Advice with changing RAID

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Advice with changing RAID

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Hi guys

Hope everyone is well and all your loved ones are safe and well.

I have been lurking for a while and this is prob the best Synology forum ive come across. Ive been learning a lot.

I am looking to make some changes to my current nas setup so needed some advice.

Having looked up some dates, I can’t believe ive had this nas for so long as it runs like new. Never had any issues and never let me down. I have a ds1813+ which I purchased new when it was released in 2013. It has 4x4tb WD Red nas hard drives which were purchased new with the nas and fitted at the same time. The drives have the date 25 August 2013 on them.

It was set up using raid 10. Over the years as I have learnt more I always felt maybe raid 10 was not the best choice for me and our needs but I left it as it was. The nas is mainly used for media and backing up of pictures + some documents. Everything important is backed up online and on another hard drive. The nas is used daily but what I would class as quite minimal to be honest.

I have a 14tb external hard drive I have recently purchased to help with the changes I need to make and to use as a new backup drive for the nas so I can backup everything going forward as opposed to only the important stuff.

Advice I need:

1) Being raid 10, I cut my storage in half to about 7tb. This was probably my biggest mistake as raid 10 is not expandable and I did not need this level of protection. When I first set it up, I never thought we would fill up 7tb and I felt better having high redundancy. Its just not needed for our uses and going forward if I backup everything on an external drive, I don’t need to worry as much.

So, what raid set up would you guys advise? I am wanting maximum space, maximum speed and some redundancy would be ok but not essential as downtime would not cause any real issues as such. Oh and being able to expand storage in future as 4 bays are empty.

I could go raid 0 for speed and space and as I will always have a full backup of everything I would be safe incase of a drive failure. But I would be concerned if one drive failed that I would need to restore data onto all drives and this would stress the other drives unnecessarily due to their age. Correct or wrong? That being said, I cant easily expand the storage by adding another drive without wiping and restoring, so same issue.

In this case I think maybe SHR/raid 5 is the best choice for me? It will give me the best balance between speed, storage, some redundancy and the ability to expand storage whenever I need in the future.

Can you advise if raid 5 or SHR is the way to go? As both are more or less the same with SHR having a few extra perks.

2) Would you consider the drives to be quite old now or at higher risk of failure at this age, especially if I change the raid? I have no experience with nas drives. As above, they have never been stressed and have been used fairly minimally during the time I have had them. The nas is on 24/7 but is asleep/hibernating most of time.

I have a few other queries but once I know the best way to adjust the current setup I can ask.

Thank you all!
(Apologies for long post)
 

Rusty

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I have been lurking for a while and this is prob the best Synology forum ive come across. Ive been learning a lot.
Aww. Tnx! Have a 🍪!!

Correct or wrong?
Correct

Can you advise if raid 5 or SHR is the way to go? As both are more or less the same with SHR having a few extra perks.
Well with the same sized drives you can go with RAID5 vs SHR. If you do plan on mixing different size drives, then go with SHR

2) Would you consider the drives to be quite old now or at higher risk of failure at this age, especially if I change the raid? I have no experience with nas drives. As above, they have never been stressed and have been used fairly minimally during the time I have had them. The nas is on 24/7 but is asleep/hibernating most of time.
Eventually, every drive will fail. I have some "old" drives as well (older than yours) that still work fine, but are currently in my test/secondary unit because a) age, b) they are stressed less (both r/w and the amount of data).

So with your thinking, you should be prepared for anything. Still, with a regular backup, there is little to fear. An in place upgrade might not be a bad idea once you switch raid types and start moving out old drives and replace them with new ones.
 
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Thanks for your help and response Luka. I have also been on your site reading all the content you've been putting up there. Such a great resource and I variety of topics covered. Keep it up!

Aww. Tnx! Have a 🍪!!
So ive seen these 🍪s being handed out among the members and was wondering when I would be able to get in- not bad for my first post.

Well with the same sized drives you can go with RAID5 vs SHR. If you do plan on mixing different size drives, then go with SHR

I like to keep the drives the same size if I can help it so would not utilise the perk of SHR mixing different size drives unless I was really in situation where I had to.

Eventually, every drive will fail. I have some "old" drives as well (older than yours) that still work fine, but are currently in my test/secondary unit because a) age, b) they are stressed less (both r/w and the amount of data).

