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  1. #1
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    Micro sd card not being recognized.

    Today, I realized that a microsd card that I've had since 2008, isn't being read anymore.

    My phone doesn't recognize it.

    My computer doesn't recognize it when I put it in a USB reader. I verified the USB reader works by trying different microsd and full sized SD cards. The reader can read those.

    I tried 7 different sd recovery programs, but none of them can recognize the microsd card, because the reader can't recognize the card. Most of those programs claim that if they can recognize the card, then they can help recover the data.

    I have a few things backed up from maybe 2008 - 2009, but not sure about much after that. Some things that were sent via text messages that I saved onto the microsd card, I can still recover, because I still have those texts.

    But the best thing would be if I could get the content off the microsd card ASAP and back all of it up.

    Any advice?

    I've read that the first thing I should do is stop using the microsd card, so I've followed that advice. I won't be using it to try and save anything, anymore. But are there any apps or techniques you know where I can still somehow recognize the card, and recover the data?

    As I said, I tried it both on my phone and PC, and neither recognize the card. It was working about 10 days ago.

    This is one of the best computer forums out there, so I'm hoping someone can help with this.

  2. #2
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    I sent the microSD card in to a data recovery company.

    They took about a week for the evaluation.

    They then said they couldn't do a recovery.

    I spoke with the engineer.

    He said that the memory card has two parts: The data, and a controller that controls access to the data.

    For my memory card model, they couldn't figure out how to bypass the access controller and get to the data. They spent the evaluation period trying to figure that out.

    If I try another data recovery company, should I tell them another company tried an evaluation and couldn't do it? Because those companies ask me that. I feel that if I tell them another company tried something, then the new company will be more likely to give up more easily if they encounter problems too.

    So it looks like I had a lot of stuff backed up, from that card, on Google Photos, from 2010-2016.

    I stopped using Google Photo backups in 2016 because it would try to back up any photo that I took right away, even junk ones that I knew I'd delete right away. And it was doing it at a compressed quality. Their standards for "high quality" were lower back in 2016 than they are now. It was also annoying that it would back up a junk photo right away if I was on Wi-Fi, and then send me a notification about it.

    Their standards for allowing unlimited photos/videos are better now, so I'll probably use it again (but still keep using my external hard drive too).

  3. #3
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    Could go either way. If you tell them what another company tried they may skip that and spend your free evaluation time on something new. If you don't tell them they may waste their time repeating the same steps and come to the same conclusion.

    Also, if there was any physical access to the internal chips then the new company will know it has been opened and tinkered with anyway.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by xeromist View Post
    Could go either way. If you tell them what another company tried they may skip that and spend your free evaluation time on something new. If you don't tell them they may waste their time repeating the same steps and come to the same conclusion.

    Also, if there was any physical access to the internal chips then the new company will know it has been opened and tinkered with anyway.
    Good points, thanks. I guess I'll tell them what another company tried, then, so they don't repeat the same steps.

    I'm also going to see if possible, I find one that specializes in Sandisk. Maybe I can also give them my model number or something, so they can see if they're familiar with it.

    The engineer said there's a lot of variety in between models, and that the trouble was with the way my particular model was.

    Also, some of the other companies don't have a free evaluation. The one I sent it to did, but others will charge for an evaluation, based on the quotes I got.

  5. #5
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    I sent the card to FlashFixers this time.

    They have 2 levels of service. Evaluation is free.

    Standard Recovery:

    They create an image of the card, then work off of that. It's $40 for the first 1GB, then $15 for every GB after that. I have 4-5 GB of data.

    NAND recovery:

    If they can't do the standard recovery, they try to reverse engineer the chip.

    There's a $75 deposit which goes towards the final cost. For my card, that would be $350.

    Let's hope this company can get it done.

  6. #6
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    Flash Fixers said today that when doing the NAND recovery to access the data, they couldn't figure out the pin out. They couldn't find a reference chip, nor library, to help.

    They tried contacting colleagues at other companies, but no success.

    They are marking this as a non-recovery.

    I guess if I look for another company next, I'll try contacting Sandisk to see if there's a data recovery company they recommend, since I've already tried two.

  7. #7
    TeamROG Moderator Array xeromist PC Specs
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    Yeah, that might be a good idea since nobody seems to understand how it is constructed.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by xeromist View Post
    Yeah, that might be a good idea since nobody seems to understand how it is constructed.
    I called Sandisk.

    They said they were partnered with LC Technology International for data recovery.

    I called LC International. They said that my previous data recovery company, Flash Fixers, was one of the best and very reputable.

    So if they couldn't do it, then chances weren't as good. But, they also said that they have access to Sandisk, and can request information from them.

    They said they don't do an evaluation, they just get right to work.

    They weren't as clear as the previous company as to steps they take. They said they try to use their special reader, and there's some reverse engineering involved, in their process.

    It's $175 for 8 GB, if they're able to recover.

    If there's no recovery, then I pay for return shipping.

    They have my card now, let's see what happens.

    When I said the previous company couldn't figure out the pin out, they gave an example that last year, they were able to get the pin out from Sandisk for a series, which helped them extract a bunch of cards that had been pending. They don't know how long it could take to get that information though. Sometimes it takes a while.
    Last edited by nuraman00; 01-28-2020 at 10:36 PM.

  9. #9
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    LC Technology International said that they couldn't figure out the pin out either, after reading the chip with their special reader.

    They are sending it back.

    I don't know what else to do.

  10. #10
    TeamROG Moderator Array xeromist PC Specs
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    Sorry to hear that.
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