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How to find out the health and condition of a hard drive - CrystalDiskInfo

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Good day!

How many things could be fixed if we knew in advance what awaits us.

And if it’s almost impossible to predict some events in life, then in the case of a hard disk, part of the problems is still possible to predict and anticipate!

To do this, there are special utilities that can recognize and analyze the readings of the SMART * drive (show them to you if necessary), and based on these data, evaluate the health status of your drive, simultaneously calculating how many years it can still serve.

The information is extremely useful, in addition, such utilities can monitor your disk online, and as soon as the first signs of unstable operation appear, you will immediately be notified. Accordingly, you will be able to make a backup in time and take measures (although backup should always be done, even when everything is fine ☺).

And so, I will consider in the article several methods (and several utilities) for analyzing the status of HDD and SSD.

* Note:
S.M.A.R.T. (Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology) is a special technology for assessing the status of a hard disk with an integrated hardware self-diagnosis / self-monitoring system. The main task is to determine the probability of device failure, preventing data loss.

Assessment of the state of the hard drive: how many years will it still last

Perhaps this is one of the most popular questions asked by all users who first encountered problems with a hard drive (or thought about the safety of storing their data). Everyone is interested in the time that the disk will work until it completely “stops”. Let's try to predict.

Therefore, in the first part of the article, I decided to show a couple of utilities that can get all the readings from the disk and analyze them yourself, and give you only the finished result (in the second part of the article, I will give utilities for viewing SMART readings for self-analysis).

Just a couple of useful CrystalDiskInfo

As you probably already noticed, almost the entire modest set of additional functions of CrystallDiskInfo is concentrated in the menu item "Tools". For example, you can change the frequency of auto-update of program data (the item "Frequency of auto-update").

For many, computers at home work 24/7, and the user is far from always nearby. In this case, it is useful to activate the "Alert by email" function (by the way, I recommend that you take notes for administrators). First you need to configure your mail in the "Mail Settings". Now, in case of any problems with the hard drive, the program will automatically send you a notification by e-mail, and a quick response to such problems can save valuable data.

And the last one. It may be useful to be able to change the temperature threshold, which by default is 50 degrees Celsius. To do this, in the tray, right-click on the disk icon, select "General Settings", then "Alarm: temperature" and set a new limit value (for what the temperature of the hard disk and other computer components should be, see the article "Component temperature computer: how to measure and what should be ").

Perhaps this is all that I wanted to say on this simple, but useful contraption.

Afterword

Here is such a CrystalDiskInfo program.

Do not forget that in case of problems with the hard disk, as a diagnostic, you can also use the excellent program Victoria (see the article "Checking the hard disk [Victoria]"), which has long been a classic.

I wish you never to lose your precious information due to a hard drive failure, and I hope that today's material will help.

As always, I will be glad to any questions, additions, thanks and all that jazz. Write in the comments, subscribe to the articles of the project and recommend us to friends,)

PS: Thanks to the MC Dos team member for the existence of this article.

Method number 1 - using Hard Disk Sentinel

Hard disk sentinel

One of the best utilities for monitoring the status of computer disks (both hard disks (HDD) and "newfangled" SSDs). What captivates the most in the program is that it will independently analyze all the data received about the state of the disk and show you a ready-made result (very convenient for beginners).

In order not to be unfounded, I will immediately show the main program window that appears after the first start (disk analysis will be done immediately automatically). The health and performance of the disk is estimated as 100% (ideally, it should be so), the time that the disk still works in normal mode is estimated by the program at about 1000 days (

What's with Hard Disk Sentinel

In addition, the program allows you to monitor the temperature: both the current and the average and maximum during the day, week, month. If the temperature goes beyond the limits of "normality", the program will warn you about this (which is also very convenient).

Also, Hard Disk Sentinel allows you to view SMART readings (although to evaluate them, you need to understand the disks well), get full information about the hard drive (model, serial number, manufacturer, etc.), see what the hard drive is loaded with (i.e. get performance information).

In general, in my humble opinion, Hard Disk Sentinel is one of the best utilities for monitoring the status of disks in the system. It is worth adding that there are several versions of programs: professional and standard (for the professional version with advanced functionality - there is a portable version of the program that does not need to be installed (for example, you can even run it from a USB flash drive).

Hard Disk Sentinel works in all popular Windows (7, 8, 10 - 32 | 64 bits), supports the Russian language in full.

