How to perform a hard drive health check

Your hard drive is the heart of your computer and you can count on it to store important data.

If it gets corrupted for some reason and you haven't made a backup recently, your data may be erased. To reduce the risk of this happening, it is recommended to monitor the health of your hard drive.

Keep reading to find out four different ways to do this in Windows 10.



Use the BIOS

You can check the health of your hard disk without starting Windows.

All computers include a BIOS (Basic Input Output System) or UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) program that allows the operating system to interface with the computer's firmware. Each time you start your computer, this software initially loads, starting Windows and allowing you to run computer diagnostics before your computer starts. This method can be used if your computer does not boot into Windows or the hard drive is inaccessible.

The process for running hard drive pre-boot diagnostics varies by manufacturer. Therefore, you will need to check your manufacturer's website for instructions on accessing and running pre-boot system diagnostics for your PC.

In the meantime, to get an idea of ​​how it's done, here's how to access the pre-boot system through Dell and Lenovo.

Dell :

  1. While your computer is trying to boot, keep pressing the "F12" key until the boot menu appears.
  2. In "screenHP", select "Diagnostics".

Lenovo :

  1. While your computer is booting, press the "Esc" button repeatedly until you see the boot menu.
  2. Press the "F2" key to start "diagnosticsRefer".

Use Windows CHKDSK Tool

Windows CHKDSK, one of the built-in tools, will scan your hard drive for system errors and bad sectors. It checks the health of your hard drive by highlighting errors. In addition to analyzing problems, if possible, he will solve them and let you know if there is a problem he cannot handle. Follow these steps to use the tool:



  1. Open "Search" and type " cmd. " 
  2. Under "Command Prompt", select "Run as administrator".
  3. Type " chkdsk at the prompt line to run a basic scan, then press "Enter."
  4. You can also use " chkdsk / f / r” to repair bad sectors and recover all readable data if possible.
  5. To unmount your disk, first enter " chkdsk / f / r / x. " 
  6. Click here for a full list of Microsoft commands using the CHKDSK tool.

Use WMIC

Windows Management Instrumentation Command (WMIC) is a command-line interface for performing administrative tasks such as checking the health of your hard drive. Use a SMART (Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology) function that allows the hard drive to automatically monitor and provide basic conclusions for the status of your hard drive alone. You will need to install a third-party app to get additional information.

How to check your hard drive status using WMIC:

  1. Simultaneously press the "Windows" + "R" buttons to open a run command window.
  2. Type " cmd and then press the "Enter" key.
  3. Right-click on the Command Prompt display, then choose "Run as administrator".
  4. Type " WMIC in the command prompt window, then press "Enter".
  5. Type " diskdrive get status“, then press “Enter”.
  6. If the report status is "OK", you have a healthy hard drive.

Use the hard drive manufacturer's application

Most hard drive manufacturers will develop an application to monitor hard drive performance and health. You can download the app via the manufacturer's website. Follow these steps to find out who your hard drive manufacturer is:



  1. Press the "Windows" + "R" buttons.
  2. In the run command window, type " msinfo32 and press "Enter" for "System Information".
  3. Click the plus sign (+) to expand the "Components" option.
  4. Locate "Storage" and tap the adjacent plus sign to find "Disks".
  5. Select "Disks" to find the manufacturer and model of your hard drive.

Once you confirm the manufacturer, go to their support page to find the hard drive utility.


FAQ

How do I know if something is wrong with my hard drive?

Usually, before your hard drive starts to fail, you will receive warning signs. These signs may only appear for a few weeks before your hard drive has any real problems. In this scenario, act quickly and back up your data regularly.


Some of the common early warning signs include:

• Progressively longer startup times

• Regular system crashes

• Regular occurrence of blue screen of death

• BIOS errors on startup

• Missing files mean segments fail

• “File Explorer” takes longer to load files

Keep an eye on the health of your hard drive

The hard disk is one of the main components of your computer. It not only stores the files you save, but also contains the code needed by the operating system. Even though you can replace it in the event of an incurable problem, your data will not be replaced unless you keep regular backups.

Luckily, there are several ways to find out the health of your hard drive, including asking through built-in tools like CHKDSK and WMIC. The manufacturer will also have a dedicated diagnostic tool available on its website.

What else do you do to keep control of your computer's overall health? Tell us about it in the comments section below.

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