Synology - No Support Unless Synology Drives Are Fitted

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Synology - No Support Unless Synology Drives Are Fitted

RS1221+, RS819, RS217
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We did wonder if this day would come. In response to an issue with my RS1221+ in recent weeks the formal answer from Synology is that only Synology drives can be fitted in order to receive technical and/or warranty support. Indeed, they have said that all other SSD from every other manufacturer are 'incompatible' with this NAS.

Synology's recommended path for continued support is to remove the 6 SSDs and 2 HDDs from my NAS and fit Synology 'Enterprise' equivalents. Not that you can actually buy them as they are consistently out of stock, as well as being of a smaller capacity. Oh and the price for the replacement Synology drives to achieve continued support.... £7500.00.

As a reminder, the vendor 'compatibility' check for my model was introduced with DSM7, several months after the unit was purchased and the SSDs themselves were migrated from my DS1571+ using the Synology migration app with DSM6.2.4.

I would guess that precisely zero customers would throw an additional £7.5k at a £1.1k consumer NAS, just to achieve warranty cover. So If it does finally die then it will go in the bin and I will endeavour to recover the cost through the small claims court (I'm in the UK, so that costs £50).

Despite receiving the final "this cannot be looked into further" message I did offer Synology a middle ground in order to continue the diagnostics. I have yet to hear if they will budge an inch though.

I think I need to type the price again - over £6k for the SSDs and well over £1k for the two HDDs. An extra £7500 just for warranty cover!


I wanted to avoid the faff of building a TrueNAS unit but with Synology taking the 'Plus' series into the stratosphere I presume this is the best way to go?
Welcome to my world when I felt like an idiot who has perceived Synology's strategy for the last 1 year as a road to hell.

- the majority of customers buy desktop version NAS with 4 bays - target audience in this NAS segment
- then Synology does not bother the marginal segment of power users or enthusiasts. This segment buys a more powerful NAS, even in the rackmount version. And this segment sees the steps associated with the "ugly monetization" of this segment as a "pointless act".
And all those fairy tales like Synology are interested in being a powerful enterprise player. Maybe like a really expensive flower stand.

Do you feel that Synology is interested in your £7500 problem? I have described the reasons a long time ago. I'm just waiting for an IPO or their logo change. And I stopped wasting my time developing in the Synology field.

Btw: We still have to wait at least a year for a quality NAS from TrueNAS (Scale). The question of what will be good quality and for whom? Because whether that in-depth analysis of what needs to be created (and why and for whom) do not recognize even in this NAS-camp. Is it such a contagious disease of civilization?
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I thought their approach to memory expansion and support was the tip of the iceberg……
Have also seen posts where people say: V7 complained about drives that V6 didn’t….. in the same physical NAS.
Overall this attitude makes me “uncomfortable”….

I gave my WD RED CMR Stuffed 215J to son-in-law with warning not to update it to V7
Well my offer of a middle ground came back with a flat no.

The irritating bit of final advice to me was to read the compatibility list when I buy a NAS. Clearly I did this time and before DSM7 there wasn't a murmur of this policy and the drive migration was a clear pathway. They cannot mean the data sheet as that hasn't been amended yet and it still has the howler in the notes about the NVMe slots too (none fitted).

So in retrospect they must mean I will have to research my next NAS and having done so it looks like I will need TrueNAS. I'm a regular consumer that just cannot find £7.5k just to populate a Synology NAS with their egregiously expensive and exceedingly rare 'enterprise-class' drives.

As a final note, Synology-labelled drives must only ever be used in Synology NASes, otherwise no warranty on them either. The vendor-lock is a door bolted from both sides.

I wonder if the thinking heads on this forum can help diagnose my NAS now that Synology has washed their hands of it...

Yes, it's getting worse and worse with every year/release of new devices/DSM we get more Vendor locking for no good reason other than money-greed from Synology side :(.

