Using External Hard Drive Repair Software

by Rod Dunne on February 20, 2011

in Hardware

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There are relatively few external hard drive repair software options available. This may be down to the fact that each hard drive is architected and designed quite differently from others. In this post I’ll detail the few available tools, including Microsoft’s own utilities, which can be used for repairing bad sectors and analyzing disk faults.

Check with the HDD maker first

Before trying out other utilities, you should check your external hard drive manufacturer website to see if they provide any disk checking/error checking utilities. They would have these types of tools in-house for their own staff to check problems with disks. However, many providers will also make customer versions of these utilities freely available.

Disc Check

The primary tool most people try using is Microsoft’s own disk checking utility. This is a basic internal and external hard drive repair software utility for analyzing the disk for signs of bad sectors which you then attempt to repair.

The major proviso when using this product is to realize that any bad sectors that cannot be repaired will be marked available to reuse for future storage. This safeguards you against future data loss.

Here’s how to find/use the product:

  1. Open up Windows Explorer.
  2. Go to the external hard disk you wish to repair. Right click on the hard drive icon and choose properties.
  3. In the properties window, go to the tools tab.
  4. The tools tab contains a button labeled ‘check now’ in the error checking section. Click this button.
  5. Different operating systems will have different choices at this point but you should generally select an option to scan and attempt repairing bad sectors. Start a scan.

If you wish to do more advanced disk checking and analysis then to the few commercial tools available are HD Tune Pro and HDD Regenerator. These products can do more in-depth analysis of your hard disk clusters on partitions to identify possible boot sector faults or other types of corruption.

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