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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2008 5:34 pm 
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Hi All,

I have posted my issue before in the "German" forum, but in order to reach more experts, I'll post it in english, too :-)

System:
- TeraStation HD-H1.0TGL/R5: means one of the first modells I guess with 4 x 250GB HDs
- running RAID 5

After one disk got broken, I got a new one from Buffalo, which I exchanged wtith the old one. Unfortunately I was/am not able, to get access to my TeraStation - neither the web frontend nor the shares are working. The system is shutting down after a few minutes.
Therefore I try to get access to the disks to get a copy of my data.

I've got an G4 iBook (means PPC architecture). But when I connect my 3 disk to it and bott a UBUNTU Live CD (I took the link stated here in the forum), the linux recognizes the disks - but not their partitions :(
But Mac OS does!
It shows 4 partitions on each disk.

So, I decided to try to connect the disks to a windows pc and get access using UFS Explorer.

Knoppix Live CD an Intel PC
======================
First I bootet a Knoppix Live Linux from CD using a PC - and this Linux recognizes both the disks and the partitions :-) I was able to mount the first partition (something like /dev/sda1), as it is configure as RAID 1 (mirror)linked to all the other first partitions (as I read here :-)). Seems, that this works fine. The typical directories are there.

Ok, next step was to boot windows.

Windows XP und UFS Explorer
========================
I tried with one of the disks first - and great - it does work! Windows shows the disk and the partitions within the -in german its called "Datenträgerverwaltung" - must be something like "disk management" or so.

But unfortunately, when I connected all the disk to the USB hub, still windows shows only one disk :-O I tried in terms with each single disk, all of them are fine and working when connected as the only one to the USB hub.
But windows never shows more than one disk.
I connect another external USB disk to the hub - thsi works fine. The disk is shown and all the windows drives are there and could be accessed.

I guess, that the issue is regarding the disk "name" or something like this :roll:

I downloaded the UFS Explorer, but obviously it can only work with the disks windows shows up.


So, any ideas regarding this?!

From my point od view there might be 2 solutions:
1) Finding a linux live CD for PowerPC architecture which recognizes the disk and the partitions contained. THe only I found was a very old Knoppix version - dated from 2003. I guess, this will not work.
Does anybody knows anotherone?

2) I find what the windows issue is and tell it how to recognize all the three disks and go further with UFS explorer. But I have got absolutely no clue how to do this. :-S

Every hint is really appreciated.

Thanxs in advance guys :-)
Raven


Last edited by Raven on Mon Apr 14, 2008 9:11 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 12:04 pm 
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Do any of the machines indicate the partition type? Buffalo at one point modified the superblock ID and I do not know if they did the same on this series. To gain access to the RAID you do need to connect them to a machine with a RAID controller. What are you actually trying to do at the moment? Recover data? With only one drive out of the RAID you should be still able to operate as RAID5 can sustain a single drive failure.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 3:37 pm 
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Hi,

thanks for your answer ;-) I tried to answer yery detailed - maybe this will be helpful to others, if it will lead to success :roll:

lb_worm wrote:
Do any of the machines indicate the partition type?
[ ..... ]
What are you actually trying to do at the moment? Recover data?

PPC architecture
Yesterday evening/night I tried various things with the PPC iBook. None of the actions taken even did recognize the partitions :(
I downloaded a couple of Live Linux CDs and booted them. Some did boot successfully but did not recognize the partitions:
- Ubuntu 6.10 PPC
- a Gentoo PPC (don't know by heart which version)

A very early Knoppix PPC CD does not boot at all - the MAC OS X was booted instead.

I tried 2 newer (dated from autum 2003 / spring 2004) Knoppix PPC CDs, too. They are listed as "MIB beta" versions, no idea what this means :roll:
- Knoppix MIB 10 PPC
- Knoppix MIB 12 PPC

Both did boot, but during the booting process, the screen went black and did not show anything at all. Though I heard the CD working. Seems, that there is some kind of issue with the resolution or anything similar. But I did not manage tio solve this :(. At 2 o'clock I went to bed :-)

Therefore I decided to go one with the PC / UFS Explorer direction.

