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  • Posted on: 12/19/2013

    WD Recovery

     

    Just in time for holiday shopping, data storage leader Western Digital™ (WD) has announced a hybrid replacement hard drive for aging laptops.

    Users suffering from old, slow PCs can upgrade to a new WD Black2 drive that combines 1TB of conventional hard disk data storage with a 120GB SSD for the operating system and programs, all on a single 9.5 mm drive. Not only will users enjoy more storage space than many legacy laptops offer, but the SSD for important operating system files may speed operation of older laptops. The 6Gbps SATA3 connection is compatible with legacy SATA modes, making this an effective upgrade even for older laptops.

    The Western Digital™ WDBlack2 drive includes a full transfer kit to make the upgrade easy, and provides users with a choice of a fresh OS install or complete cloning of all your files. The hard disk drive includes a link cable and Paragon cloning software.

    In addition, the drive comes with a five-year warranty, because the dual-drive hybrid design should take the strain off drives, prolonging their life and the number of read/write cycles until failure.

    Back Up Before You Upgrade
    It’s exciting to get a new drive, whether it’s a holiday gift or a present to yourself. Here at 24 Hour Data, we love technology as much as you do, so we understand why you’d be eager to swap out your hard disk drive with the new WDBlack2.

    But take the time necessary to back up your files before the transition. Western Digital did their best to make the upgrade process easy and fail-proof, but anything can happen when it comes to technology.

    Back up your files to CD, DVD-rom, an inexpensive flash drive, another external hard disk drive or the cloud before you swap your old drive for the new Western Digital™ WDBlack2.

    But remember, anyone can make a mistake. If your back-ups fail and you lose your data during the transition, 24 Hour Data is here to help. If you don’t heed our warning and fail to back up your data before your upgrade your drive, we won’t judge. Give us a call and we’ll help you restore your valuable family photos, videos, music and other media. That’s why 24 Hour Data is here, 24 hours a day, 365 days out of the year. 

  • Posted on: 12/17/2013

    Encrypted Recovery

     

     

    We recently talked about the benefits of Full Disk Encryption in an organization that is concerned about data security (and who isn’t concerned about data security today?) But there are limits to the level of security FDE can provide. Most of these limits are not inherent in the software, however, but in the level of care users in the organization take to protect the data. 


    As successful as FDE is to prevent outside theft of important data, there are certain things FDE can’t accomplish. Let’s take a look at some of the limitations of full disk encryption.

    FDE can slow down processes. – FDE is hardware-based encryption, which means the drive is encrypted at the hardware level, and the encryption must be included by the manufacturer at the time of production, although users can add FDE technology through software applications after the fact. FDE encrypts not only mission critical data, but the drive’s operating system. This can slow down processes.

    FDE can create a false sense of security – While full disk encryption encrypts data on the drive, it cannot protect your server or workstation PCs from threats of viruses and malware. Users still need to be conscious of accessing the internet only via secure connections and making sure sites they visit have SSL encryption if they are sharing important financial data. There are a number of other common sense measures that must be taken to protect data, even on an encrypted hard drive.

    Full Disk Encryption must be used on all drives in your organization – Using FDE is one way to protect your organization’s most critical data and trade secrets. But you must use the same level of encryption on any and all copies of that data, including your back-ups. You wouldn’t believe the number of users who have encrypted drives for their servers or workstations but then back-up data to unencrypted drives.

    This philosophy extends to encrypted drive data recovery, too. If your encrypted drive needs data recovery service, you want a firm that will protect your data with the same level of care you do, storing it in a secure facility and returning your recovered data on an encrypted drive. 

    Your data recovery service, additionally, should respect your right to confidentiality in a data recovery emergency. You should trust your data recovery specialists as much as you trust your own IT staff with mission critical data. Only then will you know you are doing everything you can to protect your organization’s data. 

     

  • Posted on: 12/12/2013

    Data Security

     

    Many of our clients don’t realize the connection, but data recovery, data protection and security are inextricably linked within an organization. If your computer is not secure, particularly when you connect to the Internet, you could become a victim of viruses and malware that can damage files and render mission critical data inaccessible.

    Additionally, organizations that exhibit lax IT security also find they are lacking in data protection that could prevent a data recovery emergency. Data protection, just like data security, is never complete. An organization never reaches an endpoint where they can say, “We are 100 percent secure and protected and no longer have to worry about threats.”

    IT security specialist Debbie Mahler says it very well in this blog post published on tech blog Tripwire, “[Security] is a continuous, ongoing process of always staying one step ahead of the threats.”

