On this page ...
Here I briefly explain
the prupose and use of FSRaid. FSRaid
is an application for working with so called PAR files. The main
purpose of PAR files is to recover missing or damaged files.
Homepage of FSRaid is: Fluid
Studios. There you will find the most recent version of FSRaid.
Ofcourse, you can download it at WeetHet
too. The version number FSRaid can be found by
starting the application and by clicking the "About"
Where do PAR files come from?
Applications like FSRaid, it's my favorite
but there are more PAR applications out there, you can create PAR
files. The principe s similar to that of a RAID disk
system (see What is RAID? for details).
A complex formula will be used to include individual
bytes of an original file. The result of that calculation will later enable
FSRaid to restore that missing byte and restore the missing
file byte by byte.
Let's consider a common example: say there are 100 files
on a website or newsgroup that you want to download. A common example
is a set of RAR files (often named with extensions like
rar, r01, r02, etc.) In order to extract this archive, you’ll need
every single file in the RAR archive set. If any one file is corrupt,
your entire RAR archive could be useless – newsgroups are notorious
If the person distributing these files had made a set
of PAR files and placed them online, your problems might just be solved.
Just download the PAR files and place them in the same directory as your
data files. If the number of PAR files is equal to or exceeds the number
of corrupt files, then the PAR files can be used to restore the original
Note: You will need at
least the same amount of PAR files as you do miss files.
So if you're missing 5 files, then you will need at least 5 PAR files
to be able to restore the originals. If you have only 4 PAR files (in
this example) then you will NOT be able to restore the missing files!
The PAR files do not need to be in sequence, it's only the number of files
that counts. So PAR files P01, P02, P03, P07, P09 will still enabe you
to restore a maximum of 5 original files.
Note: PAR files are usually
number as such: PAR, P01, P02, ... etc.
Note: When starting FSRaid
for the firsttime, it will know so and ask you for some settings. Just
click "OK" - you can change them later. It
will also associate PAR files with FSRaid,
so next time when you have some PAR files, you just double
click it and FSRaid starts.
When are PAR files used then?
Mostly in Newsgroups (see also LeechGuy
and Downloading movies).
Here it happens quite frequently that one or more files
of a set of files is missing. Missing files can be a result of:
- Retention; old files are taken
away to make room for new files
- Communication problems while doing
an upload or download
- The poster has forgot some of the file(s)
- The poster didn't completed the uploads (yet).
These sets of files are usually of the RAR
or ZIP type. I.e.
When extracting such a set of files, it usually result in a much bigger
file, for example a movie, an application or maybe even a complete CD.
One could use PAR files for securing backup files, however
using it this way might be a bit cumbersome.
How do I create PAR files?
Click the "Create"-button.
In the upcoming window, you click the button "Add
files...". The filedialog allows you to select files and
add them to the list. You can add files one by one or select multiple
files at once.
Once you finished adding files, you can set the recovery
ratio. 10% is a nice ratio (FSRaid default). You can set this
to a higher or lower evel if you like. Actually it's more of an indicator
of how many PAR files will be created. You will have
to use the slider to increase or decrease the recovery ratio. Below that
slider, on the right, you will see how many files will be created. Creating
too much files doesn't really make sense, so try to use a value between
say 10% and 25%.
Below the slider you will see a field called "Output
directory" with a "..."-button
next to it. Here you can indicate where the PAR files should be stored
on your harddrive.
Another field is "Base filename for parity
set". This is the filename used for naming the PAR files.
It doesn't need to be the same as any of the original files, however it
does make sense to use the same name if all original files startout with
the same name. This would make it easier to recognize PAR files of a particular
set of files.
Note: You can indicate if
a file should or should not be recoverable. By default, files are recoverable
(identified by [R] before the filename). Optional, you
can set a file as non-recoverable ([N]). I can guess
you question righ now: Why should I include a non-recoverable file? Well,
I haven't got a clue on that, sorry.
Now click "Create" to initiate
the PAR creation process.
Once finished you can upload the files (original files
and PAR files) to newsgroups etc.
How to restore missing files with FSRaid?
First make sure the PAR files are in
the same directory where you put the "original" files
(usually the RAR or ZIP files).
If you have started the FSRaid application before, then
you will notice that PAR files are already associated with FSRaid. You
just need to double click a PAR file and FSRaid will open automatically.
If you haven't used/started FSRaid so far, then double click the FSRAID.EXE
If you double clicked a file, FSRaid (depends on the
settings) will run through the entire process of checking and fixing by
itself, or you will need to initiate each action by hand. We assume the
last one of these two and run through the process by hand.
Firts of all: we will verify if all original files still
have the proper filename. Click "Fix names"
and FSRaid will do just this for you. Based on information the PAR file,
FSRaid will identify files and rename them.
Now we click "Check" so FSRaid
will start verifying the files found. In the upper bar it will show the
original files, the bar with blocks below that one shows the PAR files.
FSRaid will used colored boxes to indicate the state
of a particular file. The entire bar of little boxes indicate the entire
file set, for each file a single box which can be either of these colors:
This file is verified and found to be valid
||Status unknown (not yet verified)
||One of the missing files
||This file has ben verified and found damaged
||This file has a wrong filename (use "Fix
||Woops, something went wrong there ...
Now three situation can be at hand;
- You have all you files.
Well, then you're done ... close FSRaid.
- You have enough original files and enough
Click "Repair" and FSRaid will start restoring
the missing files.
- You're missing to much files.
FSRaid will indicate how much files you are missing. Go get them (either
the original files, the PAR files or a mix of these will do the trick)
and try again.