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It works.hard drive data recovery softwareIt works.

Does SpinRite TRULY work?

 Please take a moment to read some of the unsolicited feedback we continually receive from SpinRite owners who are, as you can see for yourself, often amazed, stunned, and quite grateful for what SpinRite was able to do for them . . .

 Because it is based on solid science and proven engineering, SpinRite routinely performs miracles of data recovery for 1/100th the cost of independent third-party data recovery services. You just run it and SpinRite fixes everything that's wrong. Sometimes it will warn of more serious impending trouble:
July 2nd, 2019 — Decades of Success with SpinRite
Howdy Steve and team,

My name is Bob Johnson. I've been using Spinrite since ver 5. During that time I was in the USAF and was my fighter squadrons SCM (small computer manager). Basically I was THE IT dept. We had a copy of Ver 5 (I can not vouch for its license, but we used it to recover many a crashed drive).

So when Spinrite 6 came out in 2004 I immediately bought one. The best money I have ever spent, hands down.

So now I'm fervently awaiting ver. 6.1. I have caught you from time to time mentioning your group of testers. I would like to be one of them. Am I correct in my understanding that only those that find their way to your forum/usefeed/hideaway of testers get to beta test? OK then, challenge accepted. When I have time to poke around, I'll find you guys. In the mean time, reserve me a copy of whatever the latest version is.

Take care, see you around.

Bob Johnson, avid Spinrite user, Ketonian, and defeater of diabetes. The later thanks to you and your selfless research with your own n=1 Ketogenic experiment.
GRC Comment: Bob notes his anticipation of SpinRite v6.1. He will receive it, as will all v6.0 owners at no charge as soon as it's available. Also, any and all v6.0 owners will be invited to obtain pre-release versions before the release of v6.1. So, anyone who already owns v6.0, or who purchases it, will have access to all v6.x future versions.
Jun 04, 2019 — When things slow down... remember SpinRite
Hello Mr. Gibson,

Obligitory SpinRite Story:

This is a fairly mundane success story, but I have a NetBSD server which does a nightly backup to an 8 year old 2TB hard drive. Since this is a nightly task that has run for years, I have been able to watch the hard drive transfer rate steadily decreasing over the past few months until the point where it was obvious that something was wrong, even though the SMART data that I had also been collecting didn't seem unusual or to be deteriorating.

I had been meaning to run SpinRite on the drive but didn't get around to it until last week, and when I tried to halt the system, I discovered that it was running so slowly that several night's worth of backups were still running, the drive was completely unresponsive, and I eventually just had to power down the machine.I ran SpinRite on Level 4 for a little over 24 hours - there were no errors reported and, again, the SMART data seemed ok. I reinstalled the drive into the server and it is now working correctly and performing at its normal speed!

Thanks again for the podcast and SpinRite!

Jeff Thieleke (pronounced: Tell-key...)
Apr 19th, 2019 — Posted to Steve's Blog
MADMAN in MN says:

Dear Steve,

As what might be called an "historic" user of SpinRite, I have two questions for you:

1. Do you still make available a "retail version" of the product? Or is SpinRite a "download only" at this point?

2. Searching high and low for my several versions of SpinRite, I've yet to find the original book/software/serial numbers so... If I could provide you (privately) my name, addresses lived-at when purchased (and registered), for the version(s) I own, would you have existing records to verify my status as an owner?

Any response will be appreciated. As were a number of your utilities (Leak Test, DCOMbobulator, Never 10) but above them all I'd hardly be able to tell you how MANY times SpinRite saved flaky, error-ridden, discs - be they floppies or HDDs!
GRC Comment: We replied to "MadMan's" question, explaining that we're able to look up any previous SpinRite owner, all the way back to v1... and will be glad to.
Mar 31st, 2019 — Subject: becoming a SpinRite volunteer
David W. Roscoe in North Andover MA

Hello Steve.

I'm the person who provided the testimonial about using SpinRite to repair my brother's desktop music studio which you shared in Security Now! podcast #707.

I thought I heard you say in a recent "Security Now" episode that you were interested in acquiring more volunteers for testing the next versions of SpinRite. If this is true then I hereby declare myself available for becoming one of those volunteers. If you're interested, please tell me what I need to know.

Thanks again for all you do.

David W. Roscoe
GRC Comment: ANY and ALL owners of SpinRite v6.0 will have access to pre-release versions of SpinRite before the official release of v6.1. And any feedback about their findings and experience will be welcome.
Feb 26th, 2019 — Spinrite- still working after all these years (even fixes SSDs!)
Ralph in New York City

I have a LAN with two wifi hi def security cameras on the 2.4GHz band. They are recording to a USB3 120GB SSD plugged into the router. Both cameras frequently stream together but many times only one or the other would record a file, and there were random freezes on many of the files during playback. I was suspecting a bandwidth issue until I ran a level 4 pass of Spinrite on the SSD. Watching the real time screen I could see random pauses, retries on reads and writes. After Spinrite completed both cameras happily record at the same time. This won't be a surprise, but Spinrite REALLY works.
Jan 29th, 2019 — Some memories cannot be replaced... but they can be recovered.
From: Joey Kelley
Subject: SpinRite Testimonial

Hello Steve and the rest of the GRC team,

I purchased SpinRite some time ago and have had few occasions (thankfully) to use it. Most of my customers (I own a small consulting firm on the side) have finally been convinced of the need to back up their data and even when a hard drive fails, it is usually an inconvenience, not total disaster.

Earlier today, I tweeted you a quick picture entitled 'DynaStat Engaged!' showing SpinRite going to work on a drive that I am glad to say was successfully helped by your product. Since the story behind this is interesting, I thought I would relay it to you.

In the past couple of years I have become quite good friends with a couple and their family that run a store and lunch counter near where my parents live. I swing in often and I've tweaked their computers here and there as asked. About two weeks ago they mentioned they had an old computer in the back that they would like to have the data from. That old story, repeated countless times between you and Leo on Security Now! began to play in my head - ending with that well remembered line '... and there is no backup'.

Knowing that these people have had a lot of knocks in their lives, I thought I'd help them out and wound up taking the old computer home. I set it up through a USB to IDE adapter and set SpinRite to going. It found the typical one unrecoverable sector in the early sectors of the drive - did some recovery and then finished. However, it would still not come up in either Windows or Linux as a valid drive. Figuring I had nothing to lose, I re-ran SpinRite on it with a level four scan and after only four hours the scan completed.

I was able to pull it up in both Linux and Windows and was able to copy all of their data off the drive. Success!

Then something caught my eye - the name of one of the User folders: Almost 15 years ago, these folks lost their 14 year old son in an accident. This, was the family's computer at the time and it contains photos that they have no where else of their son, which they now have back thanks to SpinRite.

Thank you - for giving this family their memories back.

PS - You have my permission to use this e-mail as you see fit!

-Joey Kelley - My Life Online - Photographing Today, For Tomorrow
Jan 8th, 2019 — Sometimes a surprise recovery!

We'd swapped e-mails a few years ago but today I write with my profