pclab wrote:I think that if it works, you will have market. I believe, as you say, that every lab want's/needs more imagers and getting a DDI or a PC3K card, etc to work as imager is too much $$$.
So if you can develop such a tool that really works (no bugs, time to time updates, etc) you will get a market.
Of course, the value of the tool will also make the difference. There's no point of develop a 1500$/2000$ tool to work as an imager when we have a DDI RapidSpar that costs 2000$ but comes from a very knowned company.
Keep it up.
So what would a tool like this be worth? I am thinking the $100-500 range. And while I may like to currently state in the license agreement that it can only be used on one computer, it will likely never have the ability to check that so I may as well say you can use it on 3 or 5 computers and charge accordingly. I know it is very hard to judge without the tool actually being available yet, but try to base it on the following facts (and also assume that it will work). The most basic version that I would try to market would have a dos looking interface such as MHDD or testdisk, and would likely only work with the keyboard and not the mouse. It would have logging and would be able to resume. It would have an algorithm similar to ddrescue 1.19 or later with a fair ability to skip out of a bad head quickly to get the most good data first. And of course the kicker, to be able to actually perform soft resets using a user adjustable timeout, and with AHCI also the hard reset. It would also have the ability to control an external relay via USB for power cycles. There would be some small physical wiring setup for the relay system to work. I can currently control a USBmicro U451 that has two relays, and have just received some cheap generic USB controlled relays to test. So if it did not recover after a reset, or exceeded a timeout, or set the device fault bit, it could be power cycled automatically.
One downside is that the user must run a compatible version of Linux, even if on bootable media. I am sure I could include the ability in my software to block a drive/port on an installation, but it would need to be done manually when using bootable media. Some instructions could be provided on how to do this, but would still require the user to be capable of doing so. And honestly if the user can’t do that, they should not be attempting data recovery using my software.
Another downside is the required physical setup for power cycles. Instructions could be provided for this also, but I may also consider selling a separate kit (computer power supply and USB relay wired up ready to use) as an option, for an additional price of course.
So that is the base idea, what would that be worth? Now consider that future versions, perhaps requiring a license upgrade, could possibly do something crazy like file based recovery. I have already done file recovery on NTFS using ddrescue and custom software so it is not out of my reach (ddrutility can recover the MFT and the bitmap, which are both files, and I have also recovered whole directories where testdisk would fail to do so). In the big picture I would love it if I could get an agreement with someone like R-Studio to set up my software as a plug-in. Always think big!