Free tools to test hard drive's health

0
August 18, 2011

Hi Experts.  I did a google search for tools to diagnosis a hard-drive that is making a whirling sound.  Before I begin downloading and testing a whole group of tools, I thought I would throw this question out there and see what other pros are using.  I am not  sure what hard drive it is or I would have downloaded and installed the tools from the manufacturer.  ; )

Please don't just post a link.  That won't count.  Put a link and why you recommend it.  Thanks in advance for your help!

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0
August 18, 2011

HDTune is a free tool that works on all types of hard drives, even external ones, USB sticks and iPods:

http://www.hdtune.com/

It comprises the following features:

-Benchmark: measures the performance

-Info: shows detailed information

-Health: checks the health status by using SMART

-Error Scan: scans the surface for errors

-Temperature display

I think it is the best "first stop" for troubleshooting. Apart from scanning and status checking it also will identify the drive, which is what makes is useful for people who don't really know much about computer hardware.

0
August 18, 2011

What is the make/model of you computer? Many manufacturers have free utilities that can be downloaded from their website, if they aren't already loaded into a utility partition on the machine.

0
August 18, 2011

There is a build in function to check file integrity included with Windows XP,

Start -> Run -> cmd

type "chkdsk c:".

The issue you are having could be hardware related and you may need to get someone to physically look at the device.

0
August 18, 2011

I have used the Hitachi Drive Fitness Tool.  It comes in ISO format and you will boot up to the cd.  It's a simple tool boot it works well.

http://www.hitachigst.com/ hdd/techno lo/dft/dft new.htm http://www.troublefixers.c om/test-yo ur-hard-di sk-health- with- free- utilities/

0
August 18, 2011

Crap.  A buddy of mine sent me the email asking to check it out.  Not a problem except he is 400+ miles away.  I thought I could just send him a link to download and test out the hdd.  Otherwise I would just go check it out.

0
August 18, 2011

Check out the Ultimate Boot CD. It has many tools that will help you test your hard drive and other devices. What is really nice is that this is a bootable CD so it will work even if your hard drive is dead. I take this CD with me every time I go fix a computer. You can get this software here:

http://www.ultimatebo otcd.com/

G











ood luck. 
0
August 18, 2011

In device manager check out what is a brand of your hard drive. Or open the case and check the exact model written on the HDD.

If you suspect a hardware issue with your drive It make sense first of all to use a disk diagnostic tool from the vendor:

www.seagate.com www.maxtor.com www.westerndigital.com www.quantum.com www.ibm.com www.storage.ibm.com/techsu p/hddtech/ welcome.ht m www.fujitsu.com www.wdc.com/service/ftp/dr ives.html

fujitsu

http://www.fcpa.fujitsu.co m/download /hard-driv es/#diagno stic

IBM and Hitachi

http://www.hgst.com/hdd/su pport/down load.htm#D FT

Maxtor/Quantum

http://www.maxtor.com/en/s upport/pro ducts/inde x.htm

Samsung

http://www.samsungelectron ics.com/hd d/support/ utilities/ utilities_ index.html

Seagate

http://www.seagate.com/sup port/seato ols/index. html

Western Digital

http://support.wdc.com/dow nload/ www.westerndigital.com

Hope it will help.

0
August 18, 2011

I guess I should apologize for not disclosing the exact nature or details surrounding this question.

The "end user" is 400 miles or so away.  You all are posting great ideas and solutions which I would typically implement (UBCD4W is extremely powerful) but I won't have physical access to the computer.  My hope/intention/goal was to see if there was a tool that he could download and run that would diagnosis or narrow down the issue, perhaps even create a log file.

From the posts so far, I guess I will get the make/model of the pc and find out the hdd's make.  Then have him download the tool and see what the results are.

Thank you for your suggestions.  I will get some more information and post back accordingly.

0
August 18, 2011

The Ultimate Boot CD has most of these tools built in with others to help. You could use the disk at the same time on your system to walk the end-user through the procedure.

Good luck.

0
August 18, 2011

Found this util and am sending him the link.  Anyone have any experiences with it?

http://www.passmark.com/pr oducts/dis kcheckup.h tm

0
August 18, 2011

Very nice.  Any licensing restrictions/requirements?

0
August 18, 2011

Free for personal use.

0
August 18, 2011

Bingo!  Downloading and testing it now.  Making sure it isn't going to be over his head.  He is as technical as I am bilingual.

0
August 18, 2011

These two apps worked:

http://www.hdtune.com

and

http://www.passmark.com/pr oducts/dis kcheckup.h tm

Once I had the info, I discovered he had the Seagate hdd and I sent him a link for

http://www.seagate.com/sup port/seato ols/index. html

.

Not sure how to score this one but I will do my best.  I appreciate everyone's time and suggestions on this and I will reward according to how your suggestion related to the solution.  Thanks again!

0
August 18, 2011

I accepted multiple answers as I learned some new trouble-shooting options from this and felt it only appropriate to reward those for passing along their tips.  I am sure that I will be posting new questions in the near future and hope to work with you all again.  Take care.

-Aaron

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