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Non-Linear Editing on the PC
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Old February 18th, 2005, 04:09 PM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Portland, Oregon
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Your favorite disk utility?

Hey guys--I am wondering if anyone has a favorite disk utility program for keeping hard drives healthy. I am running on an XP machine, Avid Xpress Pro, two external FW drives and about to add a third. I use DiskWarrior on my Mac and was wondering if there is anything similar for the PC. I've read about Norton, but it seems this might cause more problems than it solves. Anyway, thanks for the recommendations in advance!

Peter
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Old February 18th, 2005, 07:23 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Toronto, Canada
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The only two things worth doing (in my opinion):

A- Check Windows XP to see what hard drive transfer mode it is using.

Go to control panel --> system --> hardware (tab) --> device manager (button) --> IDE ATAPI controllers

Right click and get properties on the primary and secondary IDE controllers.
Go into the advanced tab... your hard drives should be using ultra DMA mode 4/5.

If not, your hard drives may be having problems. You will also see decreased performance.

Your optical drives may be using the slower PIO modes. This can happen if you put scratched CDs in them. WinXP will automatically slow down the drive when it detects read errors.

B- If you have lots of hard drives inside the case, make sure they are cooled well. If there's air moving over them, you should be good. You can check drive temperatures with speedfan... I'd try to keep em under 45C.

Speedfan: http://www.sofotex.com/SpeedFan-download_L4655.html


Other things you can do:

A- Checking the SMART status of your hard drives. SMART is a hard drive feature where the hard drive monitors itself for signs of imminent failure. If it thinks it will fail, some BIOSes will warn you. It also will not let your computer boot up until you hit a key.

If you're curious, you can check the SMART status of your hard drive with a program like speedfan.

http://www.sofotex.com/SpeedFan-download_L4655.html

B- You could scan your drive for bad sectors. Spinrite will do this.

http://grc.com/spinrite.htm

The only case where you might want to do that is for new hard drives. Even then, it might be a waste of time unless its for critical server applications.

C- You could scan the file system for errors... but I've never seen this fix or prevent problems. Another waste of time.

The chkdsk command from command prompt can do this.

2- Some Norton products can cause more problems than they solve... Go Back, Norton Antivirus, Norton Firewall come to mind.
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Old February 18th, 2005, 10:11 PM   #3
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Thanks Glenn, much appreciated!

Peter
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