSD cache used in conjunction with a larger more cost-effective hard drive RAID array have long been established. However, it is worth highlighting that unlike the Synology flagship six-bay ‘ (DS1621+), the NVMe SSD that you install inside the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 can be used for both SSD caching or as raw storage pools (either for a faster container of storage, for the Asustor ADM system software or for individual apps). There is talk of Synology enabling these bays for use as storage bays in the future, but only in 2021/2022 systems that have the bandwidth available – but Asustor have had this feature available for almost 2 years now.

HOWEVER! It is worth keeping in mind that the 4x M.2 NVMe SSD slots that the Asustor Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 has are on a separate PCIe board that is connected to the main board via the PCIe upgrade slot. That means that you will need to choose between the 4x m.2 NVMes or 10GbE official Asustor upgrade card. There ARE combination 10GbE and M.2 SSD cards in the market, but their compatibility with the Asustor platform is still TBC.

In performance testing by Asustor, using four SATA IronWolf SSD 110’s, the system was easily about to fully saturate the two 2.5GbE ports (in Link Aggregation), hitting performance of 591MB/s seq Read and 591MB/s seq Write. Even with domestic class or Pro series hard drives, you would almost certainly see the exact same level of network saturation.

In terms of 10GbE performance over a single 10Gb file (when using the AS-T10G2 network upgrade card), the results are a little less clear. Asustor reported the Seq Read performance clearly maxing the bandwidth at 1,181MB/s, but Seq Write at just 1,182MB/s. Now, this could be a number of smaller factors (using SATA storage bays in a RAID that tend to only increase performance incrementally by 150-200MB/s a drive, or the Intel Celeron inside being less file service optimized – (see my video discussing the AMD Embedded Ryzen vs Intel Celeron family here). Still, these are still quite reasonable numbers for a 6-Bay NAS and if you were to factor in the 4x M.2 NVMe SSD Bays (future video), then I think we would comfortably see much higher numbers!

Overall, the hardware that is on offer here with the Asustor AS6706T NAS is very good for the money and is a decent upgrade over the Gen 1 Lockerstor. However, a NAS is a combined hardware and software packaging and we need to go into more detail on ADM, the system software and services that are bundled in with the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2.

Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS Review – Software

The Asustor AS6706T NAS arrives with the latest version of ADM included. Additionally, this software receives frequent updates to ensure that the software runs the very best it can on the Lockerstor, as well as keeping up to date with security patches and application versions. The NAS software is accessible via a web browser and displayed very much like a normal computer operating system (desktop, user accounts, customizable themes, file management, running multiple tasks in windows that can be switched in the native tabs), but there are also a range of desktop client tools for accessing the NAS on your local machine natively, as well as a whole bunch of mobile applications that allow tailored access from your phone/tablet in more task-specific means (eg a photo app for viewing pictures and creating phone backup routines, a video app for enjoying your movies and boxsets, surveillance app to access your cameras, etc).  There is also a large range of support of 3rd party applications too in the ADM platform. Asustor is not as big a company as the likes of Synology and QNAP, whole put ALOT more money into their software development, but Asustor try to counter this by (when they do not have an in-house app) making native versions of 3rd party tools in their platform (example, they do not have a 1st party Virtual Machine app, but DO include huge support for VirtualBox). The platform is not quite as fully featured as DSM and QTS, but it is still a very smooth and accessible software platform. The app center has a few more 3rd party applications and slightly crowbarred software (eg the Amazon Media and Streaming service plugins) that is not updated up the original uploaders anywhere near enough (leading to running issues on these tools), but the 1st party apps run very well. The big takeaway on the Asustor software and it’s services is that the standard class of expected features of a modern NAS in 2022/2023 are here and run exactly as you would want, it is just some of the additional ones that other platforms have doubled down on (such as AI-related services in Photography and Surveillance for example) that are a little lacking. That said, the brand has definitely ramped up a number of the key security protocols and settings in the default setup.

LooksGood Media App – Built-in three main video library categories; movies, TV shows, home movies and smart video sorting management

    • The efficient global search function allows for searches by keywords followed by the execution of more detailed searches for the purpose of finding categories of movies, TV shows, home movies and parameters such as actors, director, year, genre, writer and title
    • Attractive poster wall and thumbnail display
    • Automatic production of video poster thumbnails
    • Centralized management and ability to configure the order of favourites and playlist history
    • The system administrator is able to configure video library and editing permissions according to user preferences
    • Can configure access permissions to share with
    • Multimedia conversion feature
    • Self-defined smart folder for video conversions
    • Supports digital TV recordings via digital
    • Easy streaming with Chromecast and DLNA
    • Supports playback of videos in Apple TV via AiVideos tvOS version

Plex – Hardware Transcoding (with a Plex Pass) is likely and with 1080p handled very well indeed, as well as some Plex 4K transcoding in H.265 (upto 60-80Mb bitrate) and the majority of H.264 Media upto 100Mb bitrate

Virtual Machines – A graphical embedded CPU like the one here will run Windows 10 and Android VMs very well. With the added support for Ubuntu and Hackintosh with VirtualBox. Then there is the option to scale up that memory to allow smoother VMs

Storage Management – BTRFS Support, as well as EXT4 for the traditionalist, Multiple Snapshot storage and browsing for recovery, a large number of ISCSI and LUN target creation, fast-acting SSD caching use. Remember that those M.2 NVMe SSD Bays can be used as both raw Pools and Caching

Network Management – Support of LAG, Load Balancing and virtual switches, as well as maintaining top transmission over 2.5/5/10Gbe for editing or gaming over the network. As well as Jumbo Frame control, DDNS automation, Wake on LAN support and internet/external NAS access with EZ Connect

Backups – Supporting a wide range of multi-tiered backup options that can be carried out simultaneously thanks to the powerful CPU in the Lockerstor and Nimbustor NAS systems, such as network RSync, USB Backups, NAS-2-NAS migration, Cloud Backups with Google Drive, Dropbox and Backblaze and numerous RAID levels internally for redundancy.

Content Management – Numerous Content Management Systems (CMS) and Customer Relationship Managers (CRMs) available in 1st and 3rd party forms, with simultaneous operations supported by this NAS

User Account Control – Supporting over 4,000 accounts, each with its own bespoke privileges and access levels, as well as grouping methods to automate the process easily

Security – AES 256bit hardware encryption on data in/out of the device, as well as over backup methods, with the Intel Celeron CPU in the AS6706T maintaining high R/W speeds throughout, as well as Windows ACL permission and configuration, auto blacklisting and multiple VPN provider support

Antivirus (ClamAV) – Scheduled Scans, Automatic Virus Definition Updates, Quarantine Infected Files

Download Center – Supports BT(Torrent & Magnet Link), HTTP and FTP Downloads, Torrent Search, Bandwidth Control, RSS Subscription and Automatic Downloading (Broadcatching), ASUSTOR Download Assistant for Windows & Mac

DropBox, OneDrive and Google Drive Sync – Each ADM Account is Able to Individually Log into one cloud Account, supporting Sync, Directly Upload Files to cloud from the NAS, or from cloud to NAS

Mail Server – Each ADM Account can Become an Independent Email Account, Provides SMTP, IMAP and POP3 Mail Protocols, Spam Filter and Black List Settings, Antivirus Scanning for Emails, Exclusive Email Backup Mechanism, Auto-Forwarding and Auto-Response Protocols

Photo Gallary – “Album” and “Browse” Viewing Modes, Manage Photo Album Access Rights: Public Access, Restricted to Certain Accounts, Album Password, Multi-level Folder Structure Support, Supports Tagging of Photos, One-click Sharing to Social Media (Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Plurk, email), Intuitive Drag and Drop Management, Slideshow Viewing Mode, Supports a Wide Range of Image Formats: JPG/JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP, TIFF, RAW and Supports Video Playback

Surveillance Center – Up to 64 channels in 720p on single live view display, On-screen camera controls including camera PTZ, manual recordings, take snapshots, configure camera settings and open Maps, Up to 4 channels of synchronous and non-synchronous playback with audio, Intelligent video analytics including motion detection and foreign object detection, Supported Browsers: Windows Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Firefox, Mac Safari, Mac Firefox ESR, Event notification supports SMS, E-mail, and mobile push notification, AiSecure mobile app for iOS and Android with Push notification, Maximum IP Cam (4 Free Licenses; Additional Licenses to be Purchased)

Takeasy – Download from YouTube, Vimeo, Twitch and More, Selectable Video Type and Quality, Automatic Downloads with YouTube or Twitch Subscriptions, Preview Downloads in Progress and Online Playback

SoundsGood Audio App – Import Personal/Public Music Collection, Personal/Public Music Collection Permission Control, Playlist Editor, ID3 Tag Editor, Local Speaker Support: HDMI, USB, Audio Jack, Supported Audio Formats for Browser: MP3, WAV, Ogg, Supported Audio Formats for Transcoding Through Browser: AIFF, Flac, Supported Audio Formats for Local Speaker: MP3, WAV, Ogg, AIFF, Flac

Backup Tools – Rsync (Remote Sync) Backup, Cloud Backup, FTP Backup, External Backup, One-Touch Backup, EZ Sync, Btrfs Snapshots

These are just the tip of the iceberg and I will be going into more ADM 3.4 and AS6706T applications in the Software Review.

Here is how the Asustor ADM platform compares with the Synology DSM platform:

Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS Review – Conclusion

The Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS is a respectable piece of kit! Indeed, the hardware here is almost faultless! Unless you are particularly noise sensitive (and therefore the metal chassis adding a few dBa to the ambient sound), there is almost nothing I can fault here on the device’s hardware. The scaling up of practically all hardware over the Gen 1 Lockerstor, such as Better CPU, Better Memory that goes higher, HDMI 2.0b, USB 3.2 Gen 2, a 10GbE upgrade option and THOSE FOUR M. 2 NVMe SSD SLOTS – you simply cannot fault how much is getting included here at the price point vs it’s competitors. The software is a little less compelling, with a smaller range of 1st party applications on offer, more of a reliance on 3rd party services and the absence of a few AAA+ features that are present on other devices in the market (AI services, Cloud Bolt on live synchronization, 1st Party SaaS native sync with Google Workspace/Office365, etc). That said, ADM does run very well, is clear and still quite user-friendly. The addition of choice of file systems EXT4 or BTRFS, flexibility on the use of those M.2 NVMe SSD bays and the Asustor HDMI portal still bring fantastic flexibility to the Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS too. Ultimately, this is a system that is clearly making big waves on it’s hardware more than its software, but as long as you keep your feet on the ground and appreciate that this system is more of a 70/30 purchase of hardware vs software, you will come to respect and rely on this Asustor NAS as the backbone of your data storage setup.

PROs of the Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS CONs of the Asustor AS6706T Lockerstor 6 Gen 2 NAS
Hard/Impossible to find this level of NAS Hardware elsewhere at this price point

Those FOUR M.2 NVMe 2280 SSD slots are great and turn this 6-Bay NAS into an 10-Bay

2.5GbE by default, as well as the option to add further 2.5/5Gb connections over USB

The option to scale up the network connectivity to 10GbE down the line (4 and 6 Bay only)

$60 increase over RRP of Lockstor Gen 1, but upgrades practically everything 1-2 levels (New Celeron CPU, Better/High Memory Max, USB 10G, HDMI 2.0b, PCIe Gen 3 Architecture)

Includes support for either EXT4 or BTRFS

Includes KVM Support with Parallel GUI over HDMI, Asustor Portal

ADM is better tha nit has ever been, responsive, clear and intuitive

Several different setup and initialization options

One of very few 6-Bay NAS drives that still feature a fully functional and controllable LCD Panel

Full Support of the traditional RAID levels for this scale (RAID 0-1-5-6)

Storage can be expanded with TWO of the Asustor AS6004U 4-Bay

Lack of a fluid RAID System (such as Synology Hybrid RAID, Drobo BeyondRAID or Terramaster TRAID) to allow mixed drive media and easier scaling of storage over time

Metal chassis and trays is going to result in an increase of ambient noise (hum/vibration) than other plastic casing/tray NAS systems

Some apps (such as the Surveillance Center apps) are long overdue an update in visuals and services

ADM is good, but lacks the killer apps/AAA and AI service tools that are being offered by other brands right now

They were targeted by the Deadbolt ransomware attack at the start of 2022 and although the linux vulnerability that was used has been reported to be closed and they worked with affected users, this is still going to be on the minds of some buyers

Need More Help Choosing the right NAS?

Choosing the right data storage solution for your needs can be very intimidating and it’s never too late to ask for help. With options ranging from NAS to DAS, Thunderbolt to SAS and connecting everything up so you can access all your lovely data at the touch of a button can be a lot simpler than you think. If you want some tips, guidance or help with everything from compatibility to suitability of a solution for you, why not drop me a message below and I will get back to you as soon as possible with what you should go for, its suitability and the best place to get it. This service is designed without profit in mind and in order to help you with your data storage needs, so I will try to answer your questions as soon as possible.

