Failed RAID 1 Greenford

“Delighted to get our data back after the server failed when attempting to remirror the main server drive. Excellent service, getting us back up and running quickly. Many thanks.”

James Hann, Greenford

Three 2TB Seagate hard disk drives arrived at our Fleet Street office in London from Greenford. An inspection of the hard disk drives by our hardware data recovery specialists showed no signs of any physical damage. Our data recovery engineers secured sector-by-sector images to our secure servers. The two drives which were part of the original mirrored pair both had unrecoverable bad sectors, with 10 present on one drive and 5 on the other. The third drive imaged successfuly with no unreadable bad sectors encountered.

Over time the health of a hard disk drive will slowly deteriorate. When a hard drive is manufactured, it contains a spare area, which is used to swap out newly encountered bad sectors. This spare area is however a finite size, which will eventually be exhausted at which point any newly encountered bad sector will be returned to the operating system. In addition to this problem, when a pair of hard drives of the same are purchased from the same source and operate under the same environmental conditions, it is highly likely that they will both deteriorate at a similar rate, making it likely that when one drive starts to return unreadable bad sectors, so will the other.

The images were examined by our data recovery specialists which revealed that one of the bad sectors encountered on both of the mirrored drives was the same. An inspection of the third drive which contained a partial image of the mirrored RAID contained a clean copy of this bad sector, allowing it to be be used as part of the virtual image. The virtual image was analysed by our data recovery engineers revealing a 500GB operating volume and a 1.5TB data volume, both formatted using the NTFS file system. The operating system volume contained approximately 300GB of data including the operating system, program files and some other assorted data files. The data volume contained approximately 960GB of recoverable files which included a large number of office documents, Word files, Excel workbooks, Access database and Powerpoint presentations as well as many scanned images all of which were returned to the customer within 24 hours of the drives arriving at our office.

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