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QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
2017-09-01, 16:30 (This post was last modified: 2017-09-02 11:56 by Donald.)
Post: #11
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
(2017-09-01 15:59)golke53 Wrote:  Thank you Donald. So the manual is wrong then.

I'd certainly concur that the Warning at the end of Chapter 7 is misleading and confusing: -

   

Perhaps it's just a Heath and Safety Warning that QNAP are obliged to include??

I would, however, draw your attention to the detailed instructions wherein it states: -

4. Unplug the failed drive from the NAS. Wait for about 20 seconds or until the server beeps twice.

7. The server should beep 1.5 seconds twice.

If the NAS is turned off it's going to have a hard job beeping - so I think there is a clue there!

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2017-09-02, 10:20 (This post was last modified: 2017-09-02 10:31 by Briain.)
Post: #12
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
Hi

Fortunately, I have not yet had a disk failure on my Qnap units (I have two Qnaps configured as RAID 1 units and a third configured as a RAID 6 unit) so I have not yet had to change a disk or to rebuild a RAID (though I do often manually - from the command line - kick off the data scrubbing activity in my TS-659; effectively, that is a form of RAID rebuilding). I have had disk failures on other units (like my and others' Infrant ReadyNAS NV+ units) and the hot swapping process always worked a treat.

I used to quite frequently read the Qnap forum (I still do, but not as frequently) and over the years, quite a few folks posted about all sorts of problems after replacing a disk with the NAS switched off, and the answers (some being from folks who maintain Qnap's at their workplace) were always that this should never be done; the disk must be replaced with the NAS running (so hot-swapped). Given these questions and answers, my assumption has always been that hot swapping was essential and from previous hunts through the Qnap documentation, I have never seen any mention of anything other than hot swapping disks (until today; see next paragraph).

That said, one very interesting slant on all this is that Qnap make a entry level 2-disk models which have to be dismantled to change the disk and I have often wondered what the process was for replacing a faulty disk in that model. I couldn't imagine the process being that folks were meant to dismantle it whilst it is operating, but that conflicts with my understanding outlined in the above paragraph). When this first occurred to me (a few years ago) I read through the on-line manual and though it stated hot swapping was the correct method, it was a generic statement and there was nothing specific to the TS-212, though interestingly, I do see it mentioned in that hardware manual linked to in Donald's post (it is the first time I've ever encountered that manual) and it clearly states that the TS-212 doesn't support hot swapping.

So given that the TS-212 has to be dismantled (and doesn't support hot-swapping) then clearly it must support 'cold swapping', but I don't know if that's achieved by a special feature, perhaps specific only to these few tray-less two disk models (e.g. a special Qnap Linux script which notes the previous disk state in a file, then that file is read when the NAS is booted, and any changes would let the operating system know when a disk has been swapped (and which disk is the new one) and thus that it needs to perform the rebuild) and if that is the case, whether that Qnap specific script is included (and works) on all models. Of course, it could instead be leveraging a feature built into the Linux RAID command (mdadm), but without detailed knowledge of the Qnap specific scripts and the rebuild aspect of mdadm, it is not possible for me to clarify the situation, other than to say - as previously mentioned - that my understanding (from others) is that one should always hot-swap a faulty disk for a new one (and that the TS-212 behaviour is a mystery as yet unsolved).

I have read parts of the mdadm specification in great detail, but these were relating to the triggers and timers relating to the rejection of a disk from an array (as opposed to the swapping of a faulty disk and rebuilding of the set). At some stage, I plan to delve deeply into all that as I plan to eventually build a Debian based RAID server (perhaps installing Debian on my Qnap) but unfortunately, I just don't have the time to do so at the moment, so apologies but I wouldn't be able to delve into that in a timely manner.

I am aware that there are some Qnap web interface tools that can be used to recover a RAID problem (though I haven't had time to look at what they added or changed in QTS 4.3) and I so know that there are numerous command line tools for driving mdadm, so likely it can be quite easily fixed. My advice would be to look at the RAID repair section in the on-line manual, or any tutorials on RAID recovery (to see if there's a point and click option in the web interface that would exactly suit your circumstances) then if it's not immediately obvious that the tools will do exactly what you need to do, it might be safer to raise a support ticket with Qnap (explaining what you have done and what the current status is) and they will either advise on the best course of action (confirm the web interface trick to use) or if necessary, they will arrange to remote access via a Teamviewer session and repair it for you (likely from the command line, which provides a more 'granular' set of repair options).

