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PERC Controller seems fine, but Windows 2003 saying drive is not initialized.

Hi, we just had a crash on our server (DELL Poweredge) and since then the controller seems to be working fine (PERC) but in Windows 2003 Server the drive isn't showing up in My Computer and in Disk Management it's saying Disk 1, Unknown, 558.75GB, Not Initialized.  I don't want to Initialize the drive in the fear that it will format the data on the disk, can anyone tell me if\how I can get windows to recognise the drive without loss of data.

This obviously had to happen a couple of days after our backup also broke, and on the day we received a new backup drive. Nightmare!!

Any help would be greatly appreiciated.  I'm currently running the checking consistancy option on the virtual dirve (resync, as per dell's instructions) which is taking a long time.

Thanks

Lee

I've posted this under the hardware topic too, hopefuly someone will be able to help.
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lee_murphy
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lee_murphy
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3 Solutions
 
pgm554Commented:
Initialze will not cause the drive to lose data or be formatted.
However,depending upon the crash,the drive might show up as unformatted.
If that happens,you need to get some type of recovery software.
But let's see what happens here first.
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lee_murphyAuthor Commented:
It's running really slowly so I'm going to leave and come back to it tomorrow, but I'll let you know.  Many thanks
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rindiCommented:
If under resync you mean the drive is rebuilding it's array, then don't do anything, as that is what it is doing, rebuilding it's raid. That would also explain the low speed. Wait until that has finished, or you could loose your data.
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scrathcyboyCommented:
With many raid controllers, an initialize causes exactly what you dont want - a total clearing of the RAID array, and all data gone.  Do not initialize unless you are certain this controller will not wipe out the data.

How you rebuild the array depends on the RAID type and what the problem was  - like did you remove a drive or have they all remained in their housings.
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pgm554Commented:
Read the question.
He is initializing out of Windows disk manager,not the BIOS on the RAID controller.
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scrathcyboyCommented:
I did, and my answer answers his question -- "can anyone tell me if\how I can get windows to recognise the drive without loss of data"

An initalization of the CONTROLLER will almost always cause a total loss of data.  I said nothing about windows, windows is meaningless to getting the drive array working at the RAID controller level first.  That is where you don't initialize the disks.  Once the controller sees the array properly, windows will also see it properly.  Raid rebuild is done in the controller BIOS.

If you tell people it is OK to initialize a RAID array -- " Initialze will not cause the drive to lose data or be formatted."  they very likely will take this to mean it is "OK" to initialize the controller, and that is almost always a mistake -- on most controller (in fact all I have seen), initialization causes total loss of data.
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pgm554Commented:
You are wrong.
You can from Windows disk manager right click on the partition and do an initialize when a partition is unknown.
I have done it many times.
It causes no loss of data.
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lee_murphyAuthor Commented:
Hi,

In the end I had to get a company to recover the data from the disks, ran out of time and just needed to get it done.  Thanks for all your help\suggestions anyway.  By the way, just so you know I used a company called QueTek, they recoved approx. 99% of the data and at about 3% the cost of other companies I'd checked out.

Anyway, thanks, I'll try split the points.

Lee
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