We can setup Synology NAS through find.synology.com or via Synology Assistant. In this article we will guide you from scratch. On how to setup your brand new NAS via its Software Assistant. So, first and foremost you need to make sure you have working internet on the router. Secondly, your NAS should be unboxed and sitting right next to the router. Third, we will need a Mac or Computer to install the software and initiate the NAS setup. And fourthly, we will need a coffee and some soft music through stereo maybe ‘Ed Sheeran’. So, lets start the setup-
Installing the Hard Drives
Most of the Synology NAS doesn’t requires screwdriver to fit them but some of the “J” series and high end enterprise series will required cross head screwdriver to open them. In most models you will be having click and load design trays and you wont need screw drivers.
Once the trays are out you will need to remove the side plastic coverings and then fit the drive into the given areas. The bolts on the tray and on the drive should fit properly. Next, put the plastic coverings on the sides back-on. Now, insert the drives into the NAS again.
Powering ON NAS
In this step we will simply just need to first connect an ethernet cable from your router’s LAN port to the ethernet port on the back side of the NAS. Also make sure your router is already setup and have internet.
Next, you will need to connect the power adapter of the NAS. Next click the power button on it. And now you might observe hard drive making sounds while turning on. Later, the light will start blinking on the NAS, and the fan will start spinning and for around a next one minute system will run its checks. Each drive bay when properly initialized will have solid light beside it on the NAS.
Downloading Synology Assistant
Next go online on your computer or laptop and then download tool called Synology assistant that will guide us through its setup. For this tool you will need to go to Synology support then go to download section. Find the NAS you are installing with the help of the drop down section. Once done, click on the “desktop utilities” tab. Now at the very top of the list, you will see Synology Assistant so we just need to download and install that software to initiate NAS login.
Once you click on download it will ask you about the operating system on which you are downloading the software. So accordingly select your operating system. If you are using windows then select that, or if you are using mac or ubuntu then choose those options.
The installation of this software is pretty simple and straight forward. It will just ask you to select your “Langauge” and then you will need to click on “next” multiple times and in the end it will ask for your permission to run Synology Assistant
Now as you click on “finish”, there are chances that Assistant software can find or can not find the NAS on your local network. It totally depends on if your NAS was booted properly. If it is connected with the same network as your laptop/computer. If all is good then it will come under server name. Now you can either simply double click on the “Synology NAS” name showing under server names. Or you can type the IP address showing there into the browser to access the Synology NAS login page.
Can’t Find NAS On Local Network
It is possible some users will not be able to find the NAS on the local network. And they will get the error message like this on Synology assistant.
If you are also getting error message like “no Synology server was found on the local network”. Then we have already covered it one article on how to fix it. You should definitely read that.
Synology Assistant Setup
On your Assistant software, it will show you your Unit. Now, if you are already using other NAS’s, then it will show you the status of the NAS like Installed or not installed. So double click on the the one that says not installed to begin setup.
Next it asks you to agree to the terms and agreement. Later it will open up NAS interface into your browser. While installing the NAS it will wipe out all the data on the drives. So be careful if you have any data on the drive then don’t click on next. First copy the data somewhere and then set this up. Or else if its blank drives then just continue.
NAS system installation takes around 10 minutes. After DSM is installed the system reboots and ask you to create user account. And then we will create storage etc. In the next window, it will ask you to create device name, administrator account name, and password.
On your screen you might also receive prompts to add Synology 2 factor authentication which make your NAS more secured. It works via google authenticator or other OTP based systems. Synology also have their own 2 factor authenticator app called “secure sign in”, which is available for both android and iOS which makes your NAS very much secure.
In the next window you will need to choose the update option for your unit. I will recommend you to go for “automatic update” as with each update any loop holes in the previous versions are rectified making your NAS way more faster and secure. It is important because there might be times when you will be accessing your unit from some other networks too. So, in that case having strong security will ensure your data remains safe. So go with automatic updates.
In the next window it will ask you to create a Synology account which has its own benefits like free two factor Authentication tool for better security and “active insight” which helps you to Monitor the health of your unit 24/7.
Creating Storage Pool And Volume
Next we will need to create storage pool and volume. Now you can do that by the pop up showing up on your screen or you can go the main menu on top left and click on the “Storage manager”.
So basically you can now create storage pools and volumes. In simpler terms storage pool is the house and the volumes are the rooms. So you can create as many volumes as you want as per your choice.
Click start to begin the process of creating storage pool. Next it will ask you to choose your Raid Configuration.
Now it is really important for every Nas user to understand these raid configurations as they can cost you entire data. So, lets quickly learn which is the best raid type that save your data and is fast enough too.
Talking about “Raid 0 or JBOD” gives you no protection against data. “Raid” 0 will combine all of the Hard Drive of your system into giant storage pool. Unfortunately you won’t be able to recover you data if any of the drives fails, all of the data is lost. So with large storage comes big risk.
Same goes with the “JBOD” too, once any drive fails you lose all the data. All other raid types like “SHR” to “Raid 1, 5, 6 and 10 provides different levels of recovery.
SHR and Raid 1 and 5 provides single disk of data recovery option. Which means if one of the drive fails then you can still recover your data and install a new drive.
The difference being SHR is a fluid rate system. Raid 1 is a two Hard drive raid system. Whereas Raid 5 can use 3 or more Hard drive.
“Raid 2” or “Raid 6” provides 2 raid disc failure protection. So if at any instance your two drives fails then you wont loose data and you will be able to replace both the drives too.
In “Raid 10” only half of the total space is available for data storage.
Mostly commonly used is “Raid 5” configuration. It can be used for 3 or more Hard drive system. Here you can recover data if one of drives fails also knows as fault tolerance. You can also read our detailed article here which explains pros and cons of each “Raid Type”.
Next name your Storage pool and click next. In the next window you will be able to create a volume for your system. You can allocate either max size or you can create multiple volumes as per your choice. Like creating one smaller volume for 30000gb or 3tb.
Moreover, it will ask you to choose between “Btrfs” and ext4 file system. “Btrfs” is faster and uses lesser resource. So we recommend you to go for btrfs. Confirm settings and your Synology NAS setup via Synology Assistant is complete.
Backup Synology NAS
It is equally Important to Backup your NAS via Snapshot, Hyper Backup, Cloud Sync, USB Copy, Etc. Check the article here which discuss in detail about the Best Synology NAS Backup Options for home and business users.