Synology NAS DS419Slim

Provide information and insights into new NAS. (TO DO)

DS419Slim

After a few months using the drive, I can now report on its overall operation.

One, don’t let the photos on Amazon fool you, this is a MINI NAS which uses laptop drives, not the normal desktop drives. Which was surprising when it arrived. Plus the description said it came with drives, but didn’t. Amazon likes to embellish its descriptions and mix all the “like”/”similar” drives. So don’t bother reading them, get your reviews elsewhere.

After the second order with drives arrived, install and setup was easy. Left the drives formatting/partitioning overnight. It comes with internet access to manage, configure and monitor.. HOWEVER, it isn’t free, SURPRISE. Locally accessing, does work and is free.

There are two pieces of software that can be installed on Synology Cloud Station Backup and Synology Cloud Station Drive. Station Backup does a backup as is per configured on each station. Station Drive syncs file as they are opened and closed. Users complained of slower computers, but was kind of expected.

You log into the NAS with each users account and can recover files easily. I don’t expect users to be able to do this.

Plex, PlexConnect and OpenPlex

Over the last couple of years my family has ripped every movie we own and stored it on a Mac Mini Server with a 4th drive attached. Using Plex and a number of plugins and add-ins, almost every device brought into the house can connect. It has been fantastic. Except.

Plex, do not work on the AppleTV. Until now! We were finally able to install PlexConnect and can now watch our movies on TV’s with AppleTVs connected. There are a couple of short falls.

1) the PlexConnect is started up using Terminal, not everyone in the house is tech savvy.

2) PlexConnect can’t easily be restarted if the system is restarted due to power loss.

Obstacles  had to be overcome included, we have been running Plex on a Mac mini server, PlexConnect won’t run on a server since the ports are already in use. We had to install another copy of Plex on an old iMac, connect that copy of Plex  it to the PlexServer  on the Mac Mini. then installed PlexConnect on the Mini everything worked fine. Oh and you need to install Certificates. There are so many different ‘instructions blogs” on how to install Plexconnect it was difficult to work out the proper install. Basically I just put down all the other instructions and tried to figure out what the end result was and why it didn’t work. Two plex servers, linked to the same data, install certificates and DON’T use a server. Bingo!

Then I wanted to find a way to restore PlexConnect in case of power loss while I was away from home. Due to bandwidths limits (by at&t) it is better for everyone if we are going to watch movies we already own, that we use local copies. (Rather than downloading it AGAIN and AGAIN.. Say ‘Frozen’ for a two year old!)

So started to work out writing a startup program in LiveCode, and ran across a program called OpenPlex. Spent a couple of hours playing with it, but it needed a lot of ‘support’ software installed. I am using an older model iMac running 10.6, and it was getting to be more of a pain to use OpenPlex than to write my own program that would just work..

I’ll keep everyone up-to-date on my progress and provide a link to the finished product when completed.

Have a great day.