• Hard Drive PCB Failure and ROM Swap

    by Sep 09, 2021

    At Blizzard Data Recovery, we occasionally get emails, phone calls, and comments on blog posts asking about failed hard drive PCBs (printed circuit boards). One of the most common things we hear is the user swapped the PCB with a donor PCB from an exact same model and the drive still doesn’t work. The reason […]

  • WD Portable SMR Hard Drives with MCU Encryption

    by Jun 22, 2021

    Each year, we see new hard disk drive models released and each year, we see the firmware get more complicated or the drive security increased by the manufacturer. Two of the most common portable drives we see by Western Digital are the 2TB Charger and the 4-5TB Spyglass models. Both drive families already presented specific […]

  • Flash Drive Recovery for CBM2091 Controller

    by Nov 16, 2020

    We recently completed a flash recovery case where the drive was not repairable, and a chip-off recovery was not, at first, successful. Once Clint had determined that the device was not physically repairable, it came to me to dump the memory chip to attempt a logical recovery. The controller on the device was a Chipsbank […]

  • Portable WD SMR Drive – Data Recovery

    by Oct 06, 2020

    Most modern portable hard disk drives use relatively new technology, first implemented in the early 2010s, called shingled magnetic recording (SMR) to write data to the platters. SMR can achieve higher areal density than the older method of perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR, sometimes referred to as conventional magnetic recording or CMR) which simply means more […]

  • Convert a Lexar Flash PCB (SM3267L-AB) to Two Chips

    by Jul 21, 2020

    We recently completed data recovery for a customer with a 32GB Lexar Jump Drive which had taken an impact while plugged into a USB port, and, as is the case with many of these Lexar flash drives, the impact flexed the circuit board enough to lift the controller (Silicon Motion SM3267L AB) and tear solder […]

  • Platter Swap – Clean Room Data Recovery

    by Dec 08, 2019

    It’s a common misconception that a large percentage of hard drive data recovery cases involve removing platters. The truth is platter swapping is only necessary in a low percentage of recovery cases for most data recovery labs. For mechanical failures, the most common reason for in-lab recovery service is removal and inspection of the read/write […]

  • Broken Flash Drive Data Recovery

    by Aug 22, 2019

    There are all kinds of ways to accidentally break a USB drive – accidents happen, and these little devices can be fragile. When they take a bad hit, the most common damage is just a detached USB connector, and if you’re going to experience a broken flash drive, that’s the way you want it to […]

  • Mac SSD Recovery – Samsung MX-JPU256T/0A6

    by May 19, 2019

    Today I want to share a story about a Macbook that was run over by a car and the internal storage was damaged. Luckily, there was only damage to some surface mount components and the entire SSD device was not destroyed. If you are familiar with Macbook internal solid state drives, you probably know that […]

  • Broken, Cracked 128 GB Lexar Flash Drive Recovery

    by Apr 07, 2019

    Lexar, along with SanDisk and PNY, is one of the more common brands of USB flash drive we see in the data recovery lab. While many flash drives that we recover suffer from either a broken connector or a bad component (which can range from a simple blown resistor to a failing NAND), we’ve known […]

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