It happened again the other day, the dreaded hard drive crash. It’s a fact of life we all have to deal with in this digital age and the question isn’t weither or not you will have a hard drive fail it’s when you will have your hard drive fail. All hard drives have a limit lifespan so having a great backup plan is always key. I wrote about my Backup strategy for wedding photography awhile back, but even with a good backup plan it’s always nice to have a warning before a potential hard drive crash.
After doing a bit of research today I found a nice little app that looks to be a good solution. It’s called SMARTReporter and is a Mac app in the Apple App store. The app gives you warnings when your hard drives might be having trouble and alerts you. It does this by periodically polling the S.M.A.R.T. status of your hard disk drives. If you aren’t familiar with that acronym S.M.A.R.T. stands for Self-Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology, which is a technology built into most modern hard disk drives and acts as an early warning system for potential hard drive problems.
The app is very straight forward and once you go through a few minute setup it just runs in the background without hopefully alerting you of issues too often. You can have the app icon show up in your dock or on the top menu bar (configured in the settings menu). Once you access the app the first screen you will see is a quick overview pane of what the current status of your drives are. Aside from the S.M.A.R.T status it can check for I/O errors, Raid issues and Disk space issues.
All of the customizations are under the settings icon. Here you can change to display the app in the menu or the dock and the icons to use for the current state of the checks. You can also setup email notification and text based notifications which I think are really helpful. If your drive is starting to go back you will want to be notified many ways!
You can also change the frequency of how often it will perform a check under the disk checks button. Here you can fine tune each of the 4 types of checks and setup how you want to be notified.
Overall it looks like a pretty slick app and it super easy to setup. The true test will be when I have a disk error and how well it will alert me. Only time will tell and hopefully my current drives still have some good life left in them. I’ll report back any future updates as I have them and if you have a great way of checking on the health of your drives I would l ove to know. Leave a comment below so we can chat.
You can get the app in the Mac App Store for $4.99 here:
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