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Sans Digital Synology DS-107

Need more spaces where you can save your data and share them with other computers on your network? If so, then you must check out our review on the Synology’s DS-107, a network attached server (NAS), which not only server as an external storage but also serve as a multimedia station, printer station, and comes with other great features. Check out what’s packed in this NAS and see how it performs.

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INTRODUCTION

Most of us probably have more than one PC in our home and the need for sharing data among these computers is a task which we do frequently. There are many ways which users can share data, such as a simple portable device, like a USB memory stick, a floppy, CD-RW, or external storage can all do a good job transfer data from one computer to the other. On the other hand, multiple systems can share files across the network simply by enabling Windows File Sharing feature to tranfer data among the computers that are connected to the same network. These methods all work but they each have their limitations. For example the external storage devices would require being physically moved from one computer to the next, and windows file sharing would only allow the network connected systems to share data when both systems are turned on. This is where a simple Network Attached Server (NAS) would be a great way to share data among networked systems.

A simple server can be simply an old system that it stores the shared data or as complicated as a business oriented Server. Of course the converting an old computer to a server is probably the cheapest way to go, however, an old PC will take up a large space and it may also consumes quite a lot of power when it’s running 24/7 and maybe slightly troublesome to maintain and configure. A NAS on the other hand takes just slightly larger space than the hard drive it encloses and it obviously consumes much less power than a full PC. Lately, the price of NAS has dropped quite significantly and has trickled down to be more affordable where even a home user can benefit from having a NAS. Not only that a NAS will serve as the medium for data transfer, many current NAS are packed with features, they can also serve as a printer server, back up stations, and recently with the popularity of torrents, it can even download files without a computer. Today, we will take a look at the Synology DS-107 NAS from Sans Digital.
 

 
 

SANS DIGITAL

Sans Digital, located in Santa Fe Springs, CA is a provider of high capacity, multi-functional advanced storage solutions. These storage units can be used in home offices, small and medium-sized businesses, video editing, data backup, surveillance systems and many other industries. Our products provide great solutions for companies and individuals across the world who need effective and reliable data storage systems.
 
Sans Digital has recently has the exclusive distribution of the Synology’s new generation of NAS. The Synology lines of NAS includes single, 2-bay, or 4 bays NAS servers, as well as 4-bays rackmount with various capability, includes RAID and Windows Active Directory Service Support. Sans Digital are kind enough to send us the DS-107 for us to review.

FEATURES

 

Synology® Series DS-107 (MAC-DS107)
With additional Windows Active Directory Service (ADS) support, performance and security enhancement, DS-107 is ready to become a Windows 2000 Server companion. It can fit into sophisticated computing environments, yet remain cost-competitive.
 
Share More Than Just Data 
Disk Station integrates many features that you would imagine in a Home & SOHO environment. It shares data, printer, photo, web, multimedia files and more! Having a Disk Station means that you can connect all of your digital data. It makes sharing everything easy and controllable.
 
Program Your Own Website
Creating your own web site is a fun project to take on and with the Disk Station it now even easier. Disk Station now supports PHP+MySQL. You are free to construct your own web site with dynamic web contents, or to install PHP open source applications from the Internet, such as blog and bulletin boards.
 
Transfer Data Securely
If you are worried about critical data being accessed via Internet, the Secure FTP and Secure Network Backup can put your mind at ease. Secure FTP uses mature SSL/TLS technology. Secure Network Backup uses the industry-proven SSH package to transfer data.
 
Work with Windows ADS
Disk Station itself already includes account management, but what if you want your Windows-domain colleagues to share the function-rich server? The Windows domain support is compatible with Windows ADS and NT4 Domain. Windows domain users now can enjoy the exciting features of Disk Station.
 
Let the Music Play 
If you have cool photos, music, and movies, why not share them? You simply upload the files to Disk Station, hook up a Network Media Player, and you can enjoy them on your TV or audio set.
 