Method number 2 - using HDDlife

HDDlife

This program is similar to the first one, it also clearly shows the current state of the disk: its health and performance (in percentage terms), its temperature, the amount of time worked (in months). In the upper part of the window, on the basis of all this data, HDDlife shows the final summary of your disk, for example, in my case, “ALL RIGHT” (which means that everything is in order with the disk).

By the way, the program can work online, monitoring the state of your disk, and in case something goes wrong (when the first signs of problems appear) - immediately notify you about it.

HDD Status

As an example, the screenshot below shows the SSD received a warning: its condition is still within acceptable limits, but reliability and performance are below average. In this case, it is not worth trusting the disk with any important data, and if possible, you need to prepare for its replacement.

The SSD is not all right.

By the way, in the main window of the program, next to the number of disk hours worked, there is a link "Tincture of a disk" (allows you to change some of the necessary parameters). Opening it, you can control the balance between noise / performance) is very useful with disks that make a lot of noise), and adjust the energy consumption settings (relevant for laptops that run out of battery quickly).

Addition: HDDlife works both on PC and on laptops. Supports HDD and SSD drives. There are portable versions of the program that do not need to be installed. You can configure the program to run along with your Windows. HDDlife runs on Windows: XP, 7, 8, 10 (32 | 64 bits).

How to view SMART readings

If the previous utilities independently evaluated the state of the disk based on SMART data, then the utilities below will provide you with more freedom and data for independent analysis. In the reports it will be possible to find a fairly large set of parameters, on the basis of which - it will be possible to approximately assess the state of the disk and make a forecast for its further work.

Method number 1 - using CrystalDiskInfo

CrystalDiskInfo

An excellent free utility for viewing the status and readings of a SMART hard drive (including support for SSDs). What bribes the utility - it provides you with complete information about the temperature, technical condition of the disk, its characteristics, etc., moreover, part of the data comes with notes (i.e. the utility is relevant, as for experienced users who themselves know what-is- that, "and for beginners who need a hint).

For example, if something is wrong with the temperature, then you will see a red indicator on it, i.e. CrystalDiskInfo will let you know about it.

Main window of CrystalDiskInfo

The main program window can be conditionally divided into 4 zones (see screenshot above):

  1. "1" - here are all of your physical disks installed in the computer (laptop). Each one shows its temperature, technical condition, and the number of sections on it (for example, "C: D: E: F:"),
  2. "2" - the current temperature of the disk and its technical condition are shown here (the program makes an analysis based on all received data from the disk),
  3. "3" - disk data: serial number, manufacturer, interface, rotation speed, etc.,
  4. "4" - SMART readings. By the way, what bribes the program - you don’t need to know what this or that parameter means - if something is wrong with any item, the program will mark it yellow or red and notify you about it.

As an example to the above, I will give a screenshot on which two disks are displayed: on the left - with which everything is fine, on the right - which has problems with reassigned sectors (technical condition - alarm!).

As a reference (on reassigned sectors):

when the hard disk detects, for example, a write error, it transfers data to a specially designated backup area (and this sector will be considered “reassigned”). Therefore, you cannot see bad blocks on modern hard disks - they are hidden in reassigned sectors. This process is called remapping, and the reassigned sector is remap.

The greater the value of the reassigned sectors, the worse the surface condition of the disks. Field "raw value" contains the total number of reassigned sectors.

By the way, for many disk manufacturers, even one reassigned sector is already a guarantee case!

I recommend that you save all important data from such a drive and, if possible, replace it with another one (if there is a guarantee, replace it).

To utility CrystalDiskInfo I watched online the status of your hard drive - in the "Tools" menu, put two checkmarks: Agent Launch and Autostart (see screen below).

Then you will see the program icon with the temperature next to the clock in the tray. In general, for the state of the disk, you can now be more calm ☺.

Method number 2 - using Victoria

Victoria - One of the most famous programs for working with hard drives. The main purpose of the program is to assess the technical condition of the drive, and replace the damaged sectors with backup workers.

The utility is free and allows you to work both from under Windows and from under DOS (which in many cases shows much more accurate data about the state of the disk).

Of the minuses: working with Victoria is quite difficult, at least at random to press buttons in it I highly recommend (you can easily destroy all data on the disk). I have one rather large article on my blog, which describes in detail how to check the disk using Victoria (including, to find out the SMART readings - an example in the screenshot below (on which Victoria pointed out a possible problem with the temperature)).

SMART Tab || utility Victoria

Round off on the sim, good luck to everyone!

Add-ons are welcome ☺

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