This tutorial describes a simple linear acquisition workflow, using the Deadboot Agent and direct attached storage. This technique is useful in a range of instances:

  • where it is difficult or impractical to remove internal storage from a computer (for example MacBook Air with non-standard storage interfaces)
  • where removal and separate imaging of storage adds inefficiencies (for example RAID arrays)
  • where internal read bandwidth of the suspect storage exceeds SATA and SAS IO speeds

Prepare Deadboot USB

The first task is to create a Deadboot USB, from which the suspect computer will be booted.

Learn how to burn a Deadboot USB

Prepare the evidence storage media

Preserving the integrity of evidence is fundamental to forensic practice. A significant challenge in forensic live CD workflows is reliably distinguishing suspect storage media from evidence storage media, and reliably managing software write blocking of those devices. Evimetry provides a range of options for fitting with your workflow. The default approach is to only allow unlocking (disabling write blocking) for storage devices that have been "blessed".

1. Attach the evidence storage device to the Controller computer.

2. Partition and format the evidence storage device to contain a single exFAT partition using the OS partitioning tools.

3. Refresh the controller node by right clicking and selecting refresh

4. Select the evidence storage drive, right click, and select "Bless"

Format with exFAT only. For performance & interopability reasons, Evimetry will only bless a drive containing a single exFAT partition.

Boot the suspect computer with the dead boot agent

Use the BIOS/EFI boot method of the computer to boot from the USB drive.

1. Connect the suspect computer to the same network as the Controller.

2. Boot the suspect computer using the Deadboot USB as the boot device.

Connect to the dead boot agent

Evimetry agents and controllers automatically discover each other when connected to the same LAN segment.

1. Connect to the dead boot agent using "File | Connect to agent" on the Controller.

Prepare a destination for evidence storage

Preservation requires that we have a location to store evidence. Evimetry agents will store evidence either to locally attached storage or to Evimetry evidence repositories accessible via the network. In this scenario we are using direct attached storage.

1. Attach the blessed evidence storage disk to the suspect computer via USB.

2. Refresh the evidence storage computer node in the Controller.

3. Find the evidence storage device under the suspect computer node. As the evidence storage device is blessed, it will appear with a green tick overlaid. Unlock the drive by right clicking and selecting "Unlock". All other storage devices are prevented from being unlocked.

4. Add a storage location (repository) to the now unlocked evidence storage device. Right click and click "Add repository".

Acquire the suspect device

We are now able to acquire an image to the unlocked repository.

1. Find the suspect evidence device you wish to acquire.

2. Right click and select "Acquire".

3. Add case details.

4. Choose the destination storage repository and container file name by selecting "Add".

5. Choose "Full Linear" as the acquisition mode.

6. Click "OK" to acquire.


This guide has only stepped through the basics of a simple acquisition. It hasn't discussed a range of other features of Evimetry such as:

  • Analysis while you acquire
  • Partial acquisition
  • Live agent evidence sources
  • Multi-destination evidence storage
  • Remote device preview

At this point the evidence storage device containing the acquired image might be mounted as a virtual drive for analysis, transferred across the network to another Evimetry agent, or quickly converted into a standard evidence format such as raw or EWF.