We help IT Professionals succeed at work.

Recover data from a RAID

italo5696 used Ask the Experts™
I can't get one of my servers to power up. I don't believe it's a hard drive issue, more importantly for the sake of this question, I don't believe it's a hard drive issue. How do I recover data from the RAID?
Watch Question

Do more with

Expert Office
EXPERT OFFICE® is a registered trademark of EXPERTS EXCHANGE®
nociSoftware Engineer
Distinguished Expert 2018
in alignment with the lack of details here a generic answer:
First determine what the defect is about. replace the defective item (power supply, cabling, ...?, too much dust inside the system...)
If that cannot be done, you need a system that is close to this one in  CPU model, memory etc.
Then transplant the disks & controller to the other system.

If the CPU is the same model than a bootup should be possible.
OTOH you could transplant the disks into another system, boot up from other media and see how well the RAID still behaves.
Philip ElderTechnical Architect - HA/Compute/Storage
Does the server power up at all? If not, then it's probably the power supply or the distribution board setup if using redundant power supplies. If the server is a fairly common make/model then obtaining a replacement part should not be that difficult.

If storage is okay and RAID is provided by add-in card then one can plug that add-in card into another board to gain access to the data on the arrays. Booting may be a challenge if the surrogate motherboard is too different.

There are ways to make this work but more information is needed.
Top Expert 2014
Even if the controller is embedded you can replace the motherboard or sometimes use a PCIe card as replacement for the onboard one.

If the worst comes to the worst you can always recover data from an array of disks without a controller by using a software de-striper such as RAID reconstructor.
can you install like windows 10 on an ssd, then see if you can access the raid partition?

can you get into the controller bios and see if it is healthy?
IT Product Manager
Top Expert 2009
If you can get the drives out then you can reconstruct the RAID configuration on any other system with RAID reconstructor software: https://www.runtime.org/raid.htm
And there is also a free tool for that: http://www.freeraidrecovery.com/


Thank you everyone for your responses. I was able to replace the defective part and was up and running so I did not have to try to recover any data from the RAID (yes I have backups running but was experiencing issues accessing those backups). Lots of lessons learned! Thanks again.