Recovering data from a Failed SSD: Here’s What You Need to Know

Failed SSD
Image Credit: Chesky_W / Getty Images

Solid-state drives (SSDs) were acclaimed for their speed and dependability when they first appeared on the market. Because an SSD has no mechanical parts, users believe it is less likely to fail mechanically. However, a failed SSD can mean losing your data.

Numerous studies show that SSDs will survive longer and perform better over time, significantly as the technology improves and storage capacity increases.

However, this doesn’t eliminate the possibility of your SSD failing at some point. Or if when a failure occurs, how to recover your data.

Below are some vital tips to help you recover data in case of a failed SSD.

What is a Solid-State Drive (SSD)?

A solid-state drive (SSD) is a storage device that utilizes non-volatile memory to store and retrieve data.

Solid-state drives (SSDs) are a core technology of computer storage devices. Unlike a hard disc, a solid-state drive (SSD) has no moving parts, which gives it advantages such as faster access time, noiseless operation, increased reliability, and lower power consumption.

Replacing your computer’s hard drive with an SSD is one of the most effective ways to improve the speed of your computing device.

RELATED: 10 Easy Tips to Make your Business Computers Faster

Why are SSDs used?

SSD adoption began in high-performance technical fields and in enthusiast PCs, where the drives’ extraordinarily faster processing times and throughput justified the increased price.

However, they have become a recognized alternative with cost-efficient business laptops and PCs, if not the default solution.

RELATED: What are the Best Laptops for Business?

Differentiating between a solid-state drive (SSD) and a hard disk drive

The classic spinning hard disc drive (HDD) is a computer’s primary non-volatile storage device. Unlike data saved in RAM, everything stored on an HDD does not “go away” when your system is switched off.

A hard drive or HDD (hard disc drive) is a metal platter with a metallic layer that keeps your data, whether it’s historical weather reports, a copy of your favorite film, or your digital music library. While the platters rotate, a read/write head on an arm analyses the information.

An SSD is equal to a hard drive in that data is stored on linked flash-memory chips that retain the relevant information even when no power is applied.

These flash chips (commonly referred to as “NAND”) are distinct from those used in USB memory sticks because they are faster and more dependable.

What causes SSDs to fail?

Users don’t have to worry about your solid-state drive’s mechanical components wearing out over time. This is because, unlike a standard hard drive, there is no moving arm recording to a spinning disc.

However, that doesn’t rule out the risks of a failed SSD due to damage. Capacitors deteriorate with time, the power supply may fail, and the processor chip may fail. While an SSD is more durable than a mechanical hard disc, it still contains parts that can and will fail.

In any data loss situation, the most crucial thing you can do is turn off the impacted device as quickly as feasible. If you continue to utilize the drive, you risk rewriting over the data you’re trying to restore. Because your laptop’s central storage device is likely an SSD, you should turn it off until the data loss scenario is fixed.

Retrieving your data from a failed SSD

Before an SSD fails, it usually doesn’t offer much warning that it is about to fail. As with all electronic equipment, it has a specified time of life. Since an SSD does not have any moving parts, they do not begin to scrape or vibrate, and after working for a while, SSD may stop working without any indicators. It’s bad news when an SSD suddenly fails.

Once SSDs were first introduced to the market, data recovery experts were doubtful if they could retrieve data like a traditional hard drive. After several years, data recovery software now includes extensive support for SSDs.

EaseUS, Stellar Data Recovery, Disk Drill, and RecoverIT are just a few client data recovery tools with a dedicated SSD data recovery option or separate tool. These are your best bet if you’re trying to recover data from a failed SSD.

There are several things to consider when looking for SSD data recovery software. You want software that is simple to use and does not necessitate a lot of understanding of data recovery techniques.

Furthermore, the program must work with a wide range of SSD devices and computing devices. You’ll also need a tool that can recover any file or directory that you’re likely to have on your SSD.

Best Tools for recovering Data from a failed SSD

Here are some popular data recovery tools that you can use to possibly recover data from a failed SDD:

  • Recover-IT: Recoverit is an easy-to-use data recovery application compatible with Windows and Mac. The program searches your drives for deleted files and attempts to recover them. Whether the data were lost due to a damaged hard drive or permanent deletion from the recycle bin, this tool will attempt to recover them for you.

One of the more affordable alternatives compared to the competitors. During testing, we found Recoverit excellent for recovering photos. Therefore, it is a tool that photographers and designers should keep in their emergency toolkits.

  • Stellar Data Recovery: Stellar Data Recovery is one of the efficient ways for businesses to get their data back, and for a good reason. The platform has several scan options so that you can customize the scan to the type of data loss. This saves time if you accidentally delete an important file and realize right away, so you don’t have to do a full system scan.

