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More RAID Woes.... again....

Last response: in Storage
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Am I gonna havta reinstall Windows?

Total: 12 votes

  • Yep, you messed it up
  • 92 %
  • No! I know how to save you!
  • 9 %
April 21, 2007 2:16:24 PM

:( 

Ok, I'm back. My Raid 0 array won't boot. I have a DS3 and was using the JMicron RAID controller. Everything was setup and functioning perfectly. Ok, good. Now, I had left some extra space on my Raid array (~10GB) to install Ubuntu (Linux) on at a later date. Today is that later date.

I dl and make the Live CD. I was using the 32bit 7.04 version. I go to install, and realize that Ubuntu does not see my RAID array. (It sees the individual disks) NP. I google "Ubuntu" "raid" and got this page.

It said I had to dl and install dmraid. When I installed it, dmraid had an post-something error. However, the Synaptic Package Manager showed dmraid as installed. I go back to install, and saw nothing has changed. I say forget it and shut down Ubuntu to go back to Windows to dl Gentoo. I boot up, the raid status screen shows one of my disks as "non-raid", and the array as failed. It tries to boot. Error. :x

Then I go back into the RAID setup and delete the RAID array. I make a new one identical to my original. No boot. I then set the disks to non-raid, still no boot. :( 

I think my mistake was deleting the RAID array. I think I should have set the disks to non-Raid first, and then created an identical array. Anyways, I don't see how the any of my data could be tampered with. So I believe that if I can get my original Raid settings back, I can boot back into Windows.

Am I right? Can I somehow get the disks configured correctly to boot? Or were some files changed and/or corrupted? Nothing mission critical was on the array, but reinstalling windows and my games and programs is a pain in the ass. But if I have no choice, what else can I do but to reinstall? I want this to be my last option.

Thanks for reading! ANY help is greatly appreciated.

My system: PD 945, DS3, 2GB Corsair DDR2-675 running at 800, X1950pro, (2) 80GB Seagate 7200.9.

EDIT: After thinkin about it some more, I think that dmraid was saved to one of the HDD's. I wonder if I could boot into ubuntu and remove dmraid :?:

More about : raid woes

April 23, 2007 3:52:36 PM

:(  Aw, nobody responded. This is my main computer guys, Can I get a little assistance please?

I'd start messing around with it, but I don't want to aggravate the problem. Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.

-Thanks
Anonymous
a b G Storage
April 23, 2007 4:15:33 PM

if you can set everything up the way it was originally you should be able to see your drives again.
Related resources
April 23, 2007 4:31:06 PM

lol, retard.

if you setup your boot partition on a RAID 0 then you pretty much deserve whatever it is you get IMHO.

i'm done giving advice in this arena as it's never followed.

Valis
April 23, 2007 4:44:31 PM

Why don't you just try a repair install of windows?
April 23, 2007 5:43:58 PM

Thanks for the responses, (except for Valis's).

Quote:
f you can set everything up the way it was originally you should be able to see your drives again.

I tried this but it didn't work. I can't seem to remember the array's name. Will that make a difference? I'll try it again when I get home. The only problem is that I think I installed something to one of the Hard Drives. So there's a random file on the drive somewhere. (probably where the boot section is.

Quote:
Why don't you just try a repair install of windows?

Good idea. Didn't think of that. I'll try that if restoring the settings doesn't work. What does this do? Just reinstall the boot info?
April 23, 2007 6:12:54 PM

Quote:
Thanks for the responses, (except for Valis's).

f you can set everything up the way it was originally you should be able to see your drives again.

I tried this but it didn't work. I can't seem to remember the array's name. Will that make a difference? I'll try it again when I get home. The only problem is that I think I installed something to one of the Hard Drives. So there's a random file on the drive somewhere. (probably where the boot section is.

Quote:
Why don't you just try a repair install of windows?

