When DriveFish began providing cheap data recovery for a flat fee several years ago, there were very few if any other companies out there providing a similar service. Over the last few years, we have watched the industry grow as more companies attempt to provide cheap data recovery. But for a variety of reasons, DriveFish is still considered the best cheap data recovery, a title we are honored to have bestowed upon us.
With DriveFish, our recovery fees are some of the lowest in the industry and unlike some other cheap data recovery companies, we will never tell you one price and then give you another later. The prices listed on our website are a flat fee, and aside from target media and shipping, this is the ONLY cost you pay. No diagnosis or lab fee. No fee if we don’t recover the data you want. No extra fee for parts or because the drive ended up taking extra time. Just the simple flat fee based on the capacity of the hard drive. That’s all.
We also strive to continue providing the best customer service possible, and help you every way we can through your data recovery experience, which we know can be stressful and even frustrating with certain companies. Therefore we keep our model the same: to provide the best cheap data recovery with quality service and keep our customers happy.
It is this philosophy that has kept DriveFish number 1 in the cheap data recovery market for years now, and we plan to keep that position for many more.
Later in this first quarter of 2013, Kingston claims they will have a 1 TB flash drive available to the market. This is a vast jump up in capacity for flash media. Known as the DataTraveler HyperX Predator, the drive communicates with USB 3.0 and promises read speeds of up to 240MB/s and write speeds of up to 160MB/s. This is incredibly fast compared to historic flash media speeds!
Of course, you will have to pay a pretty penny to get your hands on one of these HyperX Predators. The currently available 512GB model is $1750, so if you want to be one of the first in line to get the 1TB model, get ready to break open your wallet. Of course, if you’re willing to wait a little while these will come down in price. Who knows, by later in the year there will probably be a 2TB available!
We are thankful to have discerning readers looking at our blog posts, and one of these readers commented on a recent post we did about RAID setups. In this article, we discussed how RAID stands for Redundant Array of Independent Disks. This is true, though originally the acronym stood for Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks, as our reader pointed out. More often now the “I” stands for “Independent”.
Either acronym can be misleading depending on the setup. Some RAID setups can use quality (read: not inexpensive) disks, and some RAIDs are actually set up so the multiple disks require each other to function, meaning they are not completely independent. For example, in a RAID 0 setup the data is split between disks, making it not entirely redundant (or independent for that matter). These setups are used more for performance, while setups like RAID 1 have mirror images on each disk, so they are actually redundant but perform slower.
So what does RAID stand for? Redundant Array of Independent Disks? Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks? Well, it doesn’t really matter. Different RAID setups can be fitting for different people’s needs. If you work in an environment where data loss is not an option, it is worthwhile to create more redundancy and sacrifice performance speed. If you are looking for storage and speed, it’s possible you can use a more performance speed based system.
You’ll want to do your homework before putting any type of RAID system together, but you can give us a call here at DriveFish and we will be glad to answer any questions you may have and help you construct a custom RAID setup suited to your needs.
After experiencing a hard drive failure, many customers ask us about more reliable solutions of data storage. One of these possible solutions is a RAID setup, which stands for “redundant array of independent disks.” This method of data storage combines multiple disks into one unit, providing a level of redundancy to insure the safety of the data even in the case of failed disks. The term is now used for many types of data storage that replicates data on multiple physical drives, but accessed by a computer operating system as a single drive.
RAIDs can be set up under a number of different types of architecture, depending on whether the user is more interested in data integrity, speed, or capacity. These are designated with numbers such as RAID 0 or RAID 1, etc. RAID 0 for example is used more for performance. The data is split up amongst the drives but it does not provide redundancy and therefore any drive failure destroys the array. More drives in the array allow for greater bandwith but also a greater risk of data loss.
RAID 1 on the other hand writes data identically to two drives, making a “mirrored set.” This setup may not perform as fast as the RAID 0, but the mirror setup allows for the array to continue functioning in the case of one of the drives failing, making this a better setup for users less concerned with speed and more interested in the preservation of their data.
There are several more types of RAID setups. If you are interested in your own RAID setup or just have questions about the possibilities, give us a call here at DriveFish and we will be glad to explain more and create a customer RAID setup for your needs.
Solid State Drives and Digital Forensics
What is a solid state drive?
We have discussed the basics about solid state drives (SSD) here at DriveFish before. While our traditional hard disk drives contain sensitive platters and many moving parts on the inside, modern solid state drives use integrates circuit assemblies to serve as memory and store data, eliminating the need for moving parts. Solid state drives have decreased in price significant and are becoming commonly used for their increased performance and reliability. At DriveFish we know all too well the problems sensitive moving parts within a hard drive can create and look forward to a more stable future for hard drive data storage.
How does digital evidence work with solid state drives?
One overlooked aspect of this transition is digital forensics, or the retrieval of digital evidence, which is a critical factor in many of today’s legal cases. While great deals of effort must be made to truly format a traditional hard disk drive, solid state drives make it much easier to remove data in a seemingly permanent fashion. It has many experts worried, with one quoted as saying, “It seems possible that the golden age for forensic recovery and analysis of deleted data and deleted metadata may now be ending.” Manufacturers are attempting to create solutions balancing the needs of law enforcement with the needs of security for any public or government entity, but the specific construction of solid state drives imposes some design limitations. As it stands, certain secure erase tools use encryption making it seemingly impossible to retrieve targeted files.
It will be interesting to observe the future of digital forensics with solid state drives.
To answer in a word: yes!
