Server HDD Failure – Owl

We had our first true test of the Synology RAID redundancy with our Synology 1812+ server (Owl). One of the hard drives (HDD) failed. All of the other drives were fine, the data was intact and we had a new replacement HDD on hand. However, there was one shortcoming: no email notification of the drive failure. Luckily, the Synology server is next to Steven’s office and he could hear an audible beeping alerting him to the fact that something was wrong. In any case, the email notifications have been fixed and a replacement hard drive was added to the system. Here’s how these things were accomplished.


Fix email notifications

The system was previously set to use Steven’s Comcast SMTP server. Sending a test email from Owl failed, indicating authentication failure. I changed this to use the University of Washington’s email server for outgoing messages. Here’s how…

In the Synology Disk Station Manager (DSM):

Control Panel > Notifications

  • Service provider: Custom SMTP Server
  • SMTP server:
  • SMTP port: 587
  • Username:
  • Password: myUWpassword

Interesting note, there’s a “Push Service” tab in the “Notifications” window. This allows you to have Synology send emails to email addresses when the server has an issue. This eliminates the need for the SMTP settings shown above which may not be easy to find and/or understand for a given email service provider. The “Push Service” appears to be much simpler and more user friendly to set up.


Hot Swap HDD

We’ve kept a backup HDD on hand for just this occasion, so the HDD failure wasn’t too concerning. Here’re the steps I followed to swap the HDD and have the Synology system initialize/build the new HDD:


Remove the dead HDD and put the new HDD in.



Initialize/build/repair the new HDD.

In Synology DSM:

Storage Manger > Volume

Notice, there should be eight drives listed, but since one has died, only seven are shown:








That’s it! Easy breezy!

I’ve checked with Seagate on the dead HDD and it is still under warranty. Will get that returned and also purchase a new backup drive to have on hand.

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