Good idea. Didn't think of that. I'll try that if restoring the settings doesn't work. What does this do? Just reinstall the boot info?

the lovely thing about raid 0 is that if something messes up one drive, the whole raid is fubar. THAT is why it's used for speed, and not for security ;)  if you've put a file on one drive using something else when the drives weren't in raid, you've screwed the whole thing. raid 0 works by striping files across the hard drives, one file can be in a hundred pieces, half of them on one drive, half on the other.

yer hosed.

Valis
April 23, 2007 6:40:16 PM

I have an ABIT AB9 mobo with the JMICRON JMB36X raid controller. You should know up front that the jmicron controller is buggy. I had been in contact with a bios engineer in japan (via email) regarding the various issue's with the controller (after lodging a complaint). The last conversation ended with jmicron working with ABIT on a beta that was currently being tested - to date I have heard nothing from either JMICRON or ABIT (no bios updates). The controller had caused my raid array to crash, it had caused my optical drives DMA modes to default to PIO, it continually created problems for my Vista OS. I would imagine someone with high technical system expertise could probably get the jmicron controller to work effectively and stable, unfortunately that's not me. I would tell you to use that controller at your own risk. I eventually stopped using it, and configured my HDD's away from a raid setup and began using the INTEL controller. At least now everything seems to work OK.
April 23, 2007 7:30:37 PM

Quote:
Why don't you just try a repair install of windows?

Good idea. Didn't think of that. I'll try that if restoring the settings doesn't work. What does this do? Just reinstall the boot info?

It basically just recopies the base OS and repairs the boot information and alot of other minor low level crap. I don't know all the ins and outs of it, but it does have its place in the repair process overall.

The absolute worst that could happen is it doesn't help, or it best case it fixes it for whatever reason. No real loss to be had by trying which is why I suggested it. :D 
April 23, 2007 8:10:28 PM

Quote:
the lovely thing about raid 0 is that if something messes up one drive, the whole raid is fubar. THAT is why it's used for speed, and not for security Wink if you've put a file on one drive using something else when the drives weren't in raid, you've screwed the whole thing. raid 0 works by striping files across the hard drives, one file can be in a hundred pieces, half of them on one drive, half on the other.

Now, isn't that more helpful than your first post?

For the record, I went back into Ubuntu to try to uninstall dmraid. Wasn't there.

Ok, How do you get to the repair install thing? I've got my XP CD, but there is no "repair" option. However, there is a "Recovery Console". But that goes into a command line based program. I tried the command "fixmbr" and it worked, but when I try to boot I get "missing NTLDR". No clue how to work the recovery console. Before I reinstall, I just want to try everything.

Thanks and please bear with me!
April 23, 2007 8:18:40 PM

Quote:
the lovely thing about raid 0 is that if something messes up one drive, the whole raid is fubar. THAT is why it's used for speed, and not for security Wink if you've put a file on one drive using something else when the drives weren't in raid, you've screwed the whole thing. raid 0 works by striping files across the hard drives, one file can be in a hundred pieces, half of them on one drive, half on the other.

Now, isn't that more helpful than your first post?

For the record, I went back into Ubuntu to try to uninstall dmraid. Wasn't there.

Ok, How do you get to the repair install thing? I've got my XP CD, but there is no "repair" option. However, there is a "Recovery Console". But that goes into a command line based program. I tried the command "fixmbr" and it worked, but when I try to boot I get "missing NTLDR". No clue how to work the recovery console. Before I reinstall, I just want to try everything.

Thanks and please bear with me!

You load it like you would a normal install, make sure to install your RAID drivers with F6 as usual. Then you will hit enter to install a copy of windows XP, then the disc should look for previous installations on your disks and find the old install. If it does, you will hit "R" for a repair install and the installation will continue from there without formatting anything.

If, on the other hand, it does not detect your previous XP install... I am afraid your install is gone for good most likely unless the boot sector can be repaired via the command line you found. I can't remember the exact command, but it is like "/fixboot" or something to that effect. use "/?" for a list of commands, you can find the exact command that way.

