I had to fully restore my RipNAS using the Rescue Discs. I own model 803b, the smaller case containing two 1-terabyte hard drives which operates under Windows Home Server 2003.

My RipNAS was failing to boot. I ran a SATA cable connecting the one physical disk which contained the system files to a working computer and ran a chkdsk on it. After this, and reconnecting the drives to my RipNAS, the system booted and the drives operated fine.

However, the Windows Home Server Console did not open and the Windows Home Server Connector was not working. Both are needed to use the RIpNAS for its purpose, being recognized by programs such as Kinsky, Konductor ’11 or PlugPlayer “control points.” None of these types of programs were recognizing the RipNAS even though they were connected to the same network. Therefore, I needed to do a Rescue to restore my RipNAS.

HFX's claim that the Rescue takes 10 minutes to restore is bonkers and misleading! http://www.hfx.at/ripnas/rescue/. It takes at least two full days or more to fully complete your Rescue for a continuous, smooth operation.

My RIpNAS was originally shipped with Rescue Disk *1 version 1.7 boot manager. A newer version is at http://www.hfx.at/index.php?option=com_r...temid=159, version 1.7c. I used the original Rescue disk *2 that was shipped with my unit.

Use the full Rescue procedure even if you have intact data. Although there is an option for installing the operating system only while leaving the data intact, do not use this option as it simply doesn’t work. The Home Server Console will report "Network at Risk" and "Drives Status Failing--Unhealthy" after this method.

Make sure you have a backup of your data, by connecting a USB hard drive to the RipNAS as described below. When prompted to select whether to Rescue the Operating System only or the OS and Data (if applicable), choose the latter.

1. With RIpNAS powered off, carefully turn it over and write down the Windows Product Key printed on the label at the underside of the case. This will be needed later.

2. Connect monitor, keyboard and mouse directly to RipNAS since remote operation over the network may be compromised during the rescue.

3. Attach an external USB hard drive to a USB port on RipNAS and backup all the data (music files and folders). As suggested by Mobile Computing Solutions http://www.mo-co-so.com/, the U.S. support company for RipNAS, the source for copying the data from the RipNAS to an external drive should be the d:\DE\shares\music folder, as opposed to the other folder on the RipNAS that contains the identical music files.

4. I completely wiped the non-system partitions using CC Cleaner (ccleaner.com) Drive Wiper tool. This takes about nine hours for one pass and ultimately, may not be necessary. So your choice if you wish to do this.

5. I completely removed all programs from the system drive, using the Windows Add/Remove Programs function of the Control Panel plus I deleted all folders that could be removed and then emptied the Recycle Bin. However, the Rescue requires the system partition to have the NIC ethernet card controller driver installed, not sure why. Thus, leave the RipNAS connected to the Internet during the Rescue operation. My RipNAS is installed with the RealTek RTL 8102E NIC whose updated driver is at: http://www.realtek.com.tw/downloads/down...t;RTL8402. I used the US download site for the WinServer 2003 Driver.

I also used CC Cleaner to wipe all free space from the system partition and clean the registry.

7. Shut down the RipNAS, and then turn it back on. Press F10 at startup to get to the boot set-up screen. Load Rescue Disc *1, version 1.7c in the DVD-ROM Drive and press enter (because the DVD Drive is the first default choice) on the keyboard to load the boot manager.

8. Once the boot manager loads, choose whether to perform a full or selected Rescue (if applicable). Choose the full Rescue. If you get a screen giving you the option to "Save Your Data" do not choose this option.

9. Let it do its thing and then after awhile it will stop. Wait until it is completely done, with no more activity. The sequence does NOT next prompt the user to remove Rescue Disk *1 and insert Rescue Disc *2. Manually eject the Rescue Disc *1 by inserting an unfolded paperclip through the manual release slot. Then insert Rescue Disc *2. The boot manager will immediately recognize the image file on Rescue Disk *2. Enter that file. Once again, let it go through the process until it is done and there is no more activity.

After a reboot, the system will prompt you to enter your Windows Product Key. Do just that. The new login password is reset to ripnas=000000. You can change this later using the settings option of the Home Server Console.

On every restart an error message will come up in a window “Service Control Manager—At Least One Service Or Driver Failed During Startup” that a user needs to close by clicking or pressing enter. RipNAS’s U.S. tech support, Mobile Computing Solutions, says this is a known bug that is benign.

