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Can't boot - powerEdge1420_raid1_adaptec39320_HELP!

- Have a 4 mo. old Dell PowerEdge1420 server, configured with SATA Raid1, scsi controllor is the adaptec 39320.
Bad sectors were found and fixed with chkdsk, then everything worked, ran chkdsk a second time
and it ran clean.
......looking back, here's the point in the process where we should have just stopped and called it quits.
( we were only looking at 3-4 hours of lost data.....that's very acceptable considering what we're dealing with now!)

however, we marched onward and attempted to  recover the lost data by braking the array, booting into one drive, then the other and try and recover a few files - ... this didn't work....

now, after re-creating the array ( 2 attempts) we're not able to boot!!!!
 - in the adaptec utility, everything appears normal, drives are marked bootable, etc
 - during post it just doesn't see ( or in the bios, which I have reset defaults ) the scsi drives

Dell support is useless, they recommend sending drives out to data recovery (....anybody got 10k laying aroud?)
   saying that once the array was broken, it's not likely that you can get it back. I know this to be incorrrect from
past experience with other systems.

 -  our number one concern at this point:          !!!!!!    recovering about 10gigs of data off one of the partitions

...last night I was grumbling about the possibility of having to re-install, right now I would happily re-install windows if I can have my data back!
- i'm thinking about installing windows on another hdrive ( not off the controllor, i can use an ATA hDrive), thinking that then I could pull the data off the raid drives -
but I'm not doing anything untill I hear from you experts.
Thanks in advanced, ( heart-rates are beating pretty fast around here)
-geek3
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geek3
Asked:
geek3
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1 Solution
 
CallandorCommented:
At this stage, I would install the drive as a secondary drive and use GetDataBack from www.runtime.org to recover the files.  You don't want to write to this hard drive any more and risk losing more data.  Since this was a mirror, Dell is not correct about being able to get the data back - if it were a stripe (RAID-0), this would be true.
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geek3Author Commented:
Thanks Callandor,

- looking at the utility you mentioned, doesn't specifically say support for win2k3 server,
maybe i'll email them...
 - it's about 1pm eastcoast and am working on seting up one of the sata drives secondary, do you think i should do this on the same box?,
( ....i'm assuming i can put a sata card in another box, (xp), install the xp driver for the card, and then see the data....
....am i on track here?
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geek3Author Commented:
correction, the hDrives are scsi, ( i don't have a scsi controller card )
- so i'll be using the same server to do all this,
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CallandorCommented:
You don't need to install it as a secondary drive on a Win2k3 server system - Win2k or WinXP should be able to read the drive, as you have assumed.  I'm on the east coast also.
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geek3Author Commented:
i'm pulling the scsi controller from the server and will put it in a xp machine, guess time will tell if i need a software solution
...you're thinking i won't be able to see the data w/o it?
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CallandorCommented:
It depends on what happened - if it was just the boot sector, no problem.  Also no problem if it was system files, but If it was the partition table, you'll need software.
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geek3Author Commented:
1:50 pm
i've installed the scsi card on an xp machine ( 4yr old sony viao ) by downloading the drivers off the dell site, it installs sucessfully and i can boot into the current xp os with nothing plugged into the controller card,

if i plug the scsi drive into the controller and try to boot, it hangs with a blinking cursor
after going through the prompt about the raid configuration changing, press any key to continue...
    last line before hanging:    BIOS WAS INSTALLED SUCESSFULLY
...i've checked the bios settings, 'other boot device' is turned off, the bios sees the hdrive as it always has in this workstation...
hmmmm.....
   
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geek3Author Commented:
logging into xp now ( tried the other scsi drive, realized that it was the one that was terminated on the cable,)
will update momentarily
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geek3Author Commented:
not going so well here
  when i boot into xp, the scsi drive attached to the controller doesn't show up under 'my computer'
    ( looking at device manager, i can see the controller listed )

i've experimented with having either both scsi drives on the controller, or just one.
the only way i am able to log in is by having just one of the scsi drives connected

i don't have any other scsi drives around to verify that the controller is working ok with xp...
i'm not sure about my next steps...
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CallandorCommented:
I assume the SCSI controller drivers are loaded, if it is visible in device manager.  Does it appear in Control Panel->Admin Tools->Computer Mgmt->Disk Mgmt?  It might be time to install GetDataBack.
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geek3Author Commented:
- is this the point at which i need the software recovery program you mentioned?
seems to me i should at least be able to see the drive when looking at 'my computer'?
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geek3Author Commented:
....it doesn't show up under diskmanagement/admin
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CallandorCommented:
Now you need GetDataBack.
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geek3Author Commented:
i'm running this now, but not as we talked about, spoke with runtime rep and he said i should be able to see the drive in
disk managment -
for now i'm going to try and recover data off a usb drive that was accendenitally deleted ( last night was a horror show...)

will update later

thanks for you help
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geek3Author Commented:
6/06/2006 update-
 
- as posted in my question:
      "our number one concern at this point:          !!!!!!    recovering about 10gigs of data off one of the partitions

not sure how points should be awarded here, - the good news is we were able to recover the critical data from a usb hard drive using the software you (my savior Callandor) recommended ( www.runtime.org ), but the issue started out with trying to recover (or boot) from the scsi drives, this issue still remains as I am troubleshooting with the folks at runtime

I beleive you should be awarded all the points, you solution worked ( but only because i realized half-way through that we could go after the data on an external drive ( the stress i was under limited my thinking), you can bet I'm doing much better now, thank you Callandor
-geek3

           
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