Total Backup Solution
Data backup is so important but people tend to ignore it, Disk Station makes data backup so complete and automatic that backup is always happening without much attention. From Network Backup to Local Backup, from USB Copy to PC Backup (Synology Data Replicator II), you can always find backup alternatives that fit your needs.
 
Share Photos with Right People
Having trouble sharing your photos with the right people? Photo Station lets you not only share them with friends through the Internet, but also control who can view certain photo albums. You are now the master of your shared photos.
 
Continuous Download without a PC
Wouldn’t it be great if you could turn off your PC when you are downloading files? Download Station was designed specifically just for that. You only need to manage the download tasks with Synology’s Download Redirector, and the files will be transferred to Disk Station. That’s it.
 

 

SPECIFICATION

 

Synology DS-107 Specification

Form Factor

Single Bay Enclosure

Hard Disk Interface

SATA I/SATA II

Maximum Capacity

1 TB

USB 2.0 Port

4

LAN Port

RJ45 10/100/1000 Mbps

Front Panel Expansion Ports

USB 2.0 x1 and eSATA x1

Back Panel Expansion Ports

USB 2.0 x 2

USB Copy

YES

Windows User

Windows 98 onward

Mac User

Mac OS 9 onward
Support Networking Protocol
CIFS, AFP, FTP

Windows ADS Support

Yes
Maximum User Accounts 128
Maximum Group Accounts 64
Maximum Shared Folders 100
Maximum Concurrent Connections 32
NTP  YES
FTP YES
Windows ADS/NT4 Domain YES
Event Notificatoin YES
Encrypted Network Backup YES
Language Localization English, French, German, Korean, Italian, Spanish, Simplied Chinese, Traditional Chinese
eSATA *1
HDD Hibernation YES

Support Applications

Web Server with PHP+MySQL Support
USB Printer Sharing Server
FTP Server
Photo Station 2
Backup Server
Download Station with bandwidth control
UPnP Multimedia Server
iTunes Server
UPS support over USB
Management Interface Web-Based Management
Agency Certification FCC, CLASS B, CE, BSMI 
Dimensions  16.0 X 21.8 X 6.3 cm
Weight  0.81 kg (exclude HD)
Power Consumption  100V to 240V AC, 50Hz to 60Hz
Environment Requirement

 Operation Temperature: 10 to 35 C

Storage Temperature: -10 to 70 C

Relative Humidity: 5% to 95% RH

Maximum Operating Altitude: 10,000 feet

 Limitations

Support up to 1 USB Printer

Support up to 3 USB external disks

USB copy function only supports FAT32 file system

For MAC users, the USB Print Server only supports printers with PosScript 

 

HARDWARE

 

 
The DS-107 is packaged in a white box covered with information about the NAS and on the top, you will see a handle for easy carrying. The NAS and the accessories are well packaged and protected inside the box with foams. In addition to the NAS, you also get an accessory box consists of the power cord, a network cable, an installation/software CD, SATA power adapter, SATA data cable, a bag of screws, an installation guide, and a pamphlet about other products in the Synology lines.

 
The DS-107 has a very Mac mini look as it carries the same pearl white exterior color. The unit is free from any marking except the Synology logo on both sides. On the front, you will see LED indicators in addition to an USB connector, an eSATA connector, the on/off switch, and a button labeled “C”, which is used for copy data from external devices to the NAS. The buttons are fairly responsive and the on/off switch turns the unit on once it’s pushed but it will require you to hold onto the button for a few seconds before the unit is turned off.  This is a nice feature because it prevents accidentally shut down of the NAS if something bumps the on/off button.
 
  
This diagram gives you an idea on the connectors on both front and back of the DS-107.

 
When the unit is turned on, the ON/OFF switch will blink in blue LED while the other lights will display solid green LED and the LEDs will flash when the unit is being accessed.  On the back, you will see a 40mm exhaust fan, two additional USB connectors, one Gigabit LAN connector, a power connector, a reset button, and a slot that accepts Kensington cable lock cable. Note that the power supply will accept a 100 – 240 VAC input with no jumpers to change.  The fan is really quiet, almost too quiet that you will be wondering if it’s even working.
 