No worries, I like to help. :D 
April 23, 2007 8:23:04 PM

Oh, I didn't load the RAID drivers. (I don't have a FDD, so I have to boot up a old Dell, make the disk, take the FDD out, open my computer, and put the FDD there. And when I'm done, I have to take it out and put it back in the original system. Big hassle for a $5 drive.) Gimme a few minutes, and lemme try that. Thanks!
April 23, 2007 8:25:07 PM

Quote:
Oh, I didn't load the RAID drivers. (I don't have a FDD, so I have to boot up a old Dell, make the disk, take the FDD out, open my computer, and put the FDD there. And when I'm done, I have to take it out and put it back in the original system. Big hassle for a $5 drive.) Gimme a few minutes, and lemme try that. Thanks!


you're welcome. That is basically what I have to do with floppies these days........ SOOOOOOOO useless lol.
a b G Storage
April 23, 2007 9:27:48 PM

Here's a program that I've heard a lot of people say works wonders for broken RAIDs. I don't know if the 30-day trial will do everything you need, but its worth a shot:

RAID Reconstructor
April 23, 2007 10:55:09 PM

Actually it's gonna be a while before I get to try all this out. (Studying for exams) If not later tonight, then probably tomorrow. Sorry. :oops: 
April 24, 2007 12:36:51 AM

Whatever dmraid did, and whatever you did by deleting and re-creating the array probably hosed it. The RAID headers and partition headers that were on the RAID are probably gone.

Best chance for recovery at this point is to run RAID Reconstructor, make an image on another hard drive, then run GetDataBack on the image and recover the files.

Assuming successful recovery, then put the drives back in, recreate the RAID, format, and reinstall Windows & applications, then copy files back.
April 24, 2007 12:40:51 AM

Quote:
Actually it's gonna be a while before I get to try all this out. (Studying for exams) If not later tonight, then probably tomorrow. Sorry. :oops: 


Not a problem, I feel ya on the exams. 2 Finals next week. 8O
April 24, 2007 2:21:00 AM

I dont mean to come off rude but you screwed yourself.

You deleted the RAID and then re-created it? Never a good idea.

If your gonna mess with stuff ike this, and like Valis said, setup a RAID0 for boot, you need to "back that thang up" before you start messing with it. This is what Ghost and a Cheap 500GB drive are for.

PS: I googled DMRAID (knowing nothing about Linux) and it says its for SOFTWARE raid. Your talking about the jMicron RAID Controller though which means your using a Hardware RAID. Something in there screwed you. You should have been looking for a Linux JMicron driver, not a raid config program.
April 29, 2007 2:02:53 AM

Sorry for the late response. Finished exams and really needed a break.

Ok, anyways, I dl'ed BartPE, and the RAID Reconstructor and GETDATABACK. Everything works fine. I don't load any drivers, and I deleted the array that I had recreated in a earlier post. (It would recognize the drives in RAID not individually. So I go to Raid Reconstructor, and select my drives and raid type, I then analyzed it and found my settings. Then I needed to select a copy destination. So I pulled out a space 80GB Seagate, and hook it up. (restarting first) So I click copy and:
Quote:
Reconstruction to a physical drive is not possible with the evaluation version!"

Okaaaaay. So I plug in my external HDD. Doesn't recognize it. (I guessing no USB driver) I then remebered my file server I recently built. Booted it up, but then realized that the DS3 uses a Marvell (I think) LAN controller. (Which needs Marvell drivers) So I get my DS3 CD and browse to the Marvell Networking directory. I don't see a .sys file, so I try to run the setup. It loads installshield, and then a blank error message comes up, I click OK and it closes.

I'm tryna figure out what the designers were thinkin. If there is no USB support, and you can't copy to a physical drive, where the F*** are you supposed to save it :?::?::?::?: Floppy?? So I'm dead out of ideas. If I could just get my "My documents" folder, I'd be OK. *sigh* Is that too much to ask for?