So with your thinking, you should be prepared for anything. Still, with a regular backup, there is little to fear. An in place upgrade might not be a bad idea once you switch raid types and start moving out old drives and replace them with new ones.

This is true. Ok so I think I will go SHR as that gives me room to add a new drive anytime I need ( going with different sizes because going forward I would not purchase or invest in 4tb drives and it would be some of more larger TB options available so would need the ability to be able to mix dive sizes).

Long term, I will always have a backup so can rest easy if a drive fails. Plan would be to start purchasing some larger TB nas drives when good deals pop up and carry out an inplace upgrade as you suggest.

In place upgrade- does this allow for me upgrade/replace one drive at a time with a larger size drive?

What are your thoughts on shucking drives? As far I can tell, if we are taking about WD, WD just white label them and they are same internally from what I have read mostly. Yes there is the pin fix you need but apart from that its a huge saving for the equivalent red drive. I have never shucked a drive for a nas before so would like an opinion from someone who may know better than me in regards to reliability and accuracy of those claims.
 
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Keep it up!
thank you for your positive comment.

In place upgrade- does this allow for me upgrade/replace one drive at a time with a larger size drive?
Correct. Keep in mind that once you start using SHR you will be able to expand it with the drives only equal to the size of your current largest drive or larger then that. So if the largest is 4TB you need a 4TB or larger drive. Also replace one drive at a time.

What are your thoughts on shucking drives?
Personally, I don't use them. I do know people that use them and they are fine. Sounds sometimes like a lottery with those drives, but looks like you are well informed on the matter so not much more I can say. Would recommend you keep the enclosure in case the drive dies and you need to return it within warrenty.
 
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Telos

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Sounds sometimes like a lottery with those drives, but looks like you are well informed on the matter so not much more I can say.
Agree. For me this is akin to buying cheap "no name" tires for your car. If you just drive it 5 miles to the gorcery and back, probably any tire will do. But if you drive long distances at high speeds, a known tire that you can count on is a better choice.
 
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fredbert

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I've had a few of the WD Elements drives and moved their disks to other enclosures: it was a cheap way to get an otherwise more expensive disk. But this were when I wanted to keep using Firewire 800 enclosures. The last time was to get a 12TB into an eSata enclosure. That last one was a white label whereas the earlier 6TB and lower were either standard Greens or Blues. Given that there's no definitive specification on the white label drives, I wouldn't feel comfortable placing the whites in my data array but they should be OK for the intended use in external drives.

Maybe I'm over cautious.
 
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Agree. For me this is akin to buying cheap "no name" tires for your car. If you just drive it 5 miles to the gorcery and back, probably any tire will do. But if you drive long distances at high speeds, a known tire that you can count on is a better choice.

Hi Telos, I totally agree myself hence ive never really gone ahead with this and put it off some time ago.

Having said this, supposedly you can check the part numbers and spec of the drive + a number of other things and determine if it matches a wd red drive in which case it would be a red drive with white label etc

There is a lot to look out for and check before you can determine you are getting wd red equivalents. There is a lot to read and research on it so when I have time ill take a further look and see if its viable.

Ultimately I won't use anything I don't feel 100% about anyway. Maybe ill update on here for anyone that is interested about what I learn.


I've had a few of the WD Elements drives and moved their disks to other enclosures: it was a cheap way to get an otherwise more expensive disk. But this were when I wanted to keep using Firewire 800 enclosures. The last time was to get a 12TB into an eSata enclosure. That last one was a white label whereas the earlier 6TB and lower were either standard Greens or Blues. Given that there's no definitive specification on the white label drives, I wouldn't feel comfortable placing the whites in my data array but they should be OK for the intended use in external drives.

Maybe I'm over cautious.

Thanks Fred. Yeah this is totally a great way to get external storage or for use with enclosures for a very low price. Hey, never hurts to be cautious. Better safe than sorry.


Correct. Keep in mind that once you start using SHR you will be able to expand it with the drives only equal to the size of your current largest drive or larger then that. So if the largest is 4TB you need a 4TB or larger drive. Also replace one drive at a time.

Great. I understand!

Personally, I don't use them. I do know people that use them and they are fine. Sounds sometimes like a lottery with those drives, but looks like you are well informed on the matter so not much more I can say. Would recommend you keep the enclosure in case the drive dies and you need to return it within warrenty.