10. The drive letters may be wrongly assigned post-Rescue as was the case when I did it. The drive partition sizes also are likely to be wrongly allocated post-Rescue. Right click on My Computer and pull down to ‘Manage’ and select Disk Management in the left pane to view all the partitions, their letters and space allocations in the right panes. In my case, drive letter D:, one of three hard drive partitions created after the Rescue, was improperly sized after the Rescue to about 270 gigs, leaving 630 gigs of unallocated space. The Rescue Discs are programmed for models having 300 Gig hard drives. My model is shipped from the factory installed with two 1-terabyte-sized hard drives. To fix this problem, employ the ‘diskpart’ utility from the DOS window to ‘extend’ the D drive partition. From Start, click on Run, type cmd, hit enter, type diskpart, hit enter, type volume, determine which volume number corresponds to the d: drive and select that volume, then type extend, hit enter, wait and then type exit, hit enter. Re-check the allocations with ‘Manage’.

11. Two of the drive volumes after the Rescue were labeled differently than when the RipNAS first arrived from the factory. Drives E and F were interchanged by the Rescue. The final drive is expected to be the DVD-ROM, and designated letter F, but after the Rescue this drive was wrongly labeled as E, and the final letter, F, was assigned to the second physical hard drive. To fix this, go back to ‘Manage’. Right click on the drive and change the drive letters until the desired sequence is achieved. I had to make the DVD-ROM drive letter G temporarily to change the F drive to E, and so on.

12. After the Rescue the second physical drive is not turned on. Open Windows Home Server Console, click at the top add-in tile, Server Storage. You will see a list of drives. Under the "status column" one drive's status will be a faint gray circle. This circle needs to be a solid green circle. Move the mouse over this drive's column, left click, and then click on "add" in the drop-down menu. The circle will turn to green.

13. The Language Bar is set to "English United Kingdom" after the Rescue. I live in the U.S., so I changed its settings to "English U.S." Also, I changed the Windows time zone to my area, GMT -8.00 (Pacific Time with automatic daylight savings time adjustment).

14. Now is a good time to upgrade to Asset UPnP 4.0, the latest version for free. After the Rescue, a Premium Registered version of 2.1 is installed. Go to Start\Control Panel\Add Remove Programs. Remove both entries of Asset UPnP. Use Internet Explorer on the RipNAS to navigate to http://dbpoweramp.com/asset-upnp-dlna.htm. Scroll down in the Download section to "Windows Home Server v1", click on the "Download" tile on the right, and then allow the install to run. A registered premium 4.0 version will be installed onto the RipNAS.

15. Next, update Windows Home Server 2003. Use Internet Explorer on the RipNAS and navigate to http://www.update.microsoft.com/microsof...?ln=en-us. Click on "custom" and install the updates. You will need to do this about five times, sometimes with a shutdown, sometimes with a restart, since there are updates to the updates. Install all optional software updates, as well as the critical security ones, with the exception of the latest versions of Internet Explorer or Silverlight which are not required. Note there is an update to Windows Remote Desktop Connection from the optional software list that should be made as this function is used to access the RipNAS. For my model RipNAS 803, the Illustrate RipNAS software that is the main program for operation is not compatible with Windows Home Server 2011, therefore updating to the latest versions of Home Server 2003 using multiple passes of Windows Update is important.

16. If not already done, connect the external USB drive to the RipNAS that has your backed up music data tracks. Use Windows Explorer to copy the music back. Use as the target on the RipNAS the d:\shares\music directory which should already show as being shared. This is the reverse of when you transfered files from the RipNAS to the backup drive as now you are copying to the RipNAS targeting a different directory than when you tranferred from the RipNAS. Transfer in small batches, about 80 gigabytes or one-quarter of the total folders whichever is smaller, per batch. Let a batch complete its copying before moving on to the next batch.
As the copying occurs, the RipNAS software is doing its thing to catalog the music library and automatically copy the same data onto the other directory on the RipNAS, balancing.

17. After the copying is completely done, wait a long amount of time, then run a "Refresh All" in the Asset UPnP section of the Home Server Console settings options.

Finally your Rescue restoration of your RipNAS is done and you will enjoy many hours of listening to your music!

Equipment: RipNAS 803 (black), manufactured by HFX of Vienna Austria, U.S. importer Mobile Computing Solutions of Philadelphia Pennsylvania. The RipNAS 803 is installed with Intel D945GCLF motherboard (Mini-ITX form factor) fitted with Intel Atom 230 1.60 GHz processor and 2 GB of RAM (the maximum), Teac DW-224SL-R CD-RW/DVD combo drive, two 1-terabyte Western Digital Scorpio Blue 2.5-inch SATA drives WD10TPVTexternal G 4-2000 2-terabyte backup USB hard drive. Also connected: VGA monitor, PS/2 mouse and PS/2 keyboard. Operating system: Windows Home Server 2003. My RipNAS is connected via hard-wired ethernet to a network that uses control programs (Kinsky, Konductor ’11 and PlugPlayer) to send music data to a Linn Klimax DS (latest update) in one room and a Linn Akurate DS to a different room.