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HSS Podcast 288 Discussion: QNAP vs. Server vs. Synology


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pcdoc, It was really great seeing you on the podcast. Question did you test Plex trans-coding on QNAP? and if yes how did it run?? I am thinking of getting a TS-453 for testing, I really like the VM support that QNAP has. I am running two Synology DS1815+ in a cluster at home but these QNAP boxes have my interest. I also share your pain with more failed restores then good ones using WSE2012. Off topic, What ever happen to your podcast the BYOB and the other Mike M? If you prefer you can PM me, I really miss your Podcast. 

 

Thank you for the comments.  I did test the transcoding and it did pretty good, however as you know it is largely dependent on what you are transcoding and to what you are transcoding to.  Overall it did good and the quad core in TS-453 will have extra horsepower to work with so you should be OK for most of your needs.  I transcoded an uncompressed BD MKV to a mobile device and a Roku and did well.  Did not go much beyond that as I mainly wanted to know that it worked in case I need to go that route in the future and Idid not want to rebuild my Plex setup that I already had.  As for the Podcast, I had some major changes in my life that took all my time and all of my money so keeping up with tech has been a challenge.  As for MM, I have not talked to him in while as he had left the show before the show has stopped.  My heart is still in it (though I am a bit rusty) and would like at some point to do some random shows but I am not sure exactly when that will be.  In the meantime, I going to bug Dave to do more guest appearances till I get my life in order.  Thanks again.

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I am loving my 2 QNAP though I am seeing the benefit of potentially having NAS with the data and using a vm to run the plex instead of straight though the nas.   My initial purpose of the QNAP was a i

great podcast -  thanks  -  the only thing missing was  John Zadler !! -  but it was good to hear from Mike Faucher again     along the lines of the followup question that Tony Raynor posed    Th

I really enjoyed this podcast. many aspects were covered in the discussions. The questions about blown mobo or a disaster situation were especially good for the discussion. Likewise, the aspect of not

I really enjoyed this podcast. many aspects were covered in the discussions. The questions about blown mobo or a disaster situation were especially good for the discussion. Likewise, the aspect of not having MSDN definitely changes the equation.

 

In my view, there is more of a spectrum between nas and server. after all, both are just computers with memory and software. If you have a so-called nas that allows you to hook up a hdmi monitor and keyboard/mouse, the distinction seems to blur.

 

To me, my gen7 microservers are somewhere in between - low power, small footprint, hot-swap disk trays, and useful software, but more responsibility on my part to manage that software mix. If for some reason I lost them I would definitely recalculate how I might replace the lost functionality.

 

Bottom line, as one's needs change, sometimes different solutions would suffice. On the other hand, we don't always have money to trash our existing gear and buy some expensive nas.

 

thanks for the great 'cast!

 

Good points.  I could not agree more.  If someone comes into this with a "Normal" tech level and no MSDN subscription, the NAS is a better choice.  You can tinker more that you might expect with a current day NAS but mainly with the software.  Unless you or anyone has a compelling reason such as I did to change, there is very little incentive to change out your current hardware or storage environment (either direction). I would have not done this without a good reason and for me that was to reduce heat.  My rack had 5 servers in it plus the two desktops in the same room which raised the temperature of the room about 8-10 degrees warmer than the rest of the house.  In California, that is a problem as I set my AC to 74/75 most of the time and it became unbearable in my office when it was north of 80+.  I thought about a separate AC but I wanted to consolidate stuff first.  I am not finished but so far I am down to 2 desktops, 1 server, 2 NAS units and an Untangle box.  The result of my changes has brought the delta closer to about 3-4 degrees as the servers I decommissioned had more than 20 drives combined which added allot of heat.  Though I have a decent size home, each room already has PC's in it and I can not put any hardware in the garage due to the heat. I hope to do more and take if further but I am still playing with what I want to do.  Anyway, thanks for your input and I am glad you enjoyed the show.

 

BTW, here is my write up on the unit if anyone is interested:  http://thedocsworld.net/qnap-ts-451the-alternative-server/

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Thank you for the comments.  I did test the transcoding and it did pretty good, however as you know it is largely dependent on what you are transcoding and to what you are transcoding to.  Overall it did good and the quad core in TS-453 will have extra horsepower to work with so you should be OK for most of your needs.  I transcoded an uncompressed BD MKV to a mobile device and a Roku and did well.  Did not go much beyond that as I mainly wanted to know that it worked in case I need to go that route in the future and Idid not want to rebuild my Plex setup that I already had.  As for the Podcast, I had some major changes in my life that took all my time and all of my money so keeping up with tech has been a challenge.  As for MM, I have not talked to him in while as he had left the show before the show has stopped.  My heart is still in it (though I am a bit rusty) and would like at some point to do some random shows but I am not sure exactly when that will be.  In the meantime, I going to bug Dave to do more guest appearances till I get my life in order.  Thanks again.

