Recovery of X-Raid

Forum on data recovery, file unerase, disk unformat, and RAID reconstruction.
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Recovery of X-Raid

Postby Sokudoningyou » Tue May 16, 2017 9:40 pm

I've past the point of yanking out my hair over this, so here we are.

My problem: Netgear, in a moment of monumental stupidity, deleted not just my data off my ReadyNAS remotely, but hundreds if not thousands of other users as well on March 30th. (Apparently their online server program deleted a bunch of users accidentally, which then automatically deleted the folders, which meant...bye bye data.) First they tried wriggling out of it, then they finally admitted they made an error, and claimed they'd help us try to get the data back. Weelll, it's now May, and the tech has been slowly dropping off contact with me to the point I'm lucky if I can get an answer to anything within a week. So now it's apparently time to pay to get my stuff back, because they aren't doing it.

So I have a 4 bay ReadyNAS, which was in X-Raid mode (which is stock), RAID 5. It doesn't seem like I'm either finding the answer I need, or the one that makes sense so me, but how exactly am I going to be able to recover my files with R-Studio? Do I need to figure out some ridiculous setup to connect ALL four drives to my laptop somehow, or am I able to just pull two of them and still get the same information?
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Re: Recovery of X-Raid

Postby Alt » Wed May 17, 2017 1:11 pm

I don't think your laptop is fit for this work. You'll need a decent desk-top PC with pretty much storage space or/and enough SATA connectors and cables.
Part One. Try to understand whether R-Studio can help you.
1. Download and install R-Studio. You can do that without buying it. It will allow you to do many things in its demo mode.
2. Connect all the drives to the computer and see if R-Studio can assemble the RAID automatically. (I know that many data recovery pros would suggest imaging the disks first, but if you're sure that the disks' hardware is healthy, you could do that for some short time).
3. Look to R-Studio's Drive panel and try to find the assembled X-RAID and its content.

If R-Studio finds nothing, the best advice is to go to a reputable data recovery pro.

Part Two. If R-Studio does find something meaningful, try to recover something. And remember, when Linux (and ReadyNAS is a kind of Linux) deletes files, it does delete them. You'll need to scan the volume to find the lost files.
* If R-Studio reveals a full folder structure: Scan the RAID and try to find the files.
* If R-Studio reveals a sort of meaningful information, better to image the drives and work with them. You'll need to go deeply down the data on the disk to understand what and how the data can be recovered. Or go to a data recovery pro.
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Re: Recovery of X-Raid

Postby Sokudoningyou » Wed May 17, 2017 7:18 pm

I had a feeling that would be the answer. I have a desktop, but unless I can run a hub as well, there's no way I'll be able to connect everything, plus an extra drive for the space. Damn it. If Netgear had just done what they said they would do, I wouldn't even need to look into this.
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Re: Recovery of X-Raid

Postby Data-Medics » Thu May 18, 2017 12:32 pm

X-Raid recoveries can be tricky too. If it was all equal sized drives and definitely running as RAID 5 it should be fairly straight forward. But, when it comes to XRAID2 hybrid RAID it can be a real mess to recover at times. You're probably looking at a minimum $1500 recovery at any professional shop, more if it's any sort of hybrid setup.
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Re: Recovery of X-Raid

Postby Alt » Fri May 19, 2017 6:52 am

Data-Medics wrote:X-Raid recoveries can be tricky too. If it was all equal sized drives and definitely running as RAID 5 it should be fairly straight forward. But, when it comes to XRAID2 hybrid RAID it can be a real mess to recover at times. You're probably looking at a minimum $1500 recovery at any professional shop, more if it's any sort of hybrid setup.

My understanding is that XRAID2 is a Linux mdadm array. Netgear uses their proprietary code to expand it. What is X-RAID2 ?.
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Re: Recovery of X-Raid

Postby homebrewerdan » Fri May 19, 2017 1:40 pm

If you have a big enough hard drive (or hard drives), R-Studio can create images of the drive.

I have a similar problem - I have a NetGear ReadyNAS that failed and rather than buy a new box (this is the old Sparc version), I'm using R-Studio and a SATA-USB adapter to, one by one, make an image of each of my four drives (remembering which one was which). I have 4 identical 1TB drives that are all functional, so I'm able to use a 4TB external drive and grab the image and have R-Studio compress it -- so I should be able to fit all four 1TB drive images onto a single 4TB drive.

Once you have the image stored on a hard drive, R-Studio can open those .rdr images and it then behaves just like a hard drive within R-Studio.

I'm into my third drive image right now, but I think that once the four drives are imaged, I will hopefully be able to assemble the array.


I can confirm that you can at least get partial data back even with one drive. Once the drive is scanned, you can 'Open Drive Files' and you can start poking around the partition to find files. It isn't 100% since some files may be striped across drives, but you can at least get some complete files back even without assembling the array.
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Re: Recovery of X-Raid

Postby Alt » Mon May 22, 2017 10:20 am

homebrewerdan wrote:
I'm into my third drive image right now, but I think that once the four drives are imaged, I will hopefully be able to assemble the array.

You don't have to image all the drives. You may connect some and use the images for the rest. It's not as safe as imaging the all drives, but that is a good trade-off when you don't have much storage spaces and SATA connectors.
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Re: Recovery of X-Raid

Postby Data-Medics » Tue May 23, 2017 3:03 pm

Alt wrote:
Data-Medics wrote:X-Raid recoveries can be tricky too. If it was all equal sized drives and definitely running as RAID 5 it should be fairly straight forward. But, when it comes to XRAID2 hybrid RAID it can be a real mess to recover at times. You're probably looking at a minimum $1500 recovery at any professional shop, more if it's any sort of hybrid setup.

My understanding is that XRAID2 is a Linux mdadm array. Netgear uses their proprietary code to expand it. What is X-RAID2 ?.


I've read that too, but I've also seen XRAID2 cases show up where there was no mdadm metadata present. So I think it depends on the version of the NAS software they are running. The last one I saw was a model which originally used a RAID 4 (yes, RAID 4) fixed parity, but had been upgraded to a different version of the software that used RAID 5. The data was quite a mess and there was nothing on any disk indicating the array's setup. Took quite a while to figure it out.
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