ARAX Disk Doctor - Data Recovery Software





Virtual Disk Array (RAID) Wizard

This Wizard will guide you via simple steps to help you to re-assemble a damaged or disassembled RAID set to create a Virtual Disk Array. It will allow you to review and recover data located on the RAID set.

  • To create a Virtual Disk Array you must specify the type of disk array (RAID type), disks and array geometry.
  • You can manipulate the number and order of disks in the array.
  • You can specify your own Virtual Disk Array geometry or accept the default values.

To run this Wizard - click Create Virtual Array from the Wizards menu, or click Recover from Damaged RAID button on the Wizards vertical Toolbar.


Step 1: Virtual Disk Array Type  - select a RAID type to be reconstructed


Spanned Volume - composed of disk space located on several disks consecutively.

Stripe Set (RAID0)- stores data in stripes distributed on two or more disks.

Mirror (RAID1) - duplicates data identically on two disks.

RAID5- stores data in stripes distributed on three or more disks with parity control.


Step 2: Virtual Array Disks - choose disks to compose a Virtual Disk Array.

Move a disk from the left listbox (All available disks) to the right listbox (Virtual Array disks) by selecting the proper disk and clicking the Add button.

Use the [Damaged Disk] virtual device instead of the disk that is physically damaged (e.g a non spinning disk), or is known to contains invalid information. Some RAIDs  types (Mirror, RAID5) allow you to recover information even if one of the disks is lost this way.

Arrange disks in the Virtual Disk Array using the Up and Down buttons. If you do not know the particular disk order, try all possible configurations: write down the current order, assemble the array and check the data in it. If the data is not accessible - try a different order until one works.

Some RAID types (Span, RAID5) require a certain stripe block size, thus you will need to specify it in Options box. If you are not sure of this value, you may try to find it in the Controller's configuration utility (Controller's BIOS), or you can try different block sizes and check the results. The most commonly used values are: 32kb, 64kb, 128kb.


Step 3: Virtual Disk Array Geometry- choose default geometry or specify custom values.

LBA Mode
Logical Block Addressing - method used with SCSI and IDE disk drives to translate the cylinder, head, and sector specifications of the drive into addresses that can be used by an enhanced BIOS.
Number of Cylinders
Number single track location on all the platters making up a hard disk.
Number of Tracks per Cylinder
Number of tracks in each cylinder on all platters making up a hard disk. For example, if a hard disk has four platters, each with 600 tracks, then there will be 600 cylinders, and each cylinder will consist of 8 tracks (assuming that each platter has tracks on both sides).
Number of Sectors per Track
A Sector is the smallest unit that can be accessed on a disk. The tracks are concentric circles around the disk and the sectors are segments within each circle. This value indicates how many sectors are on each track.
Number of Bytes per Sector
Specify size of each sector in bytes.


Step 4: Virtual Disk Array Block Size - (for RAID-0, RAID-5 or Span Arrays only)

Stripe Block, Kb
The Size of a block in kilobytes used for RAID creation. Applicable to RAID-0 and RAID-5 arrays. Standard values are 32Kb, 64Kb, 128Kb, 256Kb. If you are not sure - try all standard sizes consecutively and you will most likely find the proper one.
Damaged Disk Size, Sectors
The size of the damaged device measured in sectors (sector is 512 bytes). Applicable to Span Arrays only. To get this size you either have to go to the HDD manufacturer's web site and look for the particular model, or look for the device geometry marked on the top of HDD. If found (not always) you need to multiply the parameters for C/H/S (Cylinders/Heads/Sectors per Track) to get the number of sectors.

For example:
A Samsung SW0212A has the following markings: CYL 4092, HD 16, SEC 63, 2.1GB. After multiplying 4092*16*63 we have 4124736 sectors which is equal 4,124,736*512 = 2,111,864,832bytes = 2.1GB. We just confirmed the size 2.1GB which is marked on HDD that means our calculations are correct.


Step 5: Confirmation - review and confirm parameters for the Virtual Disk Array to be created

Click the Create! button to create the Virtual Disk Array. Click the Finish button to close the Wizard if the RAID was reconstructed successfully, otherwise you will see error messages.

A New storage device and one or several drives (if detected) will appear in the list of devices and drives in the Recovery Explorer.

You can work with reconstructed RAID sets the same way as you work with a regular storage device or logical drive, i.e. scan device for deleted/damaged partitions, scan drives and search for files, recover/copy  files and folders to another safe location, etc...

See Also

Recover Files and Folders

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