De-bricking the Iomega IX4-200d

24th August 2011 30 By Simon

I recently had a couple of comments on some of my IX4-200d posts asking for some assistance with the IX4, this chap (Johan) had experienced a failure of some sort that left his IX4 dead as a dodo (you all know the signs, a red LED of death and a graphic on the front of the unit that brings a lump to your throat.

In the case of Johan he had either tried upgrading all the drives on his unit at once (formatting them in the process) or had a catastrophic hardware failure that ensured the disks were wiped clean (Johan, please post a comment here for clarification purposes). Anyway, his request was to see if it would be possible to take a copy of my NAS OS partition and sending it over to him. Now I have to admit that I was a bit loath to take out the disks from either of my two 8TB units as I really didn’t want to risk losing the data but as luck would have it I still had the original 500gb drives from when I upgraded my IX4 earlier on in the year so I told Johan that I would see what I could do.

I got home tonight and powered off one of my machines, removed all the disks and replaced it with one of the drives from the IX4, I then booted up the pc with my trusty Acronis TrueImage 11 USB key and as luck would have it Acronis could read the Linux ext2 partition. Taking a sector copy of the partition for testing purposes I then wrote back my saved TIB file back to the original disk thereby overwriting the original partition with the new one, that gave me to all intents and purposes a vanilla drive.

I then powered off my IX4 and removed all 4 drives (taking note to keep them in order for when I placed them back in the unit). I then took the re-imaged 500gb drive and placed it back into the IX4 and powered it up.

Apart from the fact that it was complaining about the remaining drives missing the unit powered up and I was able to launch the web console to view the system information. At this stage the unit wanted to overwrite the existing drive with new partition information (this was for the data partition rather than the NAS OS partition which wasn’t present when the drive was partitioned). A few minutes later I had a single working drive back in the unit.

What this means is that all is not potentially lost if you have a unit failure, by my reckoning you should be able to de-brick the device if you can boot up the drive with a single working NAS OS partition and for that to take control to re-write the remaining NAS OS partitions to the rest of the disks, what I obviously can’t guarantee is that your data partitions will be in a working condition and that you won’t have lost any data.

With that in mind I have made a copy of the active NAS OS partition and made it available ****** Please refer to this post for the correct links for the pre-cloud edition TIB files. ****** on a file sharing website (FileSonic) you can grab the image file from here, the file is in the Acronis TIB format and only weighs in at 145MB. You will need to use Acronis TrueImage 11 (or possibly 12 which was just released this week) to restore the image, TrueImage can be purchased from the Acronis website.