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Which NAS Cost the LEAST to Run 24×7? Working out the COST of NAS

11 novembre 2022 à 17:00

What NAS is the Cheapest to Run 24×7?

Have you SEEN how much electricity costs these days? Because of any one of about a hundred different global factors (local conflict, slow renewable energy uptake, monopolizing energy companies with powerful lobbying – take your pick!) most of us in2022/2023 have seen increases in energy costs. In this energy-aware climate, it can be appreciated that a NAS drive (a 24×7 appliance) seemingly has its cost to the end user in terms of electricity as something of a vague number. With so many kinds of NAS available in the market, featuring a mix of CPUs, PSUs, Bays and utilities, PLUS the wide range of HDD/SSD drives in the market to choose from – there are just so many variables when trying to work out how much power your NAS drive is using and how much that is translating to in your monthly energy bill! So, to resolve this concern, we have created this chart below that details the power consumption of several popular Synology and QNAP NAS systems in the market right now, defined by their reported power consumption (supplied on their official pages) and worked out how that translates into $, £ and Euros! But before we start, what is the difference between ACTIVE power use and IDLE power use? It’s pretty important when it comes to a device that will be on days, weeks, months and even YEARS at a time.

Can NAS Manufacturers be trusted to provide accurate power consumption numbers?

Popular NAS brands such as Synology, QNAP, Asustor and Terramaster are all obligated to provide a certain degree of information/specifications to end users when selling their wares globally. The extent of this information can vary, with some brands only giving you the CPU, Memory and PSU/Power brick wattage, whereas more reputable brands give you details breakdowns of the reported/average power usage of the device when in active, standby and/or idle use. Now, the question is, how much can you trust/rely on these figures? Surely it is in the interest of the brand to keep this number as LOW as possible to entice the end user? Well. I will say you can definitely, 100% TRUST the figures that the NAS brands report on their devices in use, HOWEVER, you need to always scroll down to the bottom of the page and check the DRIVES and RAID that were used in the testing. It is not uncommon for a NAS brand to use specific low-powered SSDs, or a RAID 0 as opposed to RAID 5 (which requires less system operation to maintain). These are not terrible guidelines, as there ARE users that use these setups, but it would be better if there was a form of universal standard in place (e.g separate 4TB / 8TB / 16TB / 22TB tests).

Note – Alongside these results based on officially provided energy consumption, I have been making videos and articles on SPECIFIC power usage tests, covering Active/Idle usage. These tests are going to take place throughout the next 12+ months and will cover around 30 NAS’ and 18 drive variations (capacity, performance, brands, SSD vs HDD, etc). You can read the MASSIVE article that is being regularly updated with fresh test results HERE. You watch the playlist so far HERE on YouTube.

What is the Difference Between a NAS Drive ‘Active’ and in ‘IDLE / Standby’?

Although a NAS is designed to be in operation 24×7 and is consuming electricity when running, the actual reality of this and the extent to which it is consuming it is actually alot more nuanced. Most home users who have a NAS system will use the NAS directly for a significant;y smaller portion of time per day than it is actually powered on for. Perhaps to stream a movie or a couple of TV episodes, run a daily backup, have a couple of cameras in/outside their home that are sending recordings (or more likely just alerts and associated captures) to the NAS and that is about it. They will periodically do more than these, maybe a VM, more sophisticated backup or use some of the other services ad hoc, but the result is that in most domestic/bog standard home scenarios, a NAS will be switched internally to Idle/Standby after no pro-active use quite quickly and spend 80-90% of the time in low power modes. Business users might well be using the system 24×7 for sync’d tasks and on-going camera recording, but even then, this will be a lower %  of system resources in use. So, in order to find a comparable and relative means to study the electricity use of a NAS and it’s cost, I have conducted two tests per NAS+HDD configuration. The first, a 24 Hour Active test, with the system using a decent % of it’s CPU+Memory, a swell as the HDDs not being given the chance to switch to Idle/Standy (by constantly writing AND performing S.M.A.R.T tests hourly). The idle tests involve all of those apps, services and scheduled operations being cancelled and the network cable being disconnected from the NAS (for another 24hrs). From here we can work out the cost of an hour of power usage by either setup in high activity and near-zero activity. But how can we work out the COST of the electricity used by the NAS in that time period?

All Synology and QNAP NAS Drives, Listed in Power Use and Cost (Best to Worst)

Below are the NAS we have added so far to our energy calculator. You can add your own electricity price/tariff/rate in the box at the top if you want to narrow things down a little and/get a better understanding how the reported power usage by each NAS device will work out for you in costs per day, month and year. We will be adding more NAS brands and devices as time goes on.


Electric price (UK 34 pence, US 15 cents, EU 46 cents ) Usage?
Brand Model Power Usage Power saving mode Daily usage Monthly/ Yearly
Qnap TS-130 7.29W 3.45W £0.059 £1.78/21.71
Qnap TS-133 7.32W 2.74W £0.06 £1.79/21.8
Synology DS118 9.4W 4.22W £0.077 £2.3/28
Synology DS120j 9.81W 4.68W £0.08 £2.4/29.22
Qnap TR-002 10.15W 2.98W £0.083 £2.48/30.23
Synology RT2600ac 10.80W 7.94W £0.088 £2.64/32.17
Qnap TS-233 10.81W 3.43W £0.088 £2.65/32.2
Asustor AS1102T 11.6W 5.97W £0.095 £2.84/34.55
Qnap TS-131K 11.62W 7.29W £0.095 £2.84/34.61
Asustor AS3302T 12.3W 6.04W £0.1 £3.01/36.63
Qnap TS-262 12.448W 8.198W £0.102 £3.05/37.08
Qnap TS-253D 12.448W 8.198W £0.102 £3.05/37.08
Synology DS220j 12.46W 5.06W £0.102 £3.05/37.11
Synology MR2200ac 12.95W 5.21W £0.106 £3.17/38.57
Synology DS220+ 14.69W 4.41W £0.12 £3.6/43.75
Synology DS218 14.99W 5.78W £0.122 £3.67/44.65
Qnap TS-251D 15.25W 8.08W £0.124 £3.73/45.42
Qnap TS-231P3 15.6W 8.46W £0.127 £3.82/46.46
Qnap TS-231P 15.6W 8.46W £0.127 £3.82/46.46
Qnap TS-231K 15.6W 8.46W £0.127 £3.82/46.46
Asustor AS6602T 15.9W 9.2W £0.13 £3.89/47.36
Synology DS720+ 16.44W 6.19W £0.134 £4.02/48.96
Synology DS218play 16.79W 5.16W £0.137 £4.11/50.01
Asustor AS5202T 17W 10.5W £0.139 £4.16/50.63
Asustor 效能 17W 10.5W £0.139 £4.16/50.63
Qnap TS-251+ 18.09W 10.56W £0.148 £4.43/53.88
Qnap TS-253E 18.09W 10.56W £0.148 £4.43/53.88
Qnap TR-004 18.21W 4.17W £0.149 £4.46/54.24
Qnap TS-473A 19.576W 29.792W £0.16 £4.79/58.31
Asustor AS6702T 21W 13.5W £0.171 £5.14/62.55
Synology DS420j 21.71W 7.88W £0.177 £5.31/64.66
Qnap HS-453DX 22.38W 13.55W £0.183 £5.48/66.66
Qnap TS-433 22.54W 8.45W £0.184 £5.52/67.13
Asustor AS1104T 23.1W 10.1W £0.188 £5.65/68.8
Asustor AS3304T 23.1W 10.1W £0.188 £5.65/68.8
Qnap TS-873A 25.668W 54.067W £0.209 £6.28/76.45
Qnap TS-464 25.98W 11.3W £0.212 £6.36/77.38
Qnap TS-462 25.98W 11.3W £0.212 £6.36/77.38
Qnap TS-453D 25.98W 11.3W £0.212 £6.36/77.38
Synology DS418 26.49W 8.78W £0.216 £6.48/78.9
Qnap TS-431K 26.57W 11.928W £0.217 £6.5/79.14
Qnap TS-431KX 26.7W 11.65W £0.218 £6.54/79.52
Qnap TS-431P3 26.7W 11.65W £0.218 £6.54/79.52
Qnap TS-431X 26.7W 11.65W £0.218 £6.54/79.52
Qnap TS-431P 26.7W 11.65W £0.218 £6.54/79.52
Asustor AS5304T 27W 12.6W £0.22 £6.61/80.42
Asustor AS6604T 27.6W 12.6W £0.225 £6.76/82.2
Qnap TBS-464 28W 18W £0.228 £6.85/83.4
Synology DS420+ 28.30W 8.45W £0.231 £6.93/84.29
Qnap TS-453B 30.04W 15W £0.245 £7.35/89.47
Qnap TS-435XeU 30.878W 17.367W £0.252 £7.56/91.97
Qnap TS-431XeU 30.99W 12.42W £0.253 £7.59/92.3
Qnap TS-453DU 32.038W 17.209W £0.261 £7.84/95.42
Synology DS920+ 32.17W 9.69W £0.263 £7.88/95.82
Qnap TS-451+ 33.88W 15.78W £0.276 £8.29/100.91
Qnap TS-453E 33.88W 15.78W £0.276 £8.29/100.91
Synology DS620slim 34.88W 7.59W £0.285 £8.54/103.89
Asustor AS6704T 35W 17.3W £0.286 £8.57/104.24
Qnap TS-464eU 35.297W 21.105W £0.288 £8.64/105.13
Qnap TS-653D 35.437W 18.634W £0.289 £8.67/105.55
Qnap TS-664 35.437W 18.634W £0.289 £8.67/105.55
Qnap TVS-472XT 37.32W 24.14W £0.305 £9.14/111.15
Synology RS422+ 37.93W 13.43W £0.31 £9.29/112.97
Qnap TS-453BT3 38.101W £0.311 £9.33/113.48
Qnap TS-432PXU 39.558W £0.323 £9.68/117.82
Synology DVA3221 43.92W 28.43W £0.358 £10.75/130.81
Qnap TVS-h674 45.6W 26.52W £0.372 £11.16/135.82
Qnap TVS-672X 45.6W 26.52W £0.372 £11.16/135.82
Qnap TVS-672XT 45.6W 26.52W £0.372 £11.16/135.82
Qnap TS-673A 45.898W 21.891W £0.375 £11.24/136.7
Synology RS822RP+ 47.69W 16.7W £0.389 £11.67/142.04
Synology RS822+ 47.69W 16.7W £0.389 £11.67/142.04
Asustor AS6504RD 47.7W 28.4W £0.389 £11.68/142.07
Asustor AS6504RS 47.7W 28.4W £0.389 £11.68/142.07
Asustor AS6504RS/RD 47.7W 28.4W £0.389 £11.68/142.07
Asustor AS6706T 48.5W 27.7W £0.396 £11.87/144.45
Synology RS1221+ 49.89W 22.64W £0.407 £12.21/148.59
Synology RS1221RP+ 49.89W 22.64W £0.407 £12.21/148.59
Synology DS1621+ 51.22W 25.27W £0.418 £12.54/152.55
Synology DS1522+ 52.06W 16.71W £0.425 £12.74/155.06
Qnap TS-432PXU-RP 53.343W £0.435 £13.06/158.88
Qnap TS-473 56.23W 33.24W £0.459 £13.77/167.48
Qnap TS-832PXU 56.412W £0.46 £13.81/168.02
Synology DS1821+ 59.8W 26.18W £0.488 £14.64/178.11
Qnap TVS-675 60.794W 41.897W £0.496 £14.88/181.07
Qnap TS-h686 61.115W £0.499 £14.96/182.02
Synology DS1621xs+ 62.85W 34.26W £0.513 £15.39/187.19
Qnap TS-673 63.69W 35.11W £0.52 £15.59/189.69
Qnap TS-977XU 64.22W £0.524 £15.72/191.27
Qnap TVS-h874 65.03W 41.47W £0.531 £15.92/193.69
Qnap TVS-872X 65.03W 41.47W £0.531 £15.92/193.69
Qnap TVS-872XT 65.03W 41.47W £0.531 £15.92/193.69
Asustor AS6508T 66.9W 37.2W £0.546 £16.38/199.25
Synology RX1217 68.60W 27.45W £0.56 £16.79/204.32
Synology RS1619xs+ 68.68W 34.78W £0.56 £16.81/204.56
Qnap TS-832PXU-RP 69.191W £0.565 £16.94/206.08
Qnap TS-873 70.26W 36.43W £0.573 £17.2/209.26
Qnap TS-883XU 72.16W £0.589 £17.66/214.92
Qnap TS-877XU 73.1W £0.596 £17.89/217.72
Synology DS2422+ 73.11W 32.12W £0.597 £17.9/217.75
Qnap TS-983XU 74.35W £0.607 £18.2/221.44
Synology FS2500 74.83W £0.611 £18.32/222.87
Qnap TS-h886 75.79W £0.618 £18.55/225.73
Qnap TS-977XU-RP 76.43W £0.624 £18.71/227.64
Qnap TS-h977XU-RP 76.43W £0.624 £18.71/227.64
Qnap TS-1635AX 76.69W 39.74W £0.626 £18.77/228.41
Asustor AS6510T 76.8W 41.1W £0.627 £18.8/228.74
Asustor AS7110T 78.7W 40.1W £0.642 £19.27/234.4
Qnap TS-1273AU-RP 78.92W 43.67W £0.644 £19.32/235.06
Synology RS2421RP+ 79.56W 34.89W £0.649 £19.48/236.96
Synology RS2421+ 79.56W 34.89W £0.649 £19.48/236.96
Qnap TS-1232PXU-RP 83.57W £0.682 £20.46/248.9
Qnap TS-983XU-RP 84.74W £0.691 £20.74/252.39
Qnap TS-877XU-RP 86.04W £0.702 £21.06/256.26
Qnap TS-883XU-RP 89.99W £0.734 £22.03/268.03
Asustor AS7112RDX 92.4W 45.5W £0.754 £22.62/275.2
Synology DS3622xs+ 94.42W 54.33W £0.77 £23.11/281.22
Qnap TS-1673AU-RP 97.34W 47.75W £0.794 £23.83/289.92
Synology RS2821RP+ 97.54W 49.57W £0.796 £23.88/290.51
Qnap TS-1283XU-RP 105.12W £0.858 £25.73/313.09
Qnap TS-h1283XU-RP 105.12W £0.858 £25.73/313.09
Qnap TS-h1277XU-RP 106.66W £0.87 £26.11/317.68
Synology FS3410 113.84W £0.929 £27.87/339.06
Asustor AS6512RD 115W 67W £0.938 £28.15/342.52
Qnap TS-h1886XU-RP R2 117.92W £0.962 £28.87/351.21
Qnap TS-h1886XU-RP 117.92W £0.962 £28.87/351.21
Asustor AS7116RDX 121.7W 51.5W £0.993 £29.79/362.47
Qnap TS-h1683XU-RP 130.43W £1.064 £31.93/388.47
Qnap TS-1683XU-RP 130.43W £1.064 £31.93/388.47
Qnap TS-h1677XU-RP 136.45W £1.113 £33.4/406.4
Synology SA3400 137.17W 70.95W £1.119 £33.58/408.55
Synology RS3621RPxs 140.01W 65.94W £1.142 £34.27/417.01
Synology RS3621xs+ 142.5W 72.76W £1.163 £34.88/424.42
Synology RS3618xs 142.76W 55.05W £1.165 £34.95/425.2
Qnap TS-h2477XU-RP 143.97W £1.175 £35.24/428.8
Synology RS4021xs+ 145.79W 62.68W £1.19 £35.69/434.22
Synology SA3600 156.23W 72.37W £1.275 £38.25/465.32
Qnap TS-h1090FU 157.97W £1.289 £38.67/470.5
Qnap TS-h2483XU-RP 168.97W £1.379 £41.36/503.26
Qnap TS-2483XU-RP 168.97W £1.379 £41.36/503.26
Synology FS3600 258.23W 127.99W £2.107 £63.21/769.11
Qnap TS-h3088XU-RP 261.81W 129.57W £2.136 £64.09/779.77
Qnap TS-h2490FU 277.64W £2.266 £67.97/826.92
Synology FS6400 288.49W 145.8W £2.354 £70.62/859.24
Synology UC3200 417.48W 274.38W £3.407 £102.2/1243.42
Synology SA3200D 417.48W 274.38W £3.407 £102.2/1243.42
Qnap TDS-h2489FU 467.59W £3.816 £114.47/1392.67
Qnap ES1686dc 500.87W £4.087 £122.61/1491.79
Qnap ES2486dc 579.59W £4.729 £141.88/1726.25
Synology HD6500 1025.2W 418W £8.366 £250.97/3053.46
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UK: Energy Price (October 2022) electricity rate of 34.00 pence per kWh.

