RAID 0 is a misnomer, as the set of two or more disks in the array have no redundancy. The data is striped across the set of disk drives, at a block level, which allows for a volume whose size can be much larger than the capacity of a single hard disk drive. From the viewpoint of RAID data recovery, this can cause issues, so it is important that a backup strategy is in place.
The use of RAID 0 is most useful in an environment where very fast read and write access times are required, particularly for intensive sequential file access. This requirement needs to be weighed against the need for data security, and backup plans put in place should another RAID scheme not provide suitable data transfer rates.
The Need For Speed
Apart from the increased volume capacity, the main selling point for RAID 0 is that, by spreading the data in stripes across an array of disk drives, there will be an inherent increase in the underlying data transfer speed possible.
The seek times for a hard disk are a major factor in determining the speed at which data can be read or written from and to a drive. By increasing the number of disks available, and striping it across the drives, it becomes less of a factor, as the data buffers for each drive will be full for less time.
There Is No In-Built Redundancy
As already mentioned, the big downside of using a RAID 0 architecture, is the lack of any redundancy. The failure of a single drive will result in a failure of the entire RAID array, with data recovery the only solution available, unless that data can be restored from another source.
RAID 0 Data Recovery
When a RAID 0 array fails, it is almost always due to the failure of at least one drive, and depending on the extent of that failure, it can have catastrophic results. Another factor which is of great concern, even if the failed drive is recoverable, is that most RAID 0 arrays are built from disks purchased from a single supplier and the same batch. They operate in the same environment, so once one of the drives fails the likelihood of another failure within 24 hours is high.
It is therefore important, to seek help from a professional data recovery service, to minimise the risk of the failure being compounded through improper procedures. The raw data from all the drives should be secured before any further data recovery procedures are undertaken. Failure to do so, would be negligent, and could result in a situation where the only available option was a data trawl, which would only recover small files, without their original file names.
A data trawl may also be the only option if one drive completely fails and is unrecoverable, so it is important that immediate action is taken after the failure of a RAID 0 data volume.