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of RAID arrays and reformats

Captain VashCaptain Vash Registered User regular
So I've got an older computer that's host to a software based raid array.
The windows install is acting a fool and I'm thinking it's time to format this puppy.
will my windows 7 created software raid die if I reformat the OS?

ps: the OS is installed not only on a separate partition, but a separate physical drive.

Drive 1: 60gb - Operating System drive

Drive 2-5: 4x 500gb drives in a 2tb raid 0 array set up through windows 7.

Captain Vash on


  • General_WinGeneral_Win Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    You could probably, maybe unraid the drives in the original Windows or maybe Windows will redetect the raided drives.

    Baring any of that I would just google the hell out of that.

    General_Win on
  • Captain VashCaptain Vash Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    yeah I'm not worried about the disk drives themselves being usable again, it's all my precious drive spanning data that's got me concerned.

    Captain Vash on
  • halkunhalkun Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Never ever use raid 0 unless you really hate your data. The only benefit you get out of raid 0 is a slight speed boost and that's only of you *CONSTANTLY* access the drive. The problem is if you lose one drive in the array, your whole filesystem is hosed.

    If your Windows 7 partition is outside the array and on the primary drive, you should have an intact OS, however if you installing applications in the array, those apps will be broken and have broken references in your regestry.

    My best advice is to back up everything and get rid of that array all together. It's not worth it.

    Per wikipedia
    RAID 0 is useful for setups such as large read-only NFS server where mounting many disks is time-consuming or impossible and redundancy is irrelevant.

    RAID 0 is also used in some gaming systems where performance is desired and data integrity is not very important [emphasis, mine]. However, real-world tests with games have shown that RAID-0 performance gains are minimal, although some desktop applications will benefit. Another article examined these claims and concludes: "Striping does not always increase performance (in certain situations it will actually be slower than a non-RAID setup), but in most situations it will yield a significant improvement in performance."

    The performance improvements I've seen isn't wroth the 4-fold risk in data loss.

    halkun on
  • Captain VashCaptain Vash Registered User regular
    edited January 2011

    With that in mind, do you have any suggestions on how to implement a terabyte and a half large file transfer from one raid array to another? I've had nothing but trouble with dragging even just ~8gig files back and forth between networked drives.

    Captain Vash on
  • Glirk DientGlirk Dient Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    I haven't tried it with windows 7, but with windows XP it always seemed to not want to recognize my raid array come reformat time which meant I lost both partitions. If you have a partition for windows and another for data I would recommend giving it a try and see if the windows installation recognizes the partitions as they are. If they are all on a single partition your going to need to treat it like a normal drive with a single partition and simply backup all of your data and reformat.

    Glirk Dient on
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  • davethebarbdavethebarb Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    If it was hardware RAID, then I'd probably suggest it would be fine; the installer would only touch the volume you select to install Windows to and the MBR, so it shouldn't even touch the array. For software RAID, however, it is a very different story; the drives themselves will be fine, yes, but whether or not the OS you reinstall on the other end will actually be able to rebuild your data is a totally different story. As has been said though, you really don't want to be using RAID0 on its own, it's simply not worth the risk.

    As for moving the data, TeraCopy over a wired connection and see how that works out for you; it's always managed to keep consistent speeds for me, over the standard Windows copy system, so I always use it when transferring large quantities of data. It also tends to be better at handling shifting data across my network too.

    davethebarb on
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