USA: Average (Feb 2022) electricity rate of 14.80 cents per kWh.

Germany: Average (June 2021) electricity rate of 31.93 Eurocents per kWh.

Australia: Average (March 2022) electricity rate of 23.59 cents per kWh.

Canada: Average (2020) electricity rate of 8.50 cents per kWh.

Source – https://www.sust-it.net

There are the rates that we will be using to calculate the running costs of the Synology and QNAP NAS systems (and more importantly their respective WD Drive setups and CPU usage).

QNAP NAS Security Check List – 23 Different Ways to Secure Your NAS

21 octobre 2022 à 18:00

QNAP NAS Security Check List – 23 Vital Steps to Secure Your NAS

It must be frustrating to hear about all ransomware and other kinds of attacks on QNAP. Especially if you plan to buy one or own a NAS already. In simple terms, you need to treat your NAS just like your computer. You would not risk going online without an antivirus installed on your Windows PC. Nowadays, Microsoft has built-in antivirus, but systems like NAS do not follow the same route. This is something you need to do manually just like in the olden days. And there are a lot more risks to consider when exposing your server to the internet. At best few brands like Synology will have built-in security advisor software. This will scan the system and notify you about all weak areas in your setup. But even that is not perfect. In this article, I will try to write from a hacker’s perspective. How would they think and what strategies they will use to attack your home network and your NAS.

How hackers attack your NAS?

NAS Security Checklist

How do you secure your NAS?

Bonus – How to secure your Network?

What are the ways your system can be attacked?

There are dozen of different kinds of methods to attack. But there are only a few that actually can affect a big number of NAS users. The rest of the attacks are very targeted at a single victim. Something for unique personal benefit. So the most popular attacks will be explained later in this article.

How does a hacker know I have a NAS?

They won’t until you tell them you have one. Hackers tell robots to scan every single IP in the world on daily bases. This is a single ping (something like saying Hello to a person). By default, devices are configured to reply with hello if they hear the ping. This is where hackers will initiate an open port scan which we will talk about in the next chapter.

Why do I have open ports?

Ports are like doors to different departments in your office. Something like IT office (NAS control panel), The Office Canteen (NAS multimedia apps), HR (NAS email and databases), the dispatch office (file transfer protocols) and so on. Random people pressing buttons on the control panel could cause the company to collapse. In order to keep people out, we use keycards (NAS user authentication).

Some of the door names (ports) are very specific to a certain NAS. This is how hackers can guess what kind of NAS you own.

A simple scan from online   https://pentest-tools.com  (check your IP) would check the most common ports and tell you if they are open.

A remote scan from a MAC terminal using the command nmap would show not just a few, but all single ports open.

Why open ports are potentially dangerous?

With additional commands like ‘vuln’, and ‘exploit’ hackers will check for software vulnerabilities. All services need regular updates. If not updated specific scripts will detect an outdated service and will allow hackers to abuse it. Similar to having an office key 🔑 that is 100 years old. Even kids could break in.

So your first defence here is your router. If you have not opened any ports since you received your modem/router from your broadband company you should be safe.

But it is worth checking those ports. When you log into your NAS as an admin you can tell your router to open ports. This will be called Port Forwarding. Be careful what you click. There is nothing wrong with open ports if you have security set up. I will talk about security configuration later on.

Here is a list of QNAP default ports link And here is Synology.

 

Brute force

Now when hackers know you have a NAS with certain ports open, they can start the most basic attack which is guessing your password.

They will try the most common usernames and passwords (such as Admin Password).

 

Where do hackers find my passwords?

First of all, they will use robots to try every single word inside the dictionary.

There are lists of stolen user names and passwords available on the black market for hackers to buy. You can check if any of your passwords are being sold here https://haveibeenpwned.com or here https://www.avast.com/hackcheck/

When someone is asked to replace or improve the password people so often simply capitalise the first letter, then add the number 1 and ! mark at the end of the password. Of course, hackers will try all stolen passwords with this modified version of it.

 

Phishing Attack

This is more popular among targeted attacks where people gain access to your personal data which is priceless. Since this attack is more profitable hackers can spend more time on every person individually. They would normally send you an email that looks very similar to QNAP official emails. They will say something like “your password is compromised, please change it here”. Then they will ask for old password and the new one. This is where they steal your password because you landed on hackers website that looks like QNAP. Always make sure URL is actually QNAP and not something like QNAPpp.com.

 

MAN in the middle 

Another popular phishing method is in places with Public Wifi (coffee shops, trains etc ). Man in the middle can see all data you send and receive if you don’t use HTTPS in URL. Hackers can also direct you to the page that again looks similar to QNAP page where you put your password in. But actually, it’s hackers website. Never access your important stuff or log into anywhere from free wifi EVER!

 

Zero-Day Exploit

Every piece of software becomes vulnerable with time. Either it is an Operating system or individual apps. Zero-day exploit means that there is a way to break into a system because there is no patch created or the patch has been installed on a particular system. So this makes it a ticking time bomb. They don’t even need your username and password.

It depends on each company how they deal will vulnerabilities. Some companies run Security Bug Bounty Program and some don’t. When a hacker finds a new security hole in the system they have to make a choice. Either they sell this information to a NAS brand or they sell this information to the black market. Or sometimes people simply share vulnerability info for free here https://www.cvedetails.com/vulnerability-list/vendor_id-10080/QNAP.html .

It is up to each brand how quickly they make a patch for each hole. Until there then you either need to disable the service or add another layer of security that doesn’t allow hackers to take advantage of this security hole.

You can scan your network for vulnerabilities and exploits using NMAP command.

 

Or for the visual interface, you can use Zenmap.

 

 

What about other attack types?

Malware Attacks

This will be vare rare occasion to get an actual virus. This usually happens with computers when you try to open a suspicious email attachment file. It could be zip or exe file or similar. On a NAS this could happen when manually installing OS or app. Instead of using AppStore or automated updates.

These viruses include worms, spyware, ransomware, adware, and trojans. This could be done via cheap smart plugs from China or elsewhere if you connect them in the same network (it’s good practice to connect them via guest wifi).

How To Choose The Right Settings to Secure Your NAS?

How do you secure your NAS

Now it’s time to go through the checklist and make sure your NAS is safe. You do not need to tick all of the boxes on the checklist. You start with the top and make your way down. The lower you get, the more secure your system gets.

Security Level Protects against
BASIC

  • A strong password
  • IP/USER autoblock
  • Two-Step auth
  • Disable Admin
  • Create non-Admin users
  • Remove Apps
  • Disable services
  • Change/ close ports
Brute Force Attack
MEDIUM

 
  • Enable auto-updates
  • Install Security Advisor
  • Install Antivirus / Set scan schedule
  • Enable Firewall (GEO)
  • Set User access rights (shared folders)
  • Use VPN to connect to your NAS remotely (Norton etc.)
  • Use SSL (HTTPS)
  • Isolate NAS apps
  • Use separate Volumes for storage and OS
Phishing Attack
MAN in the middle
Zero-Day Exploit
HIGH

  • Firewall (IP based)
  • Ubiquiti unify dream machine, pfsense switch
  • Open VPN, quWAN
  • Hide NAS IP via free VPN
  • Isolate smart devices VLAN (plugs,speakers etc)
  • Backup
Targeted attack

1. How to Check and/or Change Your Password

If you use the same password on multiple websites to log in, you risk that your password could be stolen from one of those websites and used to log in to any of your accounts on any other website.

It is humanly impossible to create a strong password that is unique to every account and Still Remember it. So use password generators and save those passwords. One day, when two-step authentication will be required on every system, then weak passwords will not be an issue anymore. And all passwords as you know them will seize to exist.

Protecting ADMIN account with a Very complicated password is the most important thing you have to do. Hackers will be able to access ANYTHING they want on your NAS. If they gained an access to a non-admin user the damage will be very limited.

You can use this random string generated every time you reload this page

Or with Google Chrome browser use an auto generator

QNAP default Admin password is NIC MAC address, maybe you can use a similar method with a strong password printed on sticker

To change a password, log into your QNAP and click on your user name on the top bar. Then select Options.

Click on the tab ‘Password Settings’

If you do not trust Google password wallet, you can store your passwords on an encrypted SSD like datashur. You will need to physically have this USB stick around and it can be accessed only with a pin code.

Something similar to a password is a SSH KEY. Instead of having an 8-character string, you can have an entire document filled with random characters. This is called ssh key. You can keep it on a fingerprint-based memory stick. Simple Lexar USB will do the trick.

You can enable SSH Key login option when you open User settings and click on SSH Keys tab.

 

2. How to Enable IP/Account autoblock

Hackers will usually deploy robots to use all possible combinations and stolen password lists to hack your account. If you enable autoblock this will stop the robot after a certain number of attempts. You can block an IP or the user account. You will find respective tabs when you open Control panel/ Security. IP Access Protection is for IP based blocks and Account Access Protection is for locking the account for everyone not just that IP. Some advanced robots will be using various IP addresses from the zombie computers they have gained access to before.

 

 

3. How to Enable two-step authentication

Two-step authentication means that you will use a code from another device that only you can have access to. This could be SMS code, email code or Authenticator App code. QNAP only allows Authenticator App that you can install on your Android or iPhone.

