HDD Regenerator

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Rilla927, Jan 3, 2007.

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  1. Rilla927
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    Rilla927 Registered Member

  2. Arup
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    Arup Guest

    Kind of hard to believe that damaged physical structures can be restored by a software.
  3. Coff
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    Coff Registered Member

    I used it in January 2006 after an update to a program locked up my machine and caused me to turn it off at the power switch. A subsequent run of chkdsk showed that the drive had 144 bad sectors. I used the full Error Scan (not the Quick Scan) in HDTune http://www.hdtune.com/ to determine the approximate location of the bad sectors and then used HDD Regenerator to "fix" them.

    All I can tell you is that on subsequently running the full Error Scan in HDTune, it showed no bad sectors on the drive and everything has worked fine ever since.

    The sectors are still marked as bad when running chkdsk. This is to be expected, see bottom of the page under Important Notes http://store6.esellerate.net/store/ProductInfo.aspx?StoreIDC=STR793615240&SkuIDC=SKU9923428806&pc=

    During the summer I had a problem with an external drive which overheated one night as I left it defragging. When I ran HD Tune on that drive the Error Scan was a sea of red. I ran HDD Regenerator just to see what it reported. It started to detect the bad sectors but wasn't able to fix them. I sent that drive back for a replacement - it was toast.

    So, from my experience, it depends on the exact situation as to whether or not HDD Regenerator is useful.
  4. ThunderZ
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    ThunderZ Registered Member

    I question any utility of this nature, even Spin Rite. Saw HDD Regenerator a while back. Had a long talk with my Friends at the local Tech. shop. They said they had tried it out. As best they could tell all it did was "fool" the OS into thinking the sectors were good. Sorry, do not think I would trust it for any HDD I was planning for the storage of important data.
  5. Rilla927
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    Rilla927 Registered Member

    I think pretty much what you said, but at the same time I'm wondering what shape the disks are really in and if I don't trust something I will never know.

    That HD Tune doesn't say anywhere on the site if it supports Raid0.
  6. ThunderZ
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    ThunderZ Registered Member

    IMO, I would go to the HDD manufacturers website. Most have their own utility to diagnose potential failure. If the HDDs` are still under warranty then they may require you to run it before issuing an RMA.

    That is a good question. You may have to open the case and set the drives up individually to run any test. I really did not look around on the site to see if they had a support forum. It would be a good question to ask.
  7. Mrkvonic
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    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

    Hello,
    I have used SpinRite personally. Takes 48-60 hours to repair the disk, but it does the work.
    Mrk
  8. ThunderZ
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    ThunderZ Registered Member


    I have used it myself but not on my personal PCs`. Also, when ever I have used it on a clients PC and it has found\repaired bad sectors, I advise the Client of the results and tell them, IMO, they need a new hdd. If you are comfortable with its` results then continue to use it in good health. When in doubt I prefer to replace.
  9. Ice_Czar
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    Ice_Czar Registered Member

    exactly

    error mapping (storagereview reference section)

    the quandry here is if you ignore the problem inorder to recover data, your "fixed" drive is now very likely to need to be "fixed" again very soon, and this time maybe you wont recover the data.

    here is a nice analysis of Spinrite
  10. Rilla927
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    Rilla927 Registered Member

    I have done this but Western Digitals stupid utility see's the RAID0 that is 149 Gig as 9 Gig through the window of the program. I seen some info at their site that refers to:

    If you purchased a computer through a PC Manufacturer with these drives you would have to go back to them.



    I will have to ask.
  11. Rilla927
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    Rilla927 Registered Member

    I have SpinRite 6.0 and I just contacted them about how to make the disk (they are always referring to a floppy in the manual). I would need to add the Via Raid and Promise FastTrack driver on a CD and make it bootable. He said something about making a DOS Bootable disk. He didn't tell me how, he referred me to Google. I have no idea exactly what I would need from each folder for these drivers in order to make this disk.
  12. ThunderZ
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    ThunderZ Registered Member


    I`m sure someone here can point you in the right direction for creating the disk. If not, given a little time with Google I am sure we can come up with a solution should you decide this route versus replacement.
    A lot would depend on the type of disk(s) you received with the PC. An OS disk, system restore disk, a disk with separate drivers (raid drivers should be included sense they are usually loaded prior to the OS loading). This may also be a what I believe is called a software raid. Meaning there are not 2 actual HDDs, but one, partioned to appear as 2 to the OS. I have not had a chance to play with raid in any form yet. It is on my to do list though. :D
  13. NGRhodes
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    NGRhodes Registered Member

    IMHO, spinrite cannot magically fix a drive, sure it can remove/fix and error that has occurred, but it can in no way work out and fix what caused that error... useful as a emergency recovery, as are other tools, but it cannot magically fix your drive that his marketing suggests - it will not prevent further errors occurring.

