Synology DiskStation DS3018xs NAS Buyer’s Guide

(8 customer reviews)


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DS3018xs Introduction

The DiskStation DS3018xs by Synology is a versatile and powerful six-bay NAS solution. It features a dual-core processor with the AES-NI hardware encryption engine, and it supports up to 32GB of RAM for enhanced processing power. This NAS offers a reading power of up to 265,000 sequential IOPS, and it is expandable up to 30 drives with optional accessories. The DS3018xs features a third-generation PCIe slot, which means you can upgrade it for higher networking speeds or enhanced SSD caching to handle data-intensive applications.

High-Performance Dual-Core CPU

The DS3018xs features a dual-core processor, which ensures that it will deliver fully redundant processing power. Since this CPU runs at 2.6 GHz, it can handle most NAS applications like advanced virtualization and storage solutions, and it comes with Turbo Boost technology, which can speed up your processing power in a pinch. Equipped with this processor, your NAS will be more than capable of handling the increased load from any USB 3.0 or PCIe 3.0 accessories.

Expandable RAM Power

The DS3018xs comes with 8GB of DDR4 ECC RAM, which might be enough for your purposes. However, this Synology NAS offers expandability up to 32GB of RAM, which is enough processing power to handle even the most data-intensive applications. As you discover your needs, you can add more and more RAM until your DS3018xs NAS runs smoothly.

Lightning-Fast Data Handling

With the DS3018xs, reading and writing to your drives is a dream. This NAS offers up to 2,231 MB/s in reading potential, and it can handle up to 265,000 input/output operations per second (IOPS). With data transfer speeds that are this high, retrieving data or adding new information to your drives will be instantaneous whenever you need to manage data on your DS3018xs.

Optional Increased Storage Capacity

The DS3018xs is equipped with six SSD-ready SATA bays, which provides you with a potential storage capacity upward of 72TB. However, you can maximize your storage potential even more by adding extra bays to your NAS. Synology makes an expansion unit specifically for the DS3018xs called the DX1215 that contains an additional 12 drives. Best of all, the DS3018xs can connect with two separate DX1215 units at the same time, which means that your NAS can support up to 30 drives, which is more than enough space for most medium-sized business or modest enterprise needs.

PCIe Slot for Enhanced Customization

This NAS solution from Synology is equipped with a third-generation PCIe slot to allow for advanced customization options. If you choose to install Synology’s M2D17 M.2 SSD adapter card, you can drastically increase the IOPS of your NAS. In addition, you can add a 10GbE RJ-45 card if you need to create ultra-fast network connections. If you want, you can even use this PCIe slot to install a Wi-Fi card that would turn your wired NAS into a fully wireless network storage, virtualization, and backup solution.

Intuitive DiskStation Manager UI

The DS3018xs comes equipped with DiskStation Manager (DSM), which is Synology’s user-friendly and intuitive UI. This UI’s graphical interface makes it easy to manage or transfer data, and it comes with a number of apps to help you run your server operations with ease. Snapshot Replication is an app that protects your backup snapshots by instantaneously replicating them onto iSCI LUNs, which makes it easier for to recover your data in the event of server failure. DSM also comes with Surveillance Station, which is a unified program that allows you to program all of your surveillance equipment and share recordings. MailPlus makes it easy to run a company-wide mail server on your NAS, and with CMS, you can control multiple NAS units from a single interface.

Collaborate Seamlessly with Office

One of the most exciting aspects of Synology DSM is Office. Like popular cloud-based word and data processing suites, Office gives you the power you need to share documents with your team. However, with Office, the cloud is private instead of public, which gives you total control over your data.

Synology NAS offers advanced security measures to protect against sudden data loss and potential security holes

Digital asset protection

Powerful Security Applications

DSM also comes with a suite of security applications that ensure that your data will remain protected. Security Advisor examines every aspect of your network to make sure that it is safe from attack, and it automatically removes malware. AppArmor makes sure that malicious programs won’t take over your system resources, and AES 256-bit encryption makes it practically impossible for unauthorized entities to access your shared folders or network data transmission.

Next-Generation Btrfs File System

The cutting-edge Btrfs file manages files better than any previous protocol. This file system is equipped with the DS3018xs, and it offers data restoration on the level of specific files and folders, which streamlines the data recovery process. Btrfs also automatically detects and heals any defects in your data, which protects the physical integrity of your drives and ensures that server administrators don’t need to waste their time with petty tasks.

Fully Compatible Virtualization Support

The iSCI protocol that’s equipped with the DS3018xs ensures seamless support of popular virtualization solutions like VMware, ODX, and OpenStack. You can use VMware’s vSphere 6 to optimize processing efficiency by offloading storage operations, and Windows Offloaded Data Transfer (ODX) makes data migration and transfer faster. In addition, you can use OpenStack Cinder to transform your DS3018xs into a block-based storage component.