 

4. How to Disable Admin Account Access

Just like I mention above, ADMIN account has no limits on what it can do. You can create several Admin accounts. All hackers know that the default Admin account is named ‘Admin’, so all they need to do now is try all possible passwords. Simply disabling the main Admin account and creating another one with some unusual name would slow hackers down quite a lot. Slowing down does not mean stopping them. So make sure accessing this account is very difficult, even for you.

 

5. How to Create non-Admin users and tailor their Access

When accessing your NAS on daily bases you should use a non-Admin account that has limited functionality and access to the services and files.

6. Remove Apps you don’t use – How to Check and Change Them

When people get a new NAS they usually are so excited and install every possible app to try it out. But no one removes them nor updates them. More apps you install, more potential attacks you can expect. Each app has its own volnurabilities that gets fixed via regular updates. If you never use half of your apps, why take the risk of potential security holes in any of those apps? Disable or remove apps you don’t use.

7. How to Disable Services that you don’t use

This could include SSH/Telnet that us used for command line access to your NAS. And UPnP / CloudiD firewall hole punching for remote access.

  • Telnet
  • SSH
  • UPnP
  • QNAP CloudiD

You can find all services in QNAP Settings page

Go to app center/ myQNAPcloud to find UPnP and CloudiD settings

 

 

8. How to Close Unused Ports and/or Change ports

Disabling services you don’t use will also close relevant ports. If you do enable services such as SSH, make sure you set a different port. This will confuse and slow hackers down. By default, hackers will test if you have port 22 open before they decide to attack. If ports is changed to 2889, you are less likely to be attacked. The most important ports hackers will use are SSH/Telnet and Ports 80, 443, 8080 and 8443 (HTTP and HTTPS).

 

9. How to Enable auto-updates on your NAS

Every time there is a notification about new updates indicates that hackers have found a new hole in the software. Not always hackers can get into your system because of this software bug. But in certain circumstances, they can. The chances to attack increase dramatically when you have open ports on your router and have no firewall or any malicious traffic prevention tools enabled.

Sometimes NAS is configured in a specific way that an update might disable important features. It is OK not to update these NAS ASAP as long as the system is not exposed to the internet thanks to open ports.

You can enable automatic App updates when you open AppCenter/ Settings/ Update.

You can also enable automatic operating system updates when you open Control Panel/ Firmware Update/ Auto update

10. Make Sure You Install the Security Advisor and Councilor Application!!!

With so many apps and services, it is hard to know what is going on behind the scenes. Security Advisor will run system checks and will alert you if any apps have open ports or have changed configuration that is not safe. You can install it via AppCenter.

You can then choose the level of security you need. The basic level is often all you need for home use. Businesses might go for the Advanced level. Top-level will suggest disabling a lot of features that is not useful for home use.

11. Install Antivirus and Set a Scheduled Scan on Day 1

Security counsellor app will allow you to enable 4 crucial parts of your NAS security.

  • Security Checkup (will scan for configuration weaknesses)
  • Antivirus (scan files for viruses)
  • Malware Remover (Remove any malware found on the system)
  • QuFirewall (limit the access your NAS based on IP, GEO and other rules)

 

By enabling Antivirus, this actually do not do any scans. You need to manually set the scan schedule. Go to Control panel/ Antivirus/Scan Jobs to set it up.

 

12. How to Enable Firewall protection on Your NAS on Day 1

Having a firewall will automatically block anyone if they do not pass tests like location or IP address. Similar to WD NAS, you can choose to have access to the admin panel ONLY when you are physically present inside your business network. Any access attempts to the control panel over the internet will be blocked. You need to open QuFirewall app and select one of these

  • Basic protection (allow your country only to access)
  • Subnets Only (allow only your local network to access)
  • Restricted security (allow access to popular services only)

 

13. How to Set and/or Change User Access Rights

As suggested before, only use non-admin accounts for daily use. Admin account is only meant to be accessed for configuration changes. Make sure that users have no access to other user data. You can create separate shared folders that can be shared. If hackers will manage to gain access to this user account, they can only destroy this user’s data and not others. If the admin account is hacked then all users will lose the data.

You can create a separate shared folder with unique access rights under Control Panel/ Shared Folders. I would have separate shared folders and user names for Multimedia, surveillance and Backups.

You can also specify different volume for each shared folder. This could also protect your data. Last ransomware attacked only volume1. Those with multiple volumes were not as affected. Especially who use volume one for OS and apps only. You can also encrypt shared folder. If someone steals your NAS, they can not see any data in this folder.

 

14. Use VPN to connect to your NAS (Norton etc.)

Never connect to your NAS via free WiFi. If you have to, use VON on your phone or computer. This will create a private network between your laptop and VPN server. No one in this free WiFi network will be able to see what you are doing. What data you are sending or receiving.

https://us.norton.com/products/norton-secure-vpn

 

15. Install an SSL (HTTPS) Certificate for Encrypted Access

If you do not have VPN installed on your laptop and you are for some reason connected to free wifi or work wifi that you do not trust, always make sure you use HTTPS in the URL. This will encrypt any user names, passwords and any other data you fill in boxes on any website. Same applies to the URL when visiting NAS applications. If for some reason it has no HTTPS/ SSL/ TLS encryption enabled, you can install a new certificate in Control Panel/ Security/ SSL & private Key tab.

 

16. How to Separate and Isolate NAS Applications

If there is a security hole within an app like Video Station, hackers will damage as much data as possible using the username from this app. If an app is using Admin-level access rights, hackers can not only damage this app but also gain access to anything else on your NAS. With Synology, you will notice that for example, Plex app has its own username and shared folder created automatically. This user has no other access. The worst hackers can do is delete or enjoy your movie collection. On QNAP you will need to create a Video user manually. Then you go to settings and allow only this user within the app. No admin.

Control panel/ multimedia console/ video station permission settings is the place to configure this. Similar steps apply to other apps.

If you go to Control panel/ user groups and click the last icon (application privilege), you can choose which apps user can have access to.

17. How to Separate Volume for Storage and the OS Installation/Storage

If you have separate volumes, this might save you from lazy hackers. In the last ransomware attack, they only targeted volume1. This saved a lot of people’s data.

You can create volumes under Storage & Snapshots / Create

 

 

18. Hide NAS IP with VPN

You can install VPN on your router or NAS. This way, no one knows what your real IP address is. This can prevent targeted attacks. Nord VPN will change your IP every 5 minutes. This is the average time hackers will need to scan through every single port on your network. So if they find open ports or vulnerabilities, it is too late. You now have a different identity. Do this only with trusted VPN service providers. At the end of the day, when you connect to any VPN server/proxy, you do not know who else is connected to that VPN.

I would use a separate MR2200ac router connected to my main router. All unsafe devices like smart plugs, light bulbs and other similar devices would connect to this individual WiFi network. These smart devices if hacked would have no access to your NAS and other important devices with sensitive data.

 

If you have Synology  router with SMR 1.3 you can avoid setting this up on your NAS itself

To use your Synology Router as a VPN client, go to Network Center > Internet > Connection > Primary Interface > VPN settings to modify the settings.

 

 

19. Alternatively, How to Use Open VPN, TeamViewer, nConnect , quWAN

You can create a VPN server on your NAS. You can then connect to your NAS via a computer client using this encrypted tunnel.

https://www.QNAP.com/en/how-to/tutorial/article/how-to-set-up-and-use-qvpn

If you own QNAP smart switches and you want to link your office with your home, use quWAN. This will link these two networks together. This will give a feeling that you NAS and other network devices are actually in the same room.

Here is some more info https://www.QNAP.com/en-uk/software/quwan

Here is a video on how to set this up.

You can also achieve similar results with two MR2200AC routers (priced at around $100 each).

20. How to Isolate smart devices VLAN (plugs, speakers etc)

This allows you to create an invisible fence in your existing network. You can connect all devices using LAN ports on your switches/router. In the management portal you can select which LAN ports can or can not tlk to each other. So this way you can connect your NAS, computer and other important devices on VLAN1 and less trustworthy devices such as smart home system and speakers on VLAN2. Even though you ports on the router are closed, these smart devices are allowed to open doors from inside. Similar to your computer. You can only received data back after your computer have sent a request to some destination. This opens a private hole in your network for this transaction. Who knows how safe those cheap smart home devices are.

Here are some cheapest devices that support VLAN

NETGEAR GS305E and MR2200ac

21. Ubiquiti unify dream machine, pfsense, Synology switch with an intrusion system

As I mentioned in the paragraph above, your devices in your local network are opening and closing holes in your network every second. If your computer has a malware infection, it will be opening ports and sending your private data to hackers. You will notice your computer being slower than usual. I would recommend going to the system monitor and checking the resources consuming most of the CPU, running time etc. Then research what is service name is about. Also, go through installed apps and see if there is something you don’t recognise. And install Antivirus and scan the system when you notice unusual activity.

If you purchase DreamMachine router, pfsense or Synology router, you will get an intrusion system built in. This will scan all your internal network devices. What ports they are opening and where data is being sent. This traffic will be compared against databases that daily update IP lists from hackers etc. These routers will also block traffic from unknown devices that run a suspiciously high number of requests.

Here are a few DreamMachine, pfsense and Synology routers/switches.

22. Firewall (IP based)

 

 

23. Backup, Backup, BACKUP!!!! Set up a QNAP NAS 3-2-1 Backup Routine

The last and most overlooked thing to do is a backup. It is not IF, but WHEN your NAS will be attacked, stolen or broken. Runing automated backups nowadays is easy. You can even make an agreement with a friend that you back up each others NAS. One reserves some space on their NAS for you, and you do the same for them. Every night or hour your data will be encrypted and stored there. Only you can access it.

We covered pretty much ALL the ways you can backup your QNAP NAS in this video below:

Quick Setup – How to secure your Network?

  1. Secure your router
    1. Check open ports and close unnecessary ports
    2. Enable firewall
    3. disable ping response
    4. disable port forwarding [if there is no firewall and other measures in place]
    5. disable router remote management option
    6. Use WPA2 or newer WiFi mode and make sure the password is strong
    7. Guest WiFi (private)
    8. Use VPN
    9. Enable automated updates
    10. VLAN (smart devices)
    11. An intrusion detection system (Synology)
  2. Redesign your internal network
    1. Keep your network devices under different network segments
    2. Use switches with built-in firewalls and filters [Ubiquiti UniFi Dream Machine or unifi software]
    3. Add physical firewall [pfsense] https://shop.netgate.com/products/1100-pfsense

 

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Test du NAS ASUSTOR AS6704T

17 octobre 2022 à 07:00
Par : Fx
ASUSTOR AS6704T 300x225 - Test du NAS ASUSTOR AS6704TL’ASUSTOR AS6704T (nom complet Lockerstor 4 Gen2) est un NAS relativement récent. Il dispose de nombreux atouts comme son processeur Quad Core Intel N5105, 4 Go de mémoire vive, 2 ports réseau 2,5 Gb/s, 4 emplacements NVMe, 4 baies pour les disques durs et SSD. En plus, il est possible de lui ajouter une carte réseau 10 Gb/s (en option). Que manque-t-il au NAS ? Son prix de 700€ est-il justifié ? Est-il vraiment performant ? Puis-je investir dans ce […]

QNAP TS-233 Plex Media Server NAS 4K & 1080p Tests – H.264 & HEVC

8 octobre 2022 à 18:00

How Well Does the QNAP TS-233 NAS Perform as a Plex Media Server?

Deciding on buying a NAS for use as your own private Plex Media Server is NOT an easy choice for many users. Although the building blocks of NAS servers are comparable to domestic PCs and Laptops, NAS systems are alot of focused/specific in their utility and for many, the price tag that many of these systems arrive with (despite having CPU+Memory combos that seem rather low-end) can be quite a barrier. Alot o NAS brands are aware of this and alongside more power/expensive systems, also have an area of their portfolio that includes a great many more affordable/value solutions for smaller scale buyers. QNAP is no exception to this and every couple of years will release a new generation affordable/value-series NAS solution that is designed to provide NAS to those of a more limited budget or task requirements. That is where the QNAP TS-233 comes in, a new ARM-powered NAS released in 2022 that promises to run the bulk of home user NAS applications without hurting your wallet too much. However, the modest specifications of these more affordable NAS drives tend to restrict Plex Media server use and many are concerned that the TS-233 NAS might not have the horsepower to get the job done. So, today I want to test the QNAP TS-233 NAS as a plex media server with 1080 and 4K media. But before we start, what is Plex? And How has it become so popular? The appeal of accessing all the movies, boxsets, music and home movies that you physically/digitally own in the style popularized by Netflix, Disney+ and Prime Video (flashy GUI, summary, all the box art, trailers, cast details, reviews and more) is undeniable. The rise in popularity of streaming platforms like Netflix has also been accompanied by rising monthly subscription costs and rising concerns about never truly owning the media that you want o watch. Even when you buy movies and TV boxsets in digital download forms from Amazon Video etc, you are still at the mercy of 1) needing somewhere to store it if you do choose to download it and 2) potentially losing access to it if the site/platform you purchased from has lost the license to host it (a common complain of the increasingly digital world of PC/Console gaming, as games are pulled from eStores). Hosting your media in a subscription-free form, whilst it still being presented in the universally accessible and premium GUI form of Plex is one of the most compelling reasons for many home/prosumer users deciding to make the jump towards buying their own plex media server. However, NAS drives have grown incredibly diverse in terms of hardware design and therefore one NAS might not play media in plex as well/efficiently as another – and the QNAP TS-233 NAS is no exception to this. Today I want to detail my tests of the TS-233 as a Plex Media Server and I hope this will help you decide whether a QNAP NAS deserves your Multimedia in 2022/2023.