On-line manual http://docs.qnap.com/nas/4.3/cat1/en/ind...gement.htm
Tutorials home: https://www.qnap.com/en-uk/how-to/tutorial/

Bri

PS There is a new(ish) Qnap support applet which, if not already installed, you can install from the Qnap 'app centre' page. It has links to the above resources as well as a tab where you can create a support ticket. It doesn't matter that the NAS is out of warranty (I recently created a ticket for a bizarre issue in my 3 year old TS-453 and they responded, eventually resorting to a Teamviewer session, yesterday morning).

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2017-09-02, 12:04 (This post was last modified: 2017-09-02 12:05 by Donald.)
Post: #13
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
Thanks Bri for yet another detailed and helpful explanation - this time on hot swapping - far more interesting than my somewhat briefer responses..

Your pointers to online resources to resolve RAID issues will be bookmarked (just in case) and I'll certainly investigate the new QNAP support applet.

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2017-09-02, 12:17 (This post was last modified: 2017-09-02 12:27 by Briain.)
Post: #14
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
Well, I've not been much help with the issue itself, but it perhaps gives a few ideas on how it all bolts together (mdadm and Qnap scripts to drive it) and that it will be fixable.

Back to the Qnap support service and I recently had two odd issues requiring support to directly work on my own unit. One was that my list of virtual machines was missing after the 4.3 update (which was quite a bizarre issue) and that required the first line support chap, as well as someone from second line support and someone from the design department on a 3-way Tiemviewer session (and a string of funky Python commands to fix the issue; certainly not one that I could have sorted by myself as it required a deep knowledge of the Qnaps workings and of Virtualization Station's workings).

The second issue is that on most versions of 4.3, two of my four Ethernet adaptors are dropping out (QTS cannot see the adaptors). I won't go into all the tedious details, but it isn't clear whether this is an issue with QTS 4.3 (or something installed 'disagreeing' with 4.3) or a genuine hardware issue that some versions of QTS 4.3 are being 'upset' by. A second line support chap spent well over 1 hour on Friday morning (installing and running a suite of Qnap hardware interrogation support utilities via driving my local terminal over a Teamviewer session) so it will be interesting to find out what they think is happening (likely I'll find out on Monday).

So, that's several people and several hours (over 2 hours on Teamviewer sessions, alone) on a NAS that's out of warranty; that is a pretty amazing level of service! Of course, if the second issue does turn out to be a hardware problem, I will have to pay for its board change (sadly, they don't post out boards, so it will have to go to a Qnap repair facility) but at least I still have the option to do that (so they must have a stock of boards, even though it's now a retired model).

KDS/1 (music) + ADSM (AV) -> KK/1 -> 350A + miniDSP time & phase aligned 345 rear sub
KDS Renew -> Homebrew fixed attenuator -> 2250/D -> 212 and Sizmik front sub (bedroom)
MDSI -> 104C (awaiting installation in my kitchen)
MDSI -> Shahinian Arc (installed at my mum's house)
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2017-09-02, 16:05
Post: #15
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
Still struggling with this. The system didn't burp when I re-plugged the new (formatted) drive and for a few minutes I thought a rebuild was happening. But QFinder cannot see the server now despite my being wire-connected to it, and after two days (which is sufficient to rebuild a 2TB volume) the status still appears compromised in some way (per the LEDs...which admittedly is miniscule cryptic info to go on). I don't believe my manuals do not provide any of the step-by-step you cited and I did download what seemed to be the latest when this all began. You must be looking at a different document than I have been.

I have never found it wise to assume "supports hot-plug" means the same thing as "must hot-plug" in either storage or any other system issue. But no matter; I'll assume I've not been looking at the correct document (although mine is the HW manual for the TS-412, said to be latest, and it makes no mention of any different procedural documents).

The question now is how to nudge the server to start a rebuild. I read in one of these threads (someone had not only power-cycled but had upgraded FW, and the rebuild wasn't happening) that marking a new drive a "global spare" would cause the server to start rebuilding. But I can't do that without the QFinder utility seeing the server.

