So, now that I've done everything else to this car, I'm not waiting for the NIT to fail. A 14 year old hard drive WILL fall, probably sooner rather than later. Came across a 2010 NIT from a recycler, ordered it today. I'm certainly not going to experiment with my working installed NIT (even though it's in the trunk lol). From other posts, it would appear that it's probably a 40gb pata drive. The ideal replacement will be a 40gb or slightly larger pata industrial ssd with operating temperature spec of -40c to 85c. My guess is Clonezilla or Acronis True Image using sector by sector copy will be the way to go.
I have an extra pigtail to power the NIT so all of this will be done on a bench.
Replacement of a 2009-2010 NIT requires a proxi alignment to let Can network recognize the new NIT. I'm curious to see if this is due to some type of Mac address in the unit itself or if there is something written to the drive. Will be interesting to find out if dropping in a copied imaged hdd from a different NIT will result in the need to do another proxi alignment.
If anyone has played with this specifically on a 2009-2010, and has any info, please share