    There are many holes in his marketing spiel (as mentioned in the above link), but the other thing that makes me avoid Gibson is his involvement with John Mcafee, before he left Mcafee and when he bought control of zonelabs,

    Gibson is far from independent, coincidence ?:

    "At the height of the hysteria Gibson had nearly three hundred live hyperlinks to the ZoneAlarm product page, and although he did mention other firewalls (and the fact they existed) he kept the number of links at the bare minimum to be able to come back with plausible denial: one"

    http://radsoft.net/news/roundups/grc/20060121,01.shtml

    Sorry to rant on about this subject, but there are too many people who are not aware Gibsons marketing crud.
  14. Ice_Czar
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    Ice_Czar Registered Member


    its definitely worth navigating up one level from that link
    http://grcsucks.com/

    he is by far the best example of a modern fearmongering snake oil salesman I can think of, that some consider him a security "expert" is laughable

    that he twists reality, sows fear and cashes in on it while mis-educating the poor n00bs is reprehensible.


    personally I dont try to defeat the data safeguards built in at the hardware\filesystem level
    and as mentioned in that first link consider SpinRite 80% hype, 10% dangerous, and 10% real substance
    your not "fixing" anything and there are better recovery tools

    here is the start of the Hard Disk Error Management & Recovery Section @ Storagereview (mirrored from PC Guide)
    and NTFS basics @ NTFS.com
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2007
  15. yankinNcrankin
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    yankinNcrankin Registered Member

    Never used HDD regenerator but my guess is these types of programs are designed to try and make a worn HDD work maybe just a bit longer until you can buy another one, Im sure they are designed to do a way better job than the OS chk disk utility. :D If its defective part then you probably better off getting a new one unless you got some important stuff already on your HDD that needs recovery.
  16. MerleOne
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    MerleOne Registered Member

    I don't agree with this thread general orientation that HDD Regen and Spinrite are useless.

    Some years ago, I had an external 60GB HDD which mysteriously refused to be accessed and repartitioned, partitioning utility just froze each time I was trying to access the partition table.

    A closer exam with HDTune revealed that the first cylinders were full of read errors.

    I had then the choice to either buy a new HDD or buy HDD Regen, their prices was comparable. I decided to try HDD Regen : after a few hours all read errors had been corrected, I still lost half of my files (no problem, it was a backup), was able to repartition it and fully reformat it. Since then I have been using it regularly, and no single error has appeared.

    Spinrite actually crashed on the non repaired disk, because it detected a FAT32 partition, and tried to read the file layout -> crash. HDD Regen don't assume any file system and was more powerful.

    My advice though is this kind of tool should only be used to recover data before trying another forensic/recovery tool such as file scavenger. Errors in most cases indicate something is really wrong with the hardware.

    Regarding Steve Gibson bashing, I don't agree either. Look at some gems he coded such as wizmo and many others, just for that he deserves some consideration. IMVHO.
  17. Ice_Czar
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    Ice_Czar Registered Member

    sound advice (use file scavenger myself)
    my problem with these utilities are how they are marketed, same goes with my problems with Gibson. He's PT Barnum reincarnate, puts on quite the show but take what is said with a grain of salt. Then go get the real story from the real experts.


    here is the first bu11shit claim for HDD Regenerator
    http://store2.esellerate.net/store/ProductInfo.aspx?StoreIDC=STR793615240&SkuIDC=SKU9923428806&pc=
    do to areal density and the various servo burst strategies employed these days low level formatting is only done at the factory when the drive is manufactured, either the spindoctor that wrote that was unaware of this or hes refering to zeroing a HDD, given its the technical description of how it works neither is encouraging
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2007
  18. MerleOne
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    MerleOne Registered Member

    Well, just to be fair with HDD Regen, they don't actually say that they low-level format the faulty sectors, just that they "repair" them in a way that a normal format will acknowledge them as OK again and that low-level format would not have had the same effect. The detail explanation of how low-level format works doesn't really helps me deciding if this is possible or not. Too technical...

