Replacing a DS218+ (blue flashing light of death)

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Replacing a DS218+ (blue flashing light of death)

2
3
NAS
DS218+, DS220+
Operating system
  1. Windows
Mobile operating system
  1. Android
I'm new to the forum and a novice NAS user so far as technical expertise is concerned.

I'd been running a DS218+ for a little over two years when the NAS box failed. Presumably the Hard Drives are OK (WD Red 4TB). The DS218+ was configured by the vendor and my experience has been with basic networking of the NAS and the few packages I've used. The 218+ has been backed up to Synology C2. The existing 4TB drives have ample storage for my needs for the foreseeable future. I'm disappointed in the Synology C2 Cloud as a backup destination, to retrieve any files with HyperBackup Explorer is painfully slow and it seems only single files can be retrieved. I feel locked into the Synology system as it seems complicated to retrieve my data from either the WD drives running SHR or from the C2 Cloud, without purchasing another Synology NAS.

My questions are as follows:
1. Is my data likely to be intact on the WD 4TB drives.
2. Can these drives be reinstalled in a new NAS (DS220+?) and access to the existing data retained.
3. Have I been unlucky in having my DS218+ die at a little over two years and is it reasonable to expect its replacement to last three or four times as long?
4. My DS218+ was subjected to half a dozen power failures over its life (no ups) with no data loss, most likely clean power failures not brown-outs. Could this have contributed to its short life span.
5. I've made reference to the DS220+ as a possible replacement, the main reason for choosing this model is that the previous NAS was configured for Btrfs, the j series seem not to support this file format.

Should I go ahead with replacing the existing DS218+ with another Synology NAS, I'm hoping that I can get sufficient support here to successfully regain access to my data on the existing 4TB drives, without resorting to restoring a backup from the C2 Cloud.

Thanks in advance for your insight,
Alan
 
Welcome to forum!

1. Is my data likely to be intact on the WD 4TB drives.
2. Can these drives be reinstalled in a new NAS (DS220+?) and access to the existing data retained.
Yes. You will be able to "migrate" from 218 to 220 with almost minimal to no interaction from your end.

3. Have I been unlucky in having my DS218+ die at a little over two years and is it reasonable to expect its replacement to last three or four times as long?
I would say this is the case for sure. Personally I have a unit from 2010 that still runs just fine, and another from 2012, to name the few.

4. My DS218+ was subjected to half a dozen power failures over its life (no ups) with no data loss, most likely clean power failures not brown-outs. Could this have contributed to its short life span.
This is almost certain the cause of your problem. Running a nas with no UPS (or any fine electronic) is just asking for trouble. It would be wise to invest in an UPS to protect your data. No UPS can measure to the value of your data imho.

5. I've made reference to the DS220+ as a possible replacement, the main reason for choosing this model is that the previous NAS was configured for Btrfs, the j series seem not to support this file format.
Personally I would recommend to stick with the + lineup as it will offer more room to utilize the device better, devices are more powerful and you will have a better piece of mind in the long run.

Should I go ahead with replacing the existing DS218+ with another Synology NAS, I'm hoping that I can get sufficient support here to successfully regain access to my data on the existing 4TB drives, without resorting to restoring a backup from the C2 Cloud.
Atm, looks like you have no other options. C2 being slow might have to do with your local Internet speed as well (not saying it is), but keep in mind that C2 Hybrid Storage option is something that would be used as a "hot" data access, while a classic C2 Storage (backup) service is more of a backup/disaster platform that is not mainly fast, but robust and your last resort.

Having another device (USB drive or NAS) that is closer then the "cloud" would be something that will satisfy your needs in terms of speed.

Also, having your data in C2 (even if its slow) is still a win, considering that your NAS failed on you, so you are at least covered with 0 data loss. I would consider that a great starting point, and maybe a lesson to not scrap c2 service even after you migrate to a new NAS.
 
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Welcome to the forum. It sounds that you have been unlucky as I've not seen (so far) many reports on the DS218+ failing: I got mine in April 2018 and it was my main NAS for over two years and now is used for backup of the DS1520+. I wouldn't have superseded it if I hadn't want more storage.

Have you had a look at this support page from Synology? It details steps to diagnose if there is a problem with the motherboard or attached devices. If you have added 3rd party RAM then you should remove that while testing, and if you need Synology Support as they can refuse to help if they think it is part of the problem.

It's most probable that you data is intact as that is held on different partitions on the drives to the DSM operating system. So if your DS218+ is dead then you should be able to take the drives out an insert into a DS220+ then continue from there. See this article.