What is the Hardware of the QNAP TS-233 NAS Drive?

The QNAP TS-233 NAS drive is quite similar in architecture to most PCs or Laptops (in that it features a CPU+Memory+Storage), but differs in that it’s components are designed to be more efficient (as they will be in operation 24×7) and have a larger degree of focus on storage-related applications (where as the hardware in a PC/Laptop is designed more for the applications you run with storage service concerns/provisions being far more rudimentary). The TS-233 is made up of a popular mid-range server CPU, DDR4 memory and supports Hard Drive and SSDs in SATA. although most of the specifications of QNAP NAS drives are unrelated to Plex, below I have picked up the hardware specifications of the TS-233 that are relevant to Plex:

  • CPU: Realtek ARM 64bit, Quad Core 1.4Ghz
  • Embedded Graphics: No
  • Memory (Quantity & Maximum): 2GB (Cannot be upgraded)
  • Number of Storage Bays: 2x SATA Bays
  • M.2 NVMe Caching Bays: No
  • Network Connectivity: 1x 1GbE

Next, let’s quickly touch on how we measure how good/bad the QNAP TS-233 NAS is for Plex Media Server.

Understanding the Plex Media Server Tests of the QNAP TS-233 NAS

Important Terms to Understand in Plex/NAS/Multimedia that will make the TS-233 NAS Plex Tests Easier to Understand.

  • SD, 160p, 240p, 480p, 720p, 1080p, 4K : This is the resolution that the media is being displayed at. The higher the resolution, the larger number of pixels that are available and depending on the original recording quality of the media in question. High resolutions, such as 1080p and 4K require more work to be done by the NAS hardware in order to playback the file. More often than not, a NAS with weak embedded graphics or no embedded graphics at all will be unable to play 4K very well or indeed at all. It is important to remember that just because a NAS brand like QNAP says that their latest NAS can natively play back 1080p or 4K media (natively = played using their own NAS software, software client tools and/or DLNA), that does not mean that the TS-233 will play to the same standard in Plex, as Plex is a 3rd party tool
  • Transcoding, Encoding, Decoding : These are all different techniques/names for when a file needs to be changed in order to be better suited to the connected client device connection, strength or hardware. If you are accessing all your media on the local area network (i.e only accessing your plex media at home), then transcoding will rarely be something you will use (unless your media is largely H.265/HEVC based, see earlier). However, perhaps you are accessing your plex library on the train to work or from a sun bed whilst on holiday. Perhaps you have a smaller data bandwidth/allowed MB/GB, maybe a weaker internet connection, perhaps you are using a smaller phone device and you might not need to watch your 4K 50GB Blu-ray rip of the latest Marvel Movie – in these situations, you might well want to access the media on your QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS at a lesser quality than the original version, so transcoding/re-encoding on the fly (as in, at the same time it is being played) is what you would want to do. Remember, transcoding is by far the most heavy-weight thing you will need to do on a NAS. It is also worth remembering that in order for Plex o be able to use the FULL resources of a NAS CPU (such as embedded graphics) that you will need to enable ‘Make My CPU Hurt’ in the Encoder Menu of the Plex NAS Settings menu – this also potentially requires a Plex Pass subscription, depending on the NAS in question

  • H.264, HEVC, H.265 :  These are compression techniques that are designed to allow large-scale media presentations that were made for a cinema to be viewable from your sofa (with H.265 being the more effective/powerful compression level). H.264 can largely be played by ALL devices, but many devices do not have permission or a license to play H.265/HEVC (they are the same thing). This is because, where H.264 is an easy license and comparatively free to use, H.265/HEVC licencing and patents are spread across multiple providers and allowing a device license to use this compression technique can be complex, expensive or simply impossible. Therefore HEVC/H.265 media will sometimes AUTOMATICALLY need to be converted/transcoded into H.264 etc in order to be played – therefore eating up more system resources. The TS-233, much like the rest of thte QNAP NAS range do not arrive with HEVC support by default
  • Bitrate : Bitrate is the amount of data encoded for a unit of time, and for streaming is usually referenced in megabits per second (Mbps) for video, and in kilobits per second (kbps) for audio. Higher quality and higher resolution media tends to be of a much higher bitrate

For more information on the most important terms to understand when discussing/researching a NAS as a Plex Media Server can be found in my video below:

Any further questions, you can use the free advice section at the bottom of the page and ask me and Eddie directly.

How was the QNAP TS-233 NAS Tested in Plex?

The setup for testing the TS-233 NAS for Plex was as follows:

  • The QNAP TS-233 NAS was accessed over a 1GbE network, however in order to test how the NAS would cope with transcoding/encoding, I would force the Plex Player client to transcode the file manually
  • The TS-233 NAS was used in the default CPU+Memory state that the base model arrives in (no upgraded memory or upgraded caching media)
  • Tests were performed one after the other with a short break between each test, so you might see the tail end of the previous test on a CPU graph, but I have pointed at the are of the % utilization that is important as per each test.

Regarding test results, CLEAR PASS means that the file successfully played and there were sufficient resources for the NAS to continue to do other things comfortably, PLAYED BUT HIGH CPU % means that the file played, but it utilized a significant amount of system resources in order to do so in a heavier use situation (i.e other NAS users connected) it might not play and FAIL AND-OR DID NOT PLAY means that the file either did not play or the time taken to play back the files was outpaced by the natural playback of the file – i.e. the file would stop-and-start constantly in order to try and catch up. If you want to watch the FULL video recording of all the Plex tests that I performed on the QNAP TS-233 NAS, you can watch the video below. Be warned, it is quite long! Alternatively, you can scroll past and see each of the test results, one-by-one, detailing which ones worked and which ones didn’t:

What % System Resources did the QNAP TS-233 NAS Use in Plex when Idle?

Running the Plex Media Server application, even when no multimedia is being played on the TS-233 is still going to require a % of system resources to be occupied, in order to ensure that PLEX can play media from the QNAP NAS as soon as it is requested remotely. Additionally, although Plex runs at its best with at least 2 Cores of CPU power and 2GB of Memory, many NAS also reserve areas of CPU/RAM for the system itself. So, therefore, knowing how much system resources are being consumed by the QNAP TS-233  NAS when Plex is idle is going to be useful to know how much system power is available when playback actually starts. Here is a screenshot of the TS-233 when Plex is running, but no media is being played/accessed:

Plex Test 1 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Matrix 720p 0.7Mbps h.264 Original Playback

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Matrix 720p 0.7Mbps h.264 Original Playback File Performed:

RESULT: CLEAR PASS

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 2 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Matrix 720p 0.7Mbps h.264 Transcode to 480p 1.5Mbps

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Matrix 720p 0.7Mbps h.264 Transcode to 480p 1.5Mbps File Performed:

RESULT: CLEAR PASS

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 3 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Matrix 720p 0.7Mbps h.264 Transcode to 160p 0.2Mbps

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Matrix 720p 0.7Mbps h.264 Transcode to 160p 0.2Mbps File Performed:

RESULT: PLAYED BUT HIGH CPU %

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 4 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – LSOH 1080p 1.9Mbps h.264 Original Playback

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – LSOH 1080p 1.9Mbps h.264 Original Playback File Performed:

RESULT: CLEAR PASS

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 5 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – LSOH 1080p 1.9Mbps h.264 Transcode to 480p 1.5Mbps

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – LSOH 1080p 1.9Mbps h.264 Transcode to 480p 1.5Mbps File Performed:

RESULT: PLAYED BUT HIGH CPU %

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 6 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – LSOH 1080p 1.9Mbps h.264 Transcode to 160p 0.2Mbps

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – LSOH 1080p 1.9Mbps h.264 Transcode to 160p 0.2Mbps File Performed:

RESULT: PLAYED BUT HIGH CPU %

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 7 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 3Mbps H.264 Original Playback

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 3Mbps H.264 Original Playback File Performed:

RESULT: CLEAR PASS

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 8 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 10Mbps H.264 Original Playback

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 10Mbps H.264 Original Playback File Performed:

RESULT: CLEAR PASS

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 9 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 10Mbps H.265 – HEVC CONVERTED TO H.264

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 10Mbps H.265 – HEVC CONVERTED TO H.264 File Performed:

RESULT: PLAYED BUT HIGH CPU %

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 10 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 30Mbps H.264 Original Playback

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 30Mbps H.264 Original Playback File Performed:

RESULT: FAIL AND-OR DID NOT PLAY

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 11 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 100Mbps H.264 Original Playback

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 1080p 100Mbps H.264 Original Playback File Performed:

RESULT: CLEAR PASS

Extra Notes: None


 

Plex Test 12 – QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 4K 120Mbps H.264 Original Playback – FAILED

Here is how the QNAP TS-233 Plex NAS – Jellyfish 4K 120Mbps H.264 Original Playback – FAILED File Performed:

RESULT: FAIL AND-OR DID NOT PLAY

Extra Notes: Realistically, I had zero expectations that the TS-233 would play a 4K file in plex. So this file not playing was not a huge surprise.


 

Is the QNAP TS-233 NAS Any Good outside of Plex and Where Can I buy It?

If you are interested in learning more about the QNAP TS-233 NAS Drive, I am pleased to confirm that the review here on NASCompares is already live and you can find out more about this device below.

Quick Verdict of the QNAP TS-233 NAS – What We Said in the TS-233 Review:

Overall – I would say that the QNAP TS-233 NAS Drive IS good value, although maybe not as good a value as we have seen in previous releases from the brand. On the plus side, this is by far the most modern CPU that we have seen from a NAS brand in the ‘value’ tier. After a few years of fatigue from everyone using the Realtek RTD1966, this newer and more powerful/capable Cortex A55 is a breath of fresh air and allows a larger range of QNAP services and simultaneous services to be used at once. Equally, QTS 5 seems to have taken a lot of the criticism that people have had towards QNAP in 2021, its ‘default heavy’ security, over-flexibility in its design that gave some users too much rope to hang themselves and presets – then tightened many of them up, changed how users are informed of issues, bolstered the default security tools and increased its recommendations on backup tiers. QTS still has a steeper learning curve than other NAS brands, but now thing seems a lot tighter on day 1 and changing some options that users might use carelessly has been a big part of that. The 2GB of DDR4 memory in the system is a welcome day 1 inclusion too, when many affordable systems from competitors have 512GB or 1GB (which in 2022 is rather mind-boggling), however, the lack of scalability in that memory to go higher, the default 1GbE and those USB 2.0 ports are a touch surprising from a brand that generally tends to push the envelope in the hardware department more than many others. Overall, a solid release, if a little tame and safe at times. If you are looking at entering the QNAP NAS ecosystem and are on a tight budget, the TS-233 is a solid release and excellent value.

Read the Rest of the Review HERE. Alternatively, you can find out the Pros and Cons below, as a few retailers that sell the QNAP TS-233 NAS. Thanks for reading and if you need any further help choosing the right NAS for your Plex Media Server, use the free advice section linked below. Have a great week.

SOFTWARE - 8/10
HARDWARE - 7/10
PERFORMANCE - 8/10
PRICE - 9/10
VALUE - 9/10


8.2
PROS
👍🏻Good value hardware and software at this pricepoint
👍🏻2GB of DDR4 Memory at the affordable tier is very welcome
👍🏻
👍🏻Runs the latest version of QTS 5
👍🏻
👍🏻First Value Tier NAS in the market to use the Cortex A55 Processor
👍🏻
👍🏻Quad-Core Processor is a nice bonus
👍🏻
👍🏻Inclusive AI-powered component built into the hardware
👍🏻
👍🏻USB 3.2 Gen 1 Port and Copy Button always good at the value tier
👍🏻
👍🏻Support for NAS-to-NAS/USB/Cloud backups and also supported Hybrid Storage and mounting
CONS
👎🏻1GbE in 2022 event at the value tier is underwhelming
👎🏻2x USB 2.0 Ports is equally underwhelming


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Which Backup Method is Best? NAS vs Cloud vs Tape vs USB

23 septembre 2022 à 18:00

What is the Best Way to Backup Your Data Every Day?