    BTW, spinrite is supposed to be more powerful than HDD Regen in the repair process, because it should recover the damaged data. HDD Regen just "corrects" the magnetic anomaly, but doesn't try to guess what the original data was, I think.

    Also, I don't believe innovation only come from experts. Just to give you an very recent example heard today on the radio, a car mechanic in the south of France has just finalized some time ago the design and manufacturing of a replacement for the device that ignites the gasoline in a car engine (can't recall how it's named in English), bringing the gasoline to be burnt at 99% instead of 90%, reducing significantly consumption and pollution. For the moment, only a few thousands cars are using this modification, which is BTW very cheap. It's so remarkable to have this kind of invention not coming from a big car manufacturer and their many experts !
  19. Rilla927
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    Rilla927 Registered Member

    Wow, all of you have been busy bee's!

    Hopefully someone can point me in the right direction.

    I have seen good and bad reviews of this program. Now at grc.com it says it supports Raid but yet I have been reading the news groups for SpinRite and there some said it trashed their drive, some said they couldn't get it to work on Raid, all sorts of different things.

    I guess all I can do is hope for the best if I try it. If it trashes my drive I will be one pissed off puppy, especially for what it cost.
  20. ThunderZ
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    ThunderZ Registered Member

    Is this what you read on the SpinRite site?
    How does SpinRite operate with RAID arrays?

    There are three possible situations with different consequences for SpinRite:

    A "thin" RAID controller in a striping, RAID-0 configuration:
    SpinRite is able to operate upon drives behind a thin RAID-0 controller configuration without any modification. By a "thin controller" we mean a controller like an add-on Promise controller, or typical RAID controller built into a motherboard. Specifically, one that is not providing its own high-end microprocessor with megs of independent RAID caching RAM memory. Since RAID-0 does not offer the mirroring redundancy of RAID-1, SpinRite's reads and writes are spread out and "striped" between the RAID drives, but there's still a "one for one" relationship between virtual and physical sectors, so SpinRite will be able to operate without requiring the drives to be temporarily removed from the RAID configuration.

    And, in fact, for SpinRite v6.0, which uses the RAID controller BIOS, RAID-0 drives can not be removed from behind the controller since one of the drives will contain a partition table describing a "virtual drive" that's larger than the actual physical drive. SpinRite will see this and refuse to proceed since it always chooses to do nothing unless it's completely certain of what's going on.

    A "thin" RAID-1 mirroring controller or a high-end RAID controller with on-board caching:
    In the case of a RAID-1 mirroring configuration, or where a high-end controller is providing its own isolating cache RAM, SpinRite needs to be able to operate upon the individual drives directly. SpinRite CAN be used upon the individual drives behind a RAID array if they are temporarily physically removed from the array controller and attached to a standard non-RAID controller. Since SpinRite can perform analysis, maintenance, repair and recovery on "raw" unformatted drives, it can do the same for drives formatted in any RAID fashion WITHOUT disturbing the special RAID array formatting.


    What ever you decide, Best of luck.
  21. Mrkvonic
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    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

    Hello,

    There was some talk against Steve and his software.

    As to Steve, I really couldn't care less. There are so many experts, self-proclaimed gurus - all it takes is not listening to what they say. Everyone is entitled to their bit of web. But no one forces anyone to go to grc.com or buying his software. Hell, I'd consider anything that comes from Sony as pure propaganda. Do I bother to visit their site and get upset at new corpo machinations?

    As to SpinRite, it does what it says.

    OF COURSE, after the recovery, one should buy a NEW hardrive and use the temporary stopgap solution to salvage lost data etc. HDD recovery is mainly for saving the stuff on the hard disk, not for saving the hard disk itself.

    Mrk
  22. ThunderZ
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    ThunderZ Registered Member

    Thank You. Wish I had said that. :oops: :D
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