As for the unplanned outages then a UPS would certainly help ride out those situations. Of course it can't help if they were caused by an accidental tripping over of the power cord ;) Since having to recover a couple of USB/Firewire external drives many years ago I've used UPS and it's certainly helped my sleep, plus now inelegant power-offs are limited to those I've decided had to happen.

Edit: @Rusty beat me to it!

C2 recovery using the Explorer to download selected data will be slow, but it can also be used as a Hyper Backup 'destination' that you use to restore a NAS. This method should be quicker if you need to rebuild from scratch.
 
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Welcome to forum!


Yes. You will be able to "migrate" from 218 to 220 with almost minimal to no interaction from your end.


I would say this is the case for sure. Personally I have a unit from 2010 that still runs just fine, and another from 2012, to name the few.


This is almost certain the cause of your problem. Running a nas with no UPS (or any fine electronic) is just asking for trouble. It would be wise to invest in an UPS to protect your data. No UPS can measure to the value of your data imho.


Personally I would recommend to stick with the + lineup as it will offer more room to utilize the device better, devices are more powerful and you will have a better piece of mind in the long run.


Atm, looks like you have no other options. C2 being slow might have to do with your local Internet speed as well (not saying it is), but keep in mind that C2 Hybrid Storage option is something that would be used as a "hot" data access, while a classic C2 Storage (backup) service is more of a backup/disaster platform that is not mainly fast, but robust and your last resort.

Having another device (USB drive or NAS) that is closer then the "cloud" would be something that will satisfy your needs in terms of speed.

Also, having your data in C2 (even if its slow) is still a win, considering that your NAS failed on you, so you are at least covered with 0 data loss. I would consider that a great starting point, and maybe a lesson to not scrap c2 service even after you migrate to a new NAS.
Hi Rusty,
What a generously detailed reply, thank you. First its reassuring to hear that my NAS failure may be atypical and I can have a little more confidence in buying a 220+ as a replacement.

I'll take your advice regarding using a UPS and will procure one when I purchase the 220+. Any recommendations would be appreciated, keeping in mind that it would only support the NAS, router and a small POE hub for 3 security cameras.

Yes I'm pleased to have my data secure on the C2 Storage (backup) service. I do also have incremental copies of some of my data on 2 HDDs, kept in the back shed, so that's saved the day so far as access to my most used data.

I've been looking for an article that deals with installing SHR drives in a new box, for hopefully a blow by blow instructions for protecting my data in this process.
-- post merged: --

Welcome to the forum. It sounds that you have been unlucky as I've not seen (so far) many reports on the DS218+ failing: I got mine in April 2018 and it was my main NAS for over two years and now is used for backup of the DS1520+. I wouldn't have superseded it if I hadn't want more storage.
Hi fredbert, yes Rusty beat you to it, but the additional info and links are very welcome.
Have you had a look at this support page from Synology? It details steps to diagnose if there is a problem with the motherboard or attached devices. If you have added 3rd party RAM then you should remove that while testing, and if you need Synology Support as they can refuse to help if they think it is part of the problem.
I've been through a Synology Instruction relating to diagnosing faults, but I'll run through the steps set out in your link to double check that I haven't missed something, before I put down my hard earned cash on a 220+.
It's most probable that you data is intact as that is held on different partitions on the drives to the DSM operating system. So if your DS218+ is dead then you should be able to take the drives out an insert into a DS220+ then continue from there. See this article.
Thanks for the link to Migration, I'll read it in more detail later but it makes the process appear simple......Just followed some links in the article and found a lot more detail, still it looks to be within my capability, fingers crossed.
As for the unplanned outages then a UPS would certainly help ride out those situations. Of course it can't help if they were caused by an accidental tripping over of the power cord ;) Since having to recover a couple of USB/Firewire external drives many years ago I've used UPS and it's certainly helped my sleep, plus now inelegant power-offs are limited to those I've decided had to happen.
I've been aware that I should use a UPS, will add one to the shopping list.
Edit: @Rusty beat me to it!

C2 recovery using the Explorer to download selected data will be slow, but it can also be used as a Hyper Backup 'destination' that you use to restore a NAS. This method should be quicker if you need to rebuild from scratch.
HyperBackup Explorer seems to have very limited capability so far as recovering files to Windows. I've seen references to extracting whole directories but have only been able to download one file at at time, painfully slowly. At least if I have to do a full rebuild the new NAS will be able to download (in time) all the data as one large job, via HyperBackup running on the NAS.

Thanks for the reply, I'll let you and Rusty know how I get on, and probably have more questions.
 

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