SOT: Hard Drive Health monitor software?

VMP wrote on 10/4/2014, 11:15 PM
After the many topics here about Seagate being 'bad' I am looking into a (free) utility that can monitor my drives, or do occasional scan and give a drive health report . I have 2 Seagate drives.
ST2000DM001 Drive

As soon as I read these threads about Seagate I have asked my PC store if they had any complaints about the drives, or if it had more errors compared to the Western Digital drives they had.
According to them WD and Seagate were equal in comparison, Seagate weren't any worse.
(The guy who I spoke to also repairs and maintain PC's)

As suggested here I do occasionally make backups.
But still I am looking for a utility like the Samsung Magician software which scans the disc quickly.

I have just downloaded a drive health software from Seagate, but after running it the HD activity indicator LED lights constantly and the whole PC freezes up. Mouse and Keyboard doesn't do anything anymore.
According to some forums for some users it took several hours for the 'SeaToolsforWindowsSetup.exe' software to complete the scan.

Is there any faster alternative to do this?
I just want to occasionally check the drive health.

Thanks in advance,


GeeBax wrote on 10/4/2014, 11:56 PM
I had an issue with a Seagate GoFlex drive that most of the time would not show up on my system. When it did, often you clicked on the drive and it would go away again. I contacted Seagate and they got me to install the SeaTools software, which not only did not work, but erased everything that was on the drive in question. After that it sporadically hung up the entire computer.

In the end I removed the drive from the GoFlex caddy, threw the case and caddy way, installed the drive into my system and nixed the SeaTools software.

Since then I have not had any troubles. Seagate do not rate well in my house.
bigjezza wrote on 10/4/2014, 11:58 PM
Try HDD Guardian. Its free and can be configured to email you if certain attributes change, like re allocated sector count.

It offers the standard Short and Long test, among other things.

By far its standout feature for me is the ability to see through Intel's RAID and directly access the drives. Many HDD programs do not do that.
VMP wrote on 10/5/2014, 12:19 AM
Thanks guys.


HDD Guardian looks interesting! I have just installed it.
It says that my Samsung SSD has a remaining life of 98% :- ).
After what % should one start to worry?

VMP wrote on 10/5/2014, 12:26 AM
In the Overview tab:

Both the Seagate drives show Raw Read Error rate.

ST3000 shows:

and ST2000 shows:

The drives are not older than 8 months.

The SSD (Samsung 840 series Pro 256GB) shows 0 erros rate.

I have no other brand HDD on the system at this moment so I am not sure if it is only Seagate
related. Or do HDD's get these kind of Raw data error often?

PixelStuff wrote on 10/5/2014, 1:12 AM
I don't know what the Raw Read Error Rate means, but I have 4 Western Digital drives of different ages and with different usage patterns, and they all show exactly the same:

Current: 200
Worst: 200
Threshold: 051
Raw values: 0

Then I have an OCZ Vertex 4 that shows:

Current: 006
Worst: 000
Threshold: 000
Raw values: 6

PixelStuff wrote on 10/5/2014, 1:27 AM
Here's another chart that kind of describes the S.M.A.R.T. Information.

PeterDuke wrote on 10/5/2014, 2:38 AM
I use Hard Disk Sentinel. It is not free but is affordable. It tells you disk temperature in the Windows tray, and tells you when sectors have been reallocated, warning you that the disk is failing and should be replaced before disaster strikes.

I tried a few free monitor offerings but they all had shortcomings.

Good free software is becoming harder to come by these days, with adware and or pressure to donate or to buy the "professional" version becoming the norm.

In something as important as disk reliability, go for peace of mind rather than try to save a few dollars.
VMP wrote on 10/5/2014, 2:39 AM

Here is a (HDD Guardian) screenshot: HDD-error-count.jpg

The window above shows a 5 star OK and no error count etc, and below is the 'raw values' info.
Maybe due to hardware limitations (with any brand) it is inevitable to have 0 error count while reading and writing?

PeterDuke, Thanks I am going to have a look at the software.

FilmingPhotoGuy wrote on 10/5/2014, 6:21 AM
I use Acronis, totally free. It reads the SMART info on the drive chips. Stacks of data to look thru.
PixelStuff wrote on 10/5/2014, 4:42 PM
Here is a screen shot for one of the Western Digital drives I mentioned.

