How to recover data from Synology DiskStation DS3018xs NAS

Is your network drive gone, and you are wondering what to do? Has a RAID system crashed, and your files are no longer accessible? Does your device display an error while booting? Have you accidentally rebuilt your RAID system? Are several hard disks out of order?

How to recover data from NAS Synology DiskStation DS3018xs

Synology DiskStation DS3018xs NAS Data Recovery in 2024

In this step-by-step tutorial, we’ll show you how to rebuild your RAID and recover data from DiskStation DS3018xs.

How to recover data from NAS Synology DiskStation DS3018xs

Recover data from damaged RAID arrays inaccessible from a computer.

Why can’t ordinary software tools restore files from RAID?

Conventional hard disks keep user’s data by writing it to their surface in a consecutive way, and this is how an entire file is stored on a single hard disk. However, when data is written to a RAID system, a file is divided into several parts. Then these parts are written consecutively to all hard disks within such array. The size of such parts may range from 2 KB to 2 MB, so each file is stored on several hard disks at the same time.

Such approach helps to speed up read and write operations, and it is evident that saving two parts of a file having the size of 1 GB to two hard disks simultaneously is much faster than saving the same 1 GB of data to one hard disk. However, this peculiarity makes file recovery more complicated.

Various RAID levels store information in different ways. Additionally, manufacturers like Synology also introduce some modifications to this process, and that is why data can be written to hard disk in a wide variety of ways.

How does a NAS Synology DiskStation DS3018xs device store and manage data?

The Synology DiskStation DS3018xs is a Network Attached Storage (NAS) device that is designed to store and manage data. Here is how it works:

  1. Storage: The DS3018xs comes with multiple drive bays where you can install hard drives or solid-state drives (SSDs). It supports various RAID configurations, allowing you to combine multiple drives for increased data redundancy and performance.
  2. File System: The device uses Synology's DiskStation Manager (DSM) operating system, which provides a user-friendly interface for managing the NAS. DSM uses the Btrfs file system by default, which offers advanced features like data checksums, snapshots, and file system compression.
  3. Data Management: The DS3018xs allows you to create shared folders, which can be accessed by multiple users or devices on the network. You can set permissions and access rights for each folder, ensuring secure data management. Additionally, the NAS supports various file protocols like SMB, AFP, NFS, and FTP, enabling seamless file sharing across different platforms.
  4. Data Protection: The DS3018xs offers various data protection features. It supports regular backups to external drives or other NAS devices, ensuring data redundancy. The NAS also provides built-in data protection mechanisms like RAID, which can protect against drive failures. Additionally, you can enable the Snapshot feature to take point-in-time copies of your data, allowing you to recover previous versions or restore accidentally deleted files.
  5. Data Access: The DS3018xs allows you to access your data remotely through Synology's mobile apps or web interface. This enables you to view and manage your files from anywhere with an internet connection. The NAS also supports features like cloud synchronization, allowing you to sync your data with popular cloud storage services for additional backup and accessibility.
  6. Additional Features: The DS3018xs offers a wide range of additional features, including multimedia streaming, surveillance camera integration, virtualization support, and more. These features enhance the functionality and versatility of the NAS, making it suitable for various applications and use cases.

Overall, the Synology DiskStation DS3018xs efficiently stores and manages data by providing a robust storage infrastructure, advanced file system, data protection mechanisms, and convenient access options.

How to take hard disks out of the NAS and connect them to a PC?

Although NAS DiskStation DS3018xs can be accessed over the network, you still need to take the hard disks out of the storage device and connect them to a Windows computer. Only in this case will the software be able to scan them properly. Here is what you should do:

  1. Turn off the storage and disconnect it from the power supply.

    WARNING! Before you start taking hard disks out of your NAS device, read the manual carefully. Incorrect actions may damage your network-attached storage and/or the hard disks within the RAID system.

  2. Take the hard disks out of the NAS one by one, carefully removing them from their slots. Remember that the disks are extremely vulnerable: hitting or dropping them may result in serious physical damage.

  3. Make sure to mark each hard disk in accordance with how they were installed inside the NAS.

  4. Remove the hard disks and connect them to the computer. In this video, we have explored what ports are used to connect hard disks, and what to do if there are not enough ports or connectors.

    Go to view
    How to Order Remote Data Recovery

    How to Order Remote Data Recovery

Restoring data with Hetman RAID Recovery

Hetman Raid Recovery

This program recovers data from damaged RAID arrays and is fully compatible with Synology DiskStation DS3018xs. The hard disks that make up the RAID contain technical information about the algorithm used to save files. When launched, Hetman RAID Recovery reads this information and puts the damaged array together. Then you can open the disk and save your files. Also, you can recover the files accidentally deleted from the network drive.

Go to view
How to recover data from a Synology

How to recover data from a Synology

DiskStation DS3018xs has 6 HDD slots, and it supports the following array types:

  • Synology Hybrid RAID (SHR);
  • RAID 6;
  • RAID 5;
  • RAID 10;
  • RAID 1;
  • RAID 0;
  • Basic;
  • JBOD;

NAS supports:

  • Btrfs;
  • EXT4;
  • EXT3 (External Disk Only);
  • FAT32 (External Disk Only);
  • exFAT (External Disk Only);
  • NTFS (External Disk Only);
  • HFS+ (External Disk Read Only);

Safe recovery from disk images

This utility lets you save an entire copy of the disk to file and then work with this image instead of the actual disk. Such feature helps to protect data on the disk from:

  • Overwriting during the recovery process;
  • Loss resulting from bad sectors;
  • User mistakes.

To create an image, do the following:

  1. Make sure that you have enough free space to save the image. The image file size usually equals the disk size.

  2. Select the disk in the main window, and choose from the menu ToolsSave Disk. You can select multiple disks to be saved.

  3. When the image creation wizard starts, you can choose to save the entire disk or select only a part of it. Specify the parameters and click Next.

    Hetman Raid Recovery: Image Creation Wizard
  4. At this stage, you need to choose a directory where to save the image. Choose any disk connected to this PC, or save the image by FTP.

    Hetman Raid Recovery: hoose any disk connected to this PC, or save the image by FTP

Where are user’s files stored?

The Synology DiskStation DS3018xs network-attached storage keeps DSM (DiskStation Manager) operating system files on a separate RAID 1 (mirrored) array. Usually, all NAS systems create several volumes on every hard disk, and the first of them takes up to 2 Gb of space. This is where operating system files are stored. Other volumes are united into a RAID array where user’s data is written.

Comparison of software for RAID recovery

Product Operating system License type RAID controller support Supported file systems Virtual RAID controller support Data recovery from damaged RAID File preview
Hetman RAID Recovery Windows Paid Yes, over 100 controllers FAT, NTFS, Ext2/3/4, HFS+ Yes Yes Yes
DiskInternals RAID Recovery Windows Paid Yes, over 100 controllers FAT, NTFS, Ext2/3/4, HFS+ No Yes Yes
R-Studio Windows, Mac, Linux Paid Yes, over 200 controllers FAT, NTFS, Ext2/3/4, HFS+ Yes Yes Yes
UFS Explorer RAID Recovery Windows, Mac, Linux Paid Yes, over 1,000 controllers FAT, NTFS, Ext2/3/4, HFS+ Yes Yes Yes
EaseUS Data Recovery Windows Paid Yes, over 20 controllers FAT, NTFS, Ext2/3/4, HFS+ No Yes Yes
ReclaiMe Free RAID Recovery Windows Free Yes, over 100 controllers FAT, NTFS, Ext2/3/4, HFS+ Yes Yes Yes


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Comments (1)

  • Hetman Software: Data Recovery
    Hetman Software: Data Recovery 9.08.2022 12:31 #
    If you want to ask a question about data recovery, from NAS DiskStation DS3018xs, feel free to leave a comment!
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Vladimir Artiukh

Author: Vladimir Artiukh, Technical Writer

Vladimir Artiukh is a technical writer for Hetman Software, as well as the voice and face of their English-speaking YouTube channel, Hetman Software: Data Recovery for Windows. He handles tutorials, how-tos, and detailed reviews on how the company’s tools work with all kinds of data storage devices.

Oleg Afonin

Editor: Oleg Afonin, Technical Writer

Oleg Afonin is an expert in mobile forensics, data recovery and computer systems. He often attends large data security conferences, and writes several blogs for such resources as, Elcomsoft and Habr. In addition to his online activities, Oleg’s articles are also published in professional magazines. Also, Oleg Afonin is the co-author of a well-known book, Mobile Forensics - Advanced Investigative Strategies.