Pitty, i had such great faith in them over last decade and recommended it to all my friends and some clients but sadly I can't give them that recommendation anymore unless they want to pay 2x price for Synology branded HDDs/Ram etc...
Simple math exercise:

7500 GBP is about 9000 Eur

9000 / 5y guarantee period / 12 months = 150 Eur monthly “guarantee fee” just for the 8 drives

just for a comparison:

Hitachi HNAS 5200 (pure enterprise level) = thousand light years away from the Synology top models (in every single possible comparisons)
Monthly HW maintenance standard support: 1390 Eur for entire NAS HW (out of drives ofc).
Just to be sure in this comparison is the Syno RS1221+ like small Piaggio “truck” and the HNAS like full-featured Scania truck
As my final 'FU' to Synology I found the issue and I think I have fixed it (24 hours or so with no issues).

After breaking-out the scope, bench power and DMM I found a hardware issue impacting the PCIe bus. Fault was isolated to the Synology NIC and a deeper dive into the local network revealed minor glitches and packet loss in the same timeframe as the other errors.

So not a sudden, simultaneous and multiple SSD and HDD problem caused by having WD and Toshiba drives fitted... funny that.

This was the Synology NIC (Marvell ACQ107 clone) that was pulling down the PCIe bus:


Replaced it with this new one:

IMG_2129 redacted.jpeg

I did intend to fit an Intel X710T2L card but global issues being what they are I could not get hold of one. It went against the grain to fit a Synology card but it was available at an ok price.

Looks like self-help is all we are left with. That will go down well in the 'enterprise' market Synology are chasing.

Great @Robbie
I'm afraid that the compatibility of the Intel controller with the current customized kernel from the Synology workshop could cause problems
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Maybe, but the latest Intel NIC is a good one and is usually seen as having the widest of compatibilities, holds its value well and requires less power. Not that I would ever lean on the Synology Compatibility Marketing list but the 4-port version of the Intel X710TxL is the only non-Syno card on the RS1221+ list.

Edging toward 48hrs now without incident.

Intel X710TxL is the only non-Syno card

here is also a possible option - compatible for NAS operation:
You have to be careful with Qnap cards as they tend to rely on more modern kernels being in place and that is usually a bad bet with Synology.

Looking at the image of the Qnap card does not inspire confidence though - reduced heatsink, additional fan and half the PCIe bandwidth being just a x4 card. I'm not sure any of that makes sense on a twin 10GbE card but I've only looked at the picture.

Plus, it says Qnap on it, so there is that. Probably the case that data leaks out so fast that it ruins your carpets.

it was an attempt at a joke to try the Qnap cards in Syno
I wouldn't even buy Q-products for my grandmother's living-room

now seriously:
for PCIe 3.0 and max speed for a single lane: 985 MB/s throughput (unencoded bandwidth)
you will get with 4 lanes 3,940 MB/s = 31,520 Mb/s which is 3.08x more than you need for 10G NIC
then even 2 lanes are able to support 2 x 985 MB/s x 8 = 15,760 Mb/s vs 10,240 of the 10G NIC

But I understand that one thing is theoretically throughput and the other thing is reality
Seriously, seriously... I am not sure I about that. I think my maths would be something like:
  • 10 GbE links achieve ~1200 MB/s (duplex) (x2 ports) = 2400 MB/s per port = 4800 MB/s total
  • PCIe 3.0 single lane achieves from around 800 MB/s to 960 MB/s of actual throughput
    • taking best case 960 MB/s x 4 lanes = 3840 MB/s total
  • So around 1000 MB/s of lost bandwidth by using PCIe 3.0 x 4 lanes
Qnap would probably argue that real-world port traffic diversity would effectively 'give back' the missing bandwidth and that the latency hit is trivial for TCP/IP (compared to something like a graphics card). Or something.

Intel would probably point at their ICDs for the chipset and the x8 lane requirement and tut gently. Heck, even Synology puts a dual-port card on 8 lanes and some users will want to use LAG or (hopefully) SMB MC.

I'm probably wrong about something in the maths above but a x4 card looks a bit mean for a dual-port 10 GbE card.

Your distain for Qnap is noted and appreciated. 👍


PCIe lane throughput is a dual simplex channel = for each direction
based on Decimal and not Binary MAC Transmit Bit rate conversion from the base 10Gb/s
Then 4 lanes are must for a Jumbo MTU

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