Don't Want Server To Re-Initialize Disk

By scr1b3 ยท 4 replies
Feb 17, 2010
  1. After replacing a failed drive on a 4tb disk array and rebooting the entire server. The disk array is recognize as being unallocated and the server wants to reinitialize. I know doing so will pretty erase all the data on the array. I'm hoping that someone out there's has dealt with the issue in the past and found a solution. The system is Windows svr 2003 with scsi attach 4tb disk array raid5
  2. scr1b3

    scr1b3 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    The disk array shows up in 'disk management' as unallocated. If I initialize the disk, will it erase all the data?
  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 11,128   +982

    you need to be using the RAID software and not the Windows Disk Mgr.
    When doing so, the new drive does need to be initialized, but only with the aid of the RAID software

    Solve your problem first and then consider the following

    RAID 5

    Striped set with distributed parity or interleave parity requiring 3 or more disks. Distributed parity requires all drives but one to be present to operate; drive failure requires replacement, but the array is not destroyed by a single drive failure. Upon drive failure, any subsequent reads can be calculated from the distributed parity such that the drive failure is masked from the end user. The array will have data loss in the event of a second drive failure and is vulnerable until the data that was on the failed drive is rebuilt onto a replacement drive. A single drive failure in the set will result in reduced performance of the entire set until the failed drive has been replaced and rebuilt.

    Raid5 is poor choice
    Conclusion? For safety and performance favor RAID10 first, RAID3 second,
    RAID4 third, and RAID5 last!
    The original reason for the RAID2-5 specs
    was that the high cost of disks was making RAID1, mirroring, impractical.
    That is no longer the case! Drives are commodity priced, even the biggest
    fastest drives are cheaper in absolute dollars than drives were then and
    cost per MB is a tiny fraction of what it was. Does RAID5 make ANY sense
    anymore? Obviously I think not.

    see for details
  4. scr1b3

    scr1b3 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 22

    Unfortunately the issue i have is with a raid6 where two failed drives were not attend to and the third failed just the other day that ultimately resulted in this issue. With that in hand, you still suggest I initialize with the RAID software? Are you certain data will not be lost? My hopes of reviving the server is dripping away. Inserting a new drive to the degraded ports does not automatically build, reasons I don't know why.

    Thank you
  5. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 11,128   +982

    hmm; which is it? doen't matter much however ...
    The raid SCSI software will handle the new drive replacement correctly and if not, there's no better or alternative choice anyway.
    SCSI Raid has two independent features
    • Hotswap
    • auto rebuild
    You should consult the make/model# documentation of your SCSI raid card before continuing ...
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