Supported data protection devices
Preserving the integrity of original content is considered one of the top priorities in any solid data recovery strategy. To remain valid and credible, the information must be thoroughly protected from any possible alterations, including in the process of its retrieval. But the challenge is that even the act of plugging a drive into the computer may be enough to cause adverse effects. Most operating systems will initiate write operations to it automatically, and these may potentially amend certain critical metadata or destroy the remaining previously deleted files. Any unintentional modifications may also compromise the reliability of materials being collected as digital evidence.
Modern technologies have made it much easier to minimize the risk for such inadvertent damage. A large variety of tools exist that can guarantee protected access to the device and help to ensure that the data in question is secured. Amongst the most extensively deployed ones are devices categorized as write blockers. A write blocker, also known as a forensic drive controller, prevents any write command from reaching the drive and thus keeps it read-only. Residing between the computer and the storage, such an appliance takes control over their communication, while being able to filter out the unwanted requests. Some of them also feature stabilizing capabilities and allow handling different hardware instabilities when processing degraded or otherwise imperfect storage devices.
When the OS is aware that it is dealing with a read-only storage, it also refrains from such implicit activities as file system integrity checks, defragmentation and others, which not only protects the data, but also accelerates access to it, especially in case of mechanical hard disk drives.
Maximum benefit from a data protection technology can be derived when it operates in conjunction with the employed data recovery solution. UFS Explorer itself doesn’t perform any destructive operations and offers compatibility with a number of write blockers and stabilizers, enabling efficient work with them in diverse scenarios.
The software recognizes products of the following popular vendors:
The Tableau Forensic product line by OpenText incorporates the latest technological developments that assist law enforcement, government agencies and corporate investigators in collecting digital evidence from a diversity of storage media. A part of this line is a well-known family of write blockers that make it simple to confirm its integrity and thus credibility.
T356789iu is a universal write blocker that supports the broadest set of storage interface types, including SATA, USB 3.0, PCIe, SAS, FireWire 800 and IDE.
T35u is a portable write blocking device intended for forensic acquisition of SATA and IDE solid-state drives.
T6u is a hardware write blocking solution suitable for SAS hard drives.
T7u permits easy write-blocked access to PCIe solid-state drives when coupled with a dedicated adapter.
T8u is a portable write blocker designed to be used in combination with various USB 3.0 mass storage devices.
T9 serves for the acquisition of information from storage devices based on the FireWire800 and FireWire400 interfaces.
All older device models released since the early 2000s are supported as well (USB2, FireWire, etc.).
WiebeTech’s line of professional write blockers provide fast forensic access and reliable protection for the whole range of storage devices, which include conventional hard disk and solid state drives, modern NVMe SSDs, portable USB sticks and other data carriers. These compact appliances are utilized by digital investigators and other IT specialists around the world to capture data in a forensically sound manner.
NVMe WriteBlocker is a write-blocking device designed for M.2 and U.2 NVMe solid state drives.
USB 3.1 WriteBlocker is intended for thumb drives and other storage device powered by USB 3.1/3.0/2.0.
Forensic ComboDock FCDv6 is a dual-mode write blocker for SATA or IDE hard drives and SSDs, which also provides optional read/write access.
Forensic UltraDock FUDv6 is an advanced write blocker for SATA and IDE/PATA hard drives, compatible with other tools for forensic acquisition and analysis.
Amongst the wide selection of professional equipment for data recovery technicians produced by DeepSpar Data Recovery Systems, one can find several combined solutions for maintaining stable connection with the source storage device, regardless of its state, along with blocking any operations that may modify its content. Both products share the same hardware platform, but rely on different software and firmware.
USB Stabilizer is a hardware-software suite for Windows that ensures stable connection to a USB storage device, even if it's physically defective and operates with issues. In addition, it prevents the medium from being changed, however, the protection mode can be disabled whenever it is necessary. Despite being aimed at USB hard drives, it can manage any other digital medium converted to USB.
Guardonix Write Blocker is another hardware-software system for Windows that provides constant write protection for USB-powered devices. Besides, it is able to address their read instability problems and speed up work with flash storage.
Last update: May 10, 2023