 
Turn to the bottom, you will notice four rubber feet as well as some ventilation holes to keep the hard drive running cool.
 
The DS-107 is extremely easy to open, slides the top of the enclosure toward the front will open the NAS to allow access to the internal components.  There are two screws which are provided but not screwed in on the back of the NAS to secure the enclosure once the hard drive is installed.

 
The manual and the Sans Digital’s website do not provide any information about the internal components thus it’s hard to know the processor and the controllers that are used in the DS-107. After a little bit of digging around, I found that the DS-107 uses the Freescale’s MPC8241 integrated host processor. According to the Freelance’s site, the processor is using 266 MHz RISC processor core and is designed with power consumption in mind. Besides the processor, we can see four banks of RAM, although the marking on them are a bit hard to read so I can’t find out exactly the size of the RAM. In addition to the processor, we can also see that the LAN controller is based on Marvell 88E8001-lKj1 and the USB controller is based on NEC d720101gj.

SETTING UP

The DS-107 requires you to install your own hard drive (although Sans Digital does sell units with hard drive pre-installed). It will accommodate any SATA I / SATA II hard drive up to 1TB Hard Drive, though I believe the 1TB size limitation is just what is available on the market at the moment and I am sure that if there’s larger size SATA hard drive, the DS-107 should have no problem using it.

Installing the hard drive is really easy with the DS-107 and the quick start guide gives a very detailed step by step with pictures instruction. Synology recommends installing the SATA and power cables to the hard drive first before mounting the hard drive to the NAS and connecting the cables to the PCB. After closing the NAS, plugging the unit to the wall socket and connecting the network cable, the unit is ready to use.
 

 
Sans Digital provides an easy way to set up the NAS with the included driver CD. Popping the CD to the CD-ROM after hooking up the NAS and choose “Set up the Synology Server” will walk the user through setting up the server in step by step instruction. In addition, the driver CD also comes with a handy software called “Synology Assistant” (works for both Windows and Mac) that will offer a simple way to detect and access the server and offers a quick step to map the unit to a drive and add a printer to the server.
 
 
One of the great features about the DS-107 is the support of the Windows Active Directory.  This allows user setup a breeze as the NAS can seemingly being incorporated into the existing network structure, without re-creating all the username and password combinations. 

WEB INTERFACE

 

The first screen that user will be greeted after opening up the web interface is the Log-In page with the administrator account selected as the default user, after entering the password, you will then be taken into the web interface where you can configure your NAS.  The DS-107’s navigation panel is a two-column design with main menu on the left side of the screen and the sub-categories are on the right side.  The web interface is easy to navigate but for some unknown reason it will lag a little when you click on any of the option.  I like the fact that the interface comes with HELP button placed on each page to assist configuration, furthermore, on a few options it even has a step by step tutorial that assist you configure your NAS.
 
The included pdf manual lacks some information, fortunately, Synology’s website contains quite a lot of information, ranging from compatible hard drive, USB printers, to third party backup programs.  In addition, Synology has a very informative forum where users are able to find supports and helps (link).

 
We see that the Information menu shows quite a lot of information about the NAS, ranging from the serial number, IP address, and disk usage.  The NAS will also show the temperature information of the processor (15mm from the processor) and the information about devices that are connected to the NAS.

 
The System Log is organized into categories, it gives you logs on system, connection, backup, USB copy, an network backup copy.  I like this feature because rather than having a a long log where all information are dumped, this categorized logs can provide much easier way to read the information and pin point the problem.

 
The DS-107 can obtain the IP automatically using the DHCP or the IP information can be manually entered.  You can see that the DS-107 supports jumbo frame from the MTU value of 2000 to 9000 with 1000 increments.  In addition we see the NAS is capable of automatic synchronize the time with a server or adjust the time manually.  The NAS also supports e-mail notification, reboots after power failure, supports hard disk hibernation, and even have the ability to restore to default settings.

