V-NAND data recovery complications...

Recently ‘Planar’ NAND technology has expanded with changes to density (Gbs per square millimetre), bits per cell and power consumption, notwithstanding the decreasing costs to produce it. However squeezing more bits into each NAND flash cell is becoming challenging and we are approaching the limit. Welcome to 3D NAND or V-NAND technology! Well we are now seeing several layers stacked vertically which improves the performance significantly.

Solid state drives (SSDs) based on this 3D or Vertical NAND technology have 24 or even 48 layers (256GB), with talk of 64 layers soon! Stacking cells has lots of benefits, including higher capacities and improved electrical performance because of the shortening of the interconnecting lengths between cells. But this new technology has massive implications for data recovery. When cells fail, removing chips becomes increasingly more difficult.

That’s where our research team is leading the industry. By reverse engineering data storage such as Samsung’s V-NAND 850 Pro solid state drives, we can develop new data recovery procedures, tools and handlers. Needless to say, there are no generic data recovery tools for this new V-NAND technology. The biggest challenge for our data recovery engineers is separating the flash cells without damage, so they can be read by a NAND reconstructor, before processing the physical image and converting it to a logical image with a file system.