I may have to power-cycle again; I can't think of anything else to try.
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2017-09-02, 16:33 (This post was last modified: 2017-09-02 16:34 by Hagen2000.)
Post: #16
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
Here my hints:
- First solve the problem of accessing the NAS
- Make a backup of the failed volume (e.g. to a USB disk)
- Power down the NAS
- Insert the failed (!) drive
- Power up the NAS
==> Hopefully the NAS will recognize drive 4 as failed and the corresponding volume as degraded
- Now perform the hot swap

As I explained in a further post, you can not add a spare drive with your current configuration.

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2017-09-03, 09:18
Post: #17
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
Hagen is giving an excellent advice. I would do something quite similar. However not sure that after powering on the NAS with the faulty disc the server would set the volume back to degraded. If it does not I would follow chapter 8 of the manual which describes how to do just that. Since I am not clear about the manual you have I suggest to send you a pdf of mine (which appears to be the same as Donald's). Would need your email. If you agree then PM it to me.

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2017-09-03, 12:42 (This post was last modified: 2017-09-03 12:43 by Briain.)
Post: #18
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
Yes, that is an absolutely excellent idea; that is most definitely worth a shot!

Bri Smile

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KDS Renew -> Homebrew fixed attenuator -> 2250/D -> 212 and Sizmik front sub (bedroom)
MDSI -> 104C (awaiting installation in my kitchen)
MDSI -> Shahinian Arc (installed at my mum's house)
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2017-09-07, 21:39
Post: #19
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
Somehow my reply didn't get posted. it was something to this effect:

Naturally lack of access is getting in the way and I need to reacquire it. (The box drops connectivity and I have to power-cycle and wait quite a long time while it tries to deal with recognizing the new drive, before it comes online. But if I wait a long time it does eventually grant me access.)

The other steps listed by Hagen2000 were exactly how I began this whole thing--making a backup while in a degraded mode was the first thing I did. Then I powered down and installed a different drive--and I do now believe a drive has to be formatted in advance, or at least initialized with a single partition...I learned that through doing what I did, although no manuals seem to say that. (That point was in fact the whole reason I asked on this forum--how must a drive be "prepared" prior to insertion? Now I think I know what the NAS box is "assuming" about a newly inserted drive.)

At that point the NAS box does not auto-rebuild the Drive 3/4 volume, and the reason I believe is that it doesn't seem to "recognize" the new drives I inserted. So my latest theory is that both seemingly good drives I've tried to insert have issues, so I've bought a new WD black, and will try that soon.

If the new WD Black is recognized but auto-rebuild still doesn't occur, then I will designate that fourth drive i.e. te WD Black) a "global spare" (yes I think it will allow me to do this as long as the drive is recognized), after which I hope doing that prods the system to start the rebuild. Why do I think that? Well I read in someone else's issue report that this was how their box was "nudged" into rebuilding (although that was a slightly different issue--that system owner had upgraded the FW while in degraded mode and was also removing Drives 1 & 2 and putting the new drive in a different bay than the Drive 4 that had failed...the system lost the continuity of what was trying to occur, and putting the new drive back into the proper bay failed to get things back on track until the new drive, once recognized, was marked as a "global spare." Then the rebuild began. So this might work for me if the auto-rebuild doesn't happen without y doing that.)

As a courtesy to everyone providing their ideas, I'll report on progress as it happens....
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2017-09-25, 16:49
Post: #20
RE: QNAP TS412 Drive Replacement
It takes a loooooong time to figure this out, especially since I need hours at a time with access to the system to do it. So far I've determined that there seems to be nothing wrong with the SATA intf of the bay that had gone bad. And I've determined that a new drive is finally recognized as 'good' (but only after a full block scan is done on it). And rebuild *partly* occurs: The files are transferred to the new drive. But the mirrored 2-disk volume still fails to establish itself even though the files got copied.

I also continue to have issues with access--the NAS system will come up, see that the problem 2-disk volume is not right, and then fail to give me NW access. It takes repeated reboots to get access if both of the disks of the problem volume are in place.

The good news is that I have multiple copies of the files. The bad news is that I see no other recourse but to reformat both drives and do a manual rebuild by simply creating a new empty mirrored volume and then copying files onto it.

This is the age-old problem of automation without clear and exhaustive documentation--it's almost better to design a volumen rebuild sequence that requires manual initiation and manual hand-holding of every step.

Well the effort goes on....
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