 
The firmware upgrade is also an easy task with the graphical interface menu.  The DS-107 has an direct link to the Synology’s website, however it is not direct to the specific product’s download page, just the general site.  It would be nice to actually direct to the download page or directly to the DS-107’s information/support page. 

 
The Storage Menu allows user to enable/disable the hard drive cache support and setup the share folder.  Not only the NAS’s folder can be shared, the DS-107 can also share USB drive and SATA drive when they are attached to the NAS.
 

FEATURES

User Management

The DS-107 has the ability to support maximum of 128 accounts and 64 groups and you can create, manage, and adjust these accounts under the Privileges Menu.  The management is fairly easy to use as you simply highlight the user and hit the add/remove button.

User Controls, maximum of 128 users can be created.

Group Controls, maximum of 64 groups can be created.

 

Users can be assigned with different priviledges.

Network Servers

The DS-107 offers wide range of web server features.  The NAS supports both Windows and MAC networks, and you can set the encoding language to any of the 10 languages: English, Greek, MS-DOS Latin 1, MS-DOS Latin 2, Cyrillic, Japanese SJIS, Simplified Chinese, Korean Hangul, and Traditional Chinese.  Furthermore, the unit supports ADS/NT4 Domain and AppleTalk.

 

The DS-107 support FTP Server with anti-hack login.  User is able to change the port from the default port of 21 from port 1 to 65535 with a few exceptions listed on the HELP menu.  Furthermore, the bandwidth of both upload and download can be limited and the NAS supports anonymous FTP and IP block.

The NAS also supports HTTP and HTTPS service.  Both services would allow users to access the Web Mangement UI and the Photo Station through Web Interface.  When HTTPS secure connection is enabled, connecting to the web management UI, Web Station, and Photo Station will be encrypted via SSL/TLS encrypting machanism.

 

The DS-107 also has a Web Station where user can build a webpage on the Disk Station.  The NAS supports HTML format and Support PHP 5.2.0, however, there are a few functions of PHP such as system() and exec() are not supported.  The NAS also supports MySQL Database, when it’s enabled, user can install web-based PHP tools, such as phyMyAdmin, to manage MySQL database.

The DS-107 can also download files without a PC.  It can download FTP, HTTP, and bittorrent files.  The NAS can restrict the download time and the bittorrent’s maximum upload and download rate can be limited as well the port can be configured.  Synology provides an Windows application, called Download Redirector, to manage the download files. One of the limitation of the DS-107’s Download Server is that the NAS won’t let you select which files to download if the torrent link has multiple files.  Neither the Windows application or the web interface would allow you to select which files inside a torrent link to download, so you would have to download the whole torrent files.  Also, the software is slightly buggy and will restart itself from time to time. The NAS supports drag-and-drop, so file

DS-107 will donwload FTP and Torrent files without a PC.

Download Redirector, once the program is installed, a handy icon will appear on the screen which user can simply drag-and-drop the torrent file to be added to the download list.

Multimedia Station

The DS-107 is not just a simple NAS, it also offers Multimedia Server ability without extra license fee.  The shared Multimedia folder can be mapped to a drive and the files stored in the drive will be able to share with users on the network.  The DS-107 offers a Photo Station which will create index thumbnails of the photos of the image and video files stored in the designated shared folder.  In order to use the Photo Station, user must enable JavaScript for the browser and ActiveX controls and plug-ins need to be enabled as well if you are using IE.  The NAS supports image format saved in bmp, gif, jpeg, and png formats with file size less or equal to 10 MB and supports video files saved in asf, avi, mov, mpg, mpeg, and wmv formats.  Once the Photo Station is enabled, users would be able to access the photo simply type in the “http://system-IP/photo” and the thumbnails of the images will be displayed.  Administrator is able to manage user account directly using the web interface.

DS-107 has a Photo Station where users will be able to access the shared file’s multimedia with simple web interface.

Administrator will have the ability to control user accounts using the same web interface.

