Do not upgrade Synology two volumes at same time

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Today’s topic is “Do not upgrade Synology two volumes at same time”.. I should add these words behind… “unless you want to be as worried as me as I waited for the upgrade to be completed” πŸ™‚

Do not upgrade Synology two volumes at same time
Do not upgrade Synology two volumes at same time

Wait, can’t you upgrade the two volumes at the same time

Do not get me wrong. Synology works well and it allows me to “upgrade Synology two volumes at same time. It is just that as one volume gets upgraded (“repairing” in Synology terms), the other volume is not even initialised and I was very concerned about what happened if the whole volume crashed at that moment. In other words, the second volume was “exposed” (I think) while the first volume was taking its time to repair the whole damn 6TB of data !

It is a painful wait.

Let’s have the background.

It is possible to add or upgrade the disks in a Synology volume without shutting down the Synology server. I have two volumes in my Synology DS1813+. I usually upgrade the disks one at a time as I have the Synology SHR RAID which only allows for one failure at one time.

Today, I wanted to replace two hard disks in my Synology server. One is in volume 1 and one is in volume 2.

Upgrading Hard Disks in Synology
Upgrading Hard Disks in Synology

Replacing One Hard Disk in the First Volume

So I started off, as usual, with removing the 4TB hard disk from Volume 1 (without shutting down). That will send the volume to an degraded state. I then put in the new 6TB hard disk into the volume and “repaired it”.

All went well as I removed the emails that I was waiting for.

First you will receive an email on your degraded volume:

Synology Degraded Volume
Synology Degraded Volume

I then go into the Synology Disk Manager and click on REPAIR and start the process of “repairing” the volume. Two minutes later, I received an email that the consistency check on the volume is completed. I feel happy. I feel at peace…..

Synology Consistency Check is completed
Synology Consistency Check is completed

With that, the system goes into the very long (many hours, depending on the size of your volume and the CPU of your Synology) process of repairing the volume. But at least, you think the volume is now protected as the consistency check is completed.

Repairing the Volume
Repairing the Volume

Starting the upgrade on the second volume

As you can see the repairing was going on for a while… and then that’s where I am “itchy backside” now. I decided to go to the second volume and then to replace another hard disk in that volume. Same Synology server, different storage pools.

Normally, I will be just waiting for the repair to complete before doing any more actions on the Synology server (I am a gutless guy).

But today, something went wrong in my mind and I decided, “hey, why not save some time and start a second upgrade. It is a different volume, after all. It should be fine. Nothing will go wrong”. πŸ™‚

So I did that.

I removed the 6TB Western Digital RED hard disk in Volume 2 and replaced it with a 6TB Seagate Iron Wolf hard disk. Don’t ask me why I needed to do that.. another long story.

Two volumes in Synology going to bad states
Two volumes in Synology going to bad states

As you can see from the above, the first volume (storage pool 1) was in repairing mode and then now the second volume (storage pool 2) goes into a degraded mode.

I got the email informing me of the “degradation”.

Storage Pool 2 degraded
Storage Pool 2 degraded

Of course, I clicked on repair in Synology Disk Manager. And I waited. For the email. And I waited. And I waited. But it did not come !!

Waiting for the email
Waiting for the email

The repairing work on the 2nd volume is not starting at all

I go into the Synology DSM Disk Manager and it stated that the System is HEALTHY. And that both volumes are repairing.

Healthy System but two repairing storage pools
Healthy System but two repairing storage pools

But when I drilled into the volume 2 details, I can see that it is in “WAITING” state. What is it waiting for !?!

Volume 2 Waiting
Volume 2 Waiting

Of course, it must be waiting for the first volume to be completed before it starts the repair !!!

OMG !! What have I done !!

OMG !! What have I done !!
OMG !! What have I done !!

More worrying was that the disk that I have inserted into the Volume 2 is NOT initialized at all ! I have never seen this before !! (actually I have seen it before previously in my replacement and in just a second or two, it is immediately initialised and then the repairing starts next).

The new hard disk is NOT initialized at all
The new hard disk is NOT initialized at all

I don’t know exactly whether I should be worried but the fact that I have now an “non-initalized” hard disk sitting in the second volume, with only a SHR RAID (that only provides for 1 drive fault protection) is scary to me.

If I have a disk that has, at least, passed the consistency check and then start the repair, does it mean that I am protected ? But now I have a disk that is not even initalized and I am waiting for the consistency check to be done and repair to start….. I wonder that if during this time, my second volume, till the repair works start, will crash and data be lost if I am unlucky and I lose electricity power etc.

I was worried. But nothing I can do but wait, hope and pray as the repair work on volume 1 continues (at a damn slow pace… :p).

Perhaps I can consider getting the new Synology 5 bay NAS DiskStation DS1019+ from Amazon πŸ™‚

Luckily the Volume 1 was completed successfully

Finally, about 10 hours after I started, I received the confirmation that volume 1 is completed and is ready for use.

Confirmation of Completion of Volume 1
Confirmation of Completion of Volume 1

More importantly, another email came 2 minutes later and informed me that the consistency check for the 2nd volume is completed too. About 5 hours after I started the 2nd volume.

Completion of Check for 2nd Volume
Completion of Check for 2nd Volume

Logging into Synology DSM and checking the Disk Manager, I can see that the first volume is complete and now the second volume is starting the repair….

Details of Repair
Details of Repair

Feeling better πŸ™‚ And looking further into the Storage Pool 2 .. the repair has already started… 0.33% πŸ™‚

Parity Checking and Repairing
Parity Checking and Repairing

And the disk is now initialized too…

Drive 8 is now initialised
Drive 8 is now initialised

Celebration πŸ™‚

Safe again !!!

Celebrations !
Celebrations !

All photos courtesy of Twenty20 web site.


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