The Challenges of Recovering Data From Raid Hard Drives

by : Leaftech

A "Redundant Array of Independent Drives" is a popular technique today for people working with several hard drives at once. RAID is a data storage scheme which divides or replicates data among the hard drives used, and is thus capable of offering higher data reliability and shorter response times than other schemes. This system has been in use for some time in applications that are considered non-critical.

The reason for the use of the scheme within non-critical elements of a business is that unfortunately, when one drive in a RAID system fails all of the data stored on the entire array may also be corrupted, or simply rendered inaccessible. For a business without knowledgeable support, this can be devastating. The first challenge to any recovery effort will be the reinstatement of data on not just one, but all of the drives involved in the system. The higher the level, the more complex the data recovery process becomes. Each piece of data on each drive is important, and a recovery system that ensures complete recovery is key.

When it comes to the actual recovery process, the person using a RAID scheme has a few options. Someone trained in the implementation of RAID and its applications could recover the data from the drive, as long as the data required is on the drive involved at the time of the failure. Odds are the user will have to call for help; that means two choices.

First of all, you could contact the manufacturer's support department. It is likely that they will be able to get your system up and running again, but like many support systems the recovery of your data is only a secondary objective. Basically, the manufacturer will assume that you have backed up your important data in a suitable fashion and the support staff are trained to operate under this assumption. The manufacturer cannot be expected to take responsibility for your data stored on its product.

The second option, and the best one open to the user, is to call in the services of a company that is trained in all manner of data recovery methods, and specifically one that has experience with all the levels of RAID storage. This service can be hard to find, since recovery issues and systems requirements are quite specific, but there are times when it pays to seek out the experts.

RAID schemes may be more reliable when it comes to data management, but in the event of a failure the challenges loom large. Getting the data from each system involved and ensuring that data recovery are at the heart of a support system are two of the most critical issues that a user of a RAID system will face in a failure, and it's important to find individuals who can handle the challenge.