NAND Wafers vs. Monolithic Storage: Who’s Who & What’s What

For the everyday device user, the world of additional storage drives amounts to an aisle in their favorite electronic section or computer store. They stroll down the aisle, pick the drive that—according to the packaging—meets their needs, buy it, and simply plug and play. But if that aisle had a hood like a car, and you lifted it, you would see a complex world filled with unrivaled diversity. And that is what makes data recovery such a unique and precise business.

Questions on Arrow SIgns - Who What Where When Why How

The Diversity Of Electronic Storage

Within the casing of some USB sticks, all MicroSD types, and some regular SD cards you can find surface mount (SMT) NAND wafers. Other flash storage drives can have NAND wafers that have legs on each side for connections to the circuit board (PCB). Lastly, some (when opened) have a solid circuit with no NAND chip (i.e. a monolithic or mono device). Each of these devices presents a unique challenge when data recovery is required. In fact, mono devices are some of the most complex storage types to recover files from.

NAND Wafers

NAND flash memory chips are compact, fast, and cost effective. They can handle large amounts of data and put up with the most brutal upload, download, and overwriting abuse.

What is a NAND wafer? If you’re thinking of a vanilla wafer, you’re in the wrong mindset! But you likely know how thin and delicate the layers of a vanilla wafer are. NAND wafers, although not eatable, are also thin and delicate. These dainty pieces of high tech equipment are why NAND memory is so compact and fast, but they also make data recovery a daunting challenge.

Only a few companies around the world have developed safe and effective NAND data recovery technology for accessing and reconstructing data dumps from corrupt or damaged NAND memory devices. eProvided is one of these few.

The More Complex Monolithic Storage

Monolithic (or mono) memory is even more intricate than NAND. Monolithic flash memory is comprised of electronic components and their connections, which are all built into a single layers semiconductor wafer. This wafer is then diced into 3D integrated circuits (ICs).

Mono memory has become increasingly popular amongst storage drive manufacturers. Monoliths are cheaper to produce versus traditional controller and NAND devices. Mono memory appears to be the next big breakthrough in USB, SD card and micoSD memory devices technology, but it poses a marked challenge in the event of device damage or corruption.

Recovering data from monolithic storage is far more complex versus NAND. There is little to no room for error, and most recovery companies won’t even attempt it. Some feel the complexity and time involved outweigh arriving at a fair price for the customer.

eProvided is one of the few and leading data recovery experts capable of tackling mono memory recovery and NAND data recovery. Many of the leading file recovery companies (are partners) send all their cases to the eProvided labs in Denver Colorado. Our cutting edge technology allows us to delve into these complex memory devices and carefully remove lost or damaged data. eProvided has the ability to access the RAW data from within the actual memory chips themselves. Their experienced hands are readily at your disposal for both NAND and mono device recovery.

Adjusting To Ever Changing Memory Technology

Technology is constantly improving. As the Information Technology industry continues to improve flash memory performance will improve and create devices that are more compact. It is imperative that data recovery specialists keep up. The creation of NAND and mono memory devices certainly presented document recovery experts with a unique challenge. While some companies have chosen to ignore the challenge, a few—eProvided included—decided to tackle it head on. As a result, you can rest assured that every effort will be spent to recovery your data in the event of any damage or corruption from and storage device.

As the technology continues to change, you too can adjust. Regardless of what devices and memory types you choose to buy from that aisle in your favorite computer store, Walmart, Target, etc. Always remember to have a back-up plan. Back your data up regularly to a secure location. You never know when your memory device will fall victim to unforeseen accidents, water damage, breaks or bends or other damage.