Catastrophic Failure > 14TB GONE > HELP!

EX4Shot wrote:> FINANCIAL IMPACT ANALYSIS of this defect on the WD EX4: (Tally continues)

16hrs inital triage @ $60hr (average computer tech repair rate) = $960

2hrs on the line with WD L3 support @ $60hr (average computer tech repair rate) =  $120

4hrs setting up “recovery rigs/hardware” @ $60hr (average computer tech repair rate) =  $240

48 hours into recoveing three drives (a kind estimation) = say at $30per hr =  $1440

Still have 1 drive to go, and its the “problem one” that I cant just read like the others. 

Still looking to pickup Paragon HardDisk Manager 14 Suite @ $49.95 (supports EXT4) (still looking for sugestions)

GRAND TOTAL (so far) > $2809.95… (and climbing)

I have found several freewares out there that I have been experimenting with.  

Couple recomendations by members. (thanks)  

No one has been a magic bullet yet.

Paragon ExtFS $0 > has been fairly stable reads well, and seems to copy large files.  Pops an error at the end looking for the original folder. “wierd”.  But if you just skip it finishes, and so far the few test files I have tried are viable. 

Ex2read  $0 > has some comments/feedbackl about being old and not handeleing large files.  Did not try it.

Ext4Explore $? > Recommended by the commenter on Ex2read, so I have not tried yet.

File Scavanger 4.2 $? > May look at next

TestDisk $0 > Another freeware that is DOS window driven.  Trying now.  There were several messages in the readme about not reading Ext4 without plugins, and then running 32bit under 64bit wonkyness.  Im trying it on the analyse button but so far seems to have hung.  Ill let it run for a few hours see if it finds anything.

Ex2FS $? > Driver referenced missing in above software.  Havent looked for yet.

ReiserFS $? > Driver referenced missing in above software.  Havent looked for yet.

Paragon Hard Disk Manager 14 Suite $50 > Since there free trial befor you buy, I may try this next based on the TestDisk seeming to freeze. 

Trying all these options on a 4TB drive is taking a lot of time.  I may just bite down and hit Paragon above. That being said though I have recovered about 8TB of data that looks viable.  This last one though is still the bear.

I was really hoping one of the major mfgs would have something out there, but majority dont support Ext4 for some reason.  You would think that with the saturation of NASs out there and most of them running on Ext4, somone would have see the dollar signs opportunity in thier eyes poping?

@ DavidSucesso, Hope some of these inputs help you recover your drive or at least lead you down a path.  But since you were spanned, it may be more intensive…

i will try to make WD contact you and solve your issue

you will need to give details about what happened

File scavenger 4.2 worked for me i a spanned volume i could recover some of the files 

DavidSucesso wrote:

  1. i will try to make WD contact you and solve your issue
  1. File scavenger 4.2 worked for me i a spanned volume i could recover some of the files  
  1. Yes, if you look back at my “finacial impact summary” ;] , line item 2, I am already working with L3 escalations.  (thanks though)

  2. I may have to try Filescavenger next today.

…a. The TestDisk found “nothing wrong”.  guess it looked good except for all the missing data. ;]

…b. Did you grab, from cnet or directly from Quetek?

…1. Did the demo work for you or did you purchase full? 

EX4Shot wrote:

FINANCIAL IMPACT ANALYSIS of this defect on the WD EX4:

16hrs inital triage @ $60hr (average computer tech repair rate) = $960

2hrs on the line with WD L3 support @ $60hr  =  $120

4hrs setting up “recovery rigs/hardware” @ $60hr  =  $240

48 hours into recoveing three drives (a kind estimation) @ say at $30per hr since medium monitoring =  $1440

16 hrs to recover the final drive (another kind estimate) @ $30 per hr = $480

I estimate only another 8hrs of data reoginisation & cleanup across the NAS @ $30per hr = $240

GRAND TOTAL  > $3480.00


So this whole fiasco has basicly cost me ~3 weeks of my life.  If I were a newb and needed somone else to recover this, my costs look to be in the $3500 range to recover and rebuild ~10 TB of actual data.

In the end it looks like I was able to recover every single piece of data manually.  Again, it sure wasnt a fun proccess or experience for what is a still to be determined HW/SW/Firmware fault on this device or WD drives…

Some final observations.

