Question Restoring RAID-1 after MB/CPU replacement

golem

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I had a failed MB and CPU (power surge) and used same model number replacements. The PC now boots in to Windows 7 and operates normally from the original OS SSD. My dilemma is -- What might be the simplest way to get the two data filled backup drives installed and configured as they previously were in Window 7 software RAID-1? I hoped them being in "mirror" form and not "striped" would make it somewhat simple but unfortunately I'm coming across quite a bit of conflicting info during research. Can a data filled drive even be introduced to RAID-1 or, to set up RAID, does it have to start with empty and formatted drives? I'm trying to do this without the need to purchase another drive to relocate the data and start the RAID from scratch.

Yeah, I know RAID-1 is not a backup solution but a friend requested this scenario a while back as they wanted zero interaction required. I'm very tempted to simply place one of the RAID drives in as a standard data drive and hand them the other in a USB enclosure for a safer external solution.
 

golem

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Appreciate the reply drtweak!

That would absolutely be a best option scenario. (y) Yes, it was originally initiated via Disk Manager.

One last question -- Is there much of a possibility of file/table corruption when re-initiating RAID-1 within Disk Manager? Well, make that two questions -- Unlike a "striped" RAID can I assume there isn't a concern about Windows writing anything to the disk which could cause a RAID re-implementation problem?
 

USAFRet

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If you introduce a new drive to a RAID 1 array and make it part of the array...all preexisting data on that drive will be gone as it becomes part of the array and its data.

A properly set up backup routine is also 'zero touch', until you need to recover from whatever happened. But still very easy.
A good backup routine also wards off fail modes other than a simple drive fail.
 

golem

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If you introduce a new drive to a RAID 1 array and make it part of the array...all preexisting data on that drive will be gone as it becomes part of the array and its data.
Thanks for the info!

If I understand your explanation it sounds like I could mount one of the drives (retaining the existing data) while the second drive would have to be cleaned and designated unallocated which can then be added as a mirror for rebuilding? The answer to that query would be insightful but I do think since their backup desire will require a drive to always be online (as opposed to a safer dis-connectable external backup option) I probably should opt for a Macrium (or similar) scheduled option. Sometimes I can't see the wood for the trees. ;)
 

USAFRet

Titan
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The rebuilding of the RAID array with some new drive will cause that new drive to just be part of the array, with the original data of the array. (hopefully)

Scheduled backups? That is exactly what I do.
Back up to my NAS box, every night. Each drive or system individually. Full or Incremental/Differential.

The nice part is that you can have multiple Images, spanning several days/weeks/months, on a single physical drive. If I need to recover from "Last Tuesday", click click, no problem.
A RAID 1 is simply 'now'.

I recently had to recover from a completely dead drive. One of my SSDs died suddenly. No warning.
Slot in a new drive, click click, wait an hour or so...all 605GB data recovered exactly as it was at 4AM that morning.

It all depends on their tolerance for downtime.
Most places that institute a RAID 1 also has a good backup routine.

Read here for my routine:
 
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golem

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Wanted to post an update --

Connected one of the previously RAID-1 drives, it was visible in Explorer and totally accessible. In Drive Management it was still listed as "dynamic", "foreign" and missing a mirror. After "importing" the "foreign" disk I tried to use Partition Wizard v4.2 to convert from "dynamic" to 'basic" but the conversion failed. I then dug up TestDisk 7.1 and at DOS level accomplished a clean conversion to "basic" in under a minute without any loss of data. Followed this up by doing the same processes to the second previous RAID-1 drive. I now had two mirrored "basic" drives.

On to the backup solution. I decided to go with FreeFileSync which, in the past, I've used on my personal computers. Since the drive contents were identicle there was no exhaustive reconciliation required and the sync was verified in moments. As for future backing up -- I was tempted to use the RealTimeSync option but am unsure if the monitoring function would keep the drive powered up (or cycling). They rarely access the drive as it's mainly for archival purpose and likely gets new content added no more than once a week. Ended up choosing a scheduled daily (time based) with the option of a "one click" on-demand manual run. The one thing I wish is that the "backup" mirrored drive could be made invisible. Unfortunately it seems if Explorer can't see the drive neither can a backup/sync utility.

Again, thanks for the insight and suggestions from all! (y)
 

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