I have two hard drives connected to an Intel Matrix Storage RAID/SATA contoller on a X58/ICH10R board.
Let's say I config the two drives as a RAID1 array and in the future my motherboard fails. Will I be able to connect one of the drives to a random machine (a machine without the Intel controller) and have it recognized? I would expect yes.
What if I use Intel's "Matrix RAID" and put both a RAID0 and a RAID1 configuration on the above pair of hard drives. Now if my motherboard dies, will I be able to connect one of the drives to a random machine and have the RAID1 potion be recognized? Or have I locked myself into reliance on Intel's controller by using the Matrix RAID feature?
You're asking good questions. I can't give you a definitive answer, but I suspect you're on the money in thinking that pure RAID 1 is the most portable.
But remember that even if you plug one of your RAID-1 disks into a different system and it boots, if that system doesn't have the same chipset then you're going to have problems because the system won't have the right drivers for it.
In fact I don't think you should be worrying about portability as much as backup. RAID alone won't protect your data against all risks, you really need backup to external media. And if you have the backup, then it's fairly straightforward to simply restore it to a new machine.
For example, Windows 7 includes a "System Image" backup which will back up your system disk and burn a "recovery DVD". If your system dies then you boot from the recovery DVD and it will restore the backup to the drive in that system.
But that won't solve the driver compatibility issue in the restored system, though.
If you're JUST concerned about recovering the data then I understand that the Ubuntu LiveCD will recognize most RAID organizations and can be used to recover data.
Thanks for the reply. I agree with you about placing more emphasis on making backups vs. relying on RAID1 portability.
The reason I posted my question was because I recently got bitten by not using TLER drives. In a RAID1 set, the first hard drive "failed" (actually, it timed out). Then upon rebuilding, the second drive "failed" (again, it timed out). The result was a failed array -- fortunately, most of it was backed up elsewhere.
Given that the drives were actually OK (passed manufacturer's diagnostic and surface scan), I was wondering if I could place a drive into another system to recover the remaining files which had been modified since last backup. But since I had a Matrix RAID config, instead of a simple RAID1 config, I don't think it is possible to recover.
Yes, with both HDs, I am unable to see a formatted drive in Windows XP or in ubuntu. But I cannot rule out whether it was due to corruption during rebuild (i.e. the "good" drive did drop out during rebuild) or due to Matrix RAID itself.
I might try it with a newly created, freshly formatted array just for curiosity's sake.