The best apps for your Synology NAS

Summary

  • Synology NAS provides private cloud storage, allowing you to store, access, backup, and share your files freely and securely.
  • Synology Photos app is a great option for backing up and accessing your photos, without having to trust other companies with your data.
  • Other useful Synology apps include Synology Drive for file sharing, C2 Password for secure password management, and DS video for streaming movies and TV shows.


NAS (network-attached storage) options take a backup of your phone, PC, and other data. One prominent name in NAS is Synology. Synology NAS creates private cloud storage, making your data continuously available to everyone connected to the network. You can store, access, back up, and share your files freely and securely.

A Synology NAS service gives you access to first-party apps that make it easy to create your private cloud and access the data from any device you own. If you purchased one of the best Synology NAS enclosures or want to buy one, here are the best Synology apps for your NAS that help you get the most out of your network-attached storage.


Synology Photos

Synology Photos app is the best option, especially if you have a Synology NAS. You can use the Synology Photos app to back up and access your photos from any device and whenever you want. The best thing about using Synology Photos is that your photos never leave your private network. You won’t worry about trusting companies like Apple or Google with your photos.

The Synology Photos app is similar to Google Photos, so there isn’t much of a learning curve. The app offers the option to share your photos with friends and family. You can share password-protected links so that unauthorized people can’t access your photos. Moving your media from Google Photos to a Synology NAS is easy.

Synology Drive

Similar to Synology Photos, which can replace Google Photos, Synology has Synology Drive, which replaces the Google Drive app if you own a Synology NAS. The Synology Drive app uses SSL encryption and tight permission settings, so you can share files across devices easily and securely. Synology Drive is a must-have app because it lets you access the files and media in My Drive (homesuseridDrive) as long as you’re connected to the internet. Changes to the files are automatically synced across all devices as soon as they are connected.

The app supports all common file types, such as documents, images, videos, and music. You can share these files with anyone over the internet. You can also download files for offline access when needed. We have a guide that explains how to use the Synology Drive app as a Google Drive alternative. It also offers the option to save disk space by streaming files when required.

C2 Password

Creating and using strong and unique passwords for online accounts is necessary for a secure online presence. Many of us have dozens of online accounts, and remembering unique passwords for each account is difficult. That’s where password manager apps help. Synology NAS users benefit from creating their secure password management service thanks to the C2 Password app. C2 Password is a secure password management solution that stores, syncs, and safeguards your passwords and personal information.

You can use C2 Password even if you don’t own a Synology NAS.

You get features like unlimited device syncing, browser extensions, and mobile apps, so your passwords are accessible everywhere. The data you upload via the C2 Password app is automatically encrypted, so hackers can’t get to your passwords. If you use a Synology NAS, this is a must-have application. It is one of the first and only password managers that allows users to choose where data is stored.

Synology Secure SignIn

You can never be too careful with your data. You shouldn’t take chances if it’s your NAS. Secure SignIn is a 2FA app that authenticates DSM login requests. That’s not all. You can configure it to work with any service that supports 2FA apps. You can use the C2 Password app to ensure your online accounts have the best security.

The Synology Secure SignIn app automatically saves your approved sign-ins and OTP profiles for faster login from multiple devices. Use it in conjunction with the C2 Password app to elevate the security of your account and prevent unauthorized access.

DS video

If your hard drives are packed with movies and TV shows, DS video can stream on your mobile or laptop anywhere you want. The interface is simple (maybe too simple) to follow and allows you to sort and group your collection. It fetches information such as film covers, actors, and episode titles for your existing media collection.

You can custom-make video libraries, browse content by category, and tweak advanced settings such as video transcoding, playback quality, and AC3 passthrough. DS Video safeguards your internet connection and account using SSL/TLS encryption and two-step verification to confirm your Synology NAS server certificate.

DS audio

Google Play Music’s retirement may have been bad news. If you have a NAS, you can access your audio files on the go with the help of DS audio. It doesn’t look like some popular streaming services, but you don’t have to pay to listen to high-quality audio on the go. You can also download music for offline playback on your phone.

The DS Audio app supports Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, allowing you to stream your favorite songs in high quality straight from your Synology NAS while driving.

Synology MailPlus

​​Another popular app from Synology’s in-house suite of official applications is Synology MailPlus. If you’re looking for privacy-focused alternatives to Gmail or Outlook, Synology lets you host your mail server, giving you complete control over the data. You won’t pay a third-party service to run your emails because you run it on your NAS server.

