How to use full capacity of disks?

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NAS_hans
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How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by NAS_hans » Sat Jul 08, 2017 4:52 am

Hi,

I have read lots of info on forums and QNAP manuals, but I just don't get it. So looking for help.

TS-253A with QTS 4.3.3.0210

I have 2 WD Red 4TB HDD's in RAID 1 mirror config.

My DataVol1 shows capacity of 1.65TB and my storage pool 1 shows 3.63TB capacity.

The actual size of all files on disk is 935GB (55% used of 1.65TB).

The allocated volume for the storage pool is 3.28TB (85% of 3.63TB).

So how can I make full use of the +/- 4TB that should be available for storage? Should I expand the DataVol1 so it goes up to +/- 4TB? Should I then also do something at the storage pool level?

I understand the storage pool will never get higher than 4TB because I am essentially only utilizing a single disk, and the other disk is for replication only.

Thanks!

jacobite1
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by jacobite1 » Sat Jul 08, 2017 5:34 am

NAS_hans wrote:I have read lots of info on forums and QNAP manuals, but I just don't get it. So looking for help.


Happy to!

Okay couple of things here. I'm presuming you know how a 6TB drive isn't a 6TB drive. Basically, it's the difference between TiB and TB. I would suggest reading this wikipedia article https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Binary_prefix#Consumer_confusion if you don't. It may clear some things up for you! It's also explained better https://www.quora.com/What-is-the-difference-between-Terabyte-TB-and-Tebibyte-TiB over at Quora.

What this means practically is that a 4TB drive has about 3.6TB of usable capacity.

In RAID 1, 1 disk is used for redundancy. This means that with a 3.63 storage pool capacity is normal. It will not go any higher than that. However your data volume capacity of 1.65TB is...odd. Did you recently move from 2TB to 4TB drives?

What is the size of your data volume? The 3.28TB size of your Storage Pool 1 divided by 2 = 1.64TB (which is close enough to 1.65TB). This makes me think you can expand your data volume if you want to as only 50% is being used. Can you log into your NAS, open "Storage Manager" (found under main menu). Then, in "Storage Manager", click on "Storage Space" under "Storage". Then, click the drop down arrow by the name of your storage pool to see the size of your data volume. It may look like this Image or a slight variation (better quality image here http://i.imgur.com/atcOKrv.jpg). Please screenshot this menu so we can try to work out if you can expand your data volume then post a new post.

FYI Expanding datavolume/storage volume capacity is not foolproof - people have lost data or even entire volumes in the past, so I strongly advise creating a backup if you haven't already done so.
TVS-463 4GB with 4*6TB Western Digital RED (WD60EFRX), RAID5. Approx 85% utilised. Looking at new NASes to upgrade to.

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MrVideo
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by MrVideo » Sat Jul 08, 2017 5:58 am

When a new volume is created, only 50% of the available space is allocated. You must go set it to max.
QTS 4.1.n/4.2.n/4.3.n MANUAL
Submit QNAP Support Ticket - QNAP Tutorials, FAQs, Downloads, Wiki - Product Support Status - Moogle's QNAP FAQ help V2
When you ask a question, please include the following
(Thanks to Toxic17 for the links)
QNAP md_checker nasreport (release 20180525)
===============================
Model: TS-869L -- RAM: 3G -- FW: QTS 4.1.4 Build 20150522 (used for data storage)
WD60EFRX-68L0BN1(x1)/68MYMN1(x7) Red HDDs -- RAID6: 8x6TB -- Cold spare: 1x6TB
Entware
===============================
Model: TS-451A -- RAM: 2G -- FW: QTS 4.2.3 Build 20170213 (used as a video server)
WL3000GSA6472(x3) White label NAS HDDs -- RAID5: 3x3TB
Entware -- MyKodi 17.3 (default is Kodi 16)
===============================
My 2017 Total Solar Eclipse Photos

jacobite1
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by jacobite1 » Sat Jul 08, 2017 6:00 am

MrVideo wrote:When a new volume is created, only 50% of the available space is allocated. You must go set it to max.


Huh. That I did not know. Im presuming that's because volumes can't be downsized post creation.
TVS-463 4GB with 4*6TB Western Digital RED (WD60EFRX), RAID5. Approx 85% utilised. Looking at new NASes to upgrade to.

