Glossary of Data Recovery Terms

Actuator arm : This part of the hard drive actuator positions the arm where the read/write heads are located

Auto park : When the drive is powered down this function causes the read/write heads to move to a safe landing zone where there is no data and locks it in place.

BIOS : This is also known as the Basic Input/Output System. This functions to control the basic components and functions of a computer before the operating system boots up.

Byte : A sequence of eight binary digits or bits regarded to be a unit or binary word. The common measurement of storage capacity of a disk drive is  megabytes or terabytes.

Clean room : An environment where hard drive cases safe to open due to the absence of dust particles in the air.

Controller : A processing chip that is responsible for communicating between the firmware of a storage media and the operating system trying to read it.

Card reader : A device used to read compact FLASH media data.

Click of death : a term used when clicking sounds come from a hard drive. Contrary to popular belief this does not always mean the data is gone or the hard drive needs to be opened up in a clean room to recover data.

Defragmentation : Process of relocating files contiguously so the heads do not have to travel erratically in order to read any one particular file.

Delayed parity – in RAID 5 this describes the placement of a variety of parity blocks where the data block size does not equal to parity block size.

Destriping : Destriping occurs during a RAID data recovery process that takes striped data blocks and writes them to a single storage media sequentially.

Disk image file : A file that contains an exact copy of the data from another storage media.

DIY : Do it yourself, something we never recommend if your data is valuable to you.