PC Hardware / Windows
As sayed before, the Knoppix for PC harware did recognize the partitions. THe Windows XP did so, too - but it shows only one of the three disks. Here is, what Windows shows:
Disk<nr>: 232,88 GB
primary partition: 376 MB without errors (unkown partition)
primary partition: 133 MB without errors (unkown partition)
primary partition: 232,20 GB without errors (unkown partition)
primary partition: 188 MB without errors (unkown partition)


1. Attempt
First thing I tried, to get access to all the three disks was, to connect the disks not to a common USB Hub, but directly to different PC ports. Pure try - I know :down: Doesn't matter with ports I am using, Windows shows only one of the disks (I take a look both at the "Device Manager" and the "Data Storage Management").

2. Attempt
Next was, to disconnect my IDE dvd drive and writer and plug 2 of the disks to the IDE channel instead. After a few cycles with setting jumpers ans such things, the BIOS shows both disks! As the PC tried to boot from those disks, I had to set the boot disk explicitly to "IDE Master 3" , as my SATA disk are treated as IDE channel 3 devices. OK, windows now booted.
But again, it shows only one disk!! :shock: :evil:

3. Attempt
But I treid now, to connect the third one by USB to the system. And this works :!: The -I guess unique- drive identifier in the "Device Manager" shows something like:
- Drives
.....
WDC WD2500BB-98GUC0
WDC WD2500BB-98GUC0 - USB device


For both disks the partitions are shown. So, I have to figure out, how to get access to the third drive.

4. Attempt
What I am actually trying is to clone the entire disk (the partitions) to a 500 GB disk using the clone feature of Acronis True Image. The idea is, that the issues is the drive identifier (means this "WDC WD2500BB-98GUC0" string, don't kno the correct phrase :roll:), as all the three disks would have the same one. By connecting one disk directly as IDE device, and the second one by USB, they are using different ones (see above). I hope, that the hardware of the used disks doesn't matter for the RAID system, its only looking at the partitions. In this case the 500GB disk will be recognized (I have cheked this before) and will contain all the four partitions of the original disk. Now I would be able to get access to appropriate partitions - the second ones, containing the RAID5 data. :roll:

The cloning of the disk will take about two more hours it says. I am not able to double-check, which partitions types are shown by Acronis, but I saw something like:
- Linux raid (0xFD)
- Linux swap


Therefore I see a chance, that this will work. Next step would be, to try to "build" the RAID5 with UFS Explorer.
I will post my success (or failure :( ) anyway. Hold on a while :lol: ;)


lb_worm wrote:
Buffalo at one point modified the superblock ID and I do not know if they did the same on this series. To gain access to the RAID you do need to connect them to a machine with a RAID controller.

Hm, do you mean a "real" hardware RAID? I thought, the TeraStastion internally is a soft RAID. Didn't get your point, i guess :oops:

lb_worm wrote:
With only one drive out of the RAID you should be still able to operate as RAID5 can sustain a single drive failure.

Yes, that's my hope :roll: Would be great, if this time "hope dies last" would not be the truth :oops:

Thanks for your time again & have a nice eastern,
Raven


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2008 11:17 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 28, 2008 5:42 pm
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Hi All,

some good news late in the evening :up:
Seems, that my attempt 4 is working :) I'm not 100% sure, as did not verify it, but I was able to build a SoftRaid by using UFS Explorer.

I cloned one of the disk to my 500GB internal disk. Therefore I had one original disk connected to the IDR channel, the second original as external USB device and the third as clone.
I started UFS Explorer (Version "UFS Explorer Professional Recovery", as this seems the only one supporting RAID systems). Using the process described on http://buffalo.nas-central.org/index.php/Data_Recovery I was able to build a Raid Partiton. Important to mention, that I have to add a "place holder disk" for the broken RAID disk. There is a button called "Ad DPH" for this action. Works fine :). Next was choosing the option "fast filesystem scan" from the context-sensitve menue. This switches the partition type from "unknown" to "XFS". Now, on the right side the directories of the original TeraStation were displayed, e.g. one for each samba share.

As I did not read any manual of the UFS Explorer software, I was not able to double-check, whether the entire structure, means all the files stored on the RAID can by acessed now. Nor I am sure, which is the best option to copy the data to another disk. I have got a little issue with some german characters - öüä. One Share was named "Öffentlich" (means public) - but the appropriate directory is named "ffentlich". Any hints regarding this?
Anyway - in the worst case this means time to spent to solve this issue.