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MrVideo
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by MrVideo » Sat Jul 08, 2017 6:03 am

I've never tried to find out why QNAP has done that. I just set it to max as soon as I can.
QTS 4.1.n/4.2.n/4.3.n MANUAL
Submit QNAP Support Ticket - QNAP Tutorials, FAQs, Downloads, Wiki - Product Support Status - Moogle's QNAP FAQ help V2
When you ask a question, please include the following
(Thanks to Toxic17 for the links)
QNAP md_checker nasreport (release 20180525)
===============================
Model: TS-869L -- RAM: 3G -- FW: QTS 4.1.4 Build 20150522 (used for data storage)
WD60EFRX-68L0BN1(x1)/68MYMN1(x7) Red HDDs -- RAID6: 8x6TB -- Cold spare: 1x6TB
Entware
===============================
Model: TS-451A -- RAM: 2G -- FW: QTS 4.2.3 Build 20170213 (used as a video server)
WL3000GSA6472(x3) White label NAS HDDs -- RAID5: 3x3TB
Entware -- MyKodi 17.3 (default is Kodi 16)
===============================
My 2017 Total Solar Eclipse Photos

P3R
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by P3R » Sat Jul 08, 2017 7:43 am

jacobite1 wrote:
MrVideo wrote:When a new volume is created, only 50% of the available space is allocated. You must go set it to max.
Huh. That I did not know. Im presuming that's because volumes can't be downsized post creation.
Exactly!
MrVideo wrote:I've never tried to find out why QNAP has done that.
It's because disk capacity can for some users sometimes be better used for other things than as an half empty plain shared storage.

Snapshots (a revolution when introduced) and Block-based iSCSI LUNs (which by Qnap is recommended over file based LUNs) are the two things I come to think of immediately.
I just set it to max as soon as I can.
Which is an irreversible action so unless absolutely sure of that you never ever want to use any of the new features offered by LVM/Storage pools (two mentioned above) that's not a very smart thing to do until you really need to use more of that available storage capacity as shared storage.

When a users have eventually learned about all the new possibilities offered by a modern NAS and realized they would want to use any of it, it would be a pity if they had already wasted all available storage on a maximum capacity shared volume not fully used.

That's the reason Qnap doesn't allocate all available storage to a single volume to start with. It's a actually a very nice thing they do for the newbies that have not yet understood everything about their new NAS.
RAID have never ever been a replacement for backups. Without backups on a different system (preferably placed at another site), you will eventually lose data!

A non-RAID configuration (including RAID 0, which isn't really RAID) with a backup on a separate media protects your data far better than any RAID-volume without backup.

All data storage consists of both the primary storage and the backups. It's your money and your data, spend the storage budget wisely or pay with your data!

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MrVideo
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by MrVideo » Sat Jul 08, 2017 11:30 am

P3R wrote:
jacobite1 wrote:Which is an irreversible action so unless absolutely sure of that you never ever want to use any of the new features offered by LVM/Storage pools (two mentioned above) that's not a very smart thing to do until you really need to use more of that available storage capacity as shared storage.

Nope, will never use snapshots or LUNs, or anything else, but storage. My TS-869L is almost full as it is.
QTS 4.1.n/4.2.n/4.3.n MANUAL
Submit QNAP Support Ticket - QNAP Tutorials, FAQs, Downloads, Wiki - Product Support Status - Moogle's QNAP FAQ help V2
When you ask a question, please include the following
(Thanks to Toxic17 for the links)
QNAP md_checker nasreport (release 20180525)
===============================
Model: TS-869L -- RAM: 3G -- FW: QTS 4.1.4 Build 20150522 (used for data storage)
WD60EFRX-68L0BN1(x1)/68MYMN1(x7) Red HDDs -- RAID6: 8x6TB -- Cold spare: 1x6TB
Entware
===============================
Model: TS-451A -- RAM: 2G -- FW: QTS 4.2.3 Build 20170213 (used as a video server)
WL3000GSA6472(x3) White label NAS HDDs -- RAID5: 3x3TB
Entware -- MyKodi 17.3 (default is Kodi 16)
===============================
My 2017 Total Solar Eclipse Photos

NAS_hans
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by NAS_hans » Sun Jul 09, 2017 12:34 am

Thanks all for your input, this certainly explains the things I am seeing. So I will simply do the "expand volume" (I will only use my NAS for storage, no snapshots etc but thanks for the clear explanation).

jacobite1
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by jacobite1 » Sun Jul 09, 2017 3:58 am

NAS_hans wrote:Thanks all for your input, this certainly explains the things I am seeing. So I will simply do the "expand volume" (I will only use my NAS for storage, no snapshots etc but thanks for the clear explanation).