Unparalleled Warranty Coverage

The DS3018xs is equipped with a five-year limited warranty that covers most types of hardware failure. This warranty includes unlimited phone and email support, which makes sure that you’ll always have access to the answers you need. In addition, Synology offers a replacement service that ensures you’ll never have to deal with downtime even if your NAS fails. In eligible regions, Synology Replacement Service (SRS) can provide you with a replacement NAS within one business day, which provides assurance that you wont lose business continuity.


This NAS solution from Synology features two USB 3.0 ports on its back, and it has an additional USB 3.0 port on its front. It also features four 1GbE RJ-45 ports, and it has a dedicated expansion port. It is equipped with a console port, and it also has one PCIe 3.0 port that you can equip with a GPU, a 10GbE card, a Wi-Fi card, or an M.2 SSD caching accessory.

Synology DS3018xs Hardware Features

Synology DS3018xs Hardware Features

Application and Use Case

The DS3018xs is best suited for small or medium businesses with between 20 and 200 employees. Its primary attribute is versatility; on its own, it is a small and unassuming NAS, but it can be customized to handle intensive data storage needs or data-heavy processing requirements. This NAS by Synology has a small form factor, and it’s frontal USB 3.0 port means that it wouldn’t look out of place in either an office setting or a traditional server room. The DS3018xs starts at $1,297.00 without any disks included, and it costs between $1,770.00 and $3,665.00 with 9TB-60TB of Seagate Ironwolf storage installed. If you opt for 12TB-24TB of HGST NAS drives, the DS3018xs costs between $1,873.00 and $2,310.00, and this NAS costs between $2,128.00 and $2,819.00 with 18TB-36TB of Seagate ES HDD space installed. In addition, you can opt to equip your Synology DS3018xs with 30TB-60TB of Seagate Helium ES storage for between $2,518.00 and $3,599.00.

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Specification: Synology DiskStation DS3018xs NAS Buyer’s Guide


Form Factor



Intel Pentium D1508 Dual Core 2.2 GHz 2.2 (base) / 2.6 (turbo) GHz 64-bit

Installed Memory (RAM)


Maximum RAM

32 GB (16 GB x 2)

Drive Bays

6 Bay

Expansion Ports

PCIe – 1 x Gen3 x8 slot (x8 link)

Power Supply


Product Warranty

5 Year

Photos: Synology DiskStation DS3018xs NAS Buyer’s Guide

8 reviews for Synology DiskStation DS3018xs NAS Buyer’s Guide

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  1. D. Modisette

    So much more than a NAS. It’s the bomb. Highly recommend. Currently I am running my own cloud server like Dropbox, but with terabytes of storage and no subscription fee. IMAP mail server, Itunes server, Movie server, Contacts, Calendar, Online Office clone, and I can access it all anywhere in the world with their free forwarding system. Also runs Dockers and can download torrents while in a vpn tunnel. Very Nice!