Any ideas? Thanks. (Getting drivers seems like the easiest solution)
a b G Storage
April 29, 2007 4:54:31 AM

Pay for the full version if the data is worth it I guess. Evaluation software must have some limitations or they'd never make any money, right?
April 29, 2007 5:49:29 AM

I feel your pain, bro; I really do.

I know that reinstalling the OS and other software is almost always a friggin' pain, but sometimes it's just better to do that rather than chase after an elusive solution.

This is especially true since you started your post on the 21st and it's now almost the 29th and you still haven't solved the problem! If you had reinstalled everything, you would have probably been done by now. :?

But like rwpritchett said, it might also be easier to just buy the full copy of that program you're using.

Good luck.
a c 155 G Storage
April 29, 2007 7:03:12 AM

Just to all the whiners, it looks to me like the partition/mbr/files are messed. this is not RAID's(unless the array was re-made, seems like ubuntu saw the drives by them self and wrote data to it....there is the problem) fault. It's a mistake, they happen.

I wish i had a fix for you but the best option may be a reinstall.
April 29, 2007 10:15:32 PM

RAID Reconstructor needs local storage when running under BartPE.

You need to install the two drives that were in the RAID (2x 80GB) and a drive large enough to hold the entire image of the array (160GB absolute minimum, 200GB or more recommended) into the computer. All drives should be installed as plain Jane drives, don't place them in a hardware RAID configuration or anything.

After BartPE starts up with this configuration, RAID Reconstructor will take the data off the 2 drives that comprised your array and write it to a 160GB image file on the 200GB drive. This process is called destriping.

After that, shut down, remove the two drives that comprised the RAID, and install a 4th drive to recover your files on. Boot BartPE, run GetDataBack, and open the image file from the 200GB drive. It'll find all your files and then let you recover to the 4th drive.

I know obtaining the other drives and installing them locally will be a pain. Another way you could do it would be to install the two RAID drives on a computer (your server?) that already has the space, and then run RAID Reconstructor and GetDataBack from there. If you do that, then you don't have to mess with the BartPE environment - RAID Reconstructor and GetDataBack can run within Windows on the server.

A third way to do it is to re-make the BartPE CD-ROM with Runtime's HDHost plugin. This plugin runs in the BartPE environment and allows network access to the hard drives. Heres how it works: You have Computer A which has the two RAID drives in it that you need to recover data from, running BartPE with the HDHost plugin. Then, on Computer B, you run RAID Reconstructor and/or GetDataBack. Those programs then can connect to Computer A over the network and access the drives as if they were local to Computer B. You can then recover to storage that is local to Computer B.
April 30, 2007 5:06:26 PM

Thank you SomeJoe7777 for your informative reply. (And others' too! :wink:) 

Just to say, just reformatting is beginning to sound easier at this point. I have a backup from the end of March, but I still hate losing the stuff I did in between.

The first solution seems the easiest for me. However, the largest drive I have is a 160GB PATA, which is also unformatted. Do I have to format it first? If so what kind? (FAT32, NFTS, etc.) But my main concern was when I tried using an 80GB drive before (dunno what I was thinking) Raid Reconstructor said that "Reconstruction to a physical drive is not possible with the evaluation version". And there's no way I'm paying $100 for a month's worth of data. But if you say it works, I'll get the 160GB drive and try again.

My file server is an old P3 box running FreeNas with the 160GB drive mentioned above. No SATA ports. I had a spare computer and a spare drive and whipped that together. (Nothing impressive or exotic :oops: ) (And the 160GB drive is practically empty, so I don't mind formatting it)

One of my problems with BartPE was that I could not get networking capabilities working. (No driver, I assume. Same problem in Windows until I installed the driver)
May 5, 2007 6:54:35 PM

Ok, I'm back.

