Recover RAID 0 Array

Hey tomshardware people,

I have two hard drives in a RAID 0 array (2 Samsung Spinpoint F4 320 GB) with 64KB cluster size. I was using the computer today, and it restarted. I did a hard boot, and the BIOS would hang on the "Loading Operating System . . ." screen (I have 64-bit Windows 7, 32-bit Windows 7, and Ubuntu 10 installed).

Anyways, I just want to know if it's possible to completely recover the RAID array, or at least recover the files in it. I have not created a backup since October 2010, so there's quite a bit of data and programs lost if I have to start from there.

To be clear, the drives are still healthy (but I doubt I'd continue to use both in a RAID), and neither drives are dead, but the OS considers the RAID as unformatted (some recovery software I've tried indicates otherwise, the files still appear intact and it's just a matter of time before I shell out some $ or find a good, free alternative).

I am using a program called Active@ File Recovery, and it seems to me that only the boot sector of the RAID went south (though the whole RAID is considered unformatted by Windows 7). I'm using a trial version, but I would pay a good amount to recover the files.

If you guys can name a good software I can use to recover the array, or at least the files, or other options I have, I'd appreciate it.
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  1. take it to a data recovery specialist, i would not trust the replys of people here with RAID0 - the more goes at it, the less likely you will be able to get your data

    no matter if its RAID0 or RAID1 or whatever RAID nothing replaces a good backup solution - treat your hdd's as if they will fail tomorrow - BACKUP YOUR DATA
  2. Thanks for the advice, apache_lives. I well know that backups are crucial, but luckily I was able to salvage the most important files stranded in the RAID array.

    I think I found the problem. I wasn't checking on my drive's space and I believe I have hit the space limit without defragmenting the drives for months.
  3. If both drive show to be healthy in the RAID controller setup, it's most likely a file system problem, not a drive problem. I wouldn't trust ANY of the free/cheap recovery software available on the web. Depending on how important your data is really determines where you go from here. If it's mission critical and you CANNOT live without it or your livelyhood depends on it, send it to a data recovery specialist (don't go to some local guy that claims he can do it). OnTrack is the best professional recovery service around. You can visit them at

    If you decide to tackle it yourself, like I said, don't trust cheap or free software. Runtime Software makes a software package that works wonders and has never let me down. We use it at work, and it's a miracle worker. It's called GetDataBack and it's not cheap (US$79 for the NTFS version, $69 for FAT) but it's well worth it. You do get lifetime updates when you buy it though, so it's not that bad.
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