If you are managing your own home server it’s important to keep up to speed on the latest software for your server. It’s one of the drawbacks of using a home server or NAS, you can’t just set it and forget it. The latest update from Synology for my favorite digital home handyman product is a really good one. I know this is firmly in the nerd realm, but I'm excited about this update. Synology's DiskStation Manager (DSM) is usually pretty good, and they have been making it better at a very good pace. The latest version of DiskStation manager addresses a number of things I have been concerned about.
First, it adds a feature for exploring your Glacier backup set from the DSM interface so it's easier to get a single file from backup. Awesome, this reinforces my choice of using Glacier for backups, because that was the one remaining issue with Glacier is the difficulty of restoring a small set of files from the archive.
The next exciting addition that's relevant to this blog is Security Advisor. Synology DiskStation products had a big security problem a few months ago. Some malicious hackers figured out how to remotely access many (out of date) Disk Stations that were open to the internet and they held people's files hostage. This was really bad, but the security hole was closed quickly. Synology is trying to remedy this situation by having better automated updates, better email notifications of those updates to Synology owners, and now this new Advisor security scanning application.
When you install this newest version after setup, it will ask you if you want to install updates automatically, install only important updates, or just download and wait for you to install them manually. It's personal preference of course, but my recommendation is to set it to install important updates automatically, so you get the best security patches as quickly as possible.
Another new feature that's relevant to the digital home handyman is the update to Cloud Sync. Which is an application that will sync your cloud files from DropBox and Google Drive onto your NAS also, so if a cloud service ever goes down, you still have the files on your personal cloud. The new version allows you to connect to additional services, like Microsoft OneDrive and 'box'. This is a good thing to turn on, it's especially nice because it allows you to have multiple accounts with each service.