[linux-lvm] HDD failure - please help!

Patterson, James JPatte at lsuhsc.edu
Thu Sep 2 11:50:13 UTC 2010

> Striping (like RAID0) actually makes your data *more* vulnerable (but faster).

Stuart, I just mentioned that in passing - I did NOT use striping. 

> If you wanted RAID5, your best bet on linux is the md driver.  
> Or else a hardware RAID controller.

I don't/didn't want RAID. 

> Since you don't have any details on exactly what kind of LVs you created

The default FC11 creation - whatever that may be.

> your first step is getting a copy of the metadata.  
> There should be a copy at the beginning of each drive.

Yes. How do I access it? None of the drives will mount. I am thinking here that I should create a special boot disk with the LVM tools on it (they are not present on the FC11 boot iso, afaik).

> If you had a single logical volume, and you were configured as 
> jbod (Just a Bunch of Disks)

I'm reasonably certain that's what I had.

> then you should look back a month or so in the archives
> where another user made the same mistake, but got a significant portion
> of his data back from the good drives.  I won't repeat the steps here.
> (You'll need an external USB adapter, freezer, new drive to replace failed,

I looked...could you please be a bit more specific? I didn't see anything.

> Hopefully, you've learned your lesson and won't presume (or assume) next time.

Well, truly, the only thing I've learned is never to use LVM if it's going to cause me to lose data on all 5 drives when one goes down. The logic behind it's use appears to be to just make life "easier" by using one larger disk. The reality of the situation is that I don't have one large disk - I have 5 disks. If LVM can't figure out how to restore from four remaining disks (or alternatively I can't figure out how to use LVM tools to do so) then it's less than useful for me.

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