Run tests on a specific drive with this disk diagnostics tool. FREE | BIT.LY/2TZBJWU
For years, all hard drives and SSDs have supported SMART (self-monitoring, analysis and reporting technology), which alerts you to a dying hard drive before it’s too late to transfer your data.
Linux has always supported SMART, but there’s often been uncertainty in how you’d receive such alerts when the drive was about to fail. Previously, you could use commands such as
smartctl or smartd from the Smartmontools package, or you can go with the gorgeous Gnome Disks application, which offers a snazzy GUI for Smartctl.
However, if you don’t use Gnome but still want to access Smartctl via an interface, consider GSmartcontrol. This is a standalone application that’s been recently ported to GTK3 and is available for Linux, Windows and Mac OS.
GSmartcontrol is perfect for non tech-savvy users who know enough computing basics to want their disk drives to remain in good shape. The application displays the icons of all the physical drives in your system, much like in a file manager. You can quickly find out the exact model number of each device and see if it’s passed the basic health check. Simply double-click an icon to open a window containing all the details that Smartctl usually prints in the Terminal.
GSmartcontrol divides everything into six tabs and enables you to explore what features your drive has, view error logs, display the drive’s lifetime in hours and more. One of the tab enables you to manually run some tests on a specific drive. You can choose either a short, extended or conveyance self-test and see if your drive’s really matches up to what the program is saying.
We loved GSmartcontrol for its usefulness and compact size that enables you to use it on a custom minimalistic desktop, without pulling many undesired dependencies. The developer provides many packages for all major Linux distros, so for most readers installing GSmartcontrol is just a few mouse clicks away.