Can a failed array be recovered? (Adaptec RAID Controller)

It may be possible to force the array online or recreate the array without data loss. There is no guarantee of recovery. If there is critical data that has not been backed up, it is recommended to consult a professional data recovery service. It is possible the data may not be recovered.

Important note: The options below can only be used when the original drives in the array are intact and are still attached to the controller. The drives must be in their original stripe sequence. If the array had previously failed drives, hot spares or any member has been replaced or is no longer recognized, it is recommended to contact Adaptec Technical Support for advanced options.

If the array is recognized and reported as offline or failed, it may be possible to force the array online:

  • If Adaptec / ICP Storage Manager is accessible, right click on the array that is offline and select ‘force online’. Force Online is not available inside the maxView Storage Manager. With Series 7 controllers use the BIOS Array Configuration Utility.
  • If the Command Line Utility (ARCCONF) is accessible, it may be possible to force the array online using:
    ARCCONF SETSTATE <Controller#> LOGICALDRIVE <LD#> OPTIMAL [ADVANCED <option>] [noprompt]

    Note: Please see the online help or the CLI User’s Guide for configuration specific syntax.

If the Adaptec / ICP Storage Manager or Command Line Utility is not accessible:

  • At system boot enter the BIOS utility by pressing Ctrl + A when prompted.
  • Select ‘Array Configuration Utility’.
  • Choose ‘Manage Arrays’, select the failed array and press Enter to display the array properties.
  • Verify the array parameters such as array type, total capacity and stripe size.
    Verify the array members are present and no missing segments or inaccessible disks are reported.
    Press Ctrl + F to force the array online.
    There will be a warning message indicating there may be inconsistent segments. Select Yes to force the array online. It is possible the utility cannot force the array online and will ask if the advance force online option should be used. If all the original members are present the advance force online option can be executed.

If force online is successful and the data is accessible, immediately backup any data to be recovered. Then use the Adaptec / ICP Storage Manager or Command Line Utility to run ‘verify with fix’ to bring the array back to an optimal state.

If the array is not recognized or the BIOS post message reports “the following arrays have missing members and cannot be configured” or the force online option is not successful, it may still be possible to recover the array using the skip initialize option:

  • At system boot enter the BIOS utility by pressing Ctrl + A when prompted.
  • Select ‘Array Configuration Utility’.
  • If prompted to accept/reject the changes, choose ‘reject’.
  • Choose ‘Manage Arrays’. If the failed/offline array is presented, press Enter to display the array properties.
  • Record the array parameters: array type, capacity, stripe size and array members. This is important, it is required to know the original array parameters to recover the data.
  • Escape to the main menu and select ‘Array Configuration Utility’ again. This time, accept the changes. Select ‘Array Configuration Utility’ and next, ‘Initialize Drives’.
  • Select only the members of the failed RAID array to be recovered using the “Insert” key.
    Warning: If the drives are members of multiple arrays this will also destroy the other arrays and those will also need to be recreated. In this case, it is recommended to call Adaptec Technical Support for advanced options.
    NOTE: It is all the members from the failed array, not just the failed hard drive.
  • Press Enter to initialize the selected drives. When the utility has finished initializing, it will automatically go back to the main ‘Array Configuration Utility’ menu.
  • Choose ‘Create Array’. Select only the drives that were members of the array to be recovered using the “Insert” key.
    Press Enter and select the same array parameters recorded earlier (or the known array parameters). When selecting the ‘Create RAID via’ option it is required to select ‘Skip Init’ (or ‘Quick Init’ if ‘Skip Init’ is not an option) for attempted recovery.
    When the correct array properties and initialization method have been entered, select Done.
  • Depending on the array type, there may be warning messages indicating the array will not be “built” and performance could be impacted.
    Accept the warnings and continue with creating the array.
    Verify the array is present in ‘Manage Arrays’ and reboot the system to check data integrity.

If recreating the array is successful and the data is accessible, immediately backup any data to be recovered. Then use the Adaptec / ICP Storage Manager, maxView Storage Manager or Command Line Utility to run ‘verify with fix’ to bring the array back to an optimal state.

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