I have a broken RAID array, and need some advice on the best way to proceed.
The array is on 4 hard drives, configured as RAID 5. The operating system (Windows XP) is on another drive, the array holds data only. The RAID controller is on-board Intel P965 chipset.
In an absent-minded moment I tried to install new drivers for the chipset. Now Windows reports an unformatted Local Disc where my data used to be; Disk management shows a confusion of discs in various states. I tried a system restore, but just got a 'system could not be restored' message. I tried to roll back the drivers, but with no apparent effect. Looking at Intel Matrix Storage Console reports that the driver is not properly installed.
Is there anything else that is straight forward to try?
Now the worse news - when I looked I found that not all of the data was properly backed up (it's a long story)! I suspect the data is still on the disks, so I'm resigned to paying a data restore service to pull it off, reassemble it and put it on some other medium. Then I'll stick the drives back in the machine, create a RAID arry from scratch, and copy the data back. Is this a good strategy? I'd welcome any remarks about various companies, top of my list at the moment are homedatarecovery.co.uk and datarecoveryuk.
I've just remembered that I read some years ago that it's sometimes possible to recover an array by fitting exactly the same motherboard. That was in relation to recovering data after a motherboard failure however but it could be massively cheaper than a data recovery specialist.