Editor choice

Synology DiskStation DS2419+

Designed to deliver big storage to small offices, Synology’s DiskStation DS2419+ offers a capacity normally only found in costly 2U-high rack servers. With 12 hot-swap bays and certification for 14TB SATA drives from Seagate and Toshiba, this desktop appliance can serve up to 168TB making it a great choice as a central backup vault with plenty of room for file sharing and much more.

As the successor to the 3-year old DS2415+, it introduces a number of new and welcome features. The DS2419+ may use the same cuboid chassis but inside beats a superior quad-core 2.1GHz Atom C3538 CPU partnered by DDR4 memory.

There’s a greater focus on expansion as whereas the DS2415+ could only be upgraded to a meagre 6GB of DDR3, the base 4GB in the DS2419+ can be boosted to a more usable 32GB. The DS2419+ also adds a much-needed PCI-Express slot which supports a range of 10-Gigabit (10GbE) adapters or Synology’s M2D18 caching card and its dual M.2 NVMe/SATA SSD slots.

The number of USB 3 ports have been halved to two but you still get four Gigabit ports. The Infiniband port has been retained allowing you to add a DX1215 12-bay expansion unit for a doubling in total capacity.

Build quality and deployment

Synology’s Active Backup for Business app is perfect for protecting physical and virtual systems

The metal chassis is very well built and memory upgrades are simple to conduct by removing two screws and sliding off the side panel to access the pair of SO-DIMM slots. The expansion slot is also easily accessed by removing the top panel and for 10GbE testing, we installed a dual-port Emulex 10GBase-T card.

Synology’s tool-free plastic drive trays make light work of hard disk installation and we fitted a quartet of 12TB Seagate IronWolf NAS drives. The trays also have screw holes provided for installing SFF SATA drives or SSDs.

Cooling is handled by a pair of large 12cms diameter fans mounted in a single tool-free assembly that can be quickly removed for cleaning. The appliance is also extremely quiet with the SPLnFFT iOS app on our iPad recording remarkably low noise levels of only 35.5dB at one meter in front – you’ll be hard pushed to hear this in your lounge let alone a busy office.

Installation is swift as Synology’s quick start web portal downloaded the latest DSM software and set the appliance up for us. Synology’s Assistant app can also be used to discover the appliance where it provides a link to its web console and options to quickly create mapped shares.

Mixed 10GbE performance

DSM offers a wealth of other backup apps as well as ABB

With our four IronWolf drives configured as a 33TB RAID5 storage pool, we found 10GbE performance to be variable. With a NAS share mapped to a Dell PowerEdge T640 Xeon Scalable tower running Windows Server 2016, we watched Iometer record a high sequential read rate of 9.2Gbits/sec but a significantly lower 4.4Gbits/sec for write operations.

Even so, these results are much higher than the DS2415+ as in our earlier review, the best we achieved using all four Gigabit ports were Iometer read and write speeds of 3.5Gbits/sec and 2.9Gbits/sec. Real world performance is also good with drag and drop copies of a 25GB test file averaging read and write speeds of 4.7Gbits/sec and 3.3Gbits/sec while our backup test secured a 22.4GB test folder with 10,500 small files to the share at 2.2Gbits/sec.

Encryption performance isn’t great as copying our 25GB test file to an encrypted share averaged only 1.5Gbits/sec with CPU utilization hovering around the 43% mark. IP SAN performance was similar to our NAS results with a 500GB iSCSI target returning Iometer sequential reads and writes of 8Gbits/sec and 6.3Gbits/sec.

With a dual 10GbE MPIO link to the target, we saw sequential read rates increase to 12.5Gbits/sec but write rates drop to 5.8Gbits/sec. We can point our finger at the CPU as Synology’s DS1618+ uses the same Atom C3538 chip and returned very similar results in all tests.

The best backup apps

Synology’s AV scanner and Security Advisor keep you appliance data safe

Team up the DS2419+ with Synology’s DSM software and you have the perfect backup vault as data protection features are outstanding. First up is the Snapshot Replication app which looks after on-demand and scheduled snapshots of BTRFS volumes and remote replication to other Synology appliances.

Local data can be protected with the Hyper Backup app which handles local, remote, cloud and Rysnc backups but Synology’s star player is its Active Backup for Business (ABB) app. ABB brings all your physical and virtual system protection under one roof and manages backup, restore and disaster recovery services for Windows servers and workstations along with VMware ESXi and vCentre hypervisors.

Windows systems need the ABB agent installed locally but securing virtual machines (VMs) on our VMware ESXi host using application-consistent backups just required us to provide ABB with secure admin credentials. From the ABB console, we could keep a close eye on all our backup jobs, check the calendar for failed jobs and view graphs of storage usage.

Recovery options are extensive and include file and folder plus bare-metal system restores while ABBs integral deduplication engine returned great data reduction rates of up 6:1 during our tests. Critical systems can be recovered in a flash as ABB works with Synology’s Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) and the VMware host to restore selected systems as new VMs.

Conclusion

Synology’s DS2419+ offers SMBs a great data protection solution at a very competitive price. Performance over 10GbE is a mixed bag, but this big 12-bay appliance offers a massive capacity plus essential upgrade potential and is much faster than the DS2415+

Synology’s versatile DSM software delivers the best backup apps and many other capabilities as well. You won’t even need to factor in the cost of backup software licenses as the Active Backup for Business app is free and can protect as many systems as you want.

8.8 Total Score

Synology’s versatile DSM software delivers the best backup apps and many other capabilities as well. You won’t even need to factor in the cost of backup software licenses as the Active Backup for Business app is free and can protect as many systems as you want.

Performance
7.5
Features
9.5
Build quality
9
Usability
9
Value
9
PROS
  • Good value
  • High storage capacity
  • Great Active Backup Suite
  • Expansion slot
  • Much faster than the DS2415+
  • Very quiet
CONS
  • NAS and IP SAN write speeds could be better
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