    She goes on to say that your IT system is only as secure as the weakest link. This is a common statement in IT, in general, but it’s particularly eye-opening when we look at it in terms of security. She points out that your staff is typically the weakest link in your IT systems security. If the people in your organization don’t take data protection and security seriously, and if systems and protocols aren’t in place to enforce security measures, you are setting yourself up for loss and a data recovery emergency. 

    Common Sense Security
    First, at the most basic level, common sense measures must be taken to protect data theft and vulnerability within an organization, which includes users:

    -  locking their workstations with a password before they leave their desks

    • -not leaving mission critical data exposed before the password-protected screensaver kicks in
    • -positioning their monitor so it can’t be viewed over their shoulder from people outside or within the office (the monitor should be facing the wall, and no one but the user should be on that side of the desk)
    • -not leaving laptops unattended where someone can install a keystroke logger to access passwords
    • -making sure no one can discern their password when they enter it in a public place
    • -creating passwords are difficult to hack, consisting of a combination of numbers, letters and special characters

    These could be considered six steps toward better security at the end-user level. The Tripwire article goes on to bring up another very important point. “All it takes is one contaminated USB flash drive inserted by a vendor to wreak havoc or provide a back door into sensitive data customer data.”

    Security at Every Level, Even In A Data Recovery Emergency
    Most large companies today are savvy about the big stuff when it comes to data security and data protection, using encrypted hard drives and RAID arrays with built-in redundancy, as well as virtual servers that provide snapshots for easy back up.


    But many forget the everyday things they can do to enhance IT security: making sure your employees are educated on the importance of security and best practices, and choosing vendors you can trust if those companies will have any contact with your network or server.

    This extends to finding a data recovery service that can help you in an emergency and treat your data with the same care as you do, providing the same level of security that you offer on your own servers. If you send 24 Hour Data an encrypted drive, your recovered data remains secure after we recover it. That’s just one more part of the 24 Hour Data difference

  • Posted on: 12/10/2013

    RAID 6 Recovery

     

    If you’re considering new enterprise level RAID storage, you may have heard about some of the drawbacks of RAID 5. RAID 5 arrays stripe data and provide parity, and can tolerate the failure of one RAID drive. The problem? A RAID drive failure is rarely an isolated event. When one drive in a RAID array fails, it puts stress on the other drives. This leads to cascading failure and, most often, the need for emergency RAID recovery from a professional data recovery service.

    RAID 6 is very similar to RAID 5, but has become a preferred configuration for enterprise level RAID storage.

    A RAID 6 array can tolerate the failure of two drives, simultaneously, before facing data loss. RAID 6 requires at least four hard disk drives, and supports a maximum of 16 drives. RAID 6 stripes blocks of data with parity across all drives. A second set of parity information for each block of data provides 100% data protection.

    Adding two additional drives to a RAID 6 array, creating a 6-drive RAID 6 array, can prolong the life of a RAID array, because the two drives can be used to perform a hot swap in the event of drive failure. Although there may be a drop in performance with a RAID 6 array, due to the second set of parity, the added data protection makes it a good choice for storing mission critical data.

    RAID 6 may cause some loss of performance because of the second set of parity, but in cases where security of data is more important than performance, RAID 6 is an affordable choice. Make sure you select a RAID controller that supports RAID level 6 configuration.

    RAID 6 Data Recovery
    Even with the capability for a hot swap of two disks in a RAID array, and parity on two levels, RAID 6 arrays can still suffer hard disk failure resulting in cascading RAID failure and the loss of mission critical data. It’s important to perform regular back-ups, even of a RAID 6 array, and to know there’s a data recovery service you can turn to when you need your RAID server recovered.

    24 Hour Data specializes in all level of RAID data recovery, including RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 6, RAID 10, and RAID 50. Contact us for a free price quote within 24 hours and data recovery in as little as 48 hours in many cases. 

  • Posted on: 12/05/2013

     

    Encryption Recovery

     

    24 Hour Data specializes in encrypted hard disk recovery, which includes drives using full disk encryption (FDE) technology. Let’s take a look at what full disk encryption is and why it is harder than other encrypted drive recovery, requiring more time in the lab and tops-in-their-field, experienced data recovery engineers.

    What is Full Disk Encryption?
    FDE is drive encryption that takes place at the hardware level. You can buy disk encrypting software and add it to hard drives to encrypt your data. But with FDE, even if your hard drive is removed from the computer and put into a different machine, the data will be inaccessible.
    FDE is common on laptop and notebook computers, which may be at risk of theft. If your drive does not use FDE, even if the thief doesn’t have your laptop password, he can remove the drive and read it.  With FDE, this is impossible.

