Improving Disk Array Reliability Through Expedited Scrubbing

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Executive Summary

Disk scrubbing periodically scans the contents of a disk array to detect the presence of irrecoverable read errors and reconstitute the contents of the lost blocks using the built-in redundancy of the disk array. The authors address the issue of scheduling scrubbing runs in disk arrays that can tolerate two disk failures without incurring a data loss, and propose to start an urgent scrubbing run of the whole array whenever a disk failure is detected. Used alone or in combination with periodic scrubbing runs, these expedited runs can improve the mean time to data loss of disk arrays over a wide range of disk repair times.

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