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DiskSense Unit for bad disk forensic imaging

The DiskSense Unit uses the fastest and most efficient interface connections available, and is built to last using the highest quality components one could source. It includes a built-in oscilloscope for current monitoring and write protection switch for source media.

Atola DiskSense Unit is effective for bad disk forensic imaging. To ensure high quality and efficiency of our hardware tools, we test them on hundreds of storage devices.

Technical Specifications

DiskSense unit internals

DiskSense: under the hood

DiskSense unit inside

DiskSense is basically a very small computer running a Linux OS. However, neither normal computer's BIOS, nor basic Linux kernel are suitable for handling of damaged hard drives. It is because neither of them were designed to handle hard disk failures very well. We have invested a significant amount of R&D efforts to build a highly customized and fine-tuned Linux kernel that completely overcomes these issues. Additionally, this kernel features:

DiskSense also features our proprietary circuitry for ultimate hard drive's power control:

These features are a must when dealing with damaged hard drives.

DiskSense Forensic Unit

DiskSense unit. Drive power control

For example, low-level control of the SATA, USB and IDE ports allows Atola Insight Forensic to deal with hard drives that do not properly initialize, have many bad sectors, or frequently freeze due to internal (mechanical) failures.

SATA PHY control allows resetting a frozen hard drive without a power cycle. This reduces the time while imaging, and the chance of further hard disk degradation and failure.

Current sensing allows Atola Insight to diagnose a failed hard drive even if it has electronic or mechanical damage. Please see Disk Diagnostics for more details on how this works.

Overcurrent protection detects when the hard drive draws abnormal current and stops the attached device to prevent further damage.

Overvoltage protection circuit ensures that in the unlikely event of the DiskSense unit malfunction, the attached hard drives are not damaged in any way.

DiskSense unit is fully controlled by Atola Insight software via the Gigabit Ethernet interface, hence no Linux experience is required at all in order to operate it.