Tips for Data Recovery of RAID 5 Drives
By Tony Roberts
RAID technology is the use of multiple disks to emulate the performance of one disk. This is usually done to increase the safety and redundancy of data, the speed of read/write performance, or a mixture of both. It has great use in the management of corporate data.
Data is integral to today’s businesses. Information is said to be power and right fully so, especially when you consider the nature of the economy of the modern world in this age we call the Information Age.
This has led to the explosion of the integration of Information Technology into most businesses. Most businesses employ some sort of Information System which stores sensitive information vital to a broad spectrum of operations.
These systems may be reliable, especially as technology increases the amount and accuracy of information stored in various media and systems. However, the probability that these systems will crash or that data will be lost cannot be ignored.
Most data crashes occur when some physical or logical error is introduced into a system. Hard disks, CD-ROMs, Tape Drives and other storage media can and will fail eventually. This could be caused by a host reasons – power outages, physical damage to media, head crashes, motor problems and the like.
Whatever the reason, you will need a means to restore all this data. This is especially true if for some reason the deleted, destroyed or corrupted data contains information that is not backed up or existing in any other location anyway.
A special consideration when planning for backup strategies is the type of storage you choose to employ. If you are using a RAID set up for your data access and recording, you will have to keep in mind a few extra tips on top of your general knowledge data management.
1. Regular Maintenance – While RAID components are usually reliable, it is recommended that regular back ups are performed at set intervals. There is always the chance that such systems will have logical and continuity problems. For this, you may want to employ special software to maintain the integrity of your RAID configuration.
2. Know Your Problem – It may take a little training to know the difference, but many of the RAID problems can be solved by using readily available RAID data recovery tools. If in the event that such software does not work, then you may consider the services of a professional data recovery expert.
These experts are highly-trained and employ equipment not readily available to most people to recover badly damaged disks, and hopeless media.
3. If Possible, Use Software RAID instead of Hardware RAID – while software RAID is a viable alternative to hardware RAID. Software RAID has a few practical setbacks.
Software RAID is not as fault tolerant as hardware RAID. It may not be an error magnet, but it still is a lot less reliable in comparison to hardware RAID
Also software raid takes up valuable system resources and needs to boot up before it can be used. This is not saying that software RAID should be avoided like the flu; it is jus that there are really good reasons to use hardware RAID instead
4. Invest in Maintenance – While using precious hours backing up and maintaining your RAID can prove to be taxing, and by all means unnecessary, you only have to look at a professional data recovery bill to realize that it was all worth it.
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