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DeepSpar Disk Imager™

DeepSpar Disk Imager™ ( DDI ) is an HDD imaging device specifically built for data recovery from drives with hardware issues. It greatly increases imaging speed, accuracy, and integrity of data retrieved from such drives.

The main features that DDI provides when working with drives are the following:

Direct low-level access to a drive bypassing the computers BIOS.

Disabling specific drive read/​write heads.

Disable SMART subsystem, Bad Sector Reallocation, and Read Look-Ahead

Read sector timeout controlled by Software/​Hardware/​PHY drive reset commands

Bit level analysis of corrupted data to filter out the read-write channel noise

Fully customizable multi-pass imaging

And many more others an advanced drive imager must have. You may learn more about DDI on its vendor site: DeepSpar Disk Imager™ .

DeepSpar Disk Imager™ basics

The main idea of data recovery with DDI is to clone data from the source drive with a certain level of hardware malfunction to a clone drive and perform data recovery operations either from the clone drive or while data is being cloned. Such approach greatly reduces tear and wear of the source drive and reduces further deterioration of its state.

There are two modes in which DDI processes drive s:

DDI clones the entire source drive to the source one consequently, sector by sector. Any further data recovery will be made from the clone HDD.

DDI clones those sectors of the source HDD which have been read during data recovery. Such readings are optimized to minimize the movement of the drive's head unit. All following reads from those sectors will be done from the clone drive . For example, if files are to be recovered from a partition on the drive, DDI will clone the boot record of the drive, the file table of the partition, and the sectors of the files. If the partition is scanned, the scanned sectors will be cloned, too. All consecutive operations, such as file preview, and so on, will be done from the clone drive . This greatly reduces the time necessary to perform the recovery operations and furthermore drive wear.

Click to enlarge

DeepSpar Disk Imager™ board

Read the DDI documentation on how to install DDI  connect the drives to DDI and start working with it.

The DDI board should be installed into a separate network computer (the DDI computer ), and the source and clone drives should be connected to it. The DDI computer should be started using the boot USB stick supplied with the board. R‑Studio running on another computer (the R‑Studio computer ) accesses the drive via the network. All data recovery operations will be done through this setup:

There may be several DDI computers on the network, R‑Studio will connect to all of them. Such configuration may be useful for RAID recovery when several drive s on the RAID have hardware problems.

Working with DDI

To start working with DDI , its computer should be connected to R‑Studio .

To connect R‑Studio to the DDI computer,

* Select Connect to DDI on the Drive menu
> The drive s connected to DDI will appear in the Drive pane.

Now it is possible to work with drive s connected to DDI like all other drive objects in the Drive panel. For example, such drive s may be included into virtual RAIDs and other compound objects.

Viewing the drive map

A drive map shows the conditions for individual drive sectors. You may see which sectors are OK, bad, or unstable.

To view the drive map,

* Right-click the required drive/​partition and select I/O Monitor on the shortcut menu,


select the object and select I/O Monitor on the Drive menu

> The drive map will appear in the I/O Monitor window.
Click to enlarge

DDI I/O Monitor window

You may also image individual files and view file maps .

R‑Studio can also load and process images created with the DeepSpar Disk Imager™ .

Connecting to DeepSpar Disk Imager™ manually

If R‑Studio cannot find DeepSpar Disk Imager™ , the Select Interface dialog box will appear. Try to find the DDI interface manually.