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Question regarding HDD health


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#1 Sintharius

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Posted 16 November 2014 - 03:49 AM

Hello Bleeping Computer folks, I have a question.

Is SMART trustworthy for monitoring disk health? I'm currently a long way from home for some time and would prefer my HDD to not giving up halfway through.

My current laptop is a Lenovo G580 with Windows 7 Ultimate, using Acronis Drive Monitor.

 



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#2 Platypus

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Posted 16 November 2014 - 05:21 AM

Yes, SMART can give a pretty reliable indication of drive health. It's impossible to predict the future perfectly, but SMART has been developed from a huge amount of research into drive life, and is very useful for catching indicators of potential trouble. If possible it's best to use a diagnostic from the drive manufacturer, as some parameters vary between manufacturers, but not all of them provide one to the general public.


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#3 Sintharius

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Posted 16 November 2014 - 09:25 AM

Acronis shows the Reallocation Count Event as "fail", should I be concerned? The others are all OK.



#4 ranchhand_

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Posted 16 November 2014 - 10:09 AM

If you really want to do this right, use the Seagate Seatools for DOS utility.

Download Seatools For DOS (free) from my link; in the site screen, click "DOWNLOADS" tab, then "Seatools For DOS". Burn it to a CD. Reboot with it in your drive. In the screen that appears, first check that SMART has (or has not) been tripped. Then click the upper left corner of the screen for the short test and let it run. It will notify you either Pass or Fail. This is from Seagate Corp. but will test all other drives, not just Seagate.


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#5 Sintharius

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Posted 16 November 2014 - 10:19 AM

Can I use the Windows version, or does it has to be the DOS one?



#6 JohnC_21

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Posted 16 November 2014 - 10:46 AM

A failed Reallocated Sector count is bad. I would get any important info off the drive and onto a external drive as quickly as possible before doing the test. Even doing a Seatools test can stress the drive to a point where you cannot get your info off. Seatools for Windows will work for testing the drive. Seatools for Dos can try and repair sectors.

 

Edit: From Wiki

 

Reallocated Sector Count

Count of reallocated sectors. When the hard drive finds a read/write/verification error, it marks that sector as "reallocated" and transfers data to a special reserved area (spare area). This process is also known as remapping, and reallocated sectors are called "remaps". The raw value normally represents a count of the bad sectors that have been found and remapped. Thus, the higher the attribute value, the more sectors the drive has had to reallocate. This allows a drive with bad sectors to continue operation; however, a drive which has had any reallocations at all is significantly more likely to fail in the near future.[3] While primarily used as a metric of the life expectancy of the drive, this number also affects performance. As the count of reallocated sectors increases, the read/write speed tends to become worse because the drive head is forced to seek to the reserved area whenever a remap is accessed. If sequential access speed is critical, the remapped sectors can be manually marked as bad blocks in the file system in order to prevent their use.

 

 


Edited by JohnC_21, 16 November 2014 - 10:50 AM.


#7 Sintharius

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Posted 16 November 2014 - 11:20 AM

Just rechecked, now Current Pending Sector Count and Offline Uncorrectable Sector Count are now on Degradation. Time for a new drive.



#8 ranchhand_

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Posted 16 November 2014 - 01:30 PM

Yup, sounds like it. As far as your question: I use the DOS version because it operates from outside Windows, so if Windows won't boot for any reason you can still check your HDD to see if that is the problem. It is automatic, you don't need to know DOS commands.


Help Requests: If there is no reply after 3 days I remove the thread from my answer list. For further help PM me.





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