    FDE is also common on external hard drives for the same reason; these storage devices may be vulnerable to loss or theft.

    How Does FDE Work?
    FDE encrypts data as it is written onto a hard drive. The authentication key is required to decrypt the data and read it from the drive. This occurs when the computer is unlocked via the password. All data, including the operating system, is encrypted, which may slow down access times. However, it is the most secure form of data encryption available today.

    Drawbacks of FDE
    In addition to slowing down the computer due to the encryption and decryption process, full drive encryption also makes data recovery more difficult. Encrypted drives using FDE are vulnerable to the same data loss threats, including logical and physical hard drive failure, as any other hard disk drive. But data recovery techniques are more complex.

    Encrypted Drive Data Recovery
    Often, when a drive requires physical recovery, data recovery engineers remove the drive and replace worn parts with parts in another drive of the same make and model, or place the platters storing the data in another, working drive. This process takes place in a certified clean room environment and adds time and costs to the data recovery process. 

    Recovering an encrypted hard drive that uses FDE adds another step to the data recovery process; the data must be decrypted. This requires specialized knowledge and technology.

    Not every data recovery service has the expertise or experience in successfully recovering encrypted hard disk drives. 24 Hour Data has been working with FDE and other encrypted drives for as long as the technology has been available. We will recover lost data from your encrypted drive, or there’s no charge for our service. 



     

  • Posted on: 12/05/2013

    Encryption Recovery

     

    24 Hour Data specializes in encrypted hard disk recovery, which includes drives using full disk encryption (FDE) technology. Let’s take a look at what full disk encryption is and why it is harder than other encrypted drive recovery, requiring more time in the lab and tops-in-their-field, experienced data recovery engineers.

    What is Full Disk Encryption?
    FDE is drive encryption that takes place at the hardware level. You can buy disk encrypting software and add it to hard drives to encrypt your data. But with FDE, even if your hard drive is removed from the computer and put into a different machine, the data will be inaccessible.
    FDE is common on laptop and notebook computers, which may be at risk of theft. If your drive does not use FDE, even if the thief doesn’t have your laptop password, he can remove the drive and read it.  With FDE, this is impossible.

    FDE is also common on external hard drives for the same reason; these storage devices may be vulnerable to loss or theft.

    How Does FDE Work?
    FDE encrypts data as it is written onto a hard drive. The authentication key is required to decrypt the data and read it from the drive. This occurs when the computer is unlocked via the password. All data, including the operating system, is encrypted, which may slow down access times. However, it is the most secure form of data encryption available today.

    Drawbacks of FDE
    In addition to slowing down the computer due to the encryption and decryption process, full drive encryption also makes data recovery more difficult. Encrypted drives using FDE are vulnerable to the same data loss threats, including logical and physical hard drive failure, as any other hard disk drive. But data recovery techniques are more complex.

    Encrypted Drive Data Recovery
    Often, when a drive requires physical recovery, data recovery engineers remove the drive and replace worn parts with parts in another drive of the same make and model, or place the platters storing the data in another, working drive. This process takes place in a certified clean room environment and adds time and costs to the data recovery process. 

    Recovering an encrypted hard drive that uses FDE adds another step to the data recovery process; the data must be decrypted. This requires specialized knowledge and technology.

    Not every data recovery service has the expertise or experience in successfully recovering encrypted hard disk drives. 24 Hour Data has been working with FDE and other encrypted drives for as long as the technology has been available. We will recover lost data from your encrypted drive, or there’s no charge for our service. 

     

  • Posted on: 11/21/2013

    RAID Data Recovery

     

    There are many options available for home, small business and enterprise level storage. As many large organizations make the shift to virtualization for efficiency and increased storage capacity, simpler options exist using the principles of RAID storage. Let’s explore two common storage devices and how they differ.

    What Is RAID?
    To go back to storage technology 101, RAID is a Redundant Array of Inexpensive (or Independent, depending on who you talk to) Disks. Depending on the RAID level and RAID configuration, the device uses two or more disks and either duplicates data across drives for increased stability and protection or stripes data across drives for increased performance.

    RAID 5 servers and higher provide a blend of increased performance and duplication for added security. RAID servers frequently employ a controller to manage the data across three or more hard disk drives.
    24 Hour Data has stayed on top of RAID technology advancements and maintains high success rates for RAID data recovery. You can read more about our RAID recovery techniques here.

