Can I put back a pair of RAID1+0 drives to access data?

My client has a Dell PowerEdge 2600.

3 pairs of disks in RAID 1+0.

We copied the data from a volume, replaced a pair of drives for bigger drives (drives 4 and 5 in the array), copied the data back to the new (larger) volume.

The client is now saying some data is missing. It's been about a months, I are able to simply remove the new drives in 4 and 5, put the old drives back in, quickly access the data and find the files they are after (using Windows search with a date switch). After we have the data then pull drives 4 and 5, put back the new 4 and 5 and everything will be fine?

Win 2003 SBS.

Onsite now and would really appreciate some assistance.

Thank you guru's.

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It depends on your RAID card. If it's an HP E200 or newer (either higher number or letter), it's most definitely possible (as the RAID is recognised by a special signature on the disk itself).
Most Dells work the same way.
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Ok thanks. Do you think the drives will need to "sync" or anything similar for a while before I have access to them?

I'm weary because the two drives that have to come out have Exch running on them. I'm guessing stopping all the Exch services is all I need to do to make sure the Exch DB doesn't get effected?

Just trying to get the RAID card model now.
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Here's the card, what do you think, safe to go ahead?
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Wow, I would start with stopping exchange indeed, and do a full backup if possible!
PERC4 allows for other raid disks arrays to be imported as well, as long as it was created a similar PERC4 controller. It should be listed in something called  "import foreign containers" or "add configuration".
If there are free slots however, I would use those, instead of pulling out the current ones where the exchange database is located.
If you decide to pull out those anyway, then after you've done what you needed and replaced the original drives, they're either recognised immediately, or you have to do the import/add config again (doesn't really matter which, Windows will start up as it should)
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Thanks Kimputer,

The drives came from this server and are going back into the same slots (4 and 5), the only difference is now slots 4 and 5 are occupied by these new bigger drives (which also holds exch).

Have done a backup of Exch so here goes.
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Ok, current drives 4 and 5 out. Old drives 4 and 5 in. This is what we get. I expected the volume to just appear but it's not. Any ideas? Do I need to "rescan" , "rebuild" or something? or is it just too late the data on that pair of old drives in not accessible?
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Ok, have removed old drives and put back just drive 4. Here's what we get in Dell Manager.

Do we put both "current" drives back in or just 4 then wait and add drive 5.

If I go to put this drive (drive 4) online it's stating the warning in the attached picture.

Shall we bring it online? Do we even need to do any changes, I assumed we could just put drive 4 and 5 back in and things would come back up to where they were before!

Stuck now!

Help please!
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Have put both disk 4 and 5 back in and the volume and Exchange is not available.

Attached is Windows Disk's seeing it as a new volume....why??!?! The drives have both been put back in.

Is there way of bringing this back online with the data is has?????
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
I've just realized maybe this makes what I'd like to do clearer.

Current Setup:
Disk 4 - 146GB
Disk 5 - 146GB
Volume  Name = EXCH

Want to put in the following drives into the same bays (they were in about a month ago)
Disk 4 - 73GB
Disk 5 - 73GB
Volume Name = EXCH

Q - Do I remove both 4 and 5 (146GB) drives, put in both 73GB drives or will just one 73GB drive allow me to access the old data or do I need to put both 73GB drives in?

Q - Do I need to "bring the old 73GB disk "online" in the array manager?

Q - After getting the data I need can I then put the 146GB drives back in, again do I need to bring these back "online" for the volume to function?

Thank you.
Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:
Hi, Leigh.

Couple questions:

1. What type of 'data'  is it you're trying to get back? An Exchange database? Specific mail files in a specific mailbox? What version of Exchange?

2. What type of RAID was on the 73GB drives? If it was a RAID 0, then you don't need to bring anything online. It's a simple mirror. Put the drive in another box and bring it up as an additional logical drive. The data should be there.

Let me know. Thanks!
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
No, no exchange data just office docs, pdf's etc.
Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:
Sorry I was thrown off by the volume name. What type of RAID was on the old HDDs?
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
It was a raid 1 mirror on the old HDD's. When pulled both the 146gb drives and put in one of the 73gb drives it showed as failed in the array manager. Did I need to bring that single drive online? And if I do can I then still pull that out when I'm done and pop the 2 x 146gb drives back in and not have to do anything to those?
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Sorry yes the volume was originally just for exchange db hence the name but the client needed to use some of the space for files storage.

It's all due to change soon (getting a nas for files) but first I need to get this missing data back.
Just a word of caution, DO NOT DO ANYTHING in Windows Disk Manager! I hope you didn't. Everything HAS to be done on the Dell Open Manage or during boot, NOT in Windows itself (as you'll ruin everything).
You showed a dropdown menu with Online, while if you really had more free slots (there's no slot 6 en 7?), it would have shown Foreign/Import or something in that order. Right now it will show this error because it expects the two original disks.
Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:
If it was a RAID 1, you can bring the drive online in another machine.. RAID 1 is a very simple RAID setup with a little metadata at the end. I would avoid RAID controllers at all costs. The SCSI controller should be sufficient. Just plug one of those drives into another machine and bring it up as a second hard drive. You should be able to get the data off with no issues. Let me know how it goes.
andyalderSaggar maker's framemakerCommented:
When you booted after changing to the old disks it should have given an error message telling you to go into the PERC setup so you could import the configuration off the foreign disks, you can also do this from OMSA under the controllers management subtab. It's dangerous if you do not have experience though as you can accidentally delete the metadata instead of merging it into the current configuration.
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
roycbene - If I get a USB to SCSI adapter and simply attach one of the 73GB drives to it on my Win 7 laptop you think I should be able to see the data?

The server OS where the drive was in Windows 2003 SBS.
Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:
Doesn't matter what the OS was. :) It's just a disk. As long as you don't bring the drive up as a bootable drive (just a secondary drive), then it's just data and you should be able to browse same as an external HDD. Give it a shot.

ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Will order a scsi to usb cable and give it a go. Cheers.
Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:
Great! Let me know. :)

andyalderSaggar maker's framemakerCommented:
Good luck on finding a USB to SCSI adapter, they're like rocking horse shit to find. If you can get one with a write blocker that would be favorite since you don't want to make the situation worse.

The metadata's at the beginning by the way rather than the end so it will get in the way of an OS seeing a raw disk but any recovery tool can find the FAT and files as they recognise the structure.

Did you get the new 147gb volume up by the way?
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
andyalder - Yes it looks like a bit of a mine field out there with trying ti find the correct SCSI to USB adapters. Once I've got it hooked up any recommendations on recovery software you mentioned?

Got the 147GB volume up, it wanted to sync once I'd put both the drives back in.

Going back to my original question - We don't think I can put one of the 73GB drives into the server and access the data? My concern though is not being able to get the 147GB volume back online after making the 73GB drive accessible as it contains Exch and don't much fancy rebuilding their Exch DB over the weekend!
Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:

Works a treat.

Again, you'll have no issues accessing the data if it was a RAID1. Also again, the metadata is at the end, unless you had a software RAID specifying otherwise. Personally, I would not bring this drive up on the server you took it out of.

Best of luck,

ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Wow! SCSI to USB adapters are expensive.

New idea - Grab one of these and install into my Win 8.1 x64 desktop machine.

Will that work?
Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:
I haven't tested this method on Windows 8, personally, so I can't speak to it or of whether or not it works. However, it looks straight forward enough. Not too expensive to find out. :)

- R
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
These are the 73GB SCSI drives I'm trying to get access to. 

I assume I need a PCI SCSI controller that supports 80 pin? Most I'm finding (like this one) say 68 pin. 

If anyone could recommend a PCI card and cable that works with these drives it will make my day!

Thank you.
Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:
Sorry for the delayed response; busy morning. This should get you where you need to be. Super easy:
andyalderSaggar maker's framemakerCommented:
>Wow! SCSI to USB adapters are expensive.
Someone's put an Adaptec UsbXchange on eBay for $499, must have his own rocking horse that makes them.

The adapter roycbene listed above will work, it's basically a single disk hotplug backplane. there's a cheaper way to get the adapter and SCSI card though, you can buy a whole PE2600 on eBay for £50, put one of your disks in it and boot, go into the PERC configuration during POST and select to import the configuration from the disk. It won't boot from that disk of course but Hiren's boot CD or similar will get you to the data. You can also disable RAID on the PERC, in fact it's disabled by default on that machine.
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Thanks Andyalder.

There has been a development. The client is now purchasing a NAS for their network data. This is good as it means the data will be moved off the current server.

Here's my thinking. All the data is moved off Virtual Disk1 and EXCH (see attachment) to the NAS. This should then allow me to remove the 2 x 146GB then allows me to bring one of the old 73GB disks online?, Import config?

My concern about doing that now is screwing up the RAID config that runs the 2 x 146GB drives as this houses their live exchange database and thousands of live documents....we have backups of both both it will still be a big headache to set that all up again if I can avoid it.

On a side note - Would a 80 pin to 50 pin SCSI adapter then a 50 SCSI adapter to SATA work? Might be worth a try for £20.
Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:
When you daisy chain adapters like that, it's anyone's guess. I've had them work, and I've had them not work.

Why do you keep going back to bringing the disk online on the server? Your concern is extremely valid and that is a production server, which can turn into a very bad day for you. What is your concern about just bringing it up on a workstation as a secondary drive??
ProtecITAuthor Commented:
Hi roycbene,

Yes your right I'd rather not use the server for this recovery process but I'm also not 100% sure I have the right information at the moment to get the drive working on my desktop.

To confirm are we saying the following:
1 - Get the 80 pin to 50 pin adapter 

2 - Purchase a PCI SCSI controller (50 pin version) and install into my PC 

3 - I should then be able to simply access the data as if it'a another drive in the PC or would I need to do something involved?

Just trying to not waste money on parts that might not work.


Roy BeneVP/Director - IT | ISOCommented:
Actually, the 80 to 50 pin adapter will just plug right into either a motherboard, or a SCSI cable. However, if you need the PCI card, then yes; that is the correct setup. It's a lot cheaper and easier than messing up a RAID configuration on a production Exchange server. :)

Just let me know if you need anything else. If You run into any snags, I'll be happy to walk you through it. Best of luck, Leigh.


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