Right now I'm in BartPE. I open Raid Reconstructor. I select my drives, it analyzes them. But, IT WONT LET ME SAVE THE IMAGE TO A PHYSICAL DRIVE IN THE EVALUATION VERSION!! :evil:  :evil:  :evil: 

*sigh* Ok, that feels better. Two points. 1) How does Raid Reconstructor evaluation version work? You boot into it, but you can't save to a physical drive. How else are you supposed to reconstruct a RAID volume? :? 2) I'm have no choice. I'm reinstalling. NOW. I'm going to install Windows, find a Ubuntu compatible Raid driver, and then install Ubuntu. If I screw up, I didn't lose anything.

So I guess that's it. I still haven't learned my lesson though. :lol:  O well. But thanks for everyone's help. Seriously. I'm glad there's people out there than can fix my screw-ups. Unfortunately, there's not much I can say. So, Thanks for everything!! :D 
May 6, 2007 2:26:01 AM

I'm not positive what the limitations are on RAID Reconstructor demo version. If it showed you how it could put the RAID volumes back together but doesn't actually save the image, then perhaps that is the limitation.

When I purchased the Runtime utilities bundle, it came with RAID Reconstructor, GetDataBack, and DiskExplorer. I never did use the RAID Reconstructor demo, when I used it for the first time it was the paid version.

Anyway, if you've already reinstalled, don't worry about it.
May 6, 2007 4:58:39 AM

Yea, I guess it was the evaluation version limitations.

However, I seem to have another problem. My array will randomly fail. I forgot what I did the first time, but the Raid manager (during bios) said the array had failed. I checked the status and One drive was still in the array, but the other was indicated by a question mark. Strangely, another RAID 0 array appeared. It contained the second drive and was missing the other. In other words, two arrays showed up, each containing a drive. The first time the second array was named "graid", the default name. The second time this happened, it was "<my name> RAID". The real array's name was "<my name> RAID 0".

I have no clue what could be causing this. But the second time, I had just finished copying some data from a DVD, and my hand knicked a spare HDD (which contained some older data), and the machine reset itself, and the array failed. So it is possible that I could have briefly disconnected the power cable or the sata cable to the HDD. (Don't know if that can reset the machine)

I don't know what to do. This is irreversable also. When this happens, I must reinstall again. This will be my third time. :evil: :evil:  I think this is a driver issue. If I recall correctly, I used the drivers directly from Jmicron's site. (Rather than using the ones that came with my mobo) There have been many reports of this controller being buggy. Before I reinstall again, should I use the drivers that came with my mobo again? What else could be the problem?

Thanks alot. (for the millionth time :oops: ) *bows head and kisses floor in front of you*
a b G Storage
May 6, 2007 5:51:13 AM

Why are you still F'ing with AID0??? Haven't you learned your lesson yet, or are you the worlds biggest glutton for punishment? Don't use AID0, double for your boot volume. I know you think that you need the AID0 array, but I doubt your one of those users who really need it. Just set up all your drives as "normal" ones and be done with this.
May 6, 2007 1:42:34 PM

I'm sorry!! :oops:  But I'm addicted to the speed!! :twisted: I love it!! I'm the first person to spawn on the new map. You could get any vehicle you wanted, you can be the first to capture the CP's! It's great!! :D 

But at what price does this come at? Well I guess threads like these, after I screw something up. But it wasn't the Raid 0 array that failed, rather it was something I did that screwed it up. To me its's like having a glass sphere balenced on a mini-pyramid. When it's perfectly balenced, it's awesome! But if you start messing with it, you screw everything up.

I know I should abandon RAID, but it hasn't failed me. (yet) I just keep messing it up. If I tied my hand behind my back, it would probably be fine. (But I do clearly understand you point, and it is very good. But I'm young and don't listen to good advice :oops:  :twisted: :D )
a b G Storage
May 6, 2007 4:56:21 PM

First to spawn on the map? How do you get your computer to load the game before the servers map is loaded? Don't make me break out the benchmarks that show AID0 setups loading maps a whole 1-2secs faster then non raid. Is two seconds seriously enough time to make this worthwhile? You've been without your machine for how long now?

