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Windows 7: need advice formatting drives

22 Jun 2015   #11
tgfyhre

Windows 7 32bit Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TVeblen View Post
Hitachi Drive Fitness Test is the best one to use with Toshiba hard drives.
Thank you. Is there a Windows-based version of the software or is it only run by disc? One issue with Hitachi Drive Fitness:

Notes:

Does not support Microdrive Digital Media products.
Supports all Travelstar HDDs, except 8E, 10E and C4K series.
Does not support Endurastar products.
Does not support external USB or Firewire attached drives.
Compatible only with x86-based processors.
Does not support the PC which loads Intel ICH9M chipset.


So it won't work on my external USB 3.0 enclosure. I also read that Hitachi Drive Fitness Test won't work on 3TB or larger drives. Is that true?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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22 Jun 2015   #12
tgfyhre

Windows 7 32bit Home Premium
 
 

How about HGST Windows Drive Fitness Test? Will that work with Toshiba drives?

"WinDFT is a utility that will quickly test your HGST internal and external hard disk drives as well as all single drive G-Technology products. WinDFT will perform read tests without overwriting customer data. WinDFT also has additional utilities if you need to wipe the disk clean of data."

If I just do a full format with Windows, I'll have no idea if Windows actually found any bad sectors since it won't tell me. I'm wondering if it would make more sense to do a quick format and then run something like Seagate tools or HGST Windows Drive Fitness Test? That way I'll know if it found any bad sectors. Will either of those mark off bad sectors like a full format would do so they can't be written to? Honestly both drives I'll be testing are new, and I'd feel better exchanging them if any bad sectors are found, which is why I'd like to know the results.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2015   #13
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

I'm reasonably sure that I've read that the HGST test will work on most any brand.

However, the following is a quote from a post on this forum from a highly regarded storage oriented member:


"Western Digital Data Lifeguard Diagnostic may try to auto repair bad sectors and may make the issue worse. On the other hand Seagate Seatools will only perform a read test. To repair bad sectors, user should manually enable the repair mode. I have been using Seatools for a decade. I have tested at least 1000 disks and it never screwed a single drive.

There are two reasons I prefer Seatools over others.

1. Seatools will work with any manufacturer's disk.

2. It will abort the test to prevent further damage if there are too many surface tests.

Before testing with Seatools, make sure the disk is connected directly to a SATA port and avoid USB enclosure. If it is already connected to a SATA port, replace the data cable with a good quality 6GB/s cable. Often a faulty cable may make the disk looks like bad.

For Windows version of Seatools, the test to run is "Long generic" which will scan entire disk surface."
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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22 Jun 2015   #14
tgfyhre

Windows 7 32bit Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post
I'm reasonably sure that I've read that the HGST test will work on most any brand.

However, the following is a quote from a post on this forum from a highly regarded storage oriented member:


"Western Digital Data Lifeguard Diagnostic may try to auto repair bad sectors and may make the issue worse. On the other hand Seagate Seatools will only perform a read test. To repair bad sectors, user should manually enable the repair mode. I have been using Seatools for a decade. I have tested at least 1000 disks and it never screwed a single drive.

There are two reasons I prefer Seatools over others.

1. Seatools will work with any manufacturer's disk.

2. It will abort the test to prevent further damage if there are too many surface tests.

Before testing with Seatools, make sure the disk is connected directly to a SATA port and avoid USB enclosure. If it is already connected to a SATA port, replace the data cable with a good quality 6GB/s cable. Often a faulty cable may make the disk looks like bad.

For Windows version of Seatools, the test to run is "Long generic" which will scan entire disk surface."
Thanks for this info. Will the "Long Generic" test mark bad sectors like a full format would do? Would I be wise to still run a full format if I'm going to run the long generic test, or would a quick format be fine?

And would esata be okay in an enclosure with seatools, or should I put it in my main tower and use sata?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2015   #15
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

see comments in bold

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tgfyhre View Post

Will the "Long Generic" test mark bad sectors like a full format would do?


I've never run Seatools, but I'd certainly assume so, otherwise it hasn't fixed anything and wouldn't be worthy of being called a "tool" if it can only identify bad sectors, but not retire them to the bench.

Would I be wise to still run a full format if I'm going to run the long generic test, or would a quick format be fine?

I'd think a full format would be redundant in that case and that a quick format would be fine, assuming the drive passes the tests.

And would esata be okay in an enclosure with seatools, or should I put it in my main tower and use sata?

I can't speak for Seatools, but I've certainly run Western Digital tools on drives in an external dock (not an enclosure) through eSATA. No issues. I've formatted through eSATA, restored images through eSATA, and run my PC through eSATA.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2015   #16
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Notice in the quote from the member I referred to, regarding Seatools:

To repair bad sectors, user should manually enable the repair mode.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2015   #17
tgfyhre

Windows 7 32bit Home Premium
 
 

From what I've read about Seatoools, it's recommended to run the long generic test, and as soon as it finds a bad sector, it fails the test. Then you can manually run the option to repair the disk. A full Windows format will automatically mark the bad sectors so they won't be used during the format, so when it's complete, the drive is ready to use with the bad sectors marked so they won't be used. I'm not sure what's better. When "repairing" bad sectors with Seatools, is it fixing bad sectors or is it just marking them bad like full format does? That's what I'm still confused about.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2015   #18
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tgfyhre View Post
When "repairing" bad sectors with Seatools, is it fixing bad sectors or is it just marking them bad like full format does? That's what I'm still confused about.
See my post 16.

That's the best I can do.

Where I come from, "repair" and "fix" are synonyms.

But I don't think bad sectors are ever actually "fixed" or "repaired". They are identified and sent out of the game, permanently, and cannot later be used for data or Windows or at all.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2015   #19
tgfyhre

Windows 7 32bit Home Premium
 
 

Agreed, but Windows full format doesn't fix bad sectors to my knowledge - it marks them as bad so they can't be used. That's what I'm trying to understand. Does Seatools fix the bad sectors as in, they aren't bad anymore, or does it just mark them as bad like full format so they aren't used?

It doesn't actually explain this.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jun 2015   #20
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tgfyhre View Post
Does Seatools fix the bad sectors as in, they aren't bad anymore, or does it just mark them as bad like full format so they aren't used?
See my previous post.

I seriously doubt that bad sectors are ever truly "fixed" or "repaired". If you raked a screwdriver across a disk platter, how could software possibly fix it?
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