QNAP TS-210 first impressions

The most important thing about keeping your data safe is that whatever backup or redundancy setup you choose, it has to be easy. If you need to remember to make backups, you’ll forget. For me personally, I’ve opted to go with a RAID1 solution, where my data is written to two separate disks. This means my data is safe from drive failure, and since I’m using a version control system, I don’t really need any kind of rotating backup scheme. That’s why I got a QNAP TS-210 a couple of weeks ago, and so far I love it.

I’m no expert when it comes to NAS devices (this is my first one), and so I’m not saying the QNAP is better than the similarly priced Netgear ReadyNAS Duo or the Synology DS210j. I couldn’t find any comparative reviews, so I went with the one I thought looked cool and had the best hardware specs. I did want to go with a specialist brand as opposed to something like the WD “World Edition”. I’ve never really trusted consumer solutions, and WD isn’t my favorite brand.

Installation

Installing two 1,5TB Samsung EcoGreen drives into the TS-210’s plastic enclosure was as easy as screwing them in place and connecting a couple of cables. The process is described in a Quick Start Guide and shouldn’t take more than a couple of minutes. Once you’re done, you connect the drive to the network, and locate it using a small utility called “QNAP Finder”. The initial setup process is easy enough, although it involves downloading the latest firmware (95MB) and takes a little time.

Web interface

The device’s web interface is among the best I’ve seen for any type of device. There’s a silly slider-type menu that sorta mimics the Mac OSX dock, but it’s needlessly complex. I was happy to find it can be disabled in favor of a more conventional icon-based menu. From there on in, the screen layout is excellent, with the TS-210’s many features arranged and categorized very conveniently.

I found it very easy to format the drives, set them up as RAID1 and set up network shares (Samba). I connected the NAS to my computer directly in order to copy my stuff onto it, and then moved it to my router. I’m on wifi at the office, and I’ve been working “off of” the QNAP since then. Large files take a little longer to open, but nothing serious.

Overkill

This may be an entry level NAS device, its feature set is amazing. There’s a download client (bittorrent), iSCSI support, a web server, FTP, automated backups, remote rsync and many other things of which I’ve yet to find out what they mean. I could even run WordPress off of it if I’d want to. I guess that’s what you get for buying a NAS from a manufacturer that specializes in professional solutions.

I have yet to set up FTP and other types of remote access, but so far I love the QNAP. It feels like a very solid product, and that’s important for a product that’s designed to safeguard your valuable data.

Roy | August 25, 2010 | English,Gadgets | Comments (13)
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13 Comments

  1. Please post again if you get into the FTP or other features. I’ve been looking into getting an NAS device with RAID1 and this looks like a strong contender.

    Comment by Foxumon — August 25, 2010 @ 8:58 pm

    • Due to network weirdness here at the office (multiple routers, unable to forward ports) it’ll be a while before I can really test thins like FTP properly. It work in-house, and there are many settings. I’m confident it won’t disappoint.

      Comment by Roy — August 26, 2010 @ 11:10 am

  2. hi, the data is important to us, and I get a QNAP 219P NAS about half a year ago. I love it too.
    Besides backup and make data safe, you can also read the data through internet when you out of home.

    Comment by iplaywind — September 2, 2010 @ 11:45 am

  3. I got a QNAP 210 and set it up as a home network. However, like so many others, I cannot conect to it from the internet. I have set up a http://www.dyndns.com account but no luck.
    Can someone please send me a step by step guide (feel really dumb).
    Thanks

    Comment by greg — January 2, 2011 @ 12:46 am

    • Hi Greg, I assume you have all the appropriate ports properly forwarded in your router?

      Comment by Roy — January 3, 2011 @ 1:50 pm

  4. Hi Roy,

    I have done the following:

    IN QNAP:
    – Administrator / Network / DDNS tab:
    Ticked Enable Dynamic DNS Service
    Selected dyndns and entered all details
    Ticked Check the External IP Address Automatically (every 10 min)

    TCP/IP details are:
    IP address: 192.168.1.175
    Gateway: 192.168.1.1

    Shared folder: public

    – Applications tab:
    Web file manager is enabled (Enable Web File Manager)

    ON ROUTER for internet connection (Orange Livebox):
    – Advanced tab / Router / Port Forwarding – NAT
    Added new data ie HTTP TCP 8080 80 192.168.1.175

    I am trying to log in via this url:
    http://deletedfull-link.dyndns/192.168.1.175:8080/cgi-bin/filemanager/

    Is this correct?

    Firewall (on) and Antivirus: AVG

    Comment by Greg — January 3, 2011 @ 3:04 pm

    • Hi Greg, I’m sorry about the long delay. I’m pretty sure the 192.168 IP address does not need to be in the URL. I’d recommend setting things up without dyndns first (it’s essentially a shortcut so you don’t have to remember the IP). Use whatsmyip.org to find your external IP address and connect to that IP, port 8080 (xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx:8080). The rest of your settings looks okay to me, as far as I can tell from here.

      Comment by Roy — January 12, 2011 @ 1:43 pm

  5. Hi Roy,

    I had a friend set it up, I made an account for him and he can access the QNAP but only through ftp ie ftp://myipaddress. Cant access it via http://myipaddress. Any ideas?

    Should I be able to access the software Administrator logon page from another internet computer or can I only access the files on the drive?

    Thanks

    Comment by greg — January 12, 2011 @ 6:12 pm

    • Hi Greg. If you’ve set up the proper port forwards on your router, you should be able to access any service the QNAP is running. I’ve had little chance to play with this, but I’m sure the forums over at QNAP can help you.

      Comment by Roy — January 19, 2011 @ 9:58 am

  6. Hi Greg.

    did you ever get this working?

    I THINK the gateway should be set to 255.255.255.0

    I personally don’t have the QNAP but my colleague has one. I’ve asked him if he has remote access working.

    Nigel

    Comment by Nigel — January 19, 2011 @ 11:41 pm

  7. Hi Greg.

    did you ever get this working?

    I THINK the gateway should be set to 255.255.255.0

    I personally don’t have the QNAP but my colleague has one. I’ve asked him if he has remote access working.

    Nigel

    Comment by Nigel Hanwell — January 19, 2011 @ 11:49 pm

  8. Hi Nigel,

    Thanks, finally got it going. I must say, great product but the help files and support is useless. No everyone can play with equipment every day until you work out how it actually works and what the functions are for.
    The first thing support suggested was that I install the latest software version and nothing else was mentioned – ridiculous.

    Comment by greg — January 20, 2011 @ 9:44 am

  9. Hi again.
    Does anyone know if non listed cctv cameras can be used with the qnap Surveilance station.

    Comment by Greg — January 23, 2011 @ 9:20 pm