By April 4, 2007

910GB of data down the drain

I installed a Windows Update on my file server last night, which required a reboot. The reboot took an unusually long time, but eventually I heard the familiar “beep” of my fileserver POSTing. I normally make a remote desktop connection to my fileserver from my primary workstation, but I was unable to after the system restarted. I logged in directly and my stomach sank: my RAID controller software reported that my drive array no longer existed. I tried rolling back the Windows Update, doing another reboot, shutting the system completely down, and in a moment of desperation, just let it sit powered off all night in the hopes it was some weird heat issue or computer gremlin. I booted her up this morning, and still no array.

I have no idea what caused the failure. The card is still recognized, and all three drives are listed as healthy by the card and by Windows. There doesn’t appear to be a hardware failure. Maybe Windows shut down before the card was ready, who knows. I have an email out to the card manufacturer, but I am not hopeful.

Luckily I backed up my most important data — our digital photos, but still that’s a lot of information that’s going to have to be replaced.

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5 Comments on "910GB of data down the drain"

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  1. What about checking prices from one of those shops that specializes in data recovery? I’ve heard such places exist, anyway.

  2. IRS says:

    Wow, that really sucks. If I might recommend – I learned a valuable lesson when I stored all such important things on a server at my pad. I have since moved ALL pictures to Flickr and I am planning on having a complete backup of every file on a wholly separate system.

    Anyways, sorry for your loss. 🙂

  3. Stomper says:

    Oh Dr. I’m so sorry for you’re loss. Configuratrix is right about the data recovery places. Don’t know what they cost but we had to use them at the last place I worked. Not once but twice -hmmm- yes for the same data disks.

    If I remember right when we were able to pull back nothing they recovered between 85-90%. I think there was another (more expensive) pass they could have made but we opted not to do it. I could probably find out their name if you’re interested. And we used the same company both times.

  4. Mike says:

    🙁 Sucks.

    Let me know if I can help type in a few GB of data. 🙂

  5. drfaulken says:

    Thanks for the ideas and sentiment so far. Paid data recovery may be an option; the biggest question is if they can pull data off even with a broken RAID partition. The physical disks are fine.

    I have heard back from Syba, but their only suggestion so far was to revert to the latest version of Windows XP (before the patch). Even though I tried this before writing to them, I tried again — this time at an earlier restore point. Unfortunately, it had no effect. I believe there is something corrupted onboard the card and how the card describes the RAID array.