I view AID0 as a myth. There was a megahertz myth that was broken, and I hope AID0 will brake too. Unless you are doing something that accesses the harddrives enough to make AID0 worth it, its a waste of your time trying to set it up.
May 6, 2007 6:39:53 PM

Quote:
But I'm young and don't listen to good advice


The fact that you know that in the first place puts you 95% ahead of the rest. 8)
May 6, 2007 11:50:47 PM

Quote:
Ok, I'm back. My Raid 0 array won't boot. [...] Now, I had left some extra space on my Raid array (~10GB) to install Ubuntu (Linux) on at a later date.

Off-topic slightly, but of all the various *IX builds Ubuntu seems to have the largest number of vulnerabilities discovered. Just FYI.

OK, so it looks like trying to install an OS sans the proper RAID drivers, or perhaps screwing with dmraid borked your array. Then you made the problem worse (probably only a little worse, if that makes you feel better) by deleting that array instead of trying various rebuild options.

Unfortunately I don't have a lot to add at this point - many other folks have already chimed in with excellent advice, and some well-placed criticism. Luckily, unless you scrubbed the array at some point it's more than likely that most of your data IS still there, except for whatever areas Ubuntu may have over-written on one HD. Nicer still, Windows keeps more than one copy of its critical file structures so smart software can do a fairly decent job of retrieving your data. Just proceed carefully, so as not to further endanger the contents of your hard drives

By the way, I think those Marvell controllers suck. Just My Humble Opinion, YMMV, etc.

Quote:
I know I should abandon RAID, but it hasn't failed me. (yet) I just keep messing it up.

I hope you see the horribly defective logic here.

Quote:
I'm sorry!! :oops:  But I'm addicted to the speed!! :twisted: I love it!!

Then replace that Seagate 7200.9 with a Raptor, or lay waste to your college book budget and buy a SCSI setup with a 15K Fujitsu or a Seagate 15.5 Cheetah.

Here's a novel approach that few folks consider: Just buy a drive that's at least twice as large as what you think you need. It reduces overall seek times, usually gives you faster sustained transfer rates just because of increased data density across the board, and drastically lessens the loss of sustained transfer rate as you reach the far end (inner zone) of the platters.

For example, a full ST3808110AS drops to a dismal 36 MB/s. A 150GB Raptor gives you 88.3 MB/s STR at the outer zone and by the 80GB mark, is still around 78 MB/s. A half-full Raptor is faster than an empty 7200.9, with superior native seek times as well.

The big Raptor also supports TLER, which may resolve some of your complaints about your random RAID set integrity failures.

What I find interesting is the value judgement in all this. You say "Nothing mission critical was on the array, but reinstalling windows and my games and programs is a pain in the ass", and that you had a one month old backup. And "there's no way I'm paying $100 for a month's worth of data". Yet you've been screwing around with this for two weeks now. What's all your time worth?

Lots of luck with your data recovery. At this point it seems like a merely academic exercise.

-Brad
a b G Storage
May 7, 2007 12:32:03 AM

i had to build a vista machine for a customer and i couldn't get the DS3 to work in RAID5 with Vista, i dunno who to be angry more at, Microsoft, Gigabyte, or Intel for there Incompetence and selling something that cant work as advertised.
May 7, 2007 1:59:07 AM

Ive had "some" experience with the frustration caused by RAID problems, and im with all the haters. its not worth it.
Also dual booting windows+linux of the same disk? not the best idea...and then dual booting off a raid array? thats just asking for death by deletion.
Still, i can tell you from experience that their is nothing like the satisfation you get when you finaly figure out how to get it working again after a few weeks of trying to fix it ;p
!