Questions and answers

  • What are the available cloud services supported by the NAS Synology DiskStation DS3018xs for copying data?

    The Synology DiskStation DS3018xs supports a wide range of cloud services for copying data. Some of the available cloud services supported by this NAS include:

    1. Amazon Drive
    2. Amazon S3
    3. Backblaze B2
    4. Dropbox
    5. Google Drive
    6. Microsoft Azure
    7. Microsoft OneDrive
    8. OpenStack Swift
    9. Tencent Cloud Object Storage (COS)
    10. WebDAV-compatible cloud services

    These cloud services can be configured and used with the DiskStation DS3018xs to easily copy and synchronize data between the NAS and the cloud storage.

  • How can I securely copy files from the NAS Synology DiskStation DS3018xs to a cloud service?

    To securely copy files from your NAS Synology DiskStation DS3018xs to a cloud service, you can follow these steps:

    1. Set up a cloud service account: Choose a cloud service provider that suits your needs, such as Amazon S3, Google Drive, Dropbox, or Synology C2. Create an account and set up the necessary cloud storage.
    2. Enable Cloud Sync on your Synology NAS: Log in to your DiskStation Manager (DSM) web interface and go to the "Package Center." Install the "Cloud Sync" package if it's not already installed. Open the Cloud Sync app.
    3. Add a cloud service provider: In the Cloud Sync app, click on the "Create" button to add a new cloud service provider. Select your desired cloud service provider from the list and follow the instructions to authorize access to your cloud storage.
    4. Configure the sync task: After adding the cloud service provider, click on "Create" again to set up a new sync task. Choose the source folder on your NAS that you want to sync with the cloud service. Select the cloud service provider as the destination and specify the folder or bucket where the files will be stored.
    5. Set up encryption and security options: In the sync task settings, you can enable encryption to secure your files before transferring them to the cloud. You can also set up additional security options like SSL encryption, two-factor authentication, or access control lists (ACLs) if supported by your cloud service provider.
    6. Schedule and run the sync task: Configure the sync task schedule according to your needs. You can choose to run it immediately or set up a recurring schedule. Once configured, click on "Apply" to save the settings.
    7. Monitor and verify the sync process: You can monitor the progress of the sync task in the Cloud Sync app. It will show you the status, transfer speed, and any errors encountered. Verify that the files are successfully copied to the cloud service by checking the destination folder.

    By following these steps, you can securely copy files from your NAS Synology DiskStation DS3018xs to a cloud service while ensuring data protection and encryption during the transfer process.

  • Are there any limitations or restrictions when copying data from the NAS Synology DiskStation DS3018xs to cloud services, such as file size or transfer speed?

    When copying data from a NAS Synology DiskStation DS3018xs to cloud services, there can be limitations or restrictions regarding file size and transfer speed. Here are some factors to consider:

    1. File Size Limitations: Cloud services may impose restrictions on the maximum file size that can be uploaded. For example, some services may have a limit of 5 GB per file. If you try to copy a file larger than the specified limit, you may encounter issues.
    2. Transfer Speed: The speed of transferring data from the NAS to cloud services depends on various factors, including your internet connection speed, the cloud service provider's infrastructure, and any bandwidth limitations imposed by the cloud service. If you have a slow internet connection, it may affect the transfer speed.
    3. Bandwidth Limitations: Some cloud service providers may impose bandwidth limitations or throttling, especially if you have a free or lower-tier subscription plan. This can result in slower transfer speeds or restrictions on the amount of data that can be transferred within a specific time frame.
    4. Network Conditions: The overall network conditions, including latency and stability, can impact the transfer speed and reliability. If there are network disruptions or high latency, it may affect the data transfer process.
    5. Service-Specific Limitations: Each cloud service provider may have its own specific limitations or restrictions. It is advisable to check the documentation or support resources provided by your chosen cloud service to understand any specific limitations related to file size or transfer speed.

    To ensure a smooth and efficient transfer process, it is recommended to review the documentation and guidelines provided by both Synology and your chosen cloud service provider. Additionally, testing the transfer process with smaller files or subsets of data can help identify any potential limitations or issues before attempting to copy large amounts of data.

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