Computer technician versus data recovery technician

by Jason Davies on August 17, 2013

When you go to your family doctor about a particular medical concern, your family doctor or general practitioner is the “go to guy” for the majority of things that can cause you trouble.  Sometimes, your medical condition could be very specific and require a specialist.

Computer technicians are a great deal like a general doctor; they have a wide variety of knowledge and can take care of many of your computer issues. Replacing a hard drive for example is within the job description of a computer technician.  They do all types of break-fix repairs on a computer and make sure your computer is running well.

Data recovery technicians have specific skills that revolve around hard drives. A hard drive is the lifeblood of your computer data and it is important to only trust an expert to work on this sensitive electronic device. Hard drives have circuit boards, heads, platters, motors, and complex firmware.

Understanding these complex systems requires additional training and experience. The average certified computer technician has roughly 500 hours of training compared to the 2500+ hours of training required for a data recovery technician to start out on the ground level.  This training may be on the job, or class based, or apprenticeship. The bottom line is data recovery training is a serious commitment and will always cost more.

Data recovery technicians must have a strong understanding of electronic circuits and know what each part and piece of a circuit board on a hard drive controls. They must also possess very good tactile skills in order to transplant certain hard drive components. These components are very small and very sensitive, rough handling could cause damage to the hard drive. Finally, data recovery technicians must have excellent ability to decipher firmware.  Firmware is the lifeblood of the hard drive as it dictates all of the drive operations that occur when the hard drive boots up.

Hopefully, this gives you a brief overview of how difficult and complicated hard drive recovery is. I also hope this answers the question of why computer technicians and data recovery technicians have very different skillsets.

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