The platform also has advanced search features that make it easy to find and get the most critical data.

Stellar Data Recovery is remarkable because it works with all file types and drives. It is a flexible service that can get back data from internal and external hard drives, memory cards, flash drives, and CDs and DVDs.

The package is one of the most affordable solutions for recovering crashed RAID configurations. While there are more advanced and cheaper recovery software, we’d keep this one for everyday use.

Monthly and annual plans are available. Upgrading to a paid license is pricey, but your many features make it worth it. Add the app’s superb performance, EaseUS’s prompt customer service, and a clean user interface, and you have a winner.

  • Disk Drill: Disk Drill, one of the most popular ways to get back lost data on macOS, is now available for Windows.

Disk Drill can recover data from hard drives, solid-state drives, USB flash drives, SD/CF cards, digital cameras, and even smartphones. It has several features and comes in both free and paid versions. On its website, Disk Drill says that almost any type of lost data file can be recovered in almost any way you can think of.

The fact that Disk Drill has features for every platform and situation is impressive enough. Disk Drill is a good recovery tool because it can easily mount and read a USB flash drive that couldn’t be read before and recover the data from it relatively quickly.

Even though the price of the PRO version isn’t great for home users, Disk Drill is still a great Windows recovery tool.

There is no guarantee that your data can be recovered

The only concern is whether SSD restoration is possible. Due to how an SSD self-manages data loss via the TRIM command, data recovery on an SSD is limited. Furthermore, the data recovery likelihood depends on the SSD’s condition.

Your file may be irretrievably corrupted, or that hard disc sector may be damaged and unreadable. If so, data recovery software can do little to assist you.

Before a crisis occurs, you can improve your odds of success by utilizing data recovery software. It will safeguard your data and alert you when a drive is ready to fail.

If you cannot retrieve the data on your own, you can contact a professional. This can be expensive, but it is justifiable if your data is valuable. Your actions may make their job more difficult, so try to make this decision as soon as possible.

What should you do if your computer’s SSD isn’t detected?

If your working device fails to read your SSD, you have some options.

  • To avoid BIOS misunderstanding, disconnect any other drives from your PC. If a drive is brand new, it may be necessary to edit it before your operating system acknowledges it.
  • It’s possible that updating your system’s device drivers will fix the issue. Keeping your software up to date is usually a smart idea. Check your computer for memory issues that could cause your SSD to be hidden.

Data recovery: Your last line of defense

PCs might lose data due to human error, hardware failure, application crashes, viruses and other forms of malware, natural calamities, hackers, or simple bad luck.

Therefore, plan for the worst-case scenario. Create backups of data, utilize anti-malware software, and employ surge protectors.

This should meet most  for most small businesses, but a robust data recovery application is your last line of defense.

RELATED: Using Cloud Computing to achieve Business Continuity

How to know if an SSD is failing before data is lost?

Understanding the warning indicators is the best approach to avoid a significant data loss from your SSD.

Before an HDD failed, it would clatter, click, scrape, and sound an alarm. However, your SSD does not emit any audio warnings.

Solid-state drives are susceptible to malfunctions induced by voltage drops/power surges or logical mistakes rather than physical damage since, as noted previously, they rely significantly on the capacitors of their power sources and lack moving parts.

Thus, unlike traditional hard discs, which typically alert users to a failure with beeping, rustling, grinding, or other distinct sounds emanating from the system unit, there are no audible indications that an SSD is failing or about to crash.

Five Symptoms of SSD Failure

Here are the five most typical SSD failure indicators:

  • Your computer will not boot; you see the error message “No bootable device” or “No bootable medium” (on Windows) or a flashing question mark (on Mac devices)
  • It runs slowly
  • Frequently, active programs freeze or crash
  • recurrent Blue/black screen of death
  • The volume becomes read-only

Therefore, if your system begins to behave erratically, and especially if you see any of the following negative signs, you should verify your disc’s health before proceeding to avoid losing vital data.

Mitigating SDD failure

Using your PC’s built-in software to check the status of your SSD is good practice regularly. However, the best way to prevent your data from being lost due to SSD failure is to back it up.

Cloud-based backup solutions, such as Acronis Backup for PC or Avast Business Cloud Backup, will help ensure your data isn’t lost.


Unfortunately, recovering files from an SSD is much more complex than their HDD counterparts. However, many SSD data recovery programs are out there, such as Stellar Data Recovery and RecoverIT, so try as much as possible to recover your data. If you don’t succeed with that, you can constantly attempt professional statistics restoration services.

Don’t forget to check your SSD’s health to ensure you won’t have any problems with corrupted files and a failing SSD later.

You might also like