Verifying Disk Health
Table of Contents
S.M.A.R.T. - this is a monitoring system included in disk drives(HDDs and SSDs). Its primary function is to detect and report various indicators of drive reliability and health.
Sectors - these are sections of your hard drive that store data. Your hard drive has many many sectors.
Important SMART Values
If you ever read a SMART report from any of the below tools it is useful understanding the common ones that you want to watch for. Current Pending Sector Count
When a sector is detected as bad it will be counted and the disk will attempt to move it. This value can go up and down as the disk moves or recovers sectors.
Reallocated Sectors Count
When detected as bad your disk will attempt to move a sector. If it is moved successfully this count will go up.
Uncorrectable Sector Count
This count goes up when the disk is not able to recover and move a sector. This indicates lost data.
Pending Sector Count
This count goes up when the disk is being read with unstable sectors on the disk. They are a precursor to Reallocated Sectors which cause lost of date.
Crystal Disk Info
Crystal disk is the simplest way to get a reading on SMART within Windows. Download the application then run it to view every disk in the machine.
For directions on using CDI please see our factoid about it.
The basics are color coded; if a disk shows up as Yellow/’Caution’ or Red/’Bad’ we recommend replacing it.
Hard Disk Sentinel
You can check SMART in Linux using smartmonTools. The quick steps to get a report in Ubuntu are: (replace X with your desired disk)
sudo apt install smartmontools sudo smartctl -a -d ata /dev/sdX
GSmartControl (GUI method)
sudo apt install gsmartcontrol
gsmartcontrolfrom the application menu
Select your disk once the application is opened
If your disk is anything but ‘passed’ then your disk is dying and needs to be replaced.
- To share your results choose ‘View output’ then ‘Save as’ and upload that file to a helper for review.