Synology NAS RMA & Drive Swap Process

Two years ago, I invested in the Synology 1815+ (8-bay) NAS to serve as my digital media library, primary computer backup, and some of my Docker container testing.  Sadly, over the winter holiday after a brief loss of heat in my apartment it died unexpectedly.  RIP.

Thankfully I was able to get the unit replaced fairly quickly and seamlessly transfer my drives from my old 1815+ system to the new one without any data, setting, or configuration loss.

I also bought 2 x 6TB Western Digital Reds to replace two of my existing 3TB Reds and migrating those drives was also pretty painless.

See below the jump for an overview of this process.

Synology RMA Process

As luck would have it, Synology’s support was out of the office for most of the winter holiday, so I had to wait a few days after I initially submitted my support ticket.  Luckily I was still within my Synology’s 3-year hardware warranty.  I explained in my ticket that I had both the 1815+ connected to a UPS unit with none of my other tech connected to it experiencing power issues, and that I had left it disconnected from power for some time but still could not power it on while connected to either the UPS or another outlet.

Lucky for me these troubleshooting steps seemed to do the trick because the initial response I received from support informed me that they were going to do an Advanced RMA.

After providing my credit card information they began processing the replacement unit.  Synology put a hold on the charge for a new 1815+ and sent out the replacement unit.  As long as I returned the old unit within 21 days my credit card wouldn’t be charged.  Otherwise, after 21 days I would be charged, but still have an additional 9 days to get the unit to them and be credited back.

Drive Swap

Because of the winter storms across the US, the replacement unit took an extra day to arrive (8 days total).  Once it arrived, I followed the instructions per Synology support (step 14 of section 2.1), which is essentially just replacing each drive from the old unit in the same order in the new unit.

I almost forgot, but the 1815+ has an additional RAM slot inside the unit which I had installed a 4GB module for a total of 6GB.  I had to remove the screws on the back of both units to remove the metal shell to access the RAM slot and install it in the new unit.

With fingers crossed, I powered on the my new Synology 1815+ and after a few minutes was able to login to DSM and see all my data, settings, and configurations still intact!

Reenable External Access (DDNS) & QuickConnect

If you’re like me and connect to your Synology NAS outside your LAN, I had to complete a couple extra steps to reenable Synology’s external access and QuickConnect, as these services are tied to individual Synology NAS hardware and your Synology account.

A few prompts later after logging in with my Synology account and confirming I wanted to transfer my existing QuickConnectID and DDNS hostname from my old unit to the new one and I was officially back up and running!

Synology NAS Drive Replacement

In addition to getting my new Synology NAS, I also bought 2 x 6TB Western Digital Red drives to add additional storage.  While I had Synology’s Hybrid Raid (SHR) with 2 disk data protection, I only wanted to replace one drive at a time to ensure that if another drive died at some point during the array rebuild process that all my data was still intact.

Because I have a total of 6 drives in my array with 2 disk redundancy, I would not be able to take advantage of the additional drive storage, as I would need to replace an additional 2 drives with 6TBs.

First I used Storage Manager to look at the health info for each drive to determine which of my previous 3TB Reds had the most power on time.  Once identified, I shutdown the NAS per Synology’s documentation and removed one of the drives, replacing it with one the 6TBs.  After powering it on and starting up, the NAS began to beep indicating that one of the volumes in my array had become degraded.

Opening Storage Manager again, I went to the Disk Group tab and clicked “Manage”.  This defaulted to the desired option of repairing the array and also defaulting to adding the new uninitialized drive.  Once I confirmed this, the array began repairing.

Once the array had been rebuilt successfully (after 10+ hours) I shutdown the NAS again and completed the same process with the second drive.

Very Happy!

While I certainly had concerns with the integrity of my data after my original Synology NAS failed, I was pleased and impressed with how quickly I ultimately received the new unit and how easy it was to add additional storage.

Very happy with my investment in a Synology NAS for my home and cloud storage!*

* I was not compensated in any way by Synology Inc. for writing this post


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