You can access your emails using the Synology MailPlus app. The app offers features such as customizable swipe gestures for email actions, quick-reply templates, and more. While the app is good, it cannot compete with the best email apps on Android. Still, it supports third-party leading global email providers. Setting up the mail server on your NAS can be tricky, so use this option only if privacy matters more to you than convenience.

DS file

DS file allows access to all files and gives you the options you expect from a file manager. Use this app to manage, upload, or download files to your NAS and Android device. There are a few basic editing tasks that can be done. Apart from file management, the DS File can be useful for browsing images, watching videos, and checking or editing work documents on the go.

DS File automatically backs up new files when you connect to a Wi-Fi source, saving you the time of doing it manually. If you don’t want to install Photos or Drive apps on your NAS, DS File gives you access to everything and offers camera sync.

DS cam

Security cameras are relatively cheap, but most companies like Wyze and Nest require a monthly subscription to store recordings in the cloud. Your Synology NAS, compatible smart camera, and DS Cam allow you to store your hard disk’s content and access it from anywhere. DS cam lets you watch the live feed of these cameras, playback recordings, and manage these cameras on the fly.

The UI is also intuitive, and the app sets up easily. The app lets you view up to six live feeds on your mobile, zoom in and out, and adjust the camera angles for a better view. Other features include doorbell notifications, interaction with visitors, and smooth streaming without delay or buffering.

Synology LiveCam

The DS Cam app lets you view your security camera feeds from your mobile phone. Synology LiveCam turns an old phone into a security camera. All you do is install the application and connect the phone to your NAS via Surveillance Station.

You’ll need a camera license if you have more than two cameras in your system, and those are expensive.

The best part about this app is that the videos are stored and streamed using NAS, and it doesn’t eat up space on your phone. It detects motion, records footage, lights up dark areas using the phone’s built-in LED flash, and uses the power-saving feature to record more.

DS finder

The DS finder app helps you set up a Synology NAS without a computer or laptop. It can install DiskStation Manager on your drive when your phone is connected to the same Wi-Fi network. It can also manage your NAS and receive notifications.

The DS finder app supports most models and manages Synology NAS models running DSM 5.2 and above. Setting up NAS is easy. Select the NAS from the device list and follow the on-screen instructions of the installation wizard to install your DSM.

Synology Active Insight

Active Insight allows remote health monitoring of your NAS. Check current and past performance, CPU load, memory consumption, and IOPS in easy-to-understand graphs and dashboards. The app notifies you of system alerts and provides detailed troubleshooting steps when something goes wrong.

DS note

DS note lets you jot down notes or to-do lists and access them from anywhere. Given the nature of notes and the small amount of storage they take up, you’re better off using feature-rich alternatives like Evernote, Google Keep, or Bundled Notes that don’t look like they were made in 2015.

Synology Chat

Skip this app unless you use the email client Synology offers and several people use the service. It’s an instant messaging service that runs on your NAS and can be accessed on your laptop, mobile, or desktop.

DS get

DS get is your companion if you want to remotely manage downloads on your NAS. You can view the download status and speed, control download schedules, and start downloads using the built-in browser. The app doesn’t provide information on how many seeds and peers you are connected to.

Active Backup by Synology

active backup showing the dashboard

Source: Synology

Losing access to an account with important data is what nightmares are made of. For some, it’s been a reality. Having an offline backup of your data in the cloud is always a great idea. Active Backup for Google Workspace and Microsoft 365 automate this process without an additional cost.

Third-party integrations

Over and above the first-party apps mentioned above, you can get more done on your NAS with first and third-party integrations. While covering all of them is impossible, here are a few to get you started.

Plex

Plex allows you to access your entertainment collection anywhere. Try it out if you have a collection of music or movies on your NAS. It organizes your title and automatically fetches relevant information like posters, actors, and synopsis. You’ll pay to stream your collection anywhere, but the convenience is unquestionable. Get the package for your NAS from the Plex Media Server downloads page.

WordPress

You can host your blog or business website on your Synology NAS. The process is not straightforward. Managing the server can be time-consuming, but you’ll save money and make the most of the available resources on your NAS.

TeamViewer

Synology offers a way to access your NAS remotely and supports TeamViewer, which you’re probably used to. The setup process is easy to follow, and after it’s set up, you can view and manage the system with your phone.

Get the best out of your Synology NAS

You now know what your NAS is capable of and the apps and integrations you need to make the most of it. Each app listed here is designed to satisfy a specific need, and you can go for any of them based on your choice. If you’re unfamiliar with NAS systems, check out why Synology is a good option for Android users and which NAS between Synology and QNAP is the best.

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