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 Post subject: NVRAM Chip used in IBM/Hitachi HDD and the countermeasure fo
PostPosted: December 26th, 2007, 22:58 
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NVRAM Chip used in IBM/Hitachi HDD and the countermeasure for doing a data recovery

First let’s take a look at the NVRAM (Non-Volatile Random Access Memory) used on HITACHI HDD, NVRAM is one member of NVM※(see introduction at the end)family, it can process data accessing randomly and keep data even when power is off, but its price is comparatively more expensive than the former ROM.

NVRAM of HITACHI HDD saves important data such as number of HEADs; beginning position of SA, ROM overlay module checkout and platter adaptive parameter.
At present, HITACHI is the first manufacturer to use NVRAM as the media for saving key information.

The following are two typical HITACHI PCBA Layouts; the mark shows the NVRAM position.






In the former HDD products, the important information such as number of HEAD, media adaptive and so on were saved in the ROM chip or the SA on platter. HITACHI first uses NVRAM as the storage media for its key parameters and adopts one very important feature: Random Beginning Position of SA. Each HDD takes a random address as its SA (Serve Area) beginning position (basically we can say in this new tech every HDD has a unique firmware beginning position address). This unique “Random Beginning Position of SA” for each HDD is to be saved in the NVRAM of itself, which means each HDD can work with its original NVRAM only, just like one key opens one lock only; Once the data in the NVRAM is broken or being lost, there will be no operating system or software tool which can detect the HDD, not to speak of working on the SA of the HDD. Therefore, The HDD repair or data recovery becomes mission impossible, even the former universal ways like “HOT SWAP PCB” become useless in such case (the information stored in each NVRAM is unique), we can do nothing about it, the HDD is dead, also your invaluable data. This remains until the “HD Doctor for IBM/Hitachi” of SalvationDATA becomes available.

At present market, we can’t find a data recovery product that can solve this problem effectively. Famous data recovery companies around the world like SALVATIONDATA, ACE etc. are all doing researches on this new technology, and we noticed that SalvationDATA has brought forward an effective solution towards data recovery and HDD repair from IBM/Hitachi HDD which has had the data stored in its NVRAM damaged –HD Doctor for IBM/Hitachi, which will be released by January 2008.


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 Post subject: Informative Article
PostPosted: December 27th, 2007, 0:53 
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Very good research by salvationdata. Congratulations Laura and Salvationdata Team. My best wishes.
Hddbug


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 Post subject: Re: NVRAM Chip used in IBM/Hitachi HDD and the countermeasure fo
PostPosted: December 31st, 2007, 13:54 
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Location: In ur HDD !
Most of the times if the PCB gets dead Nvram is not damaged in most of the cases luckily i have never seen NVRAM damaged and if the NVRAM is damaged eg burned how can u recover it ?


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 Post subject: Re: NVRAM Chip used in IBM/Hitachi HDD and the countermeasure fo
PostPosted: January 2nd, 2008, 21:42 
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very good research


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 Post subject: Re: NVRAM Chip used in IBM/Hitachi HDD and the countermeasure fo
PostPosted: January 3rd, 2008, 5:06 
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rameez wrote:
Most of the times if the PCB gets dead Nvram is not damaged in most of the cases luckily i have never seen NVRAM damaged and if the NVRAM is damaged eg burned how can u recover it ?



It's easy for us to solve this problem
Just find another same version NVRAM to replace the burned one,and load the HDD from file,and setup a same model NVRAM data,and begin match process,after FW matching and DATA matching,the NVRAM will be totally recovered.

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 Post subject: Re: NVRAM Chip used in IBM/Hitachi HDD and the countermeasure fo
PostPosted: January 3rd, 2008, 13:56 
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salvationlaura wrote:
HITACHI first uses NVRAM as the storage media for its key parameters and adopts one very important feature: Random Beginning Position of SA. Each HDD takes a random address as its SA (Serve Area) beginning position (basically we can say in this new tech every HDD has a unique firmware beginning position address). This unique “Random Beginning Position of SA” for each HDD is to be saved in the NVRAM of itself, which means each HDD can work with its original NVRAM only, just like one key opens one lock only;

"And on the fifth day Sharp-sighted Falcon observed what the prison had a missed wall"©

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 Post subject: Re: NVRAM Chip used in IBM/Hitachi HDD and the countermeasure fo
PostPosted: January 3rd, 2008, 14:02 
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salvationlaura wrote:
rameez wrote:
Most of the times if the PCB gets dead Nvram is not damaged in most of the cases luckily i have never seen NVRAM damaged and if the NVRAM is damaged eg burned how can u recover it ?



It's easy for us to solve this problem
Just find another same version NVRAM to replace the burned one,and load the HDD from file,and setup a same model NVRAM data,and begin match process,after FW matching and DATA matching,the NVRAM will be totally recovered.

As I remember 2.5" drives park heads if critical errors were found during init process (such as missed FW) and after that the drives do not want to unpark heads to read SA until power cycle. So, to find location of SA by modifying NVRAM, operator needs to re-power drive after each modification.
Is it the way how you solving the problem for 2.5" drives?

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 Post subject: Re: NVRAM Chip used in IBM/Hitachi HDD and the countermeasure fo
PostPosted: January 9th, 2008, 2:35 
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SalvationDATA tool can solve this problem directly and easy,because our IBM/HITACHI Doctor can load directly from file where you stored the firmware, and this is the function that no other tools have. The load process will startup the drive.

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 Post subject: Re: NVRAM Chip used in IBM/Hitachi HDD and the countermeasure fo
PostPosted: January 9th, 2008, 18:46 
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salvationlaura wrote:
SalvationDATA tool can solve this problem directly and easy,because our IBM/HITACHI Doctor can load directly from file where you stored the firmware, and this is the function that no other tools have. The load process will startup the drive.

I didn't understand where I can take the file with firmware if I cannot read firmware from a drive if it has non-orignal NVRAM. That really looks pointless

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