RAID 5 can be set so that the information can be written to a main drive and then ‘striped’ across the others four for safe storage.
Redundant Array of Independent Disks (RAID) are to be found often in large companies, corporations or educational institutions where data volume accessed is greater than any one individual can cope with. Taking this into consideration RAID 5 (and RAID 3) allows for multiple users to make changes to this data via a network setting on an almost permanent basis. RAID 5 allows accessing, changing and saving of data by large numbers of employees at the same instant because the data in question is pared down into manageable ‘stripes’ and saved across all of the drives.
With RAID 5 all drives are in play with stripes assigned to each drive. Modern RAID 5 devices allow for hot swapping which is the process where an old drive can be removed without powering down the whole network. The drive can be replaced while the RAID device continues to save newer information. The new device then backs up the data that was created during the time the old drive was out of action.
At Glasgow Data Recovery we are contacted regularly to help those who operate RAID 5 arrays. This is sometimes because a rebuild after the replacement of a drive has been unsuccessful. To many the idea of a rebuild is a menacing one because replacement hard drives sometimes have not been correctly formatted, perhaps has an error of its own, or cannot communicate with the existing controller card. This will prevent the rebuild from being successful. Taking these factors into account Glasgow Data Recovery engineers are asked if they can visit the site after recovering data so they can assist with the rebuild.
All hard drives work to a particular speed and the slower they become the more likely the chance that something is wrong with the drive. This is certainly the case with RAID 5 and becomes very noticeable when trying to access and make changes to documents that are saved on a RAID 5 setup. If a document usually takes a second or two to open but now takes longer you might consider that there are bad sectors on the drive or problems reading the instructions distributed to the drives by the controller card. It’s also important to make sure that the format of a new hard disk drive in a RAID 5 server is the same as the format of the other drives.
For more information on issues or problems relating to RAID 5 drives please contact us at Glasgow Data Recovery where our engineers can provide you with a preliminary diagnosis and a no obligation quote relating to the recovery of data from a RAID 5 array. We may also be able to provide you with on-site assistance when it comes to rebuilding the array after the recovery and replacement of a faulty drive.