How to clone 'unallocated' disk?

willisuh

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Nov 4, 2017
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One day all of a sudden, my PC crashed and it failed to reboot. It appears my entire SSD suddenly became 'unallocated', with 100% free space.

After few attempts at power cycling the SSD failed, I took out the SSD and put it into an external casing, and connected it to another computer. It appears as 'removable disk F', and it says I must format the disk before I use it? However doing so would destroy my data.

Is there any way I can image or clone this drive? I tried using Macrium but it fails to recognize this SSD...
 

randomizer

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The only way you'll be able to recover anything meaningful is if the logical to physical address translation table is still intact. Otherwise you might as well have random data on the drive. I'm not sure if there is any imaging software that will work on a drive with no partitions though.
 

randomizer

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The only way you'll be able to recover anything meaningful is if the logical to physical address translation table is still intact. Otherwise you might as well have random data on the drive. I'm not sure if there is any imaging software that will work on a drive with no partitions though.
 

BFG-9000

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What you are looking for is a tool that does "sector by sector" copying, and there are plenty that claim t do it.

However it is very difficult to recover things from SSD because of how they work--normally TRIM goes around and marks space as available, then garbage collection automatically block-erase zeroes it out to ensure writes will be fast. If unallocated is read by the garbage collection as free space then it will be zeroed in minutes if powered up. Neither HDD or flash cards use garbage collection so it's a lot easier to recover data from those.
 

randomizer

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Garbage collection algorithms are very controller-specific. It's possible that the GC process will run quickly and wipe everything, or take a long time, or only wipe some things, or do nothing at all as no pages have been explicitly marked as invalid.
 
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