First of all, English isn't my native language, i hope u can understand me.
I start with a short story so you know what i am talking about. About 18 months ago a build a new "server" based on a Intel-labeled motherboard and four WD 2.0TB sata-hdds (and of course other components). This four hdds are directly connected to motherboards sata-connectors and i use the onboard ICHx-controller to setup a Raid5 volume for security. (I work as a professional one-man-company photographer and need a lot of secure storage space.)
6 months ago one of the disc broke down. A had make a e-mail alert rule in "Intel Matrix Storage Console". One disc was "broken" and shown as a red X. The volume was still accessible but i was realy worried about all my pictures! Western Digital told me that their products normally don't brake down (...) and ask me send ALL of my four disc to them. I could not do that, it is impossible for me to backup 6-7 TB data, post a package and wait for a new package from them. I had to buy four new disc, transfer all data and, well.. look happy and smile..
Yesterday one of the new hdd:s failure! (god, gimme a bridge to jump from) Not again, i was thinking! Today ONE MORE disc shown up with a red X and the volume is not accessible. 2 out of 4 disc are broken.
As i told u, i have the 4 original discs saved. Three of this is (was..) working and my plan was to remount those, reconfigure the storage conroller to be able to again backup all data. I have a new QNAP TS419U+ in front of me to replace this crappy WD-hardware. (hope its not WD hardware inside this box...)
In the software "Intel Matrix Storage Monitor" there is 2 option. 1= Create Raid Volume , 2= Create Raid Volume from existing hard drive.
I don't remeber how a solved the problem 6 months ago. Probebly it was simpler with 4 new drives. Today both options stated tell me that "All data on the discs will be cleared if u continue "
My question to u is: How can i "mount" my 4 (3 working) old drives to get the data back? Please dont flame me, i am in desperate need of help. I know "i should have done a backup". I was naive and think it is not possible that a raid-set will failure again, i cant have EIGHTS disc just to be safe. Now i now better, that's sure. Could someone please help me?
RAID 5 gives you one drive of redundancy. It means you can lose one drive and not lose any data. However, when one drive fails you must immediately replace the drive and rebuild to avoid losing any data - when one drive has failed you no longer have any protection, and you won't have any protection until the rebuild has completed. So you should have one spare drive in case of failure.
Did you mark the old drives? Some RAID controllers won't work with old drives unless you put them back exactly the way they were. There a few RAID controllers which will work no matter what order you put them back.
No matter what, you should not count on RAID 5 as your only protection against data loss. If you do not have three copies of your data, you are likely to lose it. Use external hard drives for backup. You do not have to back up everything at once, but you DO have to backup, and more than once.
Hard disks fail. It does not matter what brand they are, or how good they are, they will fail. It is just a question of when. You must be prepared for that failure.
RAID is a disaster recovery system, not a backup system, you should use backups as well as RAID to keep your data safe. RAID is there so when a drive goes down, there is little or no down-time in restoring the system. It's should not be used as a substitute for backups.
Did you mark the old drives? Some RAID controllers won't work with old drives unless you put them back exactly the way they were.
Yes. Before i changed my drives (6 months ago) i took screen caps at the info in Intel Matrix manager. It's possible to see serial number of every disc there, so i have remount and connected all drives to the correct port and power up the system.
I am now fully aware of that living without backup is stupid. I know. The problem is, as you can see, all four drives are detected in Matrix and labeled "non raid drives". Where can i tell Intel Matrix Manager "Please, use those 4 drives (3 working) as one raid volume, without to first clear the content and setup a completely new volume.
Is not really that possible? I don't know, but i want to know..