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Next Level Technology has been serving the Hunt Valley area since 1997, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

What Does Data Recovery Involve?

What Does Data Recovery Involve?

Companies are going further and further--spending more capital than ever--to try and protect their data from loss. That’s not to say that there are times when critical business data is corrupted, damaged, formatted, lost, or dubiously inaccessible. This generally comes about because of a total failure of a core component of a computer: the hard drive.

The hard drive of a computer is essential to its ability to store and render information. That information, if it's important enough, can then be backed up to other hard drives to build redundancy. What happens when a hard drive crashes and there is no backup file? For the business owner, just like the college student that stayed up all night working on a project only to have their OS crash erasing their work, it can be explained in one word: anxiety.

The panic is especially strong if the data that was lost has data that is of any importance. Losing information is never good, but if you haven’t taken steps to protect the data you need to sustain efficient operations, and the data that could really hurt your endeavor if it got out (client financial and personal information), you are sure in for some serious trepidation. After all, it’s never good when your options are limited, but that’s exactly what happens when you lose customer data.

Today’s hardware is much more reliable than in the past, which means it typically lasts longer. Unfortunately, it is truly just a matter of time until the hardware fails. Counter this fact with the trend in continuity that has many organizations deploying network attached data and recovery systems, and you’d think that situations in which a business loses data would be rare. The problem, however, is actually quite commonplace, and can really be a detrimental situation for any organization. After all, the types of information that are stored on these devices go from benign files with no real value to extremely sensitive information that divulge a person’s more private information.

Luckily, there are solutions available for these types of situations. Data recovery, not to be confused with disaster recovery, is the process of retrieving data from “broken” technology; and, more specifically, corrupted storage media. Most of the instances of this happening are the result of an operating system failure that leads to situations where users can’t access information, or hardware failure where corresponding data was not properly backed up. Sometimes, however, it is caused by something so benign as user error.

So say a system fails and you want to get the data off of the broken drive. It could be a server drive, a hard disk drive inside a PC, an external hard drive, or a mobile device’s hard drive. There are several factors you have to be concerned about. First of which is, how do you go about recovering this information?

For files that have been deleted by users, the solution is pretty straightforward. Many of the files that have been deleted stay on the hard drive until it is overwritten by another file. If you acknowledge your mistake quickly, you have an excellent shot of getting your data back. In this scenario, a file recovery software is used. The software uses complex algorithms to look for the file on the hard drive. It does this by finding pieces of the file to guess where the file was physically stored. So while you may hold out hope for a painless recovery of a deleted file, it’s just the matter of whether it has been overwritten or not. In fact, most software-based file recovery is handled the same way.

What happens if the drive itself is damaged? Recovering files from a damaged hard drive is a very technical process. Essentially a recovery technician opens the damaged hard drive up in a clean room, which is a highly controlled environment that is, for the most part, sterile and free from static electricity. They will then rebuild parts of the hard drive to create a disk image that can then be read using very sophisticated software. As you’d imagine this process is lengthy and extraordinarily expensive. For solid state drives, it is even more expensive since the technology is still so new.

The best way to avoid the anxiety, headaches, and expenses associated with data recovery is to be sure to protect your data with a comprehensive backup and recovery platform. That way, when your hard drive fails or one of your people formats a drive you needed, you won’t be spending top dollar to get the data back. For more information about data recovery and data backup, call us today at 410-616-2070.

 

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