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Windows 7: Any relevance to full format after SMART extended test?


05 Sep 2011   #1

Seven Home Premium x64
 
 
Any relevance to full format after SMART extended test?

Hello there. My drive passed SMART extended self test that scans the entire disk surface. Is the full format with command FORMAT FS=NTFS overkill? Thanks!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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05 Sep 2011   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ult. x64 Windows 8.1 x64
 
 

Hi,

A QUICK format does NOT scan for bad sectors, whereas a FULL format does. So, you can think of it this way:

QUICK Format + CHKDSK /F = FULL Format

If you are confident that your SMART assesment tells you you have no bad sectors, then a QUICK format is probably sufficient. If it was me, and I was doing a completely new installation on a previously used HDD, then personal I would run a FULL Format, regardless of what my SMART assesment would look like. A FULL format takes considerably longer than a QUICK format, but you get the satisfaction of knowing the status of those clusters.

Regards,
Golden
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Sep 2011   #3

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

Big ++ on Golden's suggestion. Full format. Another option would be a complete wipe of the hard drive using a 3rd party program.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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06 Sep 2011   #4

Seven Home Premium x64
 
 

Hey Golden, how trustworthy do you think SMART scan could be? Could the bad blocks be missed and therefore not remapped?

Since my post I've been reading and now I say yes, the full format after SMART complete scan is overkill because all bad sectors should be reallocated already. In fact I saw some forum posts about chkdsk failing to flag known bad spots - here and quoting someone else here (check his high rank profile): "I have proved many times that Microsoft CHKDSK command missed bad sectors and only using HDD vendor made utilities could find the real problem."

Perhaps if SMART implementation is faulty, then drive utility wouldn't be reliable but (now I know) even Ubuntu trusts Drive Self-Tests.

PS. Are you right about disk check in the full FORMAT for Vista and Seven? You missed this at least: it writes zeros now, which serves to find the bad blocks too when writing fails.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Sep 2011   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ult. x64 Windows 8.1 x64
 
 

Hi,

The problem is that each disk vendor has their own SMART standards and definitions. In my view, the only way is a FULL format, or if you like, a QUICK Format and CHKDSK/f

Regards,
Golden
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 May 2013   #6

Home Premium 64bit
 
 

I'm dealing with this and wanted to add one observation: In doing an Extended Test with Western Digitals Datalifeguard for Windows on a WD drive it found bad sectors and failed in repairing it. After this I noticed there are a couple of pending sectors. I'm currently doing a full format and those two sectors have moved from pending to reallocated..
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Any relevance to full format after SMART extended test?




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