In addition to the photos, the DS-107 can also service as a Multimedia Server which you can enable it under Multimedia Services.  Enabling Multimedia Service allows users to browse multimedia files on the server through UPnP DMA.  Unfortunately, the DS-107 does not offer a simple web interface to managing the files.

Finally, given to the popularity of iTune, the DS-107 also has an iTunes Service which allows all iTunes clients in the same network subnet to browse and play music saved in the “music” shared folder on the server.  The NAS supports audio files saved in mp3 and aac and can create smart playlist files saved in wpl and m3u formats.  Unfortunately, just like the Multimedia Server, the DS-107 does not offer any web management UI to give user a way to manage the music files.

DS-107 supports iTune

Once the iTune Server is enabled, the NAS will automatically show up under iTune’s Shared menu.

Backup

 

The DS-107 lets you back up system configuration or restore all your settings via a .dss file.  The DS-107 provides four back up solutions:

  1. By using “Local Backup”, Administrator can back up Synology Server’s data to external USB or SATA HDD.
  2. By using “Network Backup”, Administrator can back up Synology Server’s data to another Synology Server.
  3. By installing Synology Data Replicator II software on the client PC, Windows users can back up data from PC to Synology Server.
  4. Administrator can also back up Synology Server’s User, Group, and Shared folders (see details below).

 

The Local Backup lets you backup the Synology Server’s data to external USB or eSATA hard drives.  You can select shared folders to backup and schedule the backup.

Choose Network backup if you have another Synology NAS and you can then backup between the two servers.

In addition to the Local and Network backup, the DS-107 also provide an software called Synology Data Replicator II that allows users to backup data from their PC.  Using the program, users can:

  1. Monitor selected folders on client PC and perform real-time backup when any modification to the file is made.
  2. Adjust backup versions and restore points.
  3. Restore backup data on Synology Server to client PC at user’s preference.

In order to use the Data Replicator II, both the PC and the Synology Server have to use the same encoding language.  What’s nice about this program is that it can do real-time backup so your data constantly is being backed up while you make any changes.  Also, it can backup just the specified folder/files so it won’t take too much time to backup the whole hard drive.  According to the manual, the program works with Windows 98/2000/XP but it does not mention support for Mac, though quick browsing through Synology’s website reveals that there’s MAC version of the Download Replicator II.

Expansions

The DS-107 has the ability to connect to USB and eSATA storage to expand the storage space.  In addition, it can be used as a printer server.  Users can even connect an uninterrupted power supply (UPS) to the unit to allow proper shut down when there’s a power failure.  The user interface provides easy access to the peripherals that are connected to the NAS.

When any devices are connected to the NAS, the information will automatically updated to the web interface and the device will show up under the External Devices Menu.  In addition, the USB and SATA disk will also be placed in the share folder.  Users would be able to use the interface not as simply an information page but also use it to format and eject the devices.

Note that the DS-107 also can be used as an USB Printer Server for both PC and MAC systems.  Also, it will support UPS, however, at the moment, Synology only lists APC Back-UPS ES 500 via USB interface as the supported device.  It would be nice if Synology will update the USP with more supported devices so that the data on the server will be protected with UPS in the event of power outage.  Also, note the USB COPY function, this feature will allow the use of the C button that’s seen on the front button.  If the feature is enabled, once the USB device is connect to the NAS and the button is pressed, the data on the USB device will automatically copied to the desingnated location on the server.

TESTING

I install an 80GB Seagate ST380013AS in the DS-107. The hard drive is not the newer SATA-II drive but it won’t matter too much in the performance as the throughput of the LAN won’t really saturate the theoretical throughput of the SATA (1.5Gbit/s).  I tested the DS-107 against the QNAP TS-101 that was reviewed previously.  Performance is tested with iozone 3.263 (www.iozone.org).  The test is done with the 100 Mbps through my existing home network with Buffalo WHR-G54S router and Vitesse Gigabit Ethernet Switch.  The following command was used to test the transfer speed of TS-101:

               iozone -Rab [results file name] -i 0 -i 1 -+u -f [path to directory on NAS device under test] -q 64k -n 32M -g 1G –z

This command basically tests the record size of 64kbytes and transferred file sizes of 32, 64, 128, 512 and 1024 Mbytes.

