Online RAID Capacity Upgrade

A New Challenge for Modern Businesses

For modern businesses, one of the greatest challenges is to select and set up a reliable network-attached storage server to secure and share important data to increase work efficiency. Meanwhile, the necessity to reduce the risk of data loss by backing up data increases the demand for higher capacity storage. With the increasing storage capacity of hard drives, QNAP provides a solution to hot swap lower capacity drives with larger capacity drives so that your QNAP Turbo NAS can grow with your business.

The QNAP Turbo NAS series provides a high-performance and low-TCO (total cost of ownership) solution for modern businesses. In addition to best-in-class hardware specifications and easy-to-use applications, the QNAP Turbo NAS series also offers innovative features such as Online RAID Capacity Upgrade (for example, replace three 500GB hard drives with three 1TB hard drives) and Online RAID Level Migration (for example, RAID level migration from RAID 1 to RAID 5). These advanced features used to be exclusive to corporations with large budgets, but QNAP implements an intuitive way to allow more businesses to enjoy these powerful technologies.

The scenario below demonstrates how users can benefit from using Online RAID Capacity Upgrade.

Use Case

  • Jeffrey bought three 500GB drives for the initial setup of a TVS-882 and used a RAID 5 configuration for these drives.
  • Six months later, the storage needs of his department sharply increased and the current storage capacity of his TVS-882 was no longer enough. At the same time, the price of 1TB hard drives had significantly dropped. Thus, Jeffery decided to buy three 1TB hard drives.
  • Jeffery now wants to upgrade the capacity of his TVS-882 NAS.

Operation procedure

Log in to QTS with an administrator account. Go to  “Storage & Snapshots” > “Storage/Snapshots”. Select the storage pool that will be expanded, then click “Manage“. The “Storage Pool Management” window will appear, select the RAID group that will be expanded and click “Replace Disks One by One” in the “Manage” menu.

Highlight the first disk to be replaced, and click “Change“.

Tips: After you replace hard drives, the description field will show the message “You can replace this drive”. You can now replace the hard drive to a larger one or skip this step if the hard drives have already been replaced.
Caution: When the hard drive synchronization is in process, DO NOT turn off the NAS or swap hard drives.

When the description field displays “Please remove this drive”, remove the hard drive from the NAS. Wait for the NAS to beep twice.

When the description field displays “Please insert the new drive”, insert the new drive to the same drive slot.

After inserting the hard drive, wait for the NAS to beep. The system will start rebuilding.

When the RAID is finished rebuilding, repeat the steps above to replace the other hard drives one by one.

After swapping out hard drives and the rebuilding completes, click “Expand Capacity” to expand the RAID.

Click “OK” to continue.

The NAS will beep and start expanding the capacity.

Depending on the drive sizes, the process may take anywhere from a few hours to tens of hours to complete. Please wait patiently for the process to finish. DO NOT turn off the NAS.

After RAID expansion is finished, the new capacity will be shown and the RAID group status will be “Ready”. The process is now complete and the new storage space is available for use.

Tips: To expand the capacity of closed NAS models (those without accessible drive bays) you need to shut down the NAS, unplug its cables, lay the NAS on a flat surface, open its cover, and then replace the hard drives within. Then replace the cover, plug in the cables, turn on the NAS, and then follow the instruction on the screen.

Source :