One of the utilities I keep in my toolkit, is DFT [Drive Fitness Test] to check the fitness of a hard disk. All OEM’s offer some type of software to check their hard disks for any type of problems. This one from Hitchi works on all brands of hard disks, and doesn’t discriminate between different brands. However, for the best results if this software indicates errors or problems, I would recommend getting a test tool from you hard disk manufacture and running it.

Reason? If the drive needs to be replaced, your OEM will ask for a error code and this can only be generated by their software.

DFT comes in .iso format. This means that the file needs to be burnt onto a CD using .iso , so you will need some type of 3rd party software to burn to disk.

What Hitachi say about their programs:

“Drive Fitness Test

Version 4.08

The Drive Fitness Test (DFT) quickly and reliably tests SCSI, IDE and SATA drives. The DFT analyze function performs read tests without overwriting customer data. (Note: other DFT restoration utilities may overwrite data.)

Downloads

To run the DFT, you must download the appropriate creator or image and create a self-booting media.

You may create the media under Windows (using the Windows OS version) or Linux (using the binary image), but you must start your system with the DOS-bootable diskette to run DFT.”

There is also a .pdf instruction file that I highly recommend you read prior to using the utility. Basically the process is fairly simple with 3 different forms of testing. These are covered in the manual. Again, most OEM hard disk manufacture also provide their own testing tools as well. Do a Google for your hard disk manufacture site, if you want to get their tool specific to your make and model.
DFT can be downloaded from here.

[tags]hard disk, utility, tool, google, free [/tags]