—- Synology DSM 7.0 Review Contents —-
Synology DSM 7 Review – Business Applications
Synology has spent the last few years retooling and ramping up the range of modern business and network storage applications in DSM, clearly making 1st party software and services a HUGE priority. Alot of these upgrades and changes to the key software took place in the last 3 years as DSM 6.2 became established and although in some cases DSM 7.0 has applied a few improvements in the UI of each of them, they remain largely the same in DSM7 as they did to their DSM 6.2 versions. One that has become a big part of the Synology architecture for business is Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) and although little change is apparent, I will highlight though that recent upgrades in VMM in conjunction with Active backup have significant improved how the software can import/migrate existing VMware/Hyper-V environments that are backed up to be mounted within the Synology VMM system.
Likewise, the ability to export your existing virtual machine or virtual conversion/image of an existing bare metal machine to the Synology VMM platform is still incredibly straightforward, as seen in my guide to test Windows 11 as a VM on a Synology NAS Video in less than 15mins.
The Surveillance platform on DSM is another area that has received very few visible changes in DSM7, with perhaps the background responsiveness and latency being tweaked in the browser in line with the DSM7 kernel improvements. The Surveillance Station application still runs like an absolute hero in the browser and desktop client application on DSM7 just as it did on DSM 6.2, with full access, configuration and control to all your camera feeds via a Chrome browser as you would like in a local app!
Indeed, even when I tested DSM 7 on a remarkably low powered and low hardware equipped system like the DS120j (2 Core ARM CPU and 512MB memory), Surveillance Station 8.2 ran perfectly well and that was with the more memory-hungry DSM 7 running on it. See how DSM 7 and surveillance, media and storage management ran on this incredibly modest NAS system (along with others) in the videos below
Finally, there is the Synology Collaboration suite of applications (a few already mentioned) that, although not changed a great deal from DSM 6.2>DSM7.0 with the exception of Synology Drive, are still mighty impressive to be included with your NAS drive purchase. These applications include:
Synology Chat – Aimed at businesses, Synology Chat is an IM service that transforms the way users collaborate and communicate.
Synology Drive – Host your own private cloud behind the safety of your NAS with 100% data ownership and no subscription fees.
Synology Calendar – Stay on track, share calendars, and schedule meetings, while ensuring sensitive information remains safely stored on company premises.
Again, although these applications have not received a significant change between DSM 6.2 and DSM 7, it is still worth highlighting that Synology is STILL the only brand out there that provides BOTH the hardware server system AND a full collaboration suite of applications that can rival that of Microsoft Office 365 and Google. Even if you choose to remain with DSM 6.2, you cannot really fault Synology for developing and releasing this range of applications and including them in your NAS software package a no additional cost – I just wish this was extended to other areas of the more recent DSM7 services, as I am convinced it would make their integrations into even low-level NAS network environments more palatable and home users make the switch more readily.
Synology DSM 7 Review – Conclusion
Unsurprisingly I have almost exclusively positive things to say about DSM 7. Throughout the years of development, this upgrade to diskstation manager has maintained a high standard of quality and features at each level and each beta preview stage, with this final product living up to ALMOST all of its promises. There are still a few key features that have yet to arrive, such as drive failure prediction and promise Mac OS support in Synology drive (file pinning, streaming) and support of Mac OS in active-backup, but practically all other promises have been maintained and DSM 7 does the impressive job of almost immediately making you feel that DSM 6.2 is dated -not a small task. Additionally, it is hard to forget that DSM 7.0 is equivalent to an entire operating system and some users are quick to forget that this is included within the cost of your NAS Purchase, so when the hardware warranty of a NAS system passes (2, 3 or 5 years) the software warranty and support continues for years and years after, with DSM 7.0 giving way to DSM 7.1 and onwards. So, it is hard to be critical of software and services that will likely change and improve over time.
That said, there are things that I think Synology DSM 7 could perhaps improve upon, the steadily more open move by Synology to graduate out of SOHO/SMB NAS and into the Enterprise and HyperScale data center environments has the potential to leave those lesser user tiers getting left behind. This is amplified when several of these new DSM 7 and new-gen services arrive with restricted or paid subscription-based models at the ground level (like HybridShare only supporting their own cloud, Active Insight being a paid subscription service and Synology C2 not having a free tier at a smaller GB bracket). Synology DSM 7.0 is of benefit to ALL users and the vast improvements in responsiveness, design, security and further tweaks to the UX for ALL users cannot be understated – it’s a triumph. Likewise the storage improvements, inclusive collaboration suite, Surveillance tools, VM manager and integration with 3rd party cloud in most areas is 10/10 for me. The lack of support of USB devices, missing config of Photo Station and the where Synology stand on 3rd party applications in DSM 7.0 still seems a little murky, but it’s still very early into DSM 7.0s life to make sweeping judgements on these. Overall, I like it, DSM 7.0 is almost perfect!
|PROs of DSM 7.0||CONs of DSM 7.0|
|Genuinely Impressive Latency
Very Appealing GUI
Unbeatable First Party App Support
Near Perfect Single EcoSystem
Makes DSM 6.2 Look Dated
Fast RAID Repair and RAID6 Improvements
Surveillance, VMs, Backups and Media Handling all still 10/10
Feels JUST as Secure & Safe as Ever
Hyper Backup & Cloud Sync Still Support MANY Clouds
Active Insight, Active Backup, C2 & HybridShare = Business Win
|Reduced USB Support Currently
Some 3rd Party Applications have not migrated well
Synology Photos Still Lacks some Photo Station Services
Hybrid Share ONLY Supports Synology C2 (Paid Sub)
Occasional Conflict of DSM 6.2 to DSM 7 Designs at times
Synology Drive File Pining & Active Backup Still not Available for Mac
—- Synology DSM 7.0 Review Contents —-
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