Reading data from different chips

Discussion in 'Embedded Systems and Microcontrollers' started by totalnewbie, Jul 16, 2009.

  1. totalnewbie

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 4, 2009
    I was wondering how complicated it would be to read data from different chips located on different IC-s. Let's take a look at an example. For example, If I have USB flash drive and it is broken off in the way that the chip where all data is located is OK but not the rest of the USB flash drive. One solution is to buy exactly the same USB flash drive and to try to swap these chips so that I could get all the information from the chip. What would be other options? Is it thinkable to buy some plain IC-s and some components (microchips etc.) and build some very simple circuit into where I could integrate the chip from which I want to get all the data. What should I know if I want to start with that kind of project? Do you know any beneficial websites or books? Does that kind of projects involve programming (plain C, C++ or assembler)?
    Is it more like feasible or is it beating my brains out?
  2. steinar96

    Active Member

    Apr 18, 2009
    If i remember correctly, usb chips have surface mount pins. So if you really want to go trough <snip> trying to get it off with a normal solder (propably next to impossible) then you could try it.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 16, 2009
  3. russ_hensel

    Well-Known Member

    Jan 11, 2009
    Right. Backup is the solution for this sort of problem, now probably too late.
  4. GetDeviceInfo

    Senior Member

    Jun 7, 2009
    your biggest hurdle will likely be identifying the device and finding a usefull datasheet for it. If you can do this, then a good part of the work is done.
  5. totalnewbie

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jun 4, 2009
    What do you think about devices that are able to program many kind of microchips? It seems to me that they are capable of reading all the data from microchips. For example Xeltek SuperPro 5000 Programmer.
  6. dwb178

    New Member

    Jul 16, 2009
    Swapping chips sounds like it is going to be the quickest, easiest, and possibly cheapest method for "repairing" your drive since you sound like you don't have a background with microcontrollers. If the chip is a SMD part you could stick it in an oven at around 400 F for a couple minutes and the chip should slide off with ease with a push. To put the part back on, just add some solder to the pads on the pcb and possibly the chip depending on the package then back into the oven.

    If you want to build a microcontroller project to read the data off the chip. I'd first do what GetDeviceInfo recommended and is try to find a good datasheet for the chip before buying anything. Once you have the datasheet, you can build/buy a programmer for a microcontoller. Microchip and Atmel both sell basic programmers for around $30-40 for their microcontrollers. You can also find free tutorials for both Microchip and Atmel microntollers on the web. For the language, Micochip and Atmel have free Assembly compilers and C compilers (chip restrictions for Microchip). If you want something like Basic or Java you would probably have to fork over some money for a compiler. You should try some easy microcontroller projects before attempting this so you have some experience first as this won't be the easiest project in the world since you may have to deal with FAT file system.
  7. n9352527

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 14, 2005
    Just remember that the chips are probably in some kind of leadless packaging. Not an easy task to solder back with a home made reflow oven.

    And I don't think there is a standard way of writing those data using FAT file system on the flash chip. So if you are considering using your own controller/reader you have to obtain the specification of the original controller.