I know it is not going to be shocking news when I say that Data is really, really important. That should not come as a staggering fact. If you found this article thanks to a rather perceptive google search, then clearly you think data is very important too. It is all too easy to rely on your data living on multiple machines in your office or home. Centralized backup is a very unappealing idea. For a start, it is expensive. You will spend hundreds, if not thousands of pounds on storage, then you find out that you need to have it in ANOTHER location too (as otherwise, it isn’t truly a backup) and then worse still it isn’t even being spent on making more space, but actually to duplicate your old data and not be used. You are spending all this money on what can be described as a remarkably large insurance policy. Worse still if you have all the machines in your home or office backing up to a device in that same location, almost all data safety and storage experts will scream to high heaven that this is still not enough. Sadly this is true, because not only do you put yourself at risk of complete critical loss in the event of fire or flooding, but also in the case of theft you end up having all your eggs in one basket and making the thieves lives much easier. So ultimate you have to stop thinking about this only in terms of how much this storage is going to cost. If you think like that, you will never move past stage one. No, you have to think about how much will this data cost you to LOSE. Your personal media (family, events, memories), your client’s data or perhaps your surveillance data. Take a moment and think how much it would cost your business right now if you lost your data – hundreds? Thousands? Close the business? The ideal backup solution should always be based on the cost of loss, not gain! Although a little trite, it is still a reliable rule of thumb to have a 3-2-1 backup solution operation that looks like this:

  1. Primary Data (Where data is initially created/collected, the PCs, the Macs, the Phones, etc)
  2. On-site Backup solution (where multiple devices are backup’ed up to internally, also more commonly referred to as the bare-metal backup)
  3. Off-site/different location Backup (where the copy of the on-site backup lives that is separate network and/or physical location. This can range from another NAS, to a cloud provider and even a USB drive)

Stages 2 and 3 should be encrypted in case they are stolen/entered, as well as feature login credentials and an admin system in the event of them being occupied/accessed illegally. Today I want to focus on the 2nd and 3rd stages of your backup routine and help you decide the best ways to spend your budget on the most effective safety net and recovery system for your needs.

Backup and Redundancy – DO NOT GET THEM MIXED UP!

Way, WAY too many NAS (network-attached storage) or DAS (direct-attached storage) owners think their data actually have a backup layer in place when they refer to their RAID configuration, their versioning or their snapshots. These are NOT backup methods and are actually designed primarily as a means of recovering your data in the event of an HDD/SSD dying, an accidentally deleted file or rolling a file back to a previous revision. Think of RAID/Snapshots/Versioning as ‘safety nets’, The only work from INSIDE the infrastructure NOT outside of it. If the NAS server or RAID enabled DAS box does, then there is a very high chance that your data cannot be recovered via these methods (not impossible, just touch and certainly not foolproof). Below is a video that breaks down a number of different Backup and Redundancy methods inside a single NAS system:

How Expensive is a 2-Stage Backup and Do I need it?

The cost of a 2-stage backup (i.e having 2 backups of your data) operation can be measured by the amount of data you/your company produces on a daily basis. Additionally, depending on your commitment to holding onto your data (so, for business, you might have a 6 year or 12-month retention policy) there are ways to make economies in between the stages. However, whether you are a home user of a business user, there are few instances where a double-layered backup is not ideal. Let’s look at this from a business and home user point of view:

Why Business and Enterprise users need an Extensive Data Backup Plan

Example. Your company has 10 employees. Each has their own workstation and they contact clients on a daily basis to drum up new sales, fulfil existing quotes and maintain a customer relationship manager (CRM). You have both #1 AND #2 stage backups (so local PCs and A NAS in-house maybe) covered. Plus you have business insurance in case of a fire or flood. One morning you arrive to find your office has been flooded/burnt/burgled/struck by lightning and everything is fried. At first, you think, lucky we have insurance. They will pay up for whole new office equipment, PCs and your server. However, what about all that customer data? Not only can the insurance company not replace it but they will not pay its consequential value (with VERY few insurance policies covering data recovery services). So now you have to start from square 1. Plus now you also have a bundle of rather angry customers from the previous days and weeks whose requirements go unfulfilled. This coupled with starting your business network from scratch, employees salaries continuing as normal and several IT guys (or 1 guy working for days) setting everything up from scratch again (this WILL be the case from fire, flood or theft) could easily KILL a company. Now, in that context, isn’t a few thousand put towards an off-site #3 Backup so bad? Thought not.

Why Home and Private users need an Extensive Data Backup Plan Too

Ok, so a home user has a smaller ecosystem to maintain and now the mission-critical data and the life or death nature of your information is less so. Or is it? Example #2. What about all those important house documents you’ve scanned? Those TV shows and movies you bought on a one time download? What about your wedding picture or those of your children growing up? Those videos of your friends and relatives that are no longer with us? Not to be bleak, but it is often the case that although much of a person’s data is not of huge financial value, it is still utterly and completely irreplaceable in the literal sense.

Likewise, if your many devices (phones, computers, hard drives) get corrupted, hacked with malware/ransomware or simply broken, don’t you want the peace of mind of knowing that there is always a backup of EVERYTHING? If you are copying the data of all your devices to a large hard drive enclosure in your home, this is NOT a perfect backup. It just protects you from the loss of one or more of your mobile/individual devices. Additionally, the minute you start deleting files on your phone/laptop to ‘make some space because it is already backed up on the NAS‘, your NAS is not a backup, it is the single repository for that data!  So, as you can see, the need for a reliable true backup is paramount regardless of whether you are a home user or business user. However accepting that you need a backup is not enough, you need to know what to consider when choosing the right backup. Home users and their data volume/frequency can always consider USB backups of course, which can be good but only upto the time that the last backup took place AND on the assumption that the USB drive is stored offsite periodically.

What are the factors I need to take into account when considering my Backup Solution?

Choosing the best full backup for your data can be a little difficult. With so many variables ranging from cost to size to speed and more, it can be easy to go around in circles and still end up choosing nothing. In almost all cases, the deciding factor is cost. However, this is closely followed by speed. Having a backup is all well and good, but if it takes too long to finish, it can often be slower than the speed at which you create data and create a bottleneck. Likewise, if you choose an unsuitable connection of choice between your primary backup storage and/or off-site 2nd backup storage, then they may communicate inefficiently. Below are the main overheads to consider when choosing your backup.

Distance & Speed – How far is the 2nd backup going to be from the primary backup and/or primary data source? Unless you are considering fibre cabling between different physical sites, you are going to be limited by your upload/download speed and if your network is busy with multiple users, then you will need to provision priority of service to these backup connections, or else risk it affecting day to day operation (particularly VoIP connections – a growing necessity in 2022 with shifting patterns in the way we are working during/ost pandemic). The local connections between your client devices in-house and the primary backup may well only be using an internet network/LAN to communicate, but that can still become oversaturated. So be sure to provision switches where appropriate too (we will touch on 10GbE later)

Power (Watts etc) – The power of the hardware inside the primary (bare-metal) data storage device, secondary backup target and (depending on your setup) even the power of your client hardware in house is also an important factor to take into consideration when scaling and provisioning an appropriate backup strategy. Critical power failure (i.e a power cut) in one or more of these locations can not only result in some data not being backed up, but more importantly can compromise the backups themselves, with some systems suffering critical hardware failure and SSD/HDD damage in the process. It is HIGHLY recommended for users who are considering a private server for their data have it connected to the mains power via a USB device, in order to allow the system to still operate in the event of power failure AND shut itself down safely.

Physical Media – The server of choice for your primary backup is only half of the battle. The media that you are storing the data too can make a huge impact too. Many have their own maximum speed or capacity, so even with a super-fast enclosure and/or connection, you will be bottlenecked by the drives themselves. All media types e.g. HDD, SSD or Tape have their own maximum performance and some are lower than the connection maximum and some are faster and therefore end up creating a limited speed inadvertently. This can be negated in a number of ways. These range from the use of RAID (redundant array of independent disks) that combines media into single storage pools that benefit from redundancy (i.e a safety net if one drive dies) and/or increases in performance. Additionally, you can look at SSD caching, a service that is particularly popular in private NAS servers released after around 2018 and continues to be included in most systems. SSD caching allows the system to have one of more SSDs installed and then utilize the increased performance they offer to benefit write actions (i.e you write data onto the SSDs first and then the NAS moves it over to the slower HDDs afterwards) and/or read actions (where the most frequently accessed files are cloned onto the SSDs and it speeds up their access to client devices) though this is less useful for backups, it is still a useful option.

The Media connection internally – As mentioned, the SATA port on most commercial HDD/SSD has a maximum of 6 gigabits (Gbs) in SATA III – SAS at 12 Gigabits. All of these are internal and are maximum bandwidths available to each media drive installed in each bay. However, realistically, most typical Hard Drives max out at 272MB/s at the very top end (and even then, this is using enterprise-grade HDDs) and most conventional 2.5″ SSDs (with the exception of U.2 and U.3) max out at about 550MB/s). So you are going to need several of these drives inside your primary backup system in a decent RAID configuration to facilitate performance AND redundancy (like a RAID 5 or RAID 5). For your external/2nd backup target, a lot of enterprise users take advance of cold storage such as tape drive media. Designed to be used for data that needs to be held for insurance/archive for years and years, the current highest generation of tape architecture is is LTO-9 = 400MB/s in uncompressed/RAW form and 1000MB/s in compressed, with storage capacities per tape hitting 45 Terabytes! However, a full backup would take (at best, so with everything at full!) over 12 hours to transfer. Additionally, tape backup is fantastically expensive and therefore largely enterprise only as an option.

The external connection – Lastly and possibly the most overlooked part, is the communication between your primary client devices to send data, the primary backup data and the secondary backup. Not just the speed, but the resilience and future-proofing. You need to consider what connection you are going to use today, tomorrow and years from now. The last thing you want is to saddle yourself with a connection now and later when you upgrade your primary hardware on individual clients or locations, end up with a device you cannot access or use with an unchangeable bottleneck. Then your data just becomes a chore to access at best and potentially days or weeks or time to restore. Popular connections and their speed between host and client devices are:

Network Backups (backups that share a LAN or vLANs in a greater network)

  • 1GBe LAN/Ethernet = 1Gbit/s, or 100-109MB/s
  • 2.5GbE LAN/Ethernet = 2.5Gbit/s, or 250-270MB/s
  • 5GbE LAN/Ethernet = 5Gbit/s, or 500-545MB/s
  • 10GbE LAN/Ethernet = 10Gbit/s, or 1000-1024MB/s

USB and local Backups directly connected and stored offsite

  • USB 3.0 (3.2 Gen 1) = 5 Gbit/s
  • USB 3.2 Gen 2= 10 Gbit/s
  • USB 3.2×2 = 20 Gbit/s
  • Thunderbolt 3 & Thunderbolt 4 = 40 Gbit/s

Fast Local Backups or Direct Connections over large distances

  • Fibrechannel / FC – 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, and 128 gigabit per second rates depending to start
  • Tape Based backups, such as LTO 7,8,9 – 300/360/400MB/s uncompressed and 750/900/1000MB/s compressed
  • Cloud storage – dependant on connection. Additionally, factors such as upload and download speeds, fair usage policies and more affect the performance. If you are fortunate to have a 1 Gigabit internet connection, that means around 100MB/s for download speeds and a fraction of that for upload speeds

So, as you can see, there are many choices out there for a means of sending backup between the 1st, 2nd and 3rd parts of your backup environment.

What is the Difference in Speed and Cost between different Backup Solutions?

And so to the meat of the subject. Different solutions cost money and in the interests of SPEED, below i have detailed numerous solutions that will provide a backup solution of upto 10TB of storage. All Costs and speeds are based on a solution that is an acceptable distance away for maximum efficiency. Perfect speed results were provided with http://www.calctool.org/ , however, it is worth noting that these are ‘perfect situation’ based and it would be tough to see this maximum threshold. you will comfortably see around 10-20% below this, but that is fine. Finally, it is always worth remembering that the speeds mentioned below are based on an initial 10 Terabyte backup. After that, there is the likely possibility that future backups will be much more granular (this can also be referred to as differential backups, where only the changed files are backed up each time afterwards). But some users may wish to take advantage of time managed backups, where a full backup per day is kept, for X number of days (when eventually the newest backup will overwrite the oldest on rotation).

ALSO IMPORTANT – In all examples where a 4TB SSD (which average around £350-400 over SATA) is mentioned, you can use a 4TB HDDs at around £75-100 (brand depending) to save a considerable sum – but you will effective quadruple or more the time the initial backups will take. Likewise, future incremental backups will be significantly reduced also.  In examples where the SSD would have been substantially bottlenecked by a connection, I have used HDD as you will not need to spend the extra.