Before we take a look at the result, let me just give you an overview as to what does the tests represent.  The Iozone’s Write test tests the performance of writing a new file.  The Rewrite tests measures the performance of writing a file that already exsisted.  The Rewrite performance is expected to be better than Write due to the less demanding task of rewriting the file with the metadata already existed in the file.  The Read tests measures the performance of reading an existing file while the Reread test measures the performance of reading a file that was recently read.  We often see performance of Reread to be better than Read as the file may be cached.

System Setup

  • Processor: AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200+ Manchester
  • Memory: 2x G.Skill Extreme Series (F1-3200PHU2-2GBZX)
  • Motherboard: DFI Lanparty nF4 SLI-DR (BIOS NF4LD406)
  • Graphics Card: Gigabyte GeForce 7900 GT
  • Sound Card: SoundBlaster Audigy 2
  • Internal Hard drive:  Maxtor DiamondMax Plus10 250GB Hard Drive (Maxtor 6B250S0), 250GB, 7,200 rpm, 16 MB Cache, SATA 150
  • Testes hard drives: Seagate ST380013AS Serial ATA (SATA/150), 80GB, 7,200 rpm, 8 MB Cache
  • LAN: NVIDIA nForce 4 Gigabit ethernet, forceware 6.86  

Data are shown with the 64kbyte record size.  Keep in mind that the theoretical throughput of the 100Mbps is 12,500kbyte/sec and 125,000 Kbytes/sec for gigabit.

100Mbps LAN PERFORMANCE

 

As we can see when the Synology DS-107 is connected to the 100Mbps LAN, its write performance is worse than the QNAP TS-101 with the exception of 1,048,576 Kb file size.  The write performance of the QNAP TS-101 is fairly constant while the write performance of the DS-107 seems to varies more. 

The situation is reversed when we look at the re-write performance.  Here we see that the DS-107 outperforms TS-101 in every file size.  The DS-107’s performance is extremely well when the file size is small and it levels off once the file size is increased.  It even outperforms the theoretical 100 Mbps’s throughput when the file size is 32768 and comes really close to the theoretical throughput for the rest of the file sizes.

The read performances of both NAS are very similar to each other.  We see that both drives have better read throughput when the file size is small and it levels off to around 8000kbytes/s.

The re-read performance of the DS-107 is extremely interesting.  It absolutely outperforms the TS-101 and the theoretical throughput of the 100Mbps LAN.  Given to the fact that the re-read is reading the recently accessed files, it’s possible that the DS-17 has a better cache system to allow better throughput than the TS-101.

 

CPU USAGE

Overall, the DS-107 seems to use slightly less CPU power in the write and slightly higher CPU power in the read.  With the exception of the re-read, we see that the CPU usage for both NAS is less than 3% so they are not consuming a lot of the precious CPU power.  The 100% CPU usage that we see in the re-read may attribute to the extremely high performance in the re-read of the DS-107.

GIGABIT LAN PERFORMANCE

Switching to the Gigabit LAN, we see more interesting results.  The DS-107 comes alive when it’s connected to the gigabit LAN.  The DS-107 is able to outperforms the TS-101 when the file size is kept small (less than 250MB) and but once the file size has gotten larger, the DS-107’s performance drops significantly.  We see a downward performance drop as we increase the file size with the DS-107 while the TS-101’s performance is fairly stable regardless of the file size.

We continue to see the same downward trend with the re-write.

The read performance of the DS-107 also shows the drop in the performance as the file size increases.  The DS-107 offers great read performance when the file size is kept around 30MB but once the file size becomes larger than that, the performance drops to around 10MB/s.  Unlike the write performance, the read performance shows a stable trend regardless of file sizes larger than the 30MB.

The re-read performance once again exhibits excellent throughput.  The DS-107’s re-read performance in fact does not seem to be effected by either the NAS is connected to the 100Mbps or gigabit LAN.

