Note Station alternative

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Note Station alternative

227
32
NAS
DS918+
Operating system
  1. macOS
Mobile operating system
  1. iOS
Note Station isn't as good as it could be. Research here seems to confirm this. What to use instead? I'm seeing Standard Notes and Joplin mentioned. Both have macOS and iOS clients and I need that. Both are hard to install, and I don't need that. I'm reluctant to return to using apps which need Docker after my NextCloud burned and died. But if I have to, maybe Standard is nicer. But the tutorial at Standard Notes - Docker self-hosted alternative for all your note needs is already confusing me. Or I could use Standards own instructions Self-hosting Standard Notes on your Synology NAS where I'm also confused if I need a subscription or not. (They promise a discount for self hosting but I can't see the price.)
I really do prefer the simplicity of running native Synology apps, but I'd rather something better than Note Station. Any others I should look at?
 
This is my old SN tutorial that is no longer valid with the new v2 version of SN! Do not use it as the setup has changed (for the better and a little simpler), but I still haven't had time to rewrite it.

Or I could use Standards own instructions Self-hosting Standard Notes on your Synology NAS where I'm also confused if I need a subscription or not.
This new method will indeed be free (100%) but in case you want anything over the basic functionality, you will have to get a self-hosted subscription at a reduced price. They call it an "offline subscription" that will run you 39$/y (unlike their hosted version at 90$/y).
 
I switched from Note Station to Standard Notes, self hosting using a single docker container.

Seeing that subsequent updates of those SN containers lead to much work and possibly data loss, while upgrading, I've dropped Standard Notes, too and I'm now using MS OneNote for all of my notes.

With clients on Android, iPadPro and of course Windows. If I like I can use it in a browser, too. I do not have a MS 365 license, to be honest. Just OneDrive and an existing MS-Account.

Note Station, IMO, has an uncertain future and in my case it did not work reliable across multi OSs like Android and Windows, especially when it comes to formatting the notes. Using OneNote I can format things like I wish, import or export from different Office apps and browser integration is also better than any other programs above.

Standard Notes was once easy to set up, but after the programmers decided to split up the former single container setup, I manged to upgrade again with some effort. But finally I dropped SN because the following docker upgrades did not really attract me.
And the plugin system of SN was getting worse after I while.
 
I dropped SN because the following docker upgrades did not really attract me.
Same here. I will give it another go, as I see the model atm is different and more stable. Still not happy that for a few extra features, they are asking 40$/y to run a self-hosted version tbh.

While it is not a "note" app, I like Bookstacks (it's more of a wiki platform) and use it a lot. It is very stable and mobile-friendly but with no dedicated app. Still, as a web app, it can be accessed from anywhere and that is the main functionality for me.
 
Note Station isn't as good as it could be. Research here seems to confirm this. What to use instead? I'm seeing Standard Notes and Joplin mentioned. Both have macOS and iOS clients and I need that. Both are hard to install, and I don't need that. I'm reluctant to return to using apps which need Docker after my NextCloud burned and died. But if I have to, maybe Standard is nicer. But the tutorial at Standard Notes - Docker self-hosted alternative for all your note needs is already confusing me. Or I could use Standards own instructions Self-hosting Standard Notes on your Synology NAS where I'm also confused if I need a subscription or not. (They promise a discount for self hosting but I can't see the price.)
I really do prefer the simplicity of running native Synology apps, but I'd rather something better than Note Station. Any others I should look at?
I've been using Trilium Notes for a while now, quite to my satisfaction. I used the deployment method as described by Marius of mariushosting.com



Trilium also has a desktop application for Windows as well as an extension for Chrome browser. All integrate very nicely.
 
Seeing that subsequent updates of those SN containers lead to much work and possibly data loss, while upgrading, I've dropped Standard Notes, too and I'm now using MS OneNote for all of my notes.
Yes, I don't want to get caught up in using Docker again, same reasons.

I've used OneNote in the past and just taken another look. It doesn't suit me as it has a (typical Microsoft) complex user interface. What I guess I want is Apple's Notes.app. Notes can be self-hosted via IMAP. I tried that but found syncing slow for whatever reason. Plus you can only use it for plain text, no formatting, unless you sync via iCloud.

I've looked at the other apps I mentioned and to be honest they're not really what I want either. Is there anything with the simplicity - both of use and UI - of Apple Notes? Other than Apple Notes!

I'm going to carry on with Note Station for now. The most frustrating thing I find is a delay in editing on my iPhone. But that may be my old phone... If it all goes wrong Apple Notes - even via iCloud - is my best option.
 
I have installed Joplin today in a container and this is working fine. Joplin has also a small community who creates plugins to make some tasks better. I have followed the howto from Mariushosting. Joplin has also apps for Android, iOs and desktop appilcation for Windows and MacOs.
 
If you want to use Standardnotes I would suggest to take a look at these alternatives. You will have all the benefits of SN and much easier to install.
Standardfile or Standard-notes server
My advice stay away from the official SN selfhost options, it is a mess to maintain!

And as a alternative I recommend Joplin, personally I dropped SN and migrated all my notes to Joplin (Server version with postgres database). I must say it is not the best UI design, but it works for my needs😉
 
And as a alternative I recommend Joplin, personally I dropped SN and migrated all my notes to Joplin (Server version with postgres database). I must say it is not the best UI design, but it works for my needs😉
It works also fast, like I described before, Joplin in combination with db fast and with webdav it was slower but it works.
 
Synology's Note Station client started to give me troubles in the last few weeks for no obvious reasons to me.
After each start/restart of my computers it refuses to login and my credentials are not accepted. I need to unlink and link again, and surprisingly then everything is OK... but just until the next start/restart!
Motivated by suggestions in this thread I tried Joplin which seems to be good enough for my needs and has a web clipper too which I use a lot. I would too recommend Joplin as an excellent alternative to Note Station.
Probably I will settle with Joplin so soon I plan to change synchronisation destination to WebDAV server on my NAS. Any advices or pros/cons to using WebDAV instead Onedrive destination?
 
Apples/Oranges. One you control. With WebDAV I recommend a dedicated shared folder, which can easily be backed up with Hyper Backup.
Is WebDAV much slower as mentioned above? I found using IMAP for Apple Notes slow. Am I right in thinking everything has to sync using WebDAV rather than just what the database know needs to sync?
 
How so? Only WebDAV and a shared folder are required by Joplin.
OK, I'm RTFM to get Joplin on my Synology via WebDAV. It says I need to add some lines in terminal application. It doesn't say where I install terminal application in order to do this. Or is it trying to say I need to configure Joplin via the command line of DSM? All clear as mud.
 
Last edited:
It says I need to add some lines in terminal application ... All clear as mud.
There's no need to touch a terminal.

Install/start WebDAV server on the NAS.
Create a shared folder ... call it "joplin" if you like.
Open the Joplin app on your phone/PC ... and look for "Synchronization" ... Select WebDAV and enter your WebDAV URL (pointing to the shared folder you created), along with your NAS login credentials. Use the "Check synchronization settings" button ... If it passes, you are done.
 
There's no need to touch a terminal.

Install/start WebDAV server on the NAS.
Create a shared folder ... call it "joplin" if you like.
Open the Joplin app on your phone/PC ... and look for "Synchronization" ... Select WebDAV and enter your WebDAV URL (pointing to the shared folder you created), along with your NAS login credentials. Use the "Check synchronization settings" button ... If it passes, you are done.
Yes, just like that...
I also used reverse proxy to avoid exposing port 5006...
 

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