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Windows 7: I cleared MBR by accident on raid0. How to save data?


14 May 2010   #1

Windows 7
 
 
I cleared MBR by accident on raid0. How to save data?

My PC was working fine. Then I got Antispyware Soft or some crap like that. It blocked all .exe files so my first move was to boot in to safe mode and do a little cleaning with task manager and regedit.

I restarted my PC and it hanged on Verifying DMI Pool Data. I tried everything. I removed all peripherals, then all memory modules (except one), then I removed that one and put one of the others inside, then removed all PCI cards, then removed hard drives... Nothing helped. Then I went to Nvidia Raid setup thinking that something happened there and I cleared MBR by accident.

Now I am freaking out! I don't know what to do. I managed to boot in to windows 7 from other computer's HDD (it worked flawlessly) and only thing I saw was 2TB of data that is unallocated.

I have no idea how to fix this.

I am on the verge of shooting myself. I have more than 6 years of graphic design there.

Please. Help.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 May 2010   #2

W7 Ult. x64 | OS X
 
 

My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2010   #3

Windows 7 x64 pro/ Windows 7 x86 Pro/ XP SP3 x86
 
 

1) Since your data is critical, first ensure its safety. You can try the the tools Al suggested, another way is to boot from a live linux cd like Knoppix. Its a distro that runs off the cd, so no installation is required. Inside Knoppix, you should be able to see your hdd and data, then back it up to an external drive.

2) If indeed you have destroyed your mbr, you can rebuild it using the Windows 7 install dvd and the command "bootrec /RebuildBcd". Heres the MS page on how to do it.

How to use the Bootrec.exe tool in the Windows Recovery Environment to troubleshoot and repair startup issues in Windows

3) "Verifying DMI...." is a mobo issue, not OS. This error can often appear if the BIOS is trying to find a IDE drive, when there is a different drive installed on the computer. Most often happens from a faulty component the BIOS is trying to register in the DMI pool data, when the component is not responding.

If you are lucky, a bios reset should solve the problem. You can do that by replugging the CMOS battery while the motherboard has no power. Removing the power of the CMOS will clear the BIOS, it should revert the BIOS to default state. You can also try getting into your bios settings and loading default settings.

Sometimes a bios flash can solve the problem. Also any onboard devices that are still connected, disable them.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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14 May 2010   #4

Windows 7
 
 

I woud like to try everything before data recovery. First I do not have 2 TB of free space and second they never save enough files and in good enough condition.

Are you sure Knopix will see my unallocated drive as a data? As I said I was able to boot windows from another computer and saw my raid as unallocated.

I tried restarting CMOS, removing the battery, jumpers, loading defaults, all of it bofore i cleared MBR. Nothing worked. I went past Verifying DMI Pood Data fine when I booted from a different HDD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2010   #5

W7 Ult. x64 | OS X
 
 

If your hard drive isn't damaged in any way, then Knoppix should see it as data. However, if the map which shows the operating system(s) where the data is located is broken then you may not be able to access it through a Live CD. In this case, I'm pretty certain that your only option is recovery software unless there is a way to rebuild the drive map.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2010   #6

Windows7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

No, Knoppix won't see the data, it's a RAID 0 member. Unless the controller who initialized the RAID volume is present, and aware of the data structure, your data is lost, Dushmanius. This is what happen when some user without any knowledge of RAID use a RAID 0 for their work disk... You get a gigantic mess along with frustration and stress and resentment along the way. Next time, stay away from RAID 0, this is the result of that "double speed"...

Here's the logic WHY it won't restore, or why you won't be able to retrieve the data. RAID 0, each write command will issue several write commands to the RAID array member. If there's 2 disk, then it will issue 2 write commands, the data in the original write will be split in half (as much as the RAID member), writing one block at 1disk, another block at the next disk... See, the data is just a jumble of garbage right now... Unless you know what block should go along with what block from which disk... you are screwed, SERIOUSLY SCREWED... Good luck with the recovery...

zzz2496
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2010   #7

Windows 7
 
 

I don't know why you think that it would be impossible to fix simple MBR sector for whole Raid 0? Raid controller is still operational (it still reads my 1TB+1TB as single 2TB drive). And if the structure of Raid 0 is unchanged then theoretically thing should still work.

You were right Knoppix was blind for the raid.

But against all odds I was able to recover the raid.
I used Hiren's BootCD (Hiren's BootCD 10.4 - www.hiren.info) and used MbrFix 1.3 (thought it has some other great MBR tools) to recover windows partitions and to install new windows 7 MBR.
After that I booted with Windows 7 DVD and repaired the startup.

All files were there and none were corrupted.

Quote:
This is what happen when some user without any knowledge of RAID use a RAID 0 for their work disk...
I must retaliate with "This is what happens when any user uses any hard drive without the backup."
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2010   #8

Windows7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Dushmanius View Post
I must retaliate with "This is what happens when any user uses any hard drive without the backup."
No, not really... regular user can always load their "normal" disk to another computer and extract the data if need be, that won't be the case with RAID 0 volumes.

See... RAID 0 + Work = disaster, thus you need to backup more than those with RAID 1 just in case. RAID 0 is for achieving high throughput, at the expense of reliability, one failed drive = all data lost. At least in RAID 1, when this kind of situation happens, you can just load either of the disks onto another computer and extract your data...

The promise of "high speed" doesn't really worth the stress and anxiety of losing your data IMHO. Anyway, since you've successfully recovered your data, this thread is solved, right? Next time, don't use RAID 0.

zzz2496
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2010   #9
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Hmm, my first thought was." How could the man have 6 years of work without proper backups".

My second thought was: "How could he have his data in the OS partition in lieu of a seperate data partition".

And my third thought was: "How could he expose his valuable data to a flimsy setup like RAID0".

Sorry, but you did about everything wrong. If you need advice for a proper data strategy, let me know. I assume you learned your lesson.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 May 2010   #10

Windows 7
 
 

: ) I did.

6 years of work without proper backups was my most hideous crime.

I actually always (since my first Duron PC) keep system on one partition and data on other. In the XP era proved to be the best solution I did my whole IT career since I had to reinstall XP more than 127 times (I keep an excel sheet). So this was done in this case too. Unfortunately it was on the same hard drive (or same raid 0 to be more specific).

I guess both of you are right about raid 0. It's just not worth it. Though my thoughts were always "If I loose half of my data, I don't really care if I lose the other half too".

I'm backing up web design as we speak on my old MyBook.

Whs if you have some good ideas about data management I would definitely like to hear them.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 I cleared MBR by accident on raid0. How to save data?




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