Wednesday, Aug 17, 2022, 17:37 Hardware

How To Backup Data On An M1 Mac With Defective Board – DriveSavers Offers A Solution

The most important measure to prevent data loss in the event of a defect is still to regularly back up your device. System side functions such as Time Machine allow Mac users to not only restore lost data, but also to retrieve older versions of specific files. Back during the days of the more conventional hard drive, and before implements such as FileVault, it was still pretty easy to access data stored within defective hardware. Lately, since the T2 chip and the first M1 Macs, things have changed considerably. Most modern storage mediums will only retrieve indecipherable data without the corresponding encryption chip.

Board "Beyond Repair"? – Data Rescue Expensive, But Possible
A well-known company, specializing in data rescue, by the name of DriveSavers now offers the first method of data recovery for M1 Macs with lost data. Nevertheless: The process is extraordinarily time-consuming and the prices are calculated on a case-by-case basis. For most normal users, such a step is completely out of the question – however, it's a good option for companies in need of data rescue and willing to shell out a couple extra thousand for the service.

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Chip Translation & Complex Operation
According to the official statement from DriveSavers, the company has since discovered a method to transfer data from completely defective "Apple Silicon" boards. The critical safety components must, however, remain continuously connected during the process – otherwise no access to the data is possible. DriveSavers uses a "microsoldering" technique to attach additional conductor paths and wire the chips. Via these "chip transfusions", it's possible to save data. However, the procedure is further complicated by the fact that Apple doesn't provide any official documentation explaining the exact function of its countless chip components.

Data Rescue For Mac, iPhone, & iPad
Random access still isn't possible with the method (for those with malicious intentions), since the device's local account information is still required for decryption purposes. Although the company – which has been an active since 1985, did announce success accessing SSDs on M1 Macs as early as the beginning of 2021 (just a few weeks after release of their release), it still took DriveSavers a long time until they were finally able to officially announce its newly created data rescue technique. However, in order to successfully execute the method, the board still needed to be intact at the time – now DriveSavers also includes "boards beyond repair" as appropriate candidates for the method. Everything described in this article applies to not only Macs, but also iPhones and iPads – since these are quite closely related from a technical standpoint.

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