‘HDDExpert’ is a software utility that lets Windows users to view the ‘S.M.A.R.T’ readings (and thus its current state of ‘Health’) of their Hard Disk Drives, with ease. It is portable, but a separate installer is also available for those that prefer it.
As you can see below, under ‘General’ it displays the manufacture, model, firmware, the serial number and the current: Temperature, Cycles (HDD start/stop count) and Hours (the total number of hours the HDD has been running so far). The other three buttons, once clicked, give you suggestions for improving the health and security of your data.
For instance, when you click the ‘Fans’ or ‘Spare’ button, it simply takes you to ‘Amazon.com’ through which you can purchase fans or a spare HDD, and the ‘Backup’ button takes you to a premium data backup tool. It also contains a ‘Message box’ in which it displays the sum of the health status and recommendations that refer to the above mentioned details.
Just like any other similar tool, it also displays various other details from the ‘S.M.A.R.T’ readings (Raw Read Error Rate, Spin-up Time, Emergency Retract Count and many others).
‘HDDExpert’ seems to be assuming the value under ‘Power-on count’ of ‘S.M.A.R.T’ as it is in hours, but some HDD manufactures count it in minutes rather than hours. This is also the case with my Toshiba SATA disk, but according to ‘HDDExpert’ this HDD has run for 325056 hours!. That is pretty much an impossible value for a HDD to have as it indicates that this drive has been running for 40 years! (assuming its daily running duration of being 8 hours).
How do I know for sure that it is in minutes ?
Well, since I know that I have been using it for about 32 months, I made two simple calculations. One was based on minutes and other by based on hours. On both occasions I assumed that the daily running hours of the HDD to be around 8 hours. And the ‘minutes-based’ calculation pretty much confirmed the ‘Power-on count’ where the ‘hours-based’ one was no where near it (obviously).
‘HDDExpert’ also has an option for ‘refreshing’ the data but that does not seem to work. The only way you can ‘refresh’ the data is by terminating and re-opening it. So just to check, once I opened it, I made a quick note of the ‘Power-on count’, then after waiting for a minute, I closed the app and re-opened it, and as I suspected, the ‘Power-on count’ had been changed by ‘1’.
Update: If you click on the HDD icon then the tool refreshes the data (without having to close it). It is just that the provided ‘Refresh’ button is what that does not work.
Update 2: This ‘refresh’ issue is now permanently fixed in the latest update of ‘HDDExpert’ (I would like to thank ‘Kyle’ -- the developer, for letting me know that. Just for the record, I did test it to see if it is actually fixed or not).
These are the only issues that I faced while using it. Although the ‘refreshing’ issue is not that much of an issue, ‘Power-on count’ is a major flaw. And since it was just released, this bug will hopefully be addressed in future releases. That said, since ‘HDDExpert’ is portable, it is still a valuable tool for experienced computer technicians while troubleshooting.
If you are still interested, then please visit this page to download it.