Testing Hard Drives

I rebuild a lot of computers for retired and disadvantaged people...limited incomes etc...
Often times I suspect the HD is going bad...perhaps in the first stages of shooting craps...judging by the way it operates...

I have a computer with a Promis PCI IDE controller, and 2 cables coming out the back, one for laptops, one for IDE drives and a power line I made about 2 ft longer...any drive I attache to either of these cables does not need the jumper to be moved...they are all "master" drives...and because of the length of my cables I usually don't have to remove the HD from the computer...

My normal routine is to connect the suspect HD to one of these cables, run a  virus scan, then look for spyware, Microsoft's scandisk,  etc...

I am looking for some type of software I can install on my computer and use to test the various parameters of the HD while I have it attached to the Promis controller...

I would rather not have a floppy, boot disk application to test HD's...I would like to perform as many tests as I can while I have the drive attached to my "work" computer...

Does anyone know of anything???

Thanx
Steve
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Steve MutchlerIT TechAsked:
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neomage23Connect With a Mentor Commented:
I'll second Callandor's remark. SpinRite from GRC is good.

Also, here is a decent article on the subject...http://www.pcstats.com/articleview.cfm?articleid=1583&page=1

ANd here is a free SMART utility: http://www.download.com/HDDlife/3000-2086_4-10380930.html?tag=lst-3-6

Good luck!

-neo

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RiccardofcCommented:
Hi,

you can use a nice BOOT CD and then test all your Hardware.

Check out this BOOT CD

http://62.253.162.19/hiren.thanki/bootcd.html


Riccardo
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nobusCommented:
i would suggest ultimate bootdisk, it has a lot of disk utilities : (and others)

http://www.startdisk.com/Web1/ubd/ubd.htm
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Steve MutchlerIT TechAuthor Commented:
Callandor & Neomage23...I have downloaded just about all the apps suggested and tried out a couple of them...the article in PCStats gave me a lead to another good prog...Splitting the points...

The boot CD's look like a nice idea, but I was really just looking for something to test HD's in my particular setup...but I appreciate the ideas...

Many thanx for your ideas...

Steve
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