A while ago I decided to buy a second Synology NAS. I really enjoy the features and capabilities of the first one a DS416Play. So I have repeated the purchase for a different model. This time I went for a DS916+.
This model packs good hardware at an affordable price for a home lab. What I really like about this model is also the compatibility with different Hypervisors stacks including VMware VAAI, Windows Server, Citrix and OpenStack.
The list of available apps for the built-in operating system the Disk Station Manager (DSM) is exhaustive and covers a wide range of scenarios including backups, collaboration, application servers, snapshot orchestration and a lot more.
On this occasion I have decided to take the first time installation screenshots. The installation process is very easy to follow as the next screenshots below. As a follow up of this article the next step will show how to create an iSCSI LUN to use with VMware VAAI.
At this point we are ready to start with the installation of our Synology NAS.
Synology NAS installation
The setup of the Synology NAS will use a web browser. As soon as the NAS receives an IP address we can access the IPAddress on port 5000 to begin the installation process. We can review high level info on the second page or click on connect to start.
Let’s click Set up button.
As a first step the wizard will deploy the latest version of the DSM including latest updates. It is recommended to give the option to connect to the internet at this stage. Alternatively it is possible to manually install the DSM operating system manually.
Synology NAS will detect the installed drives and automatically select them for the format operation.
After formatting the drives the DSM software will be installed and updated to the latest release. The wizard requires roughly 10 minutes to complete. In reality this step is a lot quicker. In case of page refresh we can enter user “admin” and leave a blank password.
At this point we can create the credentials for the administrative account.
And this completes the first part of the installation about admin user.
Next we can specify when and how to run the software updates. From my experience the updates are quite frequent. So I would recommend to use the last option. In any case the widget on the DSM desktop and the status in the Control Panel provide information when a reboot is required upon updates installation.
Synology NAS QuickConnect
QuickConnect is a very handy feature which allows to connect to the Synology NAS from the internet without creating port forwarding rules.
We can choose to send anonymous statistical information to Synology.
Synology NAS Disk Group setup
At this point we are ready to start configuring the drives. In my case I will use 4 SSD drives of 1 TB each. Let’s select all of them to create a Disk Group.
A message will warn us about existing data. Actually these are new drives let’s hit ok to continue.
From this screen we can choose the RAID software to use. The available RAID types will be presented based on the number of detected drives. Since for this NAS I will perform more Reads than Writes I have opted for a classic RAID 5.
Let’s enter a description for this Disk Group.
And a final screen to confirm the settings.
Automatically DSM will create the RAID 5 and format the Disk Group accordingly. Based on the RAID size it can take quite some time to complete.
We now have a Disk Group that we can use to create Volumes, Shares and iSCSI Targets.
In the next article we’ll cover the steps on the creation of iSCSI Targets that are optimized for VMware VAAI.