Electronic – Reading a Micron 29F32G08QAA NAND Flash IC

flashmemoryusb device

It would be nice if this was a shopping question – but it is 99%+ likely to be an electronic construction question :-(.

I wish to find the quickest / easiest / cheapest way to read a 4GB NAND Flash IC in a damaged USB memory stick. The onboard controller IC is dead.The Flash IC may also be dead but I will assume it isn't until it becomes otherwise obvious.

Reading it could involve

(1) Making a custom reader,

Maybe not a wholly silly idea as connections to Flash are fewish (8 data and a handful of controls.)

How likely it is that I could easily access the data if I did this I don't yet know. Obtaining a bit image is bearable worst case BUT I'd far far rather have something that "sees" the files system and files as was. Of course.

(2) soldering in a new controller IC

I do not yet know if these are in common use in other devices. Sample of 1 checked so far had 100% non-match. There may be an industry standard, part number irregardless, I know not (yet).

SK6211. QFP48. Outline description here and
Datasheet here.

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(3) Removing the Micron 29F32G08QAA 32 mbit NAND Flash IC.
Datasheet not yet located.

Markings VERY dim. Here is "enhanced photo image of markings".

enter image description here


Does anyone have any suggestions how I might BEST read this memory with original format, or at all?

Any thoughts on source of 6211, commonality with other parts, ability to use "any old" NAND Flash reading IC etc.

Any hints.


A good friend who had been warned about the need for data backup failed to heed the warnings as has "lost access" to an extremely valuable set of files stored on a USB memory stick. She is studying to be a teacher and the files are lesson plans and other material created over a long period of time.

The USB memory stick was physically severely damaged by being knocked sideways while plugged into a USB port. Apparently attempts were made to read it by pushing it together. When it got to me 3 of the 4 connections between PCB and connector were broken. I resoldered these, expecting there to be a good chance of restoring operation.

When plugged into a USB port the memory stick draws a large current (probably port limited) and the controller gets VERY VERY hot – I first discovered this by burning myself badly on the IC. The actual memory IC is on the opposite side of the PCB. It also appears to get hot BUT this may be due to the very large Wattage going into the controller IC. Desoldering will happen.

Part number corrected to 29F32G08QAA

Best Answer

It looks like you can get the datasheet for the flash chip and thereby rig up something to read the bits. However, that may be a long way from recovering the data. Somewhere in the pile of bits is control information private to the flash drive, probably some wear levelling data, and then file system structures as seen by the operating system.

You should be able to get info on the file system (probably FAT32), but the private flash drive structures and how/where it actually stores the data is unlikely to be specified publicly. I think the best bet is to get another flash drive of the exactly the same model, replace your flash chip into that drive, and hope no additional state is stored in non-volatile memory in the controller.