Exercising ATA disks in hopes of revealing errors

Bill Moran wmoran at potentialtech.com
Tue Apr 17 17:06:55 UTC 2007

In response to "Doug Poland" <doug at polands.org>:

> Hello,
> I've just come into possesion of a bunch of 80GB ATA drives.  I'd like
> to quickly and efficiently test each drive to see if it's free of
> errors and suitable for deployment in non-critical workstations.
> Using FreeBSD 6.x as a testing platform, what tools do people use to
> stress-test disk drives?  I've searched ports and done some googling
> but nothing stands out.

You can use bonnie++ to stress test the drives, but it doesn't guarantee
that it uses all of the drive, so you might want to do a massive dd
"dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/[rawDevice] bs=512 count=[#sectors]" as one
possible example.

Check with the vendors, though.  Many drive manufacturers have utilities
you can download specifically to check their drives.

Bill Moran

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