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Re-setup QNAP RAID to extract files

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Dear all,

My QNAP TS-451+ suffered from the well documented Intel Celeron chip failure. My little DIY during these MCO times with lack of proper equipment had led to the board shorting between the power-rails.

Long story short, my days with using RAID NAS are over. Going forward, I would like to extract my files from the 4 HDDs to other storage options (e.g. multiple USB HDDs, etc)

My QNAP NAS was setup a years ago, and left it without any trouble. Now I can't remember the RAID setup with the 4 drives. Might have been
- 3-hdd RAID 5, last disc not used
- 3-hdd RAID 5, last disc a JBOD
- 3-hdd RAID 5, with 1 HDD as a hot-spare
- 4-hdd Raid 5
- etc...

I have learnt the hard way
relying on the RAID NAS as a backup solution, so would appreciate skipping related comments to this.

Here are my thoughts:

1) I am thinking I need to have a PC that can take 4 HDDs, but don't know what to do software wise.
2) Can FreeNAS access a QNAP RAID?

Whatever it is, I rather avoid getting another TS-451+ just to extract my files.

I am very open to suggestions on what to do.

Warm regards,
Get a machine running Linux. Use it to mount one of the drives and try to see if any files are available. Try this with each drive

RAID filesystems are very vendor specific. So it's unlikely you'll be able to see an intact RAID system on a platform other than QNAP.

If your files are that valuable to you, getting another of the same make/model NAS might be the easiest and fastest way to recover.
QNAP uses LVM and MDADM for building their RAID arrays...

The default with 4 disks installed is RAID5

Ganesh over at AnandTech wrote up an article that might be very helpful - he was working with an older Synology box, but QNAP is very similar.

As @thiggins mentions - a linux machine with enough ports to plug in the disks is the easiest way to mount the drives, discover the topology of the MD array, and LVM to mount it for recovery.
In the old days when I ran RAID you could move a RAID to different hardware if you used the same controller card definitions, a matching card was fine, and you kept the drives in order. Label the drives 1,2,3,4. Out of order will destroy the RAID. Make sure the drives are installed where 1 matches 1. So now you need to match the hardware RAID to recover it. Switching to different hardware RAID will kill it. You do not initialize the RAID. It should just come up and be recognized. This is what I discovered over time many years ago.
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