The next question was, where to copy the data to. First, I thougt to spread the data on various disks. But now I decided to use my 500GB disk for the data (I hab a backup of the most important data on the TeraStation, therefore this one disk will be sufficient). As I obtained a new 250GB for my broken RAID disk from Buffalo, I actually copy the data partition from the 500GB disk to this "spare" disk. Unlike the three original RAID disks, this one has got a different "identifier", therefore it will be recognized by the operating system.
First, I tired to make a 1:1 clone of the original disk to the new one from Buffalo using Acronis True Image. But whatever I tried, I did not manage to do so, though the disks are of the same size :roll: Now, I am creating a backup of the RAID5 Partition, which I will restore on the Buffalo disk.

Hope, that will work :)

So, tomorrow I will figure out, whether there is a possibility to check the filesystem structue, whether all the fieles are present, and whih is the best way, to copy them to a different disk.

Again, I will keep you informed about my success or failure ;-)

Have a nice evening to all,
Raven


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 22, 2008 11:28 pm 
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This is great progress. I hope that you are succesful. Any probs, then please ping this post.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2008 4:18 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 28, 2008 5:42 pm
Posts: 25
Hi Guys,

sorry for not posting the results so far :oops: Finally I did manage to get all the needed data from the RAID5 :up:
But as this was late in the night from monday to tuesday, I had no time to write my experiences down. Just as today :roll: But I promise to write it down on the weekend ;)

The wiki regarding restoring RAID5 by using UFS Explorer did really great work! Thanks a lot for this ....

Bye for now,
Raven


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 12:48 pm 
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Hi All,

as already stated, finally I was able to copy all my data from the RAID5 disks. Therefore, the RAID itself was entirely intact. It seems really pure that the Buffalo helpdesk was not able to help me regarding this. Simply a hint for UFS explorer or to this forum woul have made life much easier.

My conclusion is really, not to give up and try a lot of different things, even if it seems that it should not make a difference to the way you tried before.

I faced some strange issues. I posted before, that I was not able to get access to more than one of the RAID disks when connecting them by those IDE-to-USB adapters. At last when I started the final attempt to restore the data (I had access to the RAID disk connected by the adapter already), it does not work anymore :shock:
I decided to connect three of the disks I needed directly to the IDE plugs. Therefore I unpluged my DVD drive and writer. I have got a "hard drive mobile rack". I used this one, too. The fourth disk I needed was connected by a standard USB case, which works fine - unlike the IDE-to-USB adapters.

It was a little bit work to figure out the disk's jumper settings needed. Of course, using the disks as internal ones, needs different jumper settings. But this does NOT effected the RAID.

Due to my issue with those identical disk IDs, I had to copy the RAID5 partition (the big one containing the data) of one disk to a different disk. I choosed to do it by using Acronis TrueImage. I cloned the entire disk with mode "sector by sector". As the other three partitions on the disk are not really using much space, its no issue cloning the entire disk instead of copying just the one needed partition.
I don't know, whether it would work when using not the "sector by sector" method, but although this needs more time to finish it seems the best way to me.
Again, my experience shows, that this does not impact the ability to re-build the RAID5 afterwards. I really just need the partitions.

I had purchased a license for UFS Explorer Pro version before (as only the Pro version seems to support RAID5 systems). Following the details I found here in the forum (and mindbender gave to me :-)) it was no issue to build the RAID.
One thing I was worry about was, that I've got only three of the four disks (remember, the initial problem was a broken disk). But my worry vanished, as there is an option to add a placeholder disk especially for such cases :-) You just need to know, which disk is broken (of course you do). For me it was the 1st one. I had to use 1-2-3-4 - straight forward.

At once UFS Explorer recognized the data structure - the folders and files. Everything was there.

One last issue I had - UDS Explorer was not able to copy files bigger than 4GB. It cleary shows, which files this are. As all those files are backup images of my various devices and partitions (linux & MAC OS & windows), I dont needed them anymore, as they are quiet old and in the meantime I have created newer ones. It might be, that this is related to the filesystem typ (FAT32) I choosed for my destination disk. But as it was no concern, I did not investigate this further.

At the moment I'am trying to get a new device from Buffalo (as the initial issue occured before the end of the 2-year waranty). Buffalo adviced me to send them the TeraStation before, but now they are refusing to do so ....:-(

Thanks a lot to the community - I would not have managed to "restore" my data without you :-D
Raven


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