We completely understand hesitation in sending some of your most valuable personal data, we would do the same! And because of that, we treat every one of our customer’s data as priceless and incredibly sensitive, operating under a standard of non-disclosure. Our engineers only look at your data solely to confirm everything is valid, and beyond that consider it completely private.
This is our standard procedure, but if it makes you feel more comfortable, we are happy to offer a signed non-disclosure agreement. Our data recovery takes place in our offline, self-securing lab so there is no chance of your information ever leaking on to the Internet. We will keep your data for approximately 30 days after your recovery (to be sure you got everything you wanted), and then it will be digitally destroyed. The only bits of data that make it out of our lab are those that are delivered to you.
Of course you can feel free to call if you have further questions or concerns. While we can tell you all day about the security of our data recovery lab, sometimes it is much more comforting to hear someone’s voice. DriveFish’s friendly customer service representatives are happy to personally explain the process to you and discuss any other needs you may have that need to be accommodated.
Give us a call today!
Hard drives hold some of the most valuable information to us, and most DriveFish customers can attest to how fragile they can be. So you can imagine a hard drive in a computer being sent to Mars would have to be able to withstand extreme conditions far beyond those of your average computer room.
First of all, everything has to stay working because there is obviously no one up there to fix it. Curiosity’s sensitive electronic parts must withstand the coldness of space, radiation extremes, impact events, electric overload, and the killer of many hard drives on Earth – dust. These elements are all present in extreme forms on Mars, a planet with very little atmosphere for protection compared to our home planet.
So with this in mind, it makes the hardware components of the on-board computer less to scoff at. The specifications are barely on par with decade old home computers, including a PowerPC 750 clocked around 200 MHz, and 256 MB of DRAM with 2 GB of flash storage to store video and data before being transmitted to Earth. But the full computer suite had to be specially designed to withstand the elements of space and the Martian surface.
What happens when the software needs to be upgraded? No problem, we’ll take care of it remotely! Yes, the software in Curiosity was upgraded after reaching the planet’s surface to be geared towards day to day activities on the red planet. So even if the computer in Curiosity doesn’t seem as top of the line as you might guess, it should be an understatement to say it is still an impressive feat of technology.
If you have shopped for a hard drive in the last year, you have probably noticed a wild fluctuation in prices. What is going on here? Is someone trying to rip us off?
While many of the parts for drives are made around the region, most of the final assembly of hard drives is done in the country of Thailand. Flooding in Thailand prevented much of the factory labor from going to work, and hard drive prices went up accordingly. Many reputable internet hardware vendors such as NewEgg were selling hard drives for twice the cost they were prior to the flood. Computer providers such as Dell were actually shipping computers without hard drives, allowing the consumers to deal with the problem on their own.
Thankfully as of a few months ago, production got back to normal and prices started getting back down to their original value. Most stores now offer hard drives about the same cost they were prior to the flood. But even so, this is a lesson for all of us how a limited supply of a product like computer hard drives can have a worldwide effect on prices at the local level.
And don’t let anyone double charge you for a hard drive anymore! If you have questions about hard drives or current prices, contact DriveFish!
You have probably heard people talk about solid state drives as being the way of the future, but what exactly is a solid-state drive?
First of all, let’s differentiate between what we mean by solid state compared to regular hard disk drives. If you take the case off a hard disk drive (WHICH YOU SHOULD NEVER DO!), it looks kind of like the arm of a record player reading a CD. The disk you see is the top stack of disks that contain all the data of your hard drive. Your family photos, work documents, music, all just little bits of information on these disks. For this information to be displayed on your computer, a little needle on the end of the arm must read the information off the spinning disks and then communicate it with your computer so it can be displayed or listened to or whatever the case may be. Hard disk drives have been the most dominant device for memory storage since their introduction. While most of the world’s data is still on hard disk drives, the complicated interaction between the actuator arm and disks can create speed and reliability problems that can be solved with new technology.
This new technology is currently being dominated by solid-state drives. So what does solid state mean? Remember how we said hard disk drives have an arm like a record player that reads data off spinning disks? Well solid-state drives have taken these moving parts out of the picture. They use the same type of block input/output system as traditional hard disk drives, but their lack of moving components makes them much less susceptible physical shock or lost data. They are also silent and have significantly lower access time and latency. The main holdup keeping solid-state drives being in everyone’s computers is they are currently significantly more expensive than hard-disk drives, and typically have less capacity. However, technology advances on solid-state drives is continuing to rapidly approach reasonable consumer costs and capacities which will allow solid-state drives to likely become the standard data storage method for personal computers over the next few years.
We are in the age where most of the world’s information is in digital form, all encoded as little 1′s and 0′s firing in circuit boards. So how much of this information ever makes it out of the digital world into our physical one? According to a recent study by UC Berkeley scientists, only about 7% of information in the digital world ever leaves. This means most of the world’s information exists solely in the digital realm.
Many people out there might like for this information to stay digital. Those who commit cyber-crimes use a number of methods to cover their traces, such as giving important files obscure names and moving them to a hard to find location. While this seems like an easy solution for digital investigators, time and legal restraints can make finding and extracting these files challenging.
A cyber criminal can simply change a file name or location or delete files. Deleted files can often be retrieved from the Recycle Bin, or if the Recycle Bin has been cleared, using other investigative methods. Even formatted drives can be recovered depending on the thoroughness with which the drive was formatted. It is important for investigators to pay attention to hidden and inaccessible files as these commonly contain useful evidence. When very determined, a criminal can physically destroy a drive, which if done successfully there can be no recourse for.
The digital realm is a vast one with lots of nooks and crannies for information to hide in, but computer security experts are tenacious and will always be trying to keep up with protection methods.