Mike I was really hoping you where going to tell me the trans-coding did not work well at all but now it looks like my wants to tryout a QNAP has gotten closer to my wallet. I started out with a two bay Synology DS-213 about two years ago for testing and fell in love with it in a very short time and I did not think I needed anything that could run VM's and I had already settled on installing Plex on a Windows box so I pulled the trigger and purchased an 8 bay Synology DS1812+ to get the ball rolling so I could work towards shutting down my WSE2012R2 box. One year or so latter I had everything migrated over and running just the way I wanted it except I still had to figure out my bare-metal-backups so I still had to run WSE2012R2 but now "Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE" has surfaced and I am very happy to report it runs great so now my WSE2012R2 is shutdown.

 

After getting all this setup I decided I wanted to have two NAS in a cluster and also I wanted to continue with NIC teaming so now I was in trouble because my DS-1812+ only had two NICs and one of them had to be used for the cluster and the other would be used for the LAN so I say now what? Here comes Synology with there new DS1815+ which is a Quad Core and has four NICs and more memory support so off I go adding two to my cart. Fast forward now I am thinking if Plex runs good on the QNAP and I can run a Windows 10 instance in a VM I would not need an extra box sitting on my rack. Hmm my poor wallet, I guess this could be a case of piss poor planing or we could just label this a direction change after the fact, In any case everyone should keep an eye out in the buy & sell aria over the coming months if my QNAP testing proves good results.

 

Mike you really should give "Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE" a try if you have not yet, Its a great product and according to Veeam will remain free for life. The only thing I will say is some people are complaining that it installs & uses SQL Express but for me I don't really care. I am very sorry to hear about the changes in your life but I am very glad that you seem to be looking ahead and getting threw it. I have also had some devastating changes in my life over a year ago that caused me to think it was the end but for me its just a new beginning. I for one do hope to see you on the HSS more, I think you, Jim & Dave have rhythm and it would also be great to get John Z back from retirement as well. Be well my friend :)

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Mike I was really hoping you where going to tell me the trans-coding did not work well at all but now it looks like my wants to tryout a QNAP has gotten closer to my wallet. I started out with a two bay Synology DS-213 about two years ago for testing and fell in love with it in a very short time and I did not think I needed anything that could run VM's and I had already settled on installing Plex on a Windows box so I pulled the trigger and purchased an 8 bay Synology DS1812+ to get the ball rolling so I could work towards shutting down my WSE2012R2 box. One year or so latter I had everything migrated over and running just the way I wanted it except I still had to figure out my bare-metal-backups so I still had to run WSE2012R2 but now "Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE" has surfaced and I am very happy to report it runs great so now my WSE2012R2 is shutdown.

 

After getting all this setup I decided I wanted to have two NAS in a cluster and also I wanted to continue with NIC teaming so now I was in trouble because my DS-1812+ only had two NICs and one of them had to be used for the cluster and the other would be used for the LAN so I say now what? Here comes Synology with there new DS1815+ which is a Quad Core and has four NICs and more memory support so off I go adding two to my cart. Fast forward now I am thinking if Plex runs good on the QNAP and I can run a Windows 10 instance in a VM I would not need an extra box sitting on my rack. Hmm my poor wallet, I guess this could be a case of piss poor planing or we could just label this a direction change after the fact, In any case everyone should keep an eye out in the buy & sell aria over the coming months if my QNAP testing proves good results.

 

Mike you really should give "Veeam Endpoint Backup FREE" a try if you have not yet, Its a great product and according to Veeam will remain free for life. The only thing I will say is some people are complaining that it installs & uses SQL Express but for me I don't really care. I am very sorry to hear about the changes in your life but I am very glad that you seem to be looking ahead and getting threw it. I have also had some devastating changes in my life over a year ago that caused me to think it was the end but for me its just a new beginning. I for one do hope to see you on the HSS more, I think you, Jim & Dave have rhythm and it would also be great to get John Z back from retirement as well. Be well my friend :)

 

Thanks iTGeeks.  The one thing I did not try was running a VM and the native Plex together or Plex on a VM on the NAS as my VM on a different machine.  That would certainly be interesting and look forward to hearing about it.  There is much more CPU wiggle room on the TS-453 so with plenty of RAM, it would be interesting to see how it all works out.  I plan on trying Veeam in a test environment to see what happens but just have not had the time lately.  I will definitely post my results when I get that far and thanks for the input.

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PCDoc I concur with everything with everything itGEEKS said. You have many friends in this community and are highly respected.

 

I am looking at a NAS for the same reason you did.  We moved to a new(1983) house and my small area within the kids playroom has a few concerns. The room is over

the garage and it stays warmer than the rest of the home. Next Summer I'll probably add a small window AC unit in there to help the Central AC. All of my PC's up there

are getting older. My hackintosh runs a 9550, my 2011 box a Corei7-920 and my main PC, purchased from PCDoc himself, a Corei7-875K. They of course all produce 

a lot of heat. So I'm going to slowly replace them all to help with heat and noise.

 

A NAS as a Plex box with VEEAM backup is all I need. 2012 is absolutely overkill for function and cost. I like the TS451, but like the extra power of the TS453Pro. I worried

about the potential space and saw the TS653Pro, of course the price climbing along the way. 

 

Lastly, I noticed the TS-563 albeit with an AMD processor. A quick search on Amazon for the TS-563 led to a review by this gentleman. He is more technical than myself,

but his write-up is worth a read. 

 


 

 

At this time the TS453Pro may be the sweet spot for me for price, but any comments on later expansion for a 4 Bay device?

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Thanks iTGeeks.  The one thing I did not try was running a VM and the native Plex together or Plex on a VM on the NAS as my VM on a different machine.  That would certainly be interesting and look forward to hearing about it.  There is much more CPU wiggle room on the TS-453 so with plenty of RAM, it would be interesting to see how it all works out.  I plan on trying Veeam in a test environment to see what happens but just have not had the time lately.  I will definitely post my results when I get that far and thanks for the input.

I dont no Mike, I must be crazy to even think about trying this after I just spent an arm & a leg on my two Synology 1815+ boxes but I just cant help thinking it would be great to have everything I need on one box if it works well. I do have a Super Micro 1U server that is still in the box, It has a Xeon processor that I was going to install Windows 10 on to server my Plex Media Server and some other things that I need but man QNAP with VM's sounds really good to me. I need to step back and think about what I am doing with all this, If I pull the trigger I will report back with my results in testing. I am just really afraid with Plex Media Server because as we know it needs CPU Cycles when Trans-Coding to be a great experience and I just don't know that these NAS boxes can handle the task. For anyone interested I did find a QNAP that will handle Plex with trans-coding but its 1,800.00 WOW talk about paying a premium price, How do these companies sleep at night charging these prices? If this i5 box was 1200 - 1300 I would purchase two of them in a hart beat but at 1,800.00 no thanks. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00S0XRVLU/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_S_ttl?_encoding=UTF8&colid=1N6867G1O15RY&coliid=I3FBMUL4BTLKR5

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PCDoc I concur with everything with everything itGEEKS said. You have many friends in this community and are highly respected.
 
I am looking at a NAS for the same reason you did.  We moved to a new(1983) house and my small area within the kids playroom has a few concerns. The room is over
the garage and it stays warmer than the rest of the home. Next Summer I'll probably add a small window AC unit in there to help the Central AC. All of my PC's up there
are getting older. My hackintosh runs a 9550, my 2011 box a Corei7-920 and my main PC, purchased from PCDoc himself, a Corei7-875K. They of course all produce 
a lot of heat. So I'm going to slowly replace them all to help with heat and noise.
 
A NAS as a Plex box with VEEAM backup is all I need. 2012 is absolutely overkill for function and cost. I like the TS451, but like the extra power of the TS453Pro. I worried
about the potential space and saw the TS653Pro, of course the price climbing along the way. 
 
Lastly, I noticed the TS-563 albeit with an AMD processor. A quick search on Amazon for the TS-563 led to a review by this gentleman. He is more technical than myself,
but his write-up is worth a read. 
 
 
 
At this time the TS453Pro may be the sweet spot for me for price, but any comments on later expansion for a 4 Bay device?

