Repair permanately degraded RAID


I have a Dell PowerEdge T310 that has a RAID1 with a status of permanately degraded.  The server does boot, and I have replaced the drive with a new one that is the same model number, but it still says permanately degraded.  There are no options to rebuild in the BIOS...Am I missing something?  I've repaired RAID's with a status of degraded, but have never seen "permanately degraded"
Sean RhudyPresidentAsked:
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Did Dell tech support give you instructions on the best way to fix this?

I would think that you would have to replace one drive - let the array rebuild - then replace the other drive. You might have to force the RAID controller to rebuild if it thinks the other disk is bad too.

What is the model of your RAID controller?

You can take a backup Image of the RAID 1 drive that you think has a bad sector (the one that is still up and running) but you will need to use imaging software that can do a "sector by sector copy ignoring bad sectors". I'd use Active@ Disk Image for this (make sure it can see your RAID setup OK first). Then setup your 2 new disks in RAID 1 and copy the image back, then run chkdsk /r.

Make sure you backup all the data on the server before doing anything!

It might not be possible to recover from a RAID 1 with 2 bad disks you might have to rebuild the server.
What is the interface on the drives?

Have you tried looking at the drive with a non-RAID controller do see if it is readable?
Sean RhudyPresidentAuthor Commented:
There SATA, but why would I need the bad drive in a RAiD 1?  Why can't I just rebuild with a new drive.
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Take a backup - if you havent already!
What is the model of the RAID controller in this server?

Looking at this info
Permanently degraded means that there are problems with both disks in the RAID 1 or that the RAID controller doesnt recognize or cant use the replacement disk for some reason?

Remove the replacement drive
Check it is the same model, speed & size as the old one
Check it has the same firmware as the other drive in the RAID 1
Run a quick disk wipe (using a disk tool like Killdisk) on it to make sure there is no existing RAID config or anything on the replacement drive that would stop the PERC from rebuilding the RAID 1 using this drive.
If the new drive is completely "blank" the PERC should start rebuilding the array automatically.

I would use the boot RAID config utility [CTRL] + [R] for replacing the drive. The instructions may vary depending on the model of PERC you are using.
Please post the PERC model and we can go from there.
If the replacement drive has existing RAID config on it you will have to use the "Clear foreign config" option in the RAID config utility before the drive can be used to rebuild your RAID 1.
(Be careful to select the right drive!)

Otherwise the PERC looks at the drive and sees some other RAID config and wont overwrite that RAID config because it doesn't know if you want to keep it or not - kind of a safety measure!

Removing the drive and running a quick wipe on it is another way to make sure the drive is completely "blank"
Sean RhudyPresidentAuthor Commented:
I will try wiping the disk, but it is a brand new OEM drive.  I found that the drive is not the exact same model, but it is the same make and very similiar.  Although it's not recommended, I thought you could use dissimiliar drives in a raid 1 config.
What's the drive models?

Had a major issue with Samsung RAID drives.

Although they were on the list of approved drives,there was a slight variation in one of the model numbers that would cause it not to be detected occasionally by the controller.

Worked fine as a standalone,but when mixed with the others,would not post in the RAID BIOS correctly.
You can use dissimilar drives but its not recommended.
Ideally you want the size, speed, model and firmware to be the same as the other drive in the RAID 1
What is the model of the RAID controller you are using?
Are there any firmware updates for the RAID controller?

If the server is under support and you got the replacement drive from Dell then they should provide you with tech support to get this sorted.
Sean RhudyPresidentAuthor Commented:
Dell is sending 2 new drives because they said there are bad blocks on both drives.  What's the easiest way to do this, can I create an image of the working drive (even though it has bad blocks) and image one of the new drives?
Depending upon software,you should be able to make image,but if there is a bad block where a program resides it might be corrupted.
Sean RhudyPresidentAuthor Commented:
Dell sent me 2 replacement drives.  I am imaging the working drive to a replacement and will build a new array.
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