CPU USAGE

The CPU usage of the DS-107 seems to be in direct correlation to the throughput.   The DS-107’s CPU usage usually is higher in the small file size region and stabilizes once the file size is increased just as what we have seen with the throughput’s performance.  Once again, the CPU usage are fairly low for both NAS with the exception of the DS-107’s re-read performance as what we have observed earlier.

100Mbps vs GIGABIT LAN

Lastly, let’s take a quick comparison of the DS-107’s performance when it’s connected to the 100Mbps and 100bps.  We see something interesting about the write performance when the NAS is connected to the 100Mbps vs gigabit lan.  When the NAS is connected to the 100Mbps, we see a very steady uniform throughput across the different file sizes but the throughput of the NAS shows a downward trends when it is connected to the gigabit. Despite the downward trend, users will definitely benefit from having a gigabit network as oppose to the 100Mbps network.

The read performance of the NAS connecting to the 100Mbps vs gigabit shows that with the exception of small file size, the performances are fairly stread regardless of the file size.  We also can see a slightly better performance when the NAS is connected to the gigabit than 100Mbps, although the performance gain of the read performance is not as big as the write perforamnce.

 

CONCLUSION

 
The Synology DS-107 from Sans Digital is a great looking NAS that also has a lot of nice features. Both the QNAP TS-101 and the Sans Digital DS-107 offer almost identical features, including the torrent downloads, multimedia server station, iTune support, external storage supports, one button copy, printer server, and ample of backup methods. Compare to the QNAP’s TS-101’s performance, we see that the Sans Digital’s DS-107 performs slightly better than the TS-101 when it is connected to a gigabit lan network but under the 100Mbps, the performance of the TS-101 is slightly better. Furthermore, the performance of the DS-107 seems to be depending on the transfer file size much more than the TS-101. 
 
I found that the user interface of the DS-107 is slightly easier to navigate than the TS-101, however, TS-101 does provide more control over the NAS and better documentation. Despite the fact that I love Sans Digital’s Synology DS-107’s placement of HELP menu in each configuration page, I found that the HELP sometimes lacks detail instruction and information and the included pdf manual also lacks detailed instructions and documentation. The DS-107 does make this up by having tons of information on their website and forums (so be sure to check them out if you are lost or need help).
 
One thing that the Sans Digital’s Synology DS-107 has that the QNAP’s TS-101 does not is the exhaust fan. Despite having an fan, the noise level of the Synology’s DS-107 is absolutely quiet and I do personally like to have the fan on the NAS to keep the system running cool. On the other hand, the TS-101 offers a web interface management where user can access all the files on the NAS while the DS-107 only offers web management for the photo only. I like the web file management on the TS-101 but this is something that it can be added to the future firmware update.
 
The Synology DS-107 can now be purchased through Newegg or TigerDirect at price of $299.99 (or do a quick search at Pricegrabber to see more pricing option). It is priced comparable to other NAS in the class and offers similar features. Its performance might not break any record but it is not the last one in the group either. I think if you do not plan to transfer large files across the NAS server or you just need a simple NAS to connect the exising network and need the extra neat features that the Synology DS-107 has to offer, then the DS-107 would be a great choice. If you are looking for a NAS to transfer a busy traffic network, then the DS-107 would not be the top choice for you.
 
 
 
The Synology DS-107 will receive a score of 8.5 (very good) out of 10 and receive Bjorn3D’s Seal of Approval for its rich features and easiness to setup.
 
 
 
 
 

Pros:

     + Exhaust fan
     + Easy setup
     + Nice looking
     + Full of features
     + A direct link to the website for information and downloads
     + Expandable
     + 3 USB and 1 eSATA for external storage
     + A good website and user forum which provide a lot of good and useful information

Cons:

     – Documentations is slightly lack of details
     – No web interface for files management
     – Some lags in the web interface
     – Data Replicator only works with Windows operating system
     – Slightly expensive

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