Backup plan · NAS server

How to configure Snapshot Replication on your Synology

If you have two synology NASes  there are a lot of ways for you to backup your data.

You can backup your data using:

  1. File station : Drag and drop files between NASes
  2. Cloud Station ShareSync: One/Two way sync for files and folders that change frequently in real time (hot storage).
  3. Shared Folder Sync: One way sync for files and folders that do not change that often (cold storage).
  4. Snapshot Replication (this post): Snapshots of your folders on specific periods of time.
  5. Hyper BackupData backed up are kept in a database which can be browsed, downloaded or restored with tailor-made multi-version explorer on DSM, Windows and Linux platforms.

In this post we will cover the Synology replication which is my favourite form of back up and the one that saved me the most! (Probably that is why it is my favourite)

Snapshot Replication

Ok, so what is a snapshot? In simple words, it is like taking a snapshot of your data so you can go back in time and see how things looked like at different periods of time.

And what is a replication? Replication allows you to get your snapshots and copy them to other destinations, in other words, create a copy of your snapshots.


The following limitations apply to the snapshots:

  1. The folders have to use the Btrfs file system
  2. The following number of snapshots are allowed:
    • 1024 snapshots for each shared folder (or 256 on certain Synology NAS models)
    • 256 snapshots for each iSCSI LUN
    • 65536 snapshots in total in the system (or 4096 on certain Synology NAS models)

Overview of the Snapshot Replication application

To take snapshots of your folders,

  1. Click on Menu
  2. Click on Snapshot Replication

snapshot replication synology

and it will take you to:

  1. the overview of the snapshot replication where
  2. You can see how much data you have replicated and snapshots on
  3. and the last time a replication or a snapshot was done.

3 overview snapshot replication

If we click on snapshot, we will see all the snapshots we have done on this NAS and on which folders:

3 overview of snapshots synology

Take a snapshot:

If you want to schedule or take a new snapshot, you

  1. Click on snapshot
  2. To take a new snapshot, click on “Take a snapshot” (without scheduling, see below for more info on schedule snapshots)
  3. To see a list of snapshots taken click on “Snapshot list”
  4. To calculate the size of your snapshot click on “Calculate size”

4 take a snapshot synology

And fill in the following:

  1. Description of the snapshot
  2. Lock the snapshot so it doesnt get removed during the creation of new ones,
  3. Ok

5 snapshot description synology

Schedule snapshots on your synology

If you want to have your synology create snapshots at different points in time, you do like this instead:

  1. Click on snapshots
  2. Click on the folder you want to create a scheduled snapshot
  3. Click on Settings

6 schedule snapshots synology

On the Schedule tab, select your schedule settings:

  1. How often ( I pick daily)
  2. Frequency: every day
  3. and when the snapshot should be done ( I always pick at night, so all the work has be done and it is ready for a backup)

7 snapshot schedule settings synology

On the retention tab we specify how often the snapshots should be retained.

Here I always set my own retention schedule, which is 1 snapshot daily, weekly, montly and yearly. The is enough for my needs.

8 retention policy snapshots synology Last but not least you can specify if you want the snapshot taken at GMT 0 (if your synologies are in different time zones) and if you want to make the snapshots visible.

9 snapshot schedule advance settings synology

Once you have configured the snapshots, you can check the settings on the main menu:

10 overview of snapshot of shared folder synology

And to see the snapshots, you:

  1. navigate to your folder
  2. Expand the snapshot folder
  3. and you will see all the snapshots you specified before
  4. and if you expand on of them you will see the actual files

11 snapshots of your folders synology

Easy right? This little functionality has saved me countless of times when deleting things a bit too fast!!!

This post is running too long, so I will go through the replication settings in another post.


Have fun, enjoy your Synology and Happy New Year!!!


I am buying my third synology in January, so I will run a series of posts on how to configure your synology from scratch very soon, Stay tuned!!







2 thoughts on “How to configure Snapshot Replication on your Synology

  1. Hi Ruth, always look forward to your emails. Waiting in anticipation for your replication part. I seem to have done it the wrong way round. I’ve done replication but struggling with snapshots, I need to start from scratch. Best regards from the UK.


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