NAS 101: Buyer's Guide
Looking for a better way to manage your data?
Then look no further. Learn the essentials about how to buy NAS and pick the right solution for your needs in just a few minutes.
What is a NAS?
NAS stands for Network Attached Storage.
It combines the easy-to-use interface of a PC with the advanced capabilities of a server to provide reliable storage over your local network or the internet.
Access your files and services from anywhere, whenever you want directly from a web browser or with handy mobile apps.
Centralize your data
Store all your files on a single platform to easily and quickly access and share them with your friends and family.
Stream your media
Create a multimedia hub to stream your audio and video collections to a variety of platforms and devices.
Organize your photos
Preserve your memories by creating albums and share them securely with passwords and access permissions.
Protect what matters
Back up data stored on Windows, macOS, Linux, and mobile devices to easily restore systems and files in case of accidental deletion or loss.
Guard your premises
Safeguard your assets with intelligent camera surveillance tools supported by a flexible storage infrastructure and an intuitive UI — even while on the go.
Seven key components
What is RAID?
Why is it important, and how does it work?
RAID (Redundant Array of Independent Disks) is a data storage technology that combines one or more drives into a single storage unit to achieve higher efficiency and data security. Different types of RAID come with different levels of data redundancy, storage availability, and speed. Keep in mind that the RAID type you select determines the number of drive bays you need on your NAS to reach your desired storage capacity.
Recommended RAID types
|Min. number of drives required||2||3||4|
|Max. capacity available||50%||N - 1 disk||N - 2 disk|
|Recommended scenario||Maximum securityPersonal or business backup||Maximum storage capacity, minimum budget Personal or SMB backup||Same as RAID5, but with improved securityPersonal or business backup|
|Speed||Improved read, medium write speed||High read, medium write speed||High read, low write speed due to high tolerance|
*Still unsure about which RAID to choose? Go with Synology Hybrid RAID (SHR) to create flexible storage space with optimized capacity and performance. Learn more about Synology Hybrid RAID
How to select the right NAS?
Estimate storage requirements
How much data do you expect to produce over the next 2 to 3 years?
Add up your current storage consumption across PCs, mobile devices, and public cloud accounts, and multiply the result by the average rate of annual data growth (1.2 per year).
Select the number of bays
Head to the RAID Calculator to find out the minimum number of drive bays you need according to your storage requirements. The maximum number of drives supported by each NAS is indicated in its model name. Take the DS920+ as an example:
- Model name ending j：J Series
- None or Play：Value Series
- +：Plus Series
- xs+ or xs：XS+/XS Series
Select series and model
Synology NAS comes in different series and models. From simple file management and multimedia streaming to work productivity, there is a NAS for every type of need.
- RAID Calculator offers you an estimate on the space utilization.