 

I would say no on AMD but that's only because I don't like AMD for a book long reason. As for how many drive bays the NAS has I would say do an inventory of your storage now and allow for 50% expansion should last you many years to come unless of course Ur ripping Blu-Ray disks every day. On my Synology 1815+ I have 5 of the drive bays filed with 6TB WD Red drives in a RAID 5 and I have just about 50% free but I also have 3 drive bays not used and that's because I was going to add some SSD's for caching or maybe backups of the primary disks so I wanted the extra room to do what I wanted with. I also have to tell you that I have several family members backing up to me at night so I wanted the extra head room for that as well. Good rule of thumb is allow 50 storage free and adjust accordingly based on your use case. Also you are wanting Plex Media Server to run on this box so your best chance is only going to be the TSx53Pro series or you maybe sorry, Now you have to just decide how many drive bays you want. 

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itGEEKS. You must have a home IT budget that would make PC Doc jealous. That linked NAS box was really nice, but I would end

up in divorce if I bought that thing. My original 2011 box had an earlier i3 and it did transcoding fairly well via MyMovies. MyMovies

uses handbrake and that software is a resource hog.

 

I have around 5TB of DVD folder rips that are then transcoded via MyMovies to .mp4 files. They work well with the iPads, Plex

and with streaming. I just think the old i7 box is a bit of a power hog and a heat producer. It's very convoluted, but I guess if there

were a problem I could convert with MyMovies and use the NAS as a target. If I used 4 (4-6TB) drives that would probably hold

me for a while. I am putting most of my files in OneDrive (almost wrote SkyDrive) and it's working pretty well so otherwise I don't 

have a lot of data except around 500GB of music. 

 

I would love to hear what you think about QNAP vs. Synology given how you are so experienced with Synology. 

 

Man you have some nice gear. We are still doing a lot of remodeling to a house we bought. I'm probably getting a part-time

job to finish up this house so my tech budget isn't as generous as yours right now. 

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itGEEKS. You must have a home IT budget that would make PC Doc jealous. That linked NAS box was really nice, but I would end

up in divorce if I bought that thing. My original 2011 box had an earlier i3 and it did transcoding fairly well via MyMovies. MyMovies

uses handbrake and that software is a resource hog.

 

I have around 5TB of DVD folder rips that are then transcoded via MyMovies to .mp4 files. They work well with the iPads, Plex

and with streaming. I just think the old i7 box is a bit of a power hog and a heat producer. It's very convoluted, but I guess if there

were a problem I could convert with MyMovies and use the NAS as a target. If I used 4 (4-6TB) drives that would probably hold

me for a while. I am putting most of my files in OneDrive (almost wrote SkyDrive) and it's working pretty well so otherwise I don't 

have a lot of data except around 500GB of music. 

 

I would love to hear what you think about QNAP vs. Synology given how you are so experienced with Synology. 

 

Man you have some nice gear. We are still doing a lot of remodeling to a house we bought. I'm probably getting a part-time

job to finish up this house so my tech budget isn't as generous as yours right now. 

 

I would also suggest skipping the AMD as they can not really compete on CPU/Wattage.  Go with what  iTGeeks said and go tor the TS-x53.  As for the number of bays, the more the merrier however one thing to keep in mind is that if you do go with a 4 bay, and you need extra storage later you can add a USB external RAID 5 enclosure and attach it via USB 3 to your NAS.  Makes for an inexpensive way to expand you nas storage with having to resort to expensive expansion for things like movies. Imagine using your nas for all of the greatness and sticking a 5 bay USB Raid 5 for packing in your movies.

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I would also suggest skipping the AMD as they can not really compete on CPU/Wattage.  Go with what  iTGeeks said and go tor the TS-x53.  As for the number of bays, the more the merrier however one thing to keep in mind is that if you do go with a 4 bay, and you need extra storage later you can add a USB external RAID 5 enclosure and attach it via USB 3 to your NAS.  Makes for an inexpensive way to expand you nas storage with having to resort to expensive expansion for things like movies. Imagine using your nas for all of the greatness and sticking a 5 bay USB Raid 5 for packing in your movies.

Mike thanks for agreeing with me. I say he needs to do an inventory of how much data he has now and add 50-65% to that and he can see how many drive bays he needs based on the size of the hard drives he wants to go with. I personally would not do anything less then 4-6 bays based on the fact you would want to do a RAID 5 so that takes up 3 bays alone. I have tried to do this on the cheap side but trust me if you go cheap you will end up spending at least double if not triple purchasing hardware after you realize what these boxes can do.

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