I have raid 1 my hard drive failed how do I access the data on the mirror drive?

I have a RAID question. My primary hard drive failed. I got a blue screen when microsoft was doing an automatic update overnight, and was able to reboot, but I got a message from Microsoft indicating a possible problem with my hard drive. It said I should do a thorough scan to repair the drive. To start the scan I had to reboot. When I rebooted a Check Disk process started, but the computer got hung up on step 4 out of 5 when it was looking at the files. I rebooted and was able to use F12 to run a diagnostic which shows the drive is no good. But I have a RAID 1 mirror drive that hopefully still has all my programs and data. But how do I access it?

I tried switching the cables between the two drives, thinking that would make it boot from the good mirror drive. But it went into the check disk process and got hung up at the same point.

I have ordered a new drive from Dell (it is a Dell Dimension desktop). Beware of Dell replacement parts. They tried to sell me a refurbished drive that was "new, it just says refurbished on it, but that doesn't mean anything. It really is new." When I said I didn't want a rebuilt part with a 90 day guarantee, and said I would go elsewhere, he sold me a new drive with a one year guarantee for half the cost of the refurbished one.

When the new drive comes, if I put it in and run install the operating system, will that wipe out my mirror drive. How do I protect my mirror drive and eventually retrieve my data from it?

Any help would be appreciated.
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  1. You can rebuild the array. See your manual.

    RAID 1 carries less risk when run on a motherboard RAID controller than RAID 0 does. Further, the implementation of RAID 1 is usually such that the drives can be used outside the RAID 1 if it breaks.
  2. If you elect to setup anew a RAID 1 (mirror) configuration, you must create the array in the bios and then copy the contents of one disk to the other (if you have a data drive and you wish to create a mirror copy of it for redundancy).
    If you elect to mirror and copy data, you will be asked to choose a source drive for the data.
  3. I will give that a try when the new drive arrives on Monday. thanks
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