HddSurgery data recovery tools training
Last week, HddSurgery held its first official training regarding the usage of HddSurgery data recovery & computer forensics tools. Multiple presentations about principles of hard disk drive mechanics were also a part of the training.
At the beginning of the presentation, HddSurgery's marketing manager Miloš Gizdovski welcomed our guests from the United States and France and held brief introductory presentation. Firstly, he presented both of our companies - HelpDisc data recovery, as a company which needs and ideas stand behind creation of HddSurgery, firstly as a tool brand and later as completely new company.
Photo 1: Miloš Gizdovski talks about first HddSurgery tool
He continued with the story about the risks which were carried by usage of conventional, pre-HddSurgery hard drive head replacement methodology. Development of the first HddSurgery tool for Maxtor hard drives, response from DR community and constant work and development of new tools as a result, were the main part of his introductory presentation.
Miloš concluded the introduction with the full list of current HddSurgery tools as well as with a graphical display of the countries in which HddSurgery tools are in use.
Žarko Damjanović, HddSurgery development engineer, was responsible for the main part of the training. Firstly, he held a presentation regarding CSS hard drives, landing zones parking principle, mutual differences between these hard drives and consequently differences between specific HddSurgery tools used on these HDDs. Miloš Petrović, our project technician, was Žarko’s assistant during the training.
Photo 2: Žarko Damjanović talks about CSS hard drives
Training continued with a live demonstration of head swap process on three different CSS hard drive models: ST3250824A, WD800JB-00JJC0 and ST31500541AS as models which represent three different types of CSS hard drive mechanics. After the live demonstration of HddSurgery head combs usage, course attendees repeated the procedure.
Presentation about hard drive spindle motors, their bearings, functionality, history and development followed. Causes and symptoms of jammed motor issue, one of the most complicated problems in data recovery, are noted and explained. Conventional platter swap methodology is mentioned with all of its imperfections. Risks, flaws and possible problems of platter replacement were underlined.
Then, HddSurgery spindle replacement tool is presented as a unique solution and different approach to jammed motor problem. Live demonstration was performed on real case - jammed motor on ST3500820AS.
Photo 3: Live demonstration of HddSurgery Spindle replacement tool
HddSurgery development engineer went through the entire spindle replacement procedure, simultaneously explaining to the attendees the importance and reasons of performing of each step in the process. After the spindle replacement procedure was completed, functional donor bearing was inserted into patient hard drive and glued there. Since some time is needed for glue to dry, the course continued.
Course attendees were then informed about hard drive load/unload (ramp) parking principle and its advantages over CSS technology. HddSurgery ramp tools were presented and the live demonstration of their usage followed. Using our tools, course trainer and attendees went through head swap process, firstly on WD10EARS-00Y5B1 and then on HDS722020ALA330.
Photo 4: Head replacement on HGST ramp hard drive
Second hard drive was a Hitachi model with 5 platters and 10 heads. The upper and lower magnet of these drives are connected and can't be disassembled by classical methods. This means that the heads must be disassembled together with the magnets. Support tool secures the position of the heads in relation to both magnets during the heads replacement process.
After this, HddSurgery engineer held another presentation regarding head stiction problem, its causes, appearance and symptoms. HddSurgery solution - head unstick tools and history of their development and use followed.
Live demonstration is performed on a real case - WD30EZRX-00MMMB0 with heads firmly stuck to the platters. Tips & hints for using specific head unstick tools are provided to the attendees. Result of the head unstick operation was - heads are unstuck and safely positioned on the ramp while the platters can spin freely again.
Just one thing remained before the end of the training - seeing the results of the spindle replacement process. Patient hard drive, whose jammed bearing was replaced with a functional one, was dismounted from the spindle replacement tool and their platters were able to rotate once again. So, spindle replacement process was successful - "Eppur si muove" ("And yet it moves") in the words of Galileo Galilei. :)
HddSurgery marketing manager concluded the course with the story about ideas for the company's future development and the future of the data storage industry. Some new ideas and projects were presented including HddSurgery Laminar flow clean bench and Clean room project, platter inspection tool, new head combs...
At the end of the training, course attendes had various questions regarding data recovery tools and future company project. HddSurgery’s CEO Nikola Radovanović discussed the company’s projects and what future holds for HddSurgery, HelpDisc and data recovery itself.
That was the end of successful and busy training day. Both trainers and attendees finished it in kafana in Skadarlija, bohemian quarter of Belgrade, enjoying the Serbian cuisine and music.