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  2. Ryan Wagner

    I was a little hesitant to buy this because it is extremely expensive for home/small business use that I’m using it for. However, the fact that it has the Intel Xeon processor made it seem worth it for me since so many of these are under powered. This one is extremely fast! I haven’t found any downsides to it besides the price, and I know that I’ll be using this for a long time. It comes with 16GB DDR4 ECC RAM, but they make it easy to add two additional 16GB chips bringing it up to 48GB. My RAM utilization is just a few percent so I’m not sure this may be necessary, but I know you do need the RAM upgrade if you decide to use expansion units (for even more storage).This is also going to replace a desktop computer that I’ve always left on, and now that I have Plex on the NAS I don’t need to leave that computer on anymore. Plus this has plenty of power so I know Plex won’t have issues transcoding.UPDATE (2017/07/26):I still LOVE this NAS. There are so many things that I have it backing up, and I’m using it with the Backblaze B2 cloud storage so that certain folders that I specify can be backed up to the cloud for pretty cheap (works out to about $5/month per terabyte).I am enjoying all of the benefits of using the BTRFS such as being able to take snapshots of directories without unnecessarily duplicating data. You’ll need to install a Synology package called Snapshot Replication in order to take snapshots, but it works great. I can create a snapshot of a shared folder in just a couple of clicks, or have them automatically created on a schedule. If nothing changes between snapshots there will be very little additional space used on the NAS, but if something does change it will essentially create “versions” of the changes so that you can roll back the changes should you need to. Plus you get to decide how many of these snapshots you want to keep, which is awesome! I wanted to start doing the snapshots in the first place because of all the ransomware going around. Without having snapshots in place you could find yourself in a situation where your entire NAS gets encrypted with no way to roll back the files prior to getting hit with the ransomware. You get some kind of protection from that thanks to these snapshots, but without the concerns of using a bunch of additional storage space when things are running smoothly.My family is also in love with an app called Channels for the Apple TV/iOS. We pay a small fee each month for the app, but because of the NAS the app is worth every single penny. We have two HDHomerun Extend units that provide a total of 4 TV tuners we can use to record television shows from an over-the-air (OTA) antenna directly to the NAS. We are located near Chicago and are able to pull in all of the local channels using an antenna in our crawl space, and the Channels app offers a companion package for the Synology NAS that is used to record any of the shows that we want. Plus it has built-in commercial skipping that also runs on the NAS. I am so happy that I spent the extra money to get a NAS with all this power because processing the commercials in the television shows uses up about 20-30% of the CPU power for a single show, and would probably use the entire CPU if it were processing all four at one time.We are really putting our NAS to work between all of the video recording/transcoding/playback as well as it’s most important purpose… a way for our small business and family to manage and share files.I’m running this with (12) of the WD Red Pro 8TB 3.5-Inch SATAIII 7200rpm 128MB Cache NAS Internal Hard Drive (WD8001FFWX). I am using RAID 6 (supports up to 2 failed drives) which provides the RAID group with 72.73TB of capacity. I have it all allocated to a single volume, which comes out to a capacity of 69.82TB that I get to use for storage.I do have the unit in a cabinet, but the cabinet does have a fan in it to help with air flow. These are all 7200rpm drives so they run warm. They range from 35ºC (95ºF) to 38ºC (100ºF) even with the airflow system I have in my cabinet. The drives that are not being written to generally sit at the lower temps, while the ones being used are on the higher end. If the unit is not going to be in an open-air environment I highly recommend making sure the enclosure you are putting it in is well ventilated. And then in the Synology software go to “Control Panel -> Hardware and Power -> Fan Speed Mode” and increase the fan speed until you get a temperature/noise ratio that you are comfortable with. I am able to keep the fans on full speed and don’t hear any sound from it in my cabinet, but if it was in an open-air room you could probably keep it on the quietest setting and still keep the temperature of the unit down just fine.Here are some of the performance specs that I grabbed directly from the machine for those of you curious:Model: DS3617xsCPU: INTEL Xeon D-1527CPU Clock Rate: 2.2 GHzCPU Cores: 4Total Physical Memory: 48 GB (I upgraded it, comes with 16GB DDR4 ECC RAM)

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  3. TBonez

    Fantastic, easy to setup, access and use. Tons of great apps. I quit dropbox and evernote immediately.

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  4. Nicole

    This model is much faster then the 1817+ NAS. Have owned one for 2 months and really appreciate the bettter performance then my other 2 Synology NAS.

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    I setup this NAS drive with 6 x 4TB Hitachi NAS drives using RAID5 and a Intel X520-DA2 SFP+ adapter. Connected it to a ESXi 6.5 server with a X520 SFP+ adapter, a direct attached cable and getting great speeds. I did a test on a Windows 2016 Server VM with Diskspd, set the block size to 64K, run the test for 60 seconds, disable all hardware and software caching, measure and display latency statistics, leverage 2 overlapped IOs and 4 threads per target, random 30% writes and 70% reads and create a 50MB test file and got 554 MB/s read, 237 MB/s write. Using the same options but a block size of 128K I got 715 MB/s read, 306 MB/s write.

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  6. Ron Merritt

    This thing is a tank! Easy setup with great software – it was similar in ease to consumer grade products like the WD MyCloud4100, but this is a commercial grade product, obviously. Very intuitive software. On startup, it downloads the operating system and the Diskstation software. Then you go into the software and configure your array from your laptop or other network computer via a web browser. With the fans in quiet mode, and using Seagate Ironwolf NAS drives, it’s virtually silent. I hear slight fan noise, but don’t hear drives grinding away. Very please with this purchase so far. Came very well packaged in a box within a thick walled shipping box.

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  7. C.Easley

    This is a fantastic NAS with plenty of performance to spare. I see a lot of people asking about Plex transcoding capabilities, and I can tell you that it does fine with a single stream. I transcoded a 4K movie down to 720p WHILE watching it without a single dropped frame. CPU utilization was hanging around 76%. I doubt it could handle multiple streams, but for my usage, that will never be a problem.I chose Synology after a long relationship with QNAP devices because of their simplified ecosystem, and I’m pleased I did. I just wish this model (DS3617xs) had a more modern Xeon processor, but the one it comes with does the job and more.

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  8. Franklyn Grullon

    Besides storage, this Nas is great and very flexible with the things it allows the consumer to do. Currently put in two 12TB drives and it’s running great.

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    Synology DiskStation DS3018xs NAS Buyer’s Guide
    Synology DiskStation DS3018xs NAS Buyer’s Guide


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