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I used to have my system setup entirely on a 2tb RAID 0 (risky I know) but I recently upgraded to having Ubuntu running on a SSD and using the RAID for file storage.

Since the Ubuntu 11.04 update my PC has been crashing a lot and I decided it was time to try a different Linux distro, enter openSUSE.

The problem now is that somehow during installation I deleted something on the RAID drives and now cannot boot into them or access them via openSUSE, they aren't showing up in /dev/mapper/nvidia_xxxxx anymore either.

I thought my data was lost until I booted an Ubuntu Live img and I can still access the partitions on the RAID fine.

so How can I restore access to these drives in openSUSE?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

The problem here is that nVidia RAID is not a true hardware RAID device, it is what is known as FakeRAID. As such it needs special support in order to work properly.

As you can see the drive via Ubuntu I do not believe you have messed anything up.

The problem with FakeRAID is that they take the drives away from the system and then require actual operating system support in order for them to be seen and used properly. On Windows the proper drivers get installed as part of the operating system install and Ubuntu appears to have built in this support by default as well as nVidia is mentioned in their FakeRAIDHowTo page.

FakeRAID uses the computer CPU (along with special support drivers) to achieve a "transparent" RAID configuration, as opposed to full Hardware RAID which generally has it's own processor on the RAID card and dedicated hard drive channels, or software RAID where the drives are fully handled by the operating system. Hardware RAID is generally more fault tolerant and able to cope better than FakeRAID in the event of one hard drive temporarily disappearing. Hardware RAID is generally also faster and less demanding of CPU power on the host as all the data striping or mirroring is done in hardware rather than software.

For compatibility FakeRAID is generally frowned upon, especially in the Linux community as it is very dependant on manufacturers releasing drivers for Linux or allowing open-source drivers to be written.

I suspect the FakeRAID Howto page I linked would give some idea of how to get similar support in SUSE.

This forum page looks somewhat promising for openSUSE and FakeRAID, at least for installing on FakeRAID.

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Thanks a lot, I will have a look into and let you know how I get on. I plan to remove the RAID as soon as possible but I don't have 2 TB spare to backup onto whilst I reconfigure. Thanks – hipyhop May 4 '11 at 21:26
The forum page spoke about dmraid and that solved my problems Thanks a lot Mokubai – hipyhop May 6 '11 at 13:19
No problem, glad I could be of some help. – Mokubai May 6 '11 at 13:57

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