The Best Value 1/2.5GbE based Backup Solution for 10TB of data

For a solid LAN based backup (with optional internet access as needed for off-site work) I would recommend the Synology DS220+ 2 Bay Pentium NAS at around £250. Alongside this, you will need a smart Switch (to take advantage of LAG and 2GbE, 2x 10TB HDD at £230 each as you will not see any speed difference on a network connection with SSD (RAID 1). This will cost around just under £800. Alternatively, there have been other improvements in the base level ethernet connectivity in 2-4 Bay NAS solutions in the last few years, with 2.5GbE or even 5GbE available on the likes of the QNAP TS-x53D, TS-x73A or Asustor Lockerstor 2/4 series. These solutions arrive at only a fraction more and although they can possibly add another £100-200 to the price tag, this can be offset by time saved in the backup operations AND by purchasing a 4-Bay NAS over a 2-Bay and leveraging the price vs the redundancy vs the capacity (eg instead of 2x 10TB in RAID 1, purchasing 4x 3TB and getting better performance and an extra 2TB in RAID 5).

What do CalcTool.org have to say about 1GBe

CalcTool.org

Over 1 Gigabit per second, in a perfect scenario – just over 20 hours. Realistically closer to 25 or 30 hours. SO the first few backups should be conducted over the weekend but all future ‘difference only’ backups should be fin at 12-hour intervals without harming the bandwidth too much, Likewise, you can scale this down as you utilize link aggregation (also known as port trunking, when ports are combined) and/or 2.5GbE/5GbE to reduce this figure down to 8 hours or just 4 hours respectively.

The Best Value 10GBe Network-Based Solution for 10TB of Data

In order to create the perfect cost-effective yet powerful 10GBe Network-based backup solution (so 10x faster than normal LAN) I would recommend the QNAP TS-431X3 with 10GBe  (at around £450) with SFP+ Connection and  SFP+ Cables with transceivers attached (Cable price dependant on length and transceivers). Additionally, you will need a 10GBe switch (at least £150 realistically), and for MAXIMUM speed 4x 4TB Seagate Ironwolf 125 SSD (at £450 per drive) in a RAID 5 which slows things a pinch but gives you the safety of 1 drive worth of redundancy. Of course, you can downgrade to Seagate Ironwolf 4TB Hard drives (at £85 per drive) and save over £1500, but you will see a noticeable dip in performance of around 200-400MB/s (NAS dependant). So the choice is yours. Lastly, you will need a 10GBe interface on the machine(s) you are backing up from in order to maintain the 10GBe throughput (or alternatively just have the NAS on a 10GbE connection and the clients all on 1GbE with bandwidth being shared as appropriate). In total this will cost around £2400+ for the SSD based solution and just £900-1000 for the HDD solution. None of this is set in stone, of course, you can scale things in a number of ways, using bigger NAS solutions (i.e. more bays) or using multiple 10GbE connections in LAG/Trunked connections.

What do CalcTool.org have to say about 10GBe

CalcTool.org

The performance will largely be dictated by the distance of the backups, choice of HDD or SSD and types of files. However, over 10 Gigabit per second, in a perfect scenario – just over 2 hours. However this is a little optimistic and in practice, it will realistically weigh in closer to 3+ hours, as the complexity of the files (thousand so smaller emails and documents or fewer BIG media files, everyone is different). This of course is for the first few backups of a FULL 10 Terabytes of data. Later with incremental and ‘difference only’ backups, you will see times slashed heavily for the better.

The Cost of Thunderbolt 1, 2 or 3 Backup Solutions for 10TB of data

Fast becoming a connection of choice for photo and video editors in both the Mac and Windows community, Thunderbolt is the no-fuss connection that promises speed, without the technical nonsense. Much like before you can choose to go with SSD drives for supreme speed (at a hefty price tag) or HDD if you want to make economies. Below are the options best suited for a Thunderbolt 1 (although still legacy, still is in use), Thunderbolt 2 and Thunderbolt 3 Backups:

  • TB 1 DAS, 4-Bay, Cable, 4x 4TB SSD, RAID 5 enabled = £3000+ —- 2Hours + Backup time with SSD population / 3.5+ Hour for HDD Population
  • TB 2 DAS, 4-Bay, Cable, 4x 4TB SSD, RAID 5 enabled = £3500+ —-  1 Hour + Backup time with SSD population / 2-3+ Hour for HDD Population
  • TB 3 DAS, 4-Bay, Cable, 4x 4TB SSD, RAID 5 enabled = £4500+ —- 30-45min + Backup time with SSD population / 1.5 Hour for HDD Population

What do CalcTool.org have to say about Thunderbolt 1, 2 and 3

CalcTool.orgThunderbolt does not lose speed over distance, however, most conventional cables you can buy max out around 5 metres and the ones included with the above enclosures arrive at 1-1.8m. In a real-world scenario you can realistically double this length of time listed above in the initial backups. However, it will MASSIVELY improve with subsequent backups. With the exception of a few, most Thunderbolt backups arrive with only Thunderbolt ports, so in order to maintain the speed levels of this backup, you need to either ensure that it is connected to your centralised depositary via Thunderbolt, or if it’s backing up multiple devices, that they are using a good networking device, as Thunderbolt Direct attached storage only allows a single connected device at any one time.

The Price, Speed & Suitability LTO-7, LTO-8 and LTO-9 Tape Backup 10TB Solutions

In the case of LTO / tapes, this kind of storage for 10TB can be incredibly inefficient for an extra layer of storage. You can purchase much smaller 1 and 2 tape frames/storage devices, but for what you are paying and the overall accessibility for all machines involved, it isn’t great. If you were regularly backing up 5x or 10x this amount of storage, it would be a different story. Internal operations can be upto 1000MB/s with compressed data and 400MB for raw uncompressed data. SO unless you are synchronizing between two LTO tape loading machines, you will almost certainly use uncompressed. However these are internal operations and as we are discussing backing up from existing systems to a storage device, we have to focus on the external connection. Most likely 10GBe network or 12GB/s SAS will be the means of backing up to your tape device. But Cost is hard to pin – easily £2000-3000 and upwards, over at least two tapes (capacity differed at each LTO generation) etc. Most likely around over  1-3 hours transfer time, but hugely impractical at this scale and most likely much higher in practice. Definite a good option for those at the enterprise tier, but anything less will be squandering their budgets significant with a weak ROI.

The Best Value USB 3.2 Gen 2 Backup Solution for 10TB of data

The latest available version of USB, also known as USB 3.1 Gen 2, is easily the cheapest way to store a 10TB backup at a very respectable 10 Gb/s (comparable to Thunderbolt 1) speed. You will need to ensure that the connected device(s) that you are backing up too/from use the newer USB 3.1 Gen 2 port to ensure you do not get bottlenecked at 5 Gb/s, but this Highpoint 6124V RAID 5 enabled USB 2 Gen 2 DAS enclosure arrives at £350+ and if populated with either 4x 4TB SSD or 4x HDD (same price difference as before), RAID 5 enabled = £2100+ for an SSD Based solution and just £700+ for a HDD based version

What do CalcTool.org have to say about USB 3.1 Gen 2?

CalcTool.orgWith the best drives available you will have this 10TB localized backup over USB 3.1 Gen 2 finished in just over 2 hours. However taking system overheads into consideration, as well as the RAID 5 into account (something you could counter with a RAID 10 and 4x 6TB HDD perhaps) you are looking at between 2.5 and 3.5 hours completion. Additionally, a number of NAS Drive vendors have started implementing USB 3.2 Gen 2 in their systems, which means that a 10Gb/s USB DAS solution can be used as a means of creating a secondary backup by connecting it with your primary backup and running one of the many free backup/sync tools that NAS systems include with your purchase. Just remember that in order for this to be a truly safe 2nd tier backup, it cannot constantly reside in the same location as the primary backup.

Is Cloud Suitable as a 10TB Backup solution?

You may wonder why I have not suggested the cloud as a regular backup yet. It is certainly appealing. No parts are needed, just a healthy internet connection. You already have all the hardware you will need to establish this kind of synchronised backup – this should be by far the cheapest and easiest backup, right? Well yes and no. It IS cheap – in the short-term. Even if you take into account that your Business internet connection costs, from as little as £10 to £50 a month, reaching much higher once you consider fiber channelling, it is still pretty attractive. However you have to consider the time this backup will take and how it will affect the bandwidth throughout your business – otherwise, you will need to be conducted them overnight due to limit consumption. Some brands, such as Synology with their C2 platform, have rolled in an additional cloud service alongside their bare-metal solution. This is intended to be used as an alternative means of accessing an existing storage area that is synchronized with your NAS/local solution remotely (as well as benefiting from significantly easier remote access to data). NAS+Cloud can serve as a great 2-3/double backup option, as well as ensuring that your backups are in very different physical locations. Lastly, with intelligent caching and background synchronization between the NAS-THE CLOUD-CLIENT HARDWARE happening, a lot of the actual backing up can be hugely incremental and lessen the impact on the end-user, whether they are local to the NAS or remotely communicating with the C2 cloud (or 3rd party clouds such as Google Drive and Dropbox that are synced with the NAS). But what about the cloud on its own, not used in tandem with a NAS/Private server?

The first thing to factor in is the data being sent TO the cloud. Remember we are talking about Uploads, not downloads (downloads and a backup should only be considered during recovery, not day to day operations). Most internet services advertise incredible download speeds, but backups are almost exclusively upload based and upload speeds are normally a 10th or less than advertised download speeds. lastly, we can talk about costs. As although the initial costs are much less, let’s go for £50 a month for a dedicated high upload speed connection privately (closer to £500 for a business line) for your off-site backup. That is £600 a year. In 5 years, that is £3,000 (a cost that is the same or higher than most of the solutions discussed previously). The real kicker is that after those 5 years, you either have to continue paying to maintain this backup OR buy a suitable local storage drive to download it too – something you could have had ALREADY by going for the other solutions and thereby saving you thousands of pounds more.

I took the trouble of using the awesome tool at http://www.thecloudcalculator.com/ and if you have a 30Mbps upload speed (fairly respectable and the entry point outside of central city hubs). backing up 10TB initially would take  33 Days, 22 Hours, and 27 Minutes, 11 Seconds

That is horrendously long and you cannot just assume this is a one-off and negotiable with incremental backups and difference-only changes. You need a reliable and adaptive backup solution – not one that will do the job as long as you work within its limits. If you want to entertain the idea of a cloud-based backup of 10TB on a regular basis, we have to look into fiber and at least 2Gbps (so 2000 Megabits) to get to 12 hours for an overnight full backup (non-incremental). This is going to cost a small fortune and unless you intend to take advantage of this speed during the day-time, is a huge outlay for something that is not hugely accessible or reliable.

So, those are your options. Remember you are not limited to just ONE option and each of these solutions can be used in combinations, depending on your budget, physical environment, internet speeds or volume of client devices. In summary:

NAS BACKUPS USB DAS BACKUPS THUNDERBOLT BACKUPS TAPE BACKUPS CLOUD BACKUPS
Price (more ★ = Higher Price) ★★★★★ ★★★★ ★★★★ ★★★★★ ★★★★★
Value (more ★ = more for your money) ★★★★★ ★★★★ ★★★★★ ★★★★ ★★★★
Scalability (more ★ = can grow more) ★★★★★ ★★★★★ ★★★★★ ★★★★★
Complexity (more ★ = more complex) ★★★★★ ★★★★
Speed (more ★ = faster) ★★★★★ ★★★★ ★★★★ ★★★★
User/Usage Type Home & Business Home and Local Home and Local Enterprise Remote
What to Buy

Thanks for reading! Need any more help? Why not take advantage of the free advice section below. It is genuinely free, supported by voluntary donations and ad revenue. Nothing is done with your email address and all questions are answered by two humans – Me (Robbie) and Eddie the Web Guy!

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This description contains links to Amazon. These links will take you to some of the products mentioned in today's content. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Visit the NASCompares Deal Finder to find the best place to buy this device in your region, based on Service, Support and Reputation - Just Search for your NAS Drive in the Box Below

Need Advice on Data Storage from an Expert?

We want to keep the free advice on NASCompares FREE for as long as we can. Since this service started back in Jan '18, We have helped hundreds of users every month solve their storage woes, but we can only continue to do this with your support. So please do choose to buy at Amazon US and Amazon UK on the articles when buying to provide advert revenue support or to donate/support the site below. Finally, for free advice about your setup, just leave a message in the comments below here at NASCompares.com and we will get back to you. Need Help? Where possible (and where appropriate) please provide as much information about your requirements, as then I can arrange the best answer and solution to your needs. Do not worry about your e-mail address being required, it will NOT be used in a mailing list and will NOT be used in any way other than to respond to your enquiry. [contact-form-7]     Terms and Conditions Alternatively, why not ask me on the ASK NASCompares forum, by clicking the button below. This is a community hub that serves as a place that I can answer your question, chew the fat, share new release information and even get corrections posted. I will always get around to answering ALL queries, but as a one-man operation, I cannot promise speed! So by sharing your query in the ASK NASCompares section below, you can get a better range of solutions and suggestions, alongside my own.  