Ill look into this and if I can add some useful info on the forum I will. Thanks for the tip on enclosure.



Now that I know what raid ill set the current drive to, could I get some advice on the best/most efficient way to do this.

Obviously I would want to make a full back up of everything on the nas. And I would also like to make a full back up of the configuration and settings on the nas.

What is the best/correct way to do this? As above, I have a 14tb external drive ready to use as the backup.

Would I be using Hyper Backup?

if im informed correctly, this will backup everything on the nas including the applications and system configurations? So essentially this will make an exact copy how the nas is right now, right down to all the configurations and settings?
 
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Would I be using Hyper Backup?
Correct. HB will provide you a backup to an external device.

if im informed correctly, this will backup everything on the nas including the applications and system configurations? So essentially this will make an exact copy how the nas is right now, right down to all the configurations and settings?
One note here. As much is correct here, system backup is a bit of a question here. Not the entire system will be backed up. This way you will have the option to backup compatible Synology only apps (3rd party apps are not supported) and some, not all system settings.

Also, atm (and in the upcoming DSM7) you can use Control Panel > update and restore > configuration backup option to export your system settings and use the same location to import them. So with a combination of that export and HB app backup, you should get up and running with almost all settings in place. Again, the configuration backup in the current DSM 6.x version does NOT export all the settings so depending on what elements you use you might have to do some manual configuration again in case of migration or restore (proxy settings for example).

In the upcoming DSM 7, configuration settings can be automated and sent to your Synology account (c2) with regular backup and on top of that, all the settings are now included.

TL;DR - HB and configuration export will give you a near 100% restore regarding apps and sys settings.
 
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fredbert

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Will relink to this thread of mine regarding HB restore in DSM 6.2 and what's missing. Suggest take screenshots of things that you will want to keep.
 
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Thanks guys. Ill try and get a full back up done first then.

A few questions:

1) I went with ext4 on the external drive as I don't really need to connect the drive to other devices and want it to stay with the nas for backups. From what I read its prob the best choice for speed and data integrity when using hyper backup?

2) Moving onto to the backup, I selected local folder & usb option, selected the attached external drive as the destination for the back, then checked 'volume 1' box so everything backs up then selected all the applications for backup. Please see image attached. On the next section, my nas didn't have that mandatory option for configuration backup. Is there a reason for this?

Screenshot 1.png


3) Next was the backup rotation section. I didn't enable backup rotation. I don't think I need this feature as bulk of it is media which is not modified or altered for me to different versions of.

Just so I understand, once the full backup is done for the very first time and completed, after that whenever the nas does its scheduled backups, will it only reflect any changes made to that volume? So for example, after the first backup, if I delete a file and add a file on the nas, it will make these changes to the backup on the external drive?

4) Lastly, when the backup task is running, the cpu is holding 97%+ constantly. Is this normal for the first backup or is there an issue? Is it a good idea for me to leave it running like this as I see 7tb taking quite some time to backup and surely this is not good for the cpu? I did opt to compress backup data, could this be causing the high cpu utilisation?

The read and write speeds are good (I think they are good lol) - fluctuating between 20MB/s and 33MB/s+ consistently.

I have suspended the task for now.
 
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Having looked into this a bit today,


Synology advise that I should maybe split up the backup task and backup the different shared folders one at a time. The process they mention ' img_backupd' is what I believe is causing the high cpu usage.

Does anyone have any experience with hyper backup taking up this much cpu on a first backup or with this size backup?
 
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Telos

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Synology advise that I should maybe split up the backup task and backup
No offense, but you should open new threads for different topics.... this one is about "changing RAID" IIRC. Just FYI... and carry on, whatever.
 
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No offense, but you should open new threads for different topics.... this one is about "changing RAID" IIRC. Just FYI... and carry on, whatever.

No offence taken. Im happy to open another thread if required. I felt it was related to original topic. As per my first post, the topic was changing raid- surely backing up the raid before changing raid is related to 'changing the raid' because it forms the process of changing the raid if you already have data on the raid?

If you disagree, no problem. I would understand your post if I was going off topic and started asking questions about networking, docker, security etc etc.

I assumed posting several new posts related to the process of changing raid would be annoying for other members as I already have a post on the topic.

Thanks
 
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