From: John Foust <jfoust_at_threedee.com>
Date: Thu Oct 21 19:40:13 2004

Steve Gibson shouldn't be a strange name for this list.
Google tells me that SpinRite's been mentioned a few
times in 2003 and 2004.

I recently bought a copy of his SpinRite and I'm trying
to get my head around exactly when it's useful. The manual
isn't much help.

Right now it's chugging away on a circa 1987 floppy that
lost its shutter, rattled around in an envelope, and today
has CRC errors. Not a rare disk, just something I'd like
to see if it can recover. It's busy re-reading bad sectors
hundreds of times to make its best guess at the data.

A few days ago I tried SpinRite on a contemporary PC's hard
drive that would error-out when writing to two spots on
the disk. At its strongest correction level, SpinRite
found the errors but the disk wasn't "repaired" in the
sense that I expected: I thought it would somehow map-out
the areas that had errors, and let me continue to rescue
the drive's data. It didn't. Writing to the drive still

(I successfully read both partitions with a Knoppix CD and with
R-Studio NE, but I wanted to bring the system back to life
enough to let HP's WinXP create its recovery CDs.)

So to keep this on-topic, when exactly can SpinRite help rescue
old hard drives and floppies?

And to state the obvious, SpinRite can't raise the dead.
I tried it on a drive that was alive enough to be recognized
by the BIOS, but if SpinRite can't make it spin or read,
it can't help.

- John
Received on Thu Oct 21 2004 - 19:40:13 BST

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