The Road to Data Recovery

Computer devices are central to any business activity in today’s times. All computer drives and storage devices have one thing in common; the data stored can turn inaccessible due to physical damage to the device, logical damage to the file system and malware attacks. Data loss can lead to huge downtime costs and loss of crucial information. Data Recovery provided a way out of this conundrum.

Data Recovery is a process of retrieving corrupted, damaged and formatted data from files and storage devices. Data can be salvaged from a variety of storage media, including internal and external hard disk drives (HDDs), USB flash drives, magnetic tapes, CDs, DVDs and other electronic devices. Data deleted from storage devices is never lost forever. It lingers around the storage devices and can be recovered with the help of data recovery tools and services. Data recovery tools employ algorithms to scan the storage areas of a device, collect pieces of deleted and formatted files from MBR (master boot record) of the storage device, let the users preview files and subsequently proceed with the actual recovery.

Data loss can be classified into 2 categories, viz. logical and physical. A logical problem takes place when the computer hard drive is in perfect working condition, but data has been lost due to file deletion, drive formatting or some other human errors. A majority of the data loss cases are a result of logical problems, and software solutions can be used to recover files in such cases. Recovery software recovers and repairs data files, databases and corrupted partitions, and restores the existing file formats such as images, documents, videos and compressed files. In the event of extensive damage to the file systems, data retrieval algorithms will usually reconstruct the files. Data recovery softwares for both windows and apple environments, such as R-Studio for Mac, are specifically designed for the Mac OS environment.

A physical problem is a situation whereby the mechanical and electrical components of a drive have been driven out of action by a physical issue. Data is written by actuator arms and stored on hard drive platters spinning at the rate of 800 to 15000 RPM. In the wake of increased demand for storing capacity, manufacturers tend to compress a large amount of data within small hard drive surfaces. This makes the data recovery process complex and time-consuming, and a failure in the actuator arms and platters can extensively damage the stored data. All such devices have to be sent to specialized data recovery services, which execute the data recovery process in clean data recovery rooms and labs. Computers may sometimes give a warning of an impending hard disk failure or a system crash by suddenly rebooting, displaying a blank screen or not recognizing a disk partition and these situations merit immediate attention.

To end, Data recovery should not only be regarded as a solution to an existing issue, but also as a protective measure to pre-empt a problem.