Ensure you have a backup (or 2, or 3) before you start.

The expansion process is not 100% foolproof. Your NAS may crash and you may loose data or suffer a write hole.
TVS-463 4GB with 4*6TB Western Digital RED (WD60EFRX), RAID5. Approx 85% utilised. Looking at new NASes to upgrade to.

NAS_hans
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by NAS_hans » Mon Sep 04, 2017 2:20 am

Alright, I've done the expand volume, but I've had to do it in small increments, because the "Set to Max" button only increased slightly after each expand volume:

From 1.65TB to 2.02TB to 2.36 to 2.71 to 3.06

Is that normal behaviour?

EricBuist
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by EricBuist » Sat Jul 07, 2018 11:22 pm

I am having the same issue. 2x3Tb hard drives, just 1Tb of storage space. I really, really, really, don't care about SCSI; this is just something for me that got replaced by SATA, it should not exist anymore, and cannot justify using half a drive space. Snapshots make no sense to me in that context. The idea of the NAS is to implement RAID, which can already replicate the drives. The NAS should not halve the drive's capacity for something that is not related to RAID and backups. I cannot figure out how to set disk size to max. That should have been done automatically, it makes no sense to keep half the drives unallocated. This is a major con, not mentioned in any review of the QNAP devices.

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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by dolbyman » Sat Jul 07, 2018 11:36 pm

you are mixing up iscsi and scsi .. has nothing to do with sata vs scsi

2nd post explains how to expand the volume to more than 50%

P3R
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by P3R » Sun Jul 08, 2018 5:30 am

EricBuist wrote:That should have been done automatically, it makes no sense to keep half the drives unallocated.
It's very helpful to all other newbie users that doesn't understand that they need to reserve space initially on installation if they ever later realize they wanted to use snapshots, iSCSI (block-based) or multiple volumes.

As it's always possible to expand (but not shrink) a volume, you can now easily do that but all other users with different expectations would be stuck if Qnap had defaulted to what you wish.
RAID have never ever been a replacement for backups. Without backups on a different system (preferably placed at another site), you will eventually lose data!

A non-RAID configuration (including RAID 0, which isn't really RAID) with a backup on a separate media protects your data far better than any RAID-volume without backup.

All data storage consists of both the primary storage and the backups. It's your money and your data, spend the storage budget wisely or pay with your data!

EricBuist
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by EricBuist » Tue Jul 10, 2018 4:54 am

Thanks. I figured out how to expand the volume size. I still don't understand why iSCSI and snapshots would require unallocated space to work, though.

P3R
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Re: How to use full capacity of disks?

Post by P3R » Tue Jul 10, 2018 5:54 am

EricBuist wrote:I still don't understand why iSCSI and snapshots would require unallocated space to work, though.
Because they're not stored inside the main storage volume but beside it. If the main storage volume automatically take up all usable capacity, like you suggested, there's no storage capacity left to use for the features I mentioned.

LVM (storage pools) added another layer above the RAID that removed previous migration/expansion capacity limitations, added several new features and increased flexibility of the storage. But yes, that at the same time meant that us used only to basic Linux md RAID had to learn some new things to understand how it works.

Once I had learned the basic differences, I found the following graphic from the Qnap documentation very helpful to understand how things are related to each other:
Image
RAID have never ever been a replacement for backups. Without backups on a different system (preferably placed at another site), you will eventually lose data!

A non-RAID configuration (including RAID 0, which isn't really RAID) with a backup on a separate media protects your data far better than any RAID-volume without backup.

All data storage consists of both the primary storage and the backups. It's your money and your data, spend the storage budget wisely or pay with your data!

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