Need to Test Multiple Hard Drives

Posted on 2014-08-07
Last Modified: 2016-06-26
I need to thoroughly test multiple hard drives by various manufacturers (mainly Seagate and Western Digital) to see if they are still good, and if they are, see what is on them, wipe them, and prepare them for reuse. Does anyone know of any free tool that will accomplish this? I would prefer a bootable USB Linux tool or a tool that works outside of Windows OS as some of these hard drives may contain a virus. Thanks for reading my post and I look forward to any and all responses.
Question by:wfnd58078
    LVL 16

    Accepted Solution

    Seagate has seatools, which has a live CD.  You could also use the UBCD:
    LVL 62

    Assisted Solution

    by:☠ MASQ ☠
    & DBAN remains one of the best of the free, secure wiping tools
    LVL 46

    Expert Comment

    Both Seagate and WD have these tools. Seatools and WDDiag.
    They are available as boot ISO and installable exe. You can perform long tests with them and fill the drives with zeroes - same as wipe. But look what on the drives can you in Windows if you slave them to working system.
    LVL 62

    Expert Comment

    by:☠ MASQ ☠
    Although Seatools from Seagate runs in Linux (get their Enterprise edition), the WD Tools (WDDiag & Data Lifeguard) are only available for a Windows-based environment , if you want to run tests in Linux you'll need to resort to the native hdparm or smartmon (or hunt for a very old verion of Data Lifeguard before WD changed their policy).  Seatools works for lots of non-Seagate drives though :)
    LVL 9

    Expert Comment

    partition magic. or norton ghost or BartPE its linux base, they will do military grade wipe
    LVL 91

    Assisted Solution

    disk problems are often be due to sectors that were not written with proper amplitude.
     i always run HDDRegenerator on my drives, to ensure they are written correct :      

     it repaired many drives for me
    LVL 87

    Assisted Solution

    As mentioned above, the UBCD is the tool to use, besides including the manufacturer's diagnostic utilities, it also includes DBAN which was also mentioned above.

    But why do you need to see what is on the disks? Just wipe them. But if you really do need to take a look, I suggest booting up with knoppix so you can browse their contents:

    Author Comment

    Thank you all for your comments. I prefer a single tool that is not vendor-specific, and it looks like UBCD is the winner. I had used it several years ago and was not blown away but it appears it has really evolved into an impressive suite of utilities. HDDRegenerator, although not free, sounds good in theory. I will give it a trial run and see how it works. I will award points as follows...

    choward16980: 300
    nobus: 100
    MASQ: 50
    rindi: 50

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