Calculating hash during imaging
Atola Insight Forensic supports hash calculation of both source and target devices in conjunction with imaging. We have developed highly flexible functionality to help optimize evidence acquisition process to fit one’s internal procedures as well as avoid causing further damage to fragile media.
To view the hashing options:
- In the sidebar, click Imaging.
- Click Create New Session.
- Select the target device or file.
- In Preset line, click the Show settings link.
- In the upper part of the Passes and Hash tab there are three checkboxes:
- Pre-hash source device.
- Hash source during imaging.
- Post-hash target device(s).
Multiselect is available, which allows an operator to use all three of these options.
However, Pre-hash source drive option must be used with caution: although pre-hashing can be required by an investigator’s internal procedures, when dealing with drives that have been diagnosed with hardware failure, this operation may cause further damage to the drive before essential data is imaged.
On the contrary, Hash source during imaging is the most appropriate way to calculate the hash of a fragile source evidence drive. In this case, Insight only needs to read the data on the drive once to both image and calculate the hash, thus minimally using the drive’s hardware.
Post-hash target device(s) option allows to properly record the calculated hash in the case. Since this operation does not require reading the source drive, it is safe to use this option while imaging either good or damaged drives.