Need a better NAS for running syncthing (2020)

I’m having no luck with syncthing on the two NAS boxes i have. i believe they are too under-powered.

I think i need to upgrade to a more current NAS.

Any recommendations?

I’m hoping for: NAS box, not a pc running nas software. At least two hard drives. Syncthing support baked in, easy setup, not having to use linux to install manually. Capable of handling 200,000 files in 50,000 folders without crashing.

A SPK to install is no problem. I think, its a “no-arch” package, so you can use on each type of Synology NAS.

Your idea is at least justified, a “DS115j” is a bit small. Nevertheless, there are tuning options in Syncthing for this, these are in the documentation.

If you want to invest, a DS218 would be the minimum for this task, better would be a DS218+ which could still be expanded in RAM, officially up to 6 GB, unofficially there is much more possible.

The problem with a Synology is that you do not have a “pure” Linux server, since the RAM is still loaded with Synology specific processes, such as the DSM, the APPs running on it, etc. If you want to work with the above scope, a good portion of the 256 MB RAM will already be gone.

Despite this, I think a PC running some normal operating system is vastly superior in almost all cases. More fiddling to set up initially, sure, and possibly more expensive – but likely because you’re getting better components.

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I agree.

A Marvell Armada 370 800 MHz in the DS115j or Intel Celeron J3355 Dual-Core 2.0 GHz in the DS218+ is clearly inferior to the modern CPUs of PC´s. The popular Intel Atom C2538 and Intel Atom C3538 Quad Core of the “+” series are also included.

However, the purpose of a NAS is different to a PC and normally doesn´t need such PC perfomance. But with the latter two CPUs it shouldn’t be an issue to work with Syncthing, also with a multiple of the mentioned requirements.

Thanks, very nice info there.

Main purpose of not a pc is to be able to set it on a shelf and forget about it, and not run 500w to add to the electric bill. LOL

Second reason is the wife says we have too many PC’s in the house already. If i bring in another it may be putting me outside. LOL

Hmmm… Maybe i can find something similar to the old HP MediaSmart home server, or similar microserver and run FreeNAS on that.

Small, low power, set and forget. As long as i find one with decent enough CPU.

Is RAM an issue?

If you can handle small servers well, build and configure them yourself, I would have a high-performance alternative to the Raspberry. It would be free from manufacturer-specific software, but really quickly. This can also be used to build a NAS, the manufacturer has the components for it.

The installation of Syncthing on such server is not so comfortable to install as with a Synology or like that.

When looking at replacement kit choose SSDs instead of hard disks. If you can add a battery backup, use write caching. Select a CPU that handles AES on-chip; more cores won’t hurt. The right spec depends how often you’re seeing changes on large amounts of data.

I was just checking synology site, i see the celeron in the ds218+ but did not see any that showed the higher speed atom’s. What NAS drives have you seen use those?

I know the german information page of Synology, may you switch in english.

In the coloumn “CPU-Modell” you can check the CPU type. So a very popular DS with Atom would be the DS1618+ or DS1819+, but have more than 2 bays.

I use since years DS1815+, DS415+, DS412+, these are no longer actual.

However, if you are concerned with power consumption, compare. The DS218+ has one of the lowest in the “Stromverbrauch” line.

And if you want to get an idea of how “well” the operating system on Synologies work, do a short search through this forum (spoiler: problems abound).

And lest someone gets defensive, it’s not that the Synology OS is broken it’s just that it’s very different from a normal Linux setup. Syncthing is developed for and tested on normal Linux (and other OS) setups. :man_shrugging:


That’s right, that’s a difficulty that you have to deal with first. There are a few rules to keep in mind. But then it still goes very well.

Yes it is. I dont know the exactly consumtion for handling 200,000 files in 50,000 folders. As more files and folders you have, as more RAM you need. For this case 2 GB of RAM for the whole NAS would be enough.

Maybe Simon or Jakob can make a estimation about such consumptions.

Just a sidenote, but unless you have a tonne of mechanical hard drives, a custom-built low power desktop PC can easily take as little as 30~50W (without the monitor, of course).

Try a PI running linux (raspian), runs off a phone charger, with a powered ssd drive or two, problem solved. No Synology OS wizardry! No power bills. SSH, RDP from your laptop or phone! Oh yeah, Syncthing just works too!

Thats also possible. But I think such as Odroid H2 is much perfomanter with also low consumption:

IDLE : ≃4W
CPU Stress : ≃14W
CPU+GPU Stress : ≃22W
Power-off : ≃0.5W
Suspend : ≃0.6W

Just FYI in case someone is looking for info in the future:

Current NAS: Synology DS115j, CPU: Marvell Armada 370 88F6707, Syncthing folder to be shared preloaded with 700GB in 200,000 files.

Initial folder scan prior to sync, after 24 hours, at 1%, estimated scan time remaining: > 1 month… LOL

It’s no surprise that the even slower dlink DNS-323 has yet to do any more than add devices, and never even connects to them.

At this point, I’m just gonna let this Synology chew and see if it ever manages to catch up. The hope is that once the initial sync is done, I’ll monitor it and see how hard it has to work at just maintaining.

For now, the sync is being done on a small Windows 10 Acer SFF mini-tower with an Athlon II x3 435 @2.9GHz.

The Acer performed the same initial sync in about a day.

For comparison only.

On my Synology DS1815+ with the processor Intel Atom C2538 Quad Core 2,4 GHz and 16 GB of RAM such peers needs a few hours, maybe 2-3. Again, we have the topic of RAM and how important it is. I think your DS115j could be able to do this with enough RAM in maybe 2-3 days.

It’s unfortunate that RAM is soldered to the board for this model. That may explain why disk usage is 95% always. Not enough RAM and always having to swapfile everything. :hot_face: