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5. Disk Hacks > 57. Detect Drive Failure Before It Happens

Detect Drive Failure Before It Happens

Roughly 60% of all disk drive failures are mechanical in nature—from spindle-bearing wear to read/write heads banging into delicate disk platters—and now technology built into the drives can report anticipated and specific failures to give you a chance to rectify the situation, hopefully before it is too late to retrieve your data.

In addition to monitoring a variety of parameters related to mechanical events (disk platter RPM, time to spin up, motor current, head seek failures, and sudden shock to the drive chassis), S.M.A.R.T. (Self-Monitoring, Analysis, and Reporting Technology) can report read and write retry attempts necessary due to defective areas on the disk or head failure or drive temperature. Many S.M.A.R.T.-enabled drives can also report how many times they have been turned on and off and the number of hours the drive has been on.


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