Monitoring Hard Disk Conditions

29 December 2008

Very often, one faces the problem of computer failing to start up; sometimes, the computer just hanged and may even re-start itself before it reaches the usual welcoming start up screen. Besides a virus that can cause such problem, the harddisk's condition could just be another one of such causes.

Can We Prevent Harddisk Failure?
Harddisk failure is either caused by component failures due to electric surges or by damaged harddisk media due to normal fair wear and tear. The latter appears to be main cause of all problems. One of the many ways that we can prevent a harddisk failure is to monitor the harddisk's working condition, especially its operating temperature.

How to Monitor?
One can download this S.M.A.R.T software free from here.

What is S.M.A.R.T?
It stands for "Self-Monitoring, Analysis, and Reporting Technology", first introduced by IBM in 1992. S.M.A.R.T will monitor about 40 different attributes of the harddisk from read and seek errors to airflow temperature in and around the harddisk.

How useful?
Among the many attributes monitored, one would find the temperature monitoring most useful. Very often, one neglects the proper ventilation of the harddisk. This S.M.A.R.T software can continuously monitor the temperature and warns us if the temperature has exceeded the preset level. This would often prevent premature harddisk failures.

Besides temperature monitoring , the software can scan harddisk surface and display the results in graphs. This will facilitate the repair and the revival the harddisk. The software could also point out the data transfer errors caused by faulty cables etc.

Doubleclick for enlarged view

How to install?
The HDDScan software to be download comes with installation readme notes as well as manuals for the installation and operation of the software. There are no complicated installation procedures other than having to extract the ZIP files into a selected directory.

Related articles
1. S.M.A.R.T. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
2. HDDScan, the HDDGuru


simon said...

hi skyjuice,

hope you can help me with this. i have this software in my com that i can't remove! it just downloaded by itself and keep coming up with msgs saying i have viruses in my computer and telling me to buy their anti-virus software and telling me to run the program and scan the computer. u know of any software that i can download to delete this thing, other than reformating my whole harddisk? i can't even manually delete the file...

Sky Juice said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sky Juice said...

This virus is quite commonly found in the web but yours appear to be a “resident” in your computer. A software being used often is Hijackthis ( ). Since you are about to wipe the disk and re-install the operating system, you could try to erase all the suspicious name/software found by Hijackthis and restart your computer. Should some software refuse to start after this, either just re-install them or go back to Hijackthis’s backup list to restore the software. There were reports of anti-virus software, such as Norton, giving such irritating pop-up when they expired; if that being the case, either just uninstall/renew them or disable the Security Centre and Security Account Manager temporary using “msconfig”.