  • While JBOD is definitly not the best data redundant option, it sure benched as the fastest and easiest to recover.
  • Ext4 is a pain on M$ Windows based machines.
  • Having a good disk diagnostic and recovery software is key.  (looking for apps on the fly stinks and is risky.)
  • Also noting that other “disk softwares” finds errors WDDiag doesnt report.
  • Ill definitly be looking for an “industry” prefered/recomended/awarded software moveing forward.
  • Not sure if the final cost warranted just sending to data recovery experts supported by WD. (drive savers etc)

Some things I would have liked to try to confirm:

  • Pulling a JBOD drive and replacing it with another will not corrupt all drives.
  • Pulling the primary/volume1 JBOD drive will not corrupt all drives
  • Inserting the original JBOD drive back into the machine is supported. (ie original data is still there and accessable)
  • Abillity to pull all drives in same manor above before flasing a firmware.

I hope you all in the community ever have to go through such an experience, and feel free to drop any questions if I can assist others in this perdicament.

Thanks do go to WD and thier L3 support.  Opposed to the horrific misinformation I have recieved for the lower levels in the past, L3 was very supportive and professional throughout this trying endeavour.

EX4Shot wrote:> "While JBOD is definitly not the best data redundant option, it sure benched as the fastest and easiest to recover.

final observations."






JBOD has NO data redundancy or fault tolerance whatsoever.

Glad it worked aeverything for you

did you need to use file scavenger??   i have bought the fulll version after testing trial

I’m glad you were able to recover your data.  

I’m quoting you here… 

" Yes, I have made a conscience decison to use JBOD for a different set or reasons that are not in debate here wheather you agree with them or not. "

…I think the big question here everybody wants to know is after all that hoopla to recover your data … do your reasons that are not up for debate still stand … are you going to be putting your hard fought recovered data BACK onto a JBOD setup?  

@Jumpman: Yes a somwhat over/under statement. No fault tolerance, but the simplest for DIY recovery and best for exibited performance. I accept that because I have recovered a number of “faulty” drive in my days. The Ext4 FS was the new neauance for me.

@DavidS: Yes, File Scavanger was able to recover the final/first “corrupt drive”. I like the fact that it left the origional drive alone and recovered to another location. I did recover to another internal drive, and then copied to the NAS. I would like to know if you recovered to the NAS share directly. The other thing I noticed during the 6hr drive scan was File Scavanger found drive/sector errors. WD WDLG Diags reported “pass”. (I know its an archaic test that really doesnt report much.) Curious though if this in any way contributed to the FW update failure or fault of this data/volume removal error that started all this?

@SGallant: Yes, I am using JBOD again. If you noticed the “realworld” benchmark I posted on page 2 of this JBOD was actually the fastest.

From a fault tolerance/redundancy perspective, reflecting on DaividS’s experience it only made the situation worse in this particular incident. All of my drives/data were easily, abiet time comsuming to recover with the exception of the last/first volume. Im hoping all this documentation helps others that may fall prey to this scenario. I think WD is still scratching thier heads on how thier FW update toasted us… (and maybe others that are just not forum savy.)

I really wish it would just support NTFS because thats all I needed it for. (and that would make plug and play & recover in windows a SNAP)

For my next tests, I want to test the “plug and play” capability of replacing a drive/volume. Which is one of the primary reasons I went with non RAID. It makes the solution “somewhat scaleable”. ie. pull a full drive/volume. Pop in a new one and keep trucking. I just dont know if I can put the old drive/volume back to really complete that scaleability theory.

To you all, I really do appreciate all your input, consern and help.  If I wasnt so busy at work I would counsider the Linux VM path that was recommended… Now that I have my data back, im just sitting back a little to enjoy again… (fearing the next update that may bring back NFS and make me start over again) ;]  Hoping this was isolated.  But it its not, im well versed on what to do, and how long it takes to rebuild…  lol

All in all: JBOD recovery, not one piece of data lost across all 4 drives.  (as much as I have been able to verify) (ill probably be verifying for antothe 6 months.)  Just a LOT of pacience!  (out of the 14TB, about 10TB of it was data.  I had about 4 left to grow.)  Slow and steady…

they want my NAS back for testing purposes and will give me a new one

my drives are all fine but the firmware update make them lost the volume

hope i can realy get my data back with ontrack

i scanned my entire 8tb volume recovered some files but mainly isos i coulnt recover… not even a bad sector reported on that 8tb …