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jemexzt
1 Copper

RAID 5 array, two drives out, down due to controller card

Hello,

A client has a 2800 server ( Adaptec 39160, PERC 4e/Di) has a failed RAID 5 due to controller. I was able to match a duplicate 2800 with the same configuration disks, OS, etc. 

The RAID 5 array has three disks, of which only one shows online (the logical volume has failed), two drives would/will power up, but have "fallen out" of the array,  when I arrived. My question is since the problem was due to the controller card, is it possible that the data has not been lost? 

To make matters worse the tape backup unit had been not working. I had to order the client another tape unit, so I restore data, but older data and put this data set onto a NAS. The sequence of events was due to a lack of understanding that all data could be lost without a tape back up and regular drive maintenance. as well economics on the part of the client.The client was politely warned several times that data loss was quite possible if the drives went/fell out of the array..

Is it possible to move the drives to the working 2800 and recover the array with the working controller?  Or is it that the data was lost even if  the drives did not go bad, die etc?Orr will the disks have to be sent to one of the data rescue services given what has occurred?

In advance thanks for any help.

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3 Replies
theflash1932
6 Indium

Re: RAID 5 array, two drives out, down due to controller card

IF the drives are still somewhat healthy and the failure was firmware related, then it is very possible the data is undamaged.  In which case, you can simply plug in the drives into another 2800/2850, boot to CTRL-M, Configure, View/Add, Disk View, and save on exit to import the configuration.  For optimal results, firmware should be identical on the second 2800 OR newer.

If the drives are damaged/faulty and are not operational enough to rebuild/import/operate, then your only real option is data recovery services.

How did you determine the controller was reponsible for two drives going offline?

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jemexzt
1 Copper

Re: RAID 5 array, two drives out, down due to controller card

Theflash1932, my sincere thanks. I was thinking this might be true, but wanted to check with someone more experienced than I. Both servers are up to the same firmware, drivers etc

There are two identical servers. The other server had a healthy RAID 5 array. Removing one member of the healthy array and plugging the good drive in into the drive bay should have resulted in the drive being power up, but the drive did not power up. Checking to be sure that there was no problem with the connectors, wires etc I found that everything was OK. Powering up the problematic server the good drive(s) appeared to be non-functional. Given that the drive powered up in the original server, I then put the drive that appeared to be bad back into the  server with the healthy RAID 5 array and the drive powered up. To check this at the original server I then started moving the existing drives around and I found that the slots where the original drives were had the same problem - not powering up, but if I put those original drives into other slots of the enclosure the drives powered up and stayed powered up.
Going into the configuration of the Adaptec sections, with CNTL-M, the drives in the non-original slots show live with both the original disks and test disks.
My logic could be faulty. I have never let any array get to that point, which is why I am inexperienced with the problem. I had not at that point downloaded the Dell suite to check on things. I appreciate any feedback.
I did put the drives into the other server and I do see that the drives power up. The array is seen, but I do not see a key to save/read the configuration. So of course the array is in not properly read. I looked all over the screen, but I could not see a key to read/save the new configuration.  Windows does see the drives, but as uninitialized.  
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theflash1932
6 Indium

Re: RAID 5 array, two drives out, down due to controller card

"CTRL-M, Configure, View/Add, Disk View, and save on exit to import the configuration"

There is no key or function called "Save" ... in View/Add, it should ask you which configuration you want to view:  Disk or NVRAM; choose Disk.  When you exit out of that screen, you will then be prompted to save it.

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