VMP wrote on 10/5/2014, 4:58 PM
Thanks PixelStuff.

I just found this:

"The raw value (125498017) for the Read Error Rate attribute is actually a sector count, not an error count. This count rolls over to zero after 250000000. The normalised value of the attribute is logarithmic and is calculated according to some proprietary formula.

Steve Mann wrote on 10/5/2014, 6:34 PM
"It says that my Samsung SSD has a remaining life of 98% :- ).
After what % should one start to worry?"


Seriously, if you even keep the computer long enough to see the "Remaining Life" drop to near zero, you will probably be running an 8-core, 4GHz PC and this one is in the grandkids playroom.
Steve Mann wrote on 10/5/2014, 6:40 PM
"I don't know what the Raw Read Error Rate means"

Raw Read Error is not a hardware issue, but the number of times that the driver had to re-read the data because of a CRC error during normal operation.
VMP wrote on 10/6/2014, 6:36 AM
That's interesting, thanks Steve Mann.

Rob Franks wrote on 10/6/2014, 6:54 AM
Interesting question...

I have HDD guardian and it indicates one of my drives is a bit weak (49 ATA errors). Now this also happens to be a drive which is encrypted (I use Truecrypt and encrypt this drive in case of theft because it contains a lot of personal data)

Now... how much of these "errors" are actually errors and not the system getting tripped up in attempting to read an encrypted drive? (Windows sees the drive as "raw" when truecript is not running and decrypting the drive)
bsuratt wrote on 10/6/2014, 10:34 AM
Here is some enlightening info from a heavy HD user:

My experience with Seagate has not been good!
PeterDuke wrote on 10/6/2014, 6:14 PM
"Now... how much of these "errors" are actually errors and not the system getting tripped up in attempting to read an encrypted drive? (Windows sees the drive as "raw" when truecript is not running and decrypting the drive)"

I am only guessing here but truecript presumably is equivalent to a foreign file system. Disk monitoring software (or at least Hard Disk Sentinel) is not concerned with data or file systems. It looks at the disk's housekeeping operations.


Hard Disk Sentinel does report the Windows drive letter and amount of data stored on drives recognised by Windows, but not on drives with foreign file systems.
Rob Franks wrote on 10/7/2014, 9:01 PM
I think you're probably right Peter. I shouldn't ply around with it. I'll just replace the drive to be safe. It's got all our bank account stuff on it along with passwords and thousands of family photos. It's probably dumb to second guess.
John_Cline wrote on 10/8/2014, 1:38 AM
For what it's worth, I ran HDD Guardian on the drives which reside in my server, it is on 24/7 and gets pounded pretty hard. I have four Hitachi/HGST drives which have each been running continuously for 52,780 hours (just over 6 years) and have zero errors and zero bad sectors. The same machine also has four 1.5TB Seagate drives which have been running for about 12,000 hours (about 1.3 years), one of them has 192 bad sectors, the others have 90, 76 and 40 bad sectors respectively. I guess it's time to buy some more HGST drives to replace the Seagates.
DSCalef wrote on 10/8/2014, 3:40 AM
I use Hard Disk Sentinel, and have for a couple of years. I like what it is able to tell me. I use for early warning that it is time to clone my HDD to a new drive and toss the old one under a sledge hammer.
John_Cline wrote on 10/26/2014, 2:08 AM
Here's the September 2014 hard drive reliability report from Backblaze. HGST drives are the most reliable by a WIDE margin.

PeterDuke wrote on 10/26/2014, 6:22 AM
Why don't they show 2TB? I have heaps (well, several) of them (Seagate and WD) as USB drives.

I guess it is safe to interpolate. 2TB no better or worse than the other sizes.
craftech wrote on 10/26/2014, 9:37 AM

So I tried HDD Guardian and it reports for my Adata SP600 SSD 316 ATA errors, but that is "PASSED". Then under Device Health it recommends that I replace the disc. It also says Remaining Life N/A for that drive and my secondary drive.

I downloaded the trial of Hard Disk Sentinel and it said that there was 1 error during data transfer and that the health is 99%, but that unless the health drops further warranty replacement is not possible.

Quite a discrepancy.

Any thoughts?

Rob Franks wrote on 10/26/2014, 12:48 PM
I have both and have such discrepancies as well. I've never been able to explain it.