How to Test Your Plex Media Server NAS – 4K, 1080p, HDR, HEVC and UHD Files to Download

26 août 2022 à 01:06

Recommended Files to Test Your Plex Media Server NAS

If you are considering buying/building your own Plex Media server (or even want to test the capabilities of your existing Plex server), then you may have discovered that it is actually a lot harder to bench-test your multimedia system than it should be. Notwithstanding the fact that very, VERY few people are running the exact same server setup (even two people buying the same NAS drive might have different HDDs, SSDs, memory, caching, directories, network traffic and more), but then you need to factor in that the depth, frequency and volume of everyone’s media collection will differ wildly. One user might have a simple Nvidia Shield + external USB drive setup and mostly 1080P, another running a Synology DS920+ NAS and a tonne of 4K, meanwhile, user number 3 is a highly audio-focused user that wants to use pristine, flawless raw audio to their smart home speakers from their Plex library – These are just three setups and each is INCREDIBLY different in it’s hardware requirements! So, when you are in the market for a new server for your Plex system, or simply want to check your current setup does the job), it is recommended to run a benchmark by playing some ranged media that will stress test different areas of multimedia playback on your Plex server. I have been running Plex Media Server tests on NAS drives for a  number of years (a FULL PLEX TEST PLAYLIST can be found HERE on the NASCompares YouTube) and although I include fairly standard multimedia testing using familiar movies and TV shows, I have also used a tremendously thorough range of files known as the ‘JellyFish Files‘. This is an incredible range of files that cover everything from a 2MB sized 480p, low bitrate, H.264, all the way upto an insanely high end 1.4 GIGABYTE 400Mbps 4K UHD HEVC HDR file – ALL of which are the same 30 second media file. These files can be added to your Plex Media Server and playing them, whilst monitoring your system’s hardware and resource utilization will help you understand the limitations of your system and what the system can/cannot play natively, as well as what impact files that need on-the-fly conversion (known predominantly as ‘transcoding’ and we will cover that later). The original source website and author location of the JellyFish files has become vague over the years (with the original repository that I originally found them and credit, being a dead website now in 2022), however, I am often asked if I still have access to the Jellyfish archive and if I can share them. The answer to that first question is YES, but the 2nd question takes a little longer to answer. I tried to backlink/direct users to the repository for a long time, as well as locate the original author (feeling that it is not my work to feely distribute) but hit something of a wall and after my bazillion’th requests, I have decided to create a shared drive for ALL these files. Below are the links to the FULL range of JellyFish files for testing your Plex NAS, but before you proceed, there are a few things you need t keep in mind before you proceed:

Understanding the Jellyfish Files and the File Formats, Quality and Density on a Plex NAS Benchmark Test

Before you start testing your Plex Media Sever and its multimedia capabilities, it is worth taking a moment to understand the terminology and variations of media files. You could have two copies of ‘Marvel’s Avengers Endgame’, both in 4K, but due to variations in their bitrate, their compression technique and their file format/codec and one will play much, MUCH better than another on your system. Although there are many kinds of ways you can clarify your multimedia files, the FOUR most important variables/standards to check are Bitrate, Resolution, Codec and Video Compression Standard. Take a moment to learn about what these are and their impact using the glossary below:

  • Bitrate – Bitrate is the number of bits per second. The symbol is bit/s. It generally determines the size and quality of video and audio files: the higher the bitrate, the better the quality, and the larger the file size because of File size = bitrate (kilobits per second) x duration. In most cases, 1 byte per second (1 B/s) corresponds to 8 bit/s. Video bitrate affects video quality in several ways. First, it is the key measure of any video file size. Secondly, high video bitrate results in high video quality and low bitrates result in poor video quality. However, using an extremely high bitrate is just a waste of bandwidth. In general, a higher bitrate will accommodate higher image quality in the video output, only when comparing the same video with the same resolution. Bitrates should be expected to go up whenever the resolution goes up, as more data is being processed. Therefore, high video bitrate may provide excellent quality, but it can also place a major strain on your hardware which can result in stutters.
  • Resolution – Video resolution determines the amount of detail in your video or how realistic and clear the video appears. It’s measured by the number of pixels contained in the standard aspect ratio of 16:9, the most common aspect ratio for television and computer monitors. A higher number of pixels indicates a higher resolution and a lower number of pixels makes for a low-resolution video. For the common resolutions of 720 and 1080, the naming convention is based on the total number of pixels running in a vertical line down the display area. For 2K, 4K or 8K video, the resolution is named for the number of pixels running in a horizontal line across the frame. Previously, the resolution has been divided between standard definition (SD video) and high definition (HD video). Anything below 720 is considered standard definition. However, as screen resolutions on computer monitors and televisions continue to improve, it’s less likely for anything to be shot in SD.
  • The difference between video resolution and frame rate – Digital videos are made up of thousands of still images played in sequence. While resolution refers to the amount of data in the frame, frame rate refers to how quickly those frames are cycled through, or how many stills are packed into each second. As with video resolution, choose your video’s frame rate based on the type of motion you’re trying to capture and the type of video formats you expect to release to your audience.
  • Codec – Codecs are the oxygen of the streaming media market; no codecs, no streaming media. From shooting video to editing to encoding our streaming media files for delivery, codecs are involved every step of the way. Many video producers also touch the DVD-ROM and Blu-ray markets, as well as broadcast, and codecs play a role there as well. Codecs are compression technologies and have two components, an encoder to compress the files, and a decoder to decompress. There are codecs for data (PKZIP), still images (JPEG, GIF, PNG), audio (MP3, AAC) and video (Cinepak, MPEG-2, H.264, VP8). It’s important to distinguish codecs from container formats, though sometimes they share the same name. Briefly, container formats, or wrappers, are file formats that can contain specific types of data, including audio, video, closed captioning text, and associated metadata. Though there are some general-purpose container formats, like QuickTime, most container formats target one aspect of the production and distribution pipeline, like MXF for file-based capture on a camcorder, and FLV and WebM for streaming Flash and WebM content.
  • HEVC, H.264 and H.265 – H.264 (AVC) and H.265 (HEVC) are both standards for video compression used in recording and distributing digital video. Why would you choose one over the other? The main difference between H.264 and H.265 is how each processes information and the resulting video file size and bandwidth consumption used with each standard. H.264 processes frames of video using macroblocks, while H.265 processes information using coding tree units (CTUs). CTUs process information more efficiently, which results in a smaller file size and less bandwidth used for your streaming video. H.264 (also called AVC, or Advanced Video Coding) is an industry-standard for video compression that allows for the recording, compression, and distribution of digital video content. H.265 is newer and more advanced than H.264 in several ways. H.265 (also called HEVC, or High-Efficiency Video Coding) allows for further reduced file size, and therefore reduced required bandwidth, of your live video streams.

There are several other terms that are more appropriate to Plex that it might be worth getting school’d up on, but these are optional and you can learn about them below in my video on Plex NAS servers for Dummies:

Where to Download the Files to Test Your Plex Media Server NAS

As mentioned, the Jellyfish files comprise a wide range of files that, although all the same 30 secs of jellyfish playing around in the sea, comprise around 56 files of varying degrees of quality and size. You can use the links below to head over to google drive for each specific file (each link opens in a new tab). Then you can use the download option at the top right corner to  download the file to your local machine:

For those looking to bulk-download, I am afraid that due to reasons of bandwidth hogging (when I shared these files with people in the past) and the sheer weight of these files, I have opted to keep these on a Google Drive shared drive. You should be able to add these files and bulk download them from inside your own Google Drive account, or you can message me directly for the full download link by contacting me directly using the contact section at the bottom of the page. Otherwise, here is the full range of Jellyfish files to download and test your Plex Media server NAS server or DIY/ByO system:

Filename
(Click to Download)
Bitrate
(Overall)
Resolution Codec File
Size
jellyfish-3-mbps-hd-h264.mkv Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 11 MB
jellyfish-3-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 11 MB
jellyfish-3-mbps-hd-hevc-10bit.mkv Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 11 MB
jellyfish-5-mbps-hd-h264.mkv Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 18 MB
jellyfish-5-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 18 MB
jellyfish-10-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 10 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 36 MB
jellyfish-10-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 10 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 36 MB
jellyfish-10-mbps-hd-hevc-10bit.mkv 10 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 36 MB
jellyfish-15-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 15 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 53 MB
jellyfish-15-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 15 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 53 MB
jellyfish-20-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 20 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 71 MB
jellyfish-20-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 20 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 75 MB
jellyfish-20-mbps-hd-hevc-10bit.mkv 20 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 75 MB
jellyfish-25-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 25 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 89 MB
jellyfish-25-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 25 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 93 MB
jellyfish-30-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 30 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 106 MB
jellyfish-30-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 30 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 110 MB
jellyfish-35-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 35 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 126 MB
jellyfish-35-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 35 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 129 MB
jellyfish-40-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 40 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 142 MB
jellyfish-40-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 40 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 146 MB
jellyfish-40-mbps-hd-hevc-10bit.mkv 40 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 146 MB
jellyfish-45-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 45 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 160 MB
jellyfish-45-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 45 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 166 MB
jellyfish-50-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 50 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 180 MB
jellyfish-50-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 50 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 182 MB
jellyfish-55-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 55 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 208 MB
jellyfish-55-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 55 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 199 MB
jellyfish-60-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 60 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 213 MB
jellyfish-60-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 60 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 220 MB
jellyfish-60-mbps-hd-hevc-10bit.mkv 60 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 218 MB
jellyfish-70-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 70 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 251 MB
jellyfish-70-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 70 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 256 MB
jellyfish-80-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 80 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 286 MB
jellyfish-80-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 80 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 290 MB
jellyfish-90-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 90 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 322 MB
jellyfish-90-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 90 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 329 MB
jellyfish-90-mbps-hd-hevc-10bit.mkv 90 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 330 MB
jellyfish-100-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 100 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 358 MB
jellyfish-100-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 100 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 365 MB
jellyfish-110-mbps-hd-h264.mkv 110 Mbps 1920×1080 H.264 394 MB
jellyfish-110-mbps-hd-hevc.mkv 110 Mbps 1920×1080 HEVC 401 MB
jellyfish-120-mbps-4k-uhd-h264.mkv 120 Mbps 3840×2160 H.264 431 MB
jellyfish-120-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv 120 Mbps 3840×2160 HEVC 438 MB
jellyfish-140-mbps-4k-uhd-h264.mkv 140 Mbps 3840×2160 H.264 502 MB
jellyfish-140-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv  140 Mbps 3840×2160 HEVC 525 MB
jellyfish-160-mbps-4k-uhd-h264.mkv 160 Mbps 3840×2160 H.264 573 MB
jellyfish-160-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv 160 Mbps 3840×2160 HEVC 586 MB
jellyfish-180-mbps-4k-uhd-h264.mkv 180 Mbps 3840×2160 H.264 647 MB
jellyfish-180-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv 180 Mbps 3840×2160 HEVC 658 MB
jellyfish-200-mbps-4k-uhd-h264.mkv 200 Mbps 3840×2160 H.264 718 MB
jellyfish-200-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv 200 Mbps 3840×2160 HEVC 731 MB
jellyfish-250-mbps-4k-uhd-h264.mkv 250 Mbps 3840×2160 H.264 897 MB
jellyfish-250-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv 250 Mbps 3840×2160 HEVC 914 MB
jellyfish-300-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv 300 Mbps 3840×2160 HEVC 1.0 GB
jellyfish-400-mbps-4k-uhd-hevc-10bit.mkv 400 Mbps 3840×2160 HEVC 1.4 GB

There you have it, those are the Jellyfish files for testing your Plex server. If you are still on the fence about the best plex media server NAS drive you should consider buying, you can use my article below that highlights the drives I would personally recommend and why:

(Click Below to view this article)

 

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This description contains links to Amazon. These links will take you to some of the products mentioned in today's content. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Visit the NASCompares Deal Finder to find the best place to buy this device in your region, based on Service, Support and Reputation - Just Search for your NAS Drive in the Box Below

Need Advice on Data Storage from an Expert?

We want to keep the free advice on NASCompares FREE for as long as we can. Since this service started back in Jan '18, We have helped hundreds of users every month solve their storage woes, but we can only continue to do this with your support. So please do choose to buy at Amazon US and Amazon UK on the articles when buying to provide advert revenue support or to donate/support the site below. Finally, for free advice about your setup, just leave a message in the comments below here at NASCompares.com and we will get back to you. Need Help? Where possible (and where appropriate) please provide as much information about your requirements, as then I can arrange the best answer and solution to your needs. Do not worry about your e-mail address being required, it will NOT be used in a mailing list and will NOT be used in any way other than to respond to your enquiry. [contact-form-7]     Terms and Conditions Alternatively, why not ask me on the ASK NASCompares forum, by clicking the button below. This is a community hub that serves as a place that I can answer your question, chew the fat, share new release information and even get corrections posted. I will always get around to answering ALL queries, but as a one-man operation, I cannot promise speed! So by sharing your query in the ASK NASCompares section below, you can get a better range of solutions and suggestions, alongside my own.  

❌