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Raid Data Recovery

By Author: Sandra White
Total Articles: 18

RAID data recovery might be one of the most complex processes any data recovery company can perform. More often than not, the problems are compounded by those things of the client prior to sending the drives set for recovery. Many users feel it is important to try and recover the data themselves or repair the array through various system utilities, and this can be fine if the data is not critical. However, it has been our experience that if you have a RAID failure that is triggered substantial data loss, more regularly than not, somebody's job is on the line if that data is not recovered. The largest piece of advise this information can offer in the event of a RAID failure is to leave it alone.

IT professionals have a lot of pressure placed on them when a catastrophic system failure occurs. It is their job to ensure that all systems are up and running. Many times, out of panic, troubleshooting processes are initiated to correct the problem. Often times these processes only create a bad situation worse, and in many instances they could render the data unrecoverable. Let us remember what this data can include in the average corporate environment. You are probably dealing with information that cost many countless tens of thousands of dollars in labor and resources to create. Much of the data probably cannot be duplicated. The intellectual value alone could take the many countless dollars. Corporate executives really don't care to know about the way the failure occurred, or what unbelievable string of events led around the server crashing. They don't really care to know the technical jargon as you try to explain in their mind what happened, and hope they understand that it was not your fault. They only wish to know one thing..."why was this data not supported, and just how can we have it back?"

In place of taking chances all on your own, call a data recovery professional. RAID data recovery could be expensive, but in most cases, it is much less costly than wanting to recreate the data that are being lost. There's a group procedure that a lot of data recovery professionals follow in regards to performing any recovery work. These procedures are followed and expanded upon when dealing with a RAID recovery. The first step of any RAID recovery is to ensure every one of the drives are functional. In order to properly complete the recovery it is important that all drives are fully functional (this is especially true with a RAID 0). This may involve taking any physically damaged drives into the clean room, to be able to make the necessary repairs so they function normally again. Once that is completed the next step is to make complete, sector-by-sector clones of each and every drive. This is simply not "Ghosting", but a really low-level process which allows the recovery technician to work around bad sectors, and have complete control over the way the drive functions. During the cloning process, the original source drive that you have submitted, is generally put in a "write protect" mode in order that no data could be written to the drive. This ensures that the original source data is not altered in just about any way.

After the cloning process is complete, the original drives you submitted are set off aside and are no more touched. The specific recovery process is performed on the cloned copies, so nothing that is completed during recovery can make the situation worse. After the drives are cloned, they will be loaded into an emmulator and destriped. Destriping is much like taking the scattered items of a puzzle and putting them together neatly. Simply stated, destriping is taking the data scattered on the list of multiple drives that produce up the array and placing it into a single destination drive. From there we have a single drive by which we could complete what we would consider to become a "normal" recovery. We are able to complete this technique even at the multi-terrabyte level. If the harm to the stripe is not too severe, in most cases an entire rebuild of the directory structure and all associated data could be completed.

As mentioned earlier, RAID data recovery could be expensive. With respect to the company you contact the costs can vary considerably. Numerous factors influence the cost, such as RAID type, file system, total size, situation of failure, etc. Many times attempt fees and evaluation fees are charged if the data is unrecoverable. That is understandable because of the amount of time and resources required to perform a single RAID recovery. However, in most cases the costs involved in recovering the data are not even 1% of the data's overall value. If you are reading this information and you have not suffered a RAID failure, what have you been awaiting? Back up your computer data NOW.


For more information you may visit http://www.southbit.co.za/data-recovery/raid-recovery/

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