RAID 5 rebuilding?

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RAID 5 rebuilding?

Postby MauiMikey » Fri Mar 22, 2013 10:01 am

Newbie here. Please be gentle.
The psu in my 5-6 y/o Dell workstation did a meltdown. After replacing it I inadvertently plugged one of the three drives in the RAID 5 configuration into a dead sata plug. After switching the drive cable the Intel Matrix Storage Manager shows all 3 drives green and RAID status as Rebuild. At the bottom of the screen it says "Volumes with "Rebuild" status will be rebuilt within the operating system." Upon exiting I get just a blinking underline cursor. Is the RAID being rebuilt at this point?
I assumed that Windows 7 would boot and rebuild the RAID.
I've been down this road only once before and don't recall the process.
I'd appreciate any input/confirmation/suggestions.
Mike
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Re: RAID 5 rebuilding?

Postby egloeckle » Fri Mar 22, 2013 10:46 am

Typically you are able to boot the OS still with only a single drive 'failure' while the rebuild is happening to a new disk. This being a softRAID type of card though I am not positive if that still holds true (though I dont see why it wouldnt). Is the volume flagged as bootable? Is there any disk activity happening?
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Re: RAID 5 rebuilding?

Postby MauiMikey » Fri Mar 22, 2013 11:24 am

Yes, it shows as bootable. The drives are slightly warm and seem to be spinning but in a constant speed, unlike I would associate with read/write activity.
A couple years ago I had to replace one of the drives and the RAID rebuilt successfully. I just don't recall what the process was or how long it took. The drives are 250gb each.
Thanks for the reply.
Mike
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Re: RAID 5 rebuilding?

Postby egloeckle » Fri Mar 22, 2013 11:45 am

It may be rebuilding. Do you not have a disk activity light on the machine?

Rebuilding a raid array with 3x 250GB drives could easily take a day or so depending. I would expect 10-12 hours at most but stranger things have happened to me on much more powerful hardware.

Restarting during a rebuild is in *most* cases safe to do. May want to give that a shot and see if you get anything different.

Really wish I could be more help, but I tend to avoid these types of 'softraid' controllers like the plague. Had some quirky issues with them in the past that left a really bad taste (single disk failure in RAID 1 crashed the system and prevented booting until the drive was removed... really?!? ](*,) )
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Re: RAID 5 rebuilding?

Postby MauiMikey » Fri Mar 22, 2013 1:14 pm

#-o Didn't think to look at activity lights. The machine is normally out of sight. It has lights for each of the drives and none are lit or blinking. I tried re-booting the machine and it went through the same scenario. I think I'll just let it go for a day and see what happens. I was in a panic because a term project that was due yesterday was on this volume. I had a backup file but it was old and lacking about 8 hrs of most recent work. Now that that boat has sailed I'm not quit so anxious. It would be nice to get my data back though. [-o<
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Re: RAID 5 rebuilding?

Postby egloeckle » Fri Mar 22, 2013 1:48 pm

Activity lights should be doing something if the volume is rebuilding. I would power down and make sure everything is connected properly. Verify that the raid controller says it is rebuilding (not sure on that specific one but usually you can go into the card's 'BIOS' and see what is happening). Besides that unfortunately there isnt much I can tell you on that specific setup. It may just be the boot sector that got damaged causing windows to not boot, but the only real way to tell is to boot something that can read that volume, though this isnt always easy due to drivers, etc.
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Re: RAID 5 rebuilding?

Postby MauiMikey » Sat Mar 23, 2013 9:40 am

UPDATE:
After not seeing disk activity for awhile I rebooted and for grins went into the bios settings for a look see. The boot sequence was all whacked, with a recently installed cache drive as first drive, a non-existent floppy, two non-existent hdd, RAID 5, and dvd last. Once I got that straightened out the machine booted Win7, painfully slowly, and eventually began rebuilding the RAID. I let it run overnight and all seems to be restored except my wireless adapter is not seeing my wireless network.
Much relief here! I plan a system rebuild soon with a ssd boot drive and will likely forgo the RAID.
Thanks again for your time and suggestions.
Mike
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Re: RAID 5 rebuilding?

Postby egloeckle » Sun Mar 24, 2013 10:40 am

Most likely your wireless card drivers got fragged in the rebuild. Completely remove and reinstall them and you should be good.

I would recommend sticking to RAID 1 for any non-server/disk array use. RAID 5/6 has its own set of issues that unless you understand and know enough to determine it is what you need it can cause more headaches than its worth. RAID 5/6 can also be slower depending on disk configuration/count and load (the raid penalty really screws with write speed).

Glad you are up and running again.
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