    What Is An NAS Appliance?
    NAS stands for Network Attached Storage, which means that the storage device is attached to your computer over the local area network (usually via Ethernet) and stores data without adding software applications to your computer workstation or taking up storage space or memory on your computer. In this way, NAS differs from Direct Attached Storage.


    Like a RAID server, NAS uses a RAID configuration for redundancy and increased speed. However, because a RAID server is connected directly to the computer, it will naturally be faster than a NAS device. Latency in the network connection won’t affect a direct attached RAID array. A RAID server, although it is an external device, operates much like an internal hard drive.

    A NAS device would be preferred if multiple workstations had to connect to the same data and applications. Rather than using separate RAID arrays, resulting in additional software and hardware costs, a NAS device permits network connection to any workstation without using the resources of the computer it is attached to.

    RAID or NAS?
    Whether you choose Network Attached Storage or a Direct Attached (DAS) RAID array, note that performance and storage capacity and features vary widely between different models. Consider the level and configuration of the RAID, the controller, and the storage capacity before making your choice.

    Whatever you choose, 24 Hour Data’s recovery specialists have expertise in NAS recovery and RAID recovery for all popular makes and models, including IBM, Cisco, Dell, HP and many others. 

  • Posted on: 11/08/2013

    SSD Recovery

     

    More computers today, as well as some servers and RAID arrays, rely on solid state drives (SSDs) for storage. The benefits of SSDs are well-documented, including increased reliability since there are fewer moving parts to fail, greater energy efficiency, and faster performance.

    But how do they really work? Let’s take a peek inside solid state drives, with the objective of understanding why solid state drive data recovery is so complicated, requiring the expertise of a professional data recovery service.

    How Solid State Drives Store Data
    Solid state drives store data on flash memory, a collection of NAND chips, which are made up of floating gate transistors that hold a charge of zero or one. The transistors are stored in collections of cells, which are organized into a grid, called a block. One row of that grid is considered a “page” of data.

    Why Are SSDs Faster Than HDDs?
    “Latency” in a computer is the time delay it takes a CPU to find stored data. Solid state drives have lower latency than HDDs, first and foremost, because they have no moving parts. Regardless of where on the flash memory data is stored, access is nearly instantaneous, reducing latency and making your computer feel much faster. 

    Additionally, SSDs read and write data faster than conventional HDDs, further improving performance. But the controller and the NAND flash components, themselves, make data recovery more challenging than conventional hard disk data recovery.

    Solid State Drive Failure?
    There’s one key drawback to solid state memory that’s worth mentioning: SSDs get slower as they age. This is because solid state drives don’t overwrite data the way hard disk drives do. Instead, the drive erases data in an entire block at one time when it needs to write new data on that block.


    Each SSD manufacturer has developed proprietary techniques involving compression and reduplication to store data more efficiently in the NAND flash and minimize erasing and rewriting blocks of data more times than necessary. These operations are controlled by the SSD controller, which is similar to a controller in a RAID array.

    Our explanation simplifies the process. You can read about how NAND flash and solid state drives work in even more detail in this article published by Ars Technica.

    As SSDs are developed with greater storage densities, write cycles become even more complex, increasing error rates and reducing the life of each flash cell. This makes solid state drive failure, and the loss of mission critical data, inevitable.

    Solid State Drive Recovery Processes
    SSDs use intricate transistors and controllers to store data. Each SSD manufacturer has its own techniques and methods to manage data storage and maintain the speed of an SSD over numerous read/write cycles. When SSDs fail, each data recovery case is different from the ones before it. Data recovery engineers must understand in detail how each brand and model of SSD works in order to successfully recover lost data.

    24 Hour Data maintains industry high success rates for solid state drive data recovery. Since flash memory and SSD storage came onto the market, we’ve been staying up to date on SSD technology and developing the most effective, most efficient recovery techniques to stay at the top of the data recovery field.

    Companies and individuals across the U.S. trust 24 Hour Data for SSD recovery. Give us a call if you need a solid state drive recovered quickly and completely. 

  • Posted on: 10/11/2013

    24 Hour Data has a long history of serving businesses and individuals in need of emergency data recovery services. We’ve been thinking of a way to thank our past customers, as well as new customers who call us each day.

    We’ve decided to hold a prize drawing for your choice of two useful, high-tech items: an iPad or an external hard drive. The contest is open to all past satisfied clients of 24 Hour Data, who have called us for fast and successful data recovery on a hard drive, flash drive, RAID array, virtual server, smartphone, Mac device or any other data storage media.

    How to Win with 24 Hour Data
    To be entered into our quarterly drawing, all you have to do is let the world know you are a satisfied 24 Hour Data customer. Post a review on Google, Yelp or both sites, letting readers know what you like about 24 Hour Data and how we helped save the day for you.

    Business owners, did we recover mission critical data and get you back up and running to save you thousands of dollars? Parents, did we find deleted baby photos you thought were gone forever?  Maybe you’re a student and we recovered your master thesis. Share your exciting data recovery story with the world!

    Contest Rules
    To be entered into our drawing to win an external hard drive (We’d love to see all our customers backing up their data onto an external device), an iPod Touch or an iPad, post a review detailing your experience with 24 Hour Data and why you are happy with us on Google or Yelp!

    • Maximum of two reviews per person (one for Google and one for Yelp) 
    • You will receive one contest entry per review
    • Your data recovery must have been performed successfully by 24 Hour Data
    • The name on the reviews must match the full name on the data recovery form you submitted to 24 Hour Data, which is your 24 Hour Data account name (Please contact us if you don’t remember your account name) 

    -One winner will be notified each quarter via the email 24 Hour Data has on file

    -Winner will have 7 days to claim their prize via phone or email, after that, the winner will forfeit their prize and a new winner will be drawn for the quarter.
    - Odds of winning depends on the number of entries received each quarter

    The Prizes
    Here’s the important part: What you could win just by sharing your thoughts about 24 Hour Data’s recovery service.

    One winner each quarter will have a choice to claim one of these four high-tech prizes to improve your productivity or provide peace-of-mind that your business or personal data is protected and secure.

    •  iPad Mini 16GB WiFi in Black & Slate or White & Silver
    • iPod Touch 32GB, any color
    • Western Digital MyBook Studio 4TB External Hard Drive USB 3.0
    • LaCie Blade Runner 4TB External Hard Drive USB 3.0

    We use these drives to return recovered data to our customers, because they are reliable, easy-to-use, and have a large storage capacity. Now, you can back up your data to one of these drives for an added layer of protection against catastrophic data loss.

    What Are You Waiting For?
    What’s stopping you from your chance to win a great prize and share your data recovery story with the world? Go to Google or Yelp now to post a short review of 24 Hour Data’s service, and we’ll enter you in our drawing right away.

  • Posted on: 10/02/2013

    Hard Drive Recovery

     

    Major hard disk drive manufacturers announced at the Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara, California, last month, the launch of a new industry association, the Storage Products Association. 

    Seagate®, Western Digital®, HGST® and Toshiba® are the founding members of the organization devoted to helping storage manufacturers and users understand and support current and future storage needs. The organization will emphasize the role hard disk drives continue to play in storage technology innovations, while also promoting solid state and HDD hybrid storage media.

    Hard Disk Drives Are Not Dead
    Even with the prevalence and proliferation of flash media storage, conventional rotating media hard disk drives are not dead. A case in point is Seagate’s newest ultra-slim HDD and a number of new, eco-friendly hybrid drives on the market.

    Of the members of the organization, only Toshiba produces solid state drives. Seagate, WD, and HGST all continue to focus their R&D efforts and new product launches on conventional hard disk storage. 

    The Role of Data Recovery Firms in Storage Media Innovations
    As a top data recovery service, it’s not 24 Hour Data’s role to pass judgment on which storage format is superior: conventional hard disk drives or SSDs. Both have benefits and drawbacks based on users’ budget requirements and storage needs.

    As SSDs grow in popularity, we see growing numbers of solid state recovery cases come into our office, however, we also see plenty of hard disk drives at the end of their life span. Our data recovery engineers are constantly perfecting our SSD recovery techniques, while staying up to date on the latest HDD technology as well. 

    As the storage media market evolves, 24 Hour Data keeps an eye on all the developments in order to continue to develop the most effective, fastest, cutting edge data recovery techniques for new and emerging media. Our data recovery specialists stay on top of new and evolving forms of storage media, including conventional hard disk drives in new, slimmer formats; hybrid drives; flash memory storage, and SSDs.

    At the same time, through this blog and our informative website pages, we strive to keep consumers of storage media educated by debunking myths and misconceptions about popular storage methods and letting readers know about the newest products. In this regard, our social media mission and the mission of SPA is the same.

    We wish the manufacturers involved in SPA much success moving forward, and we’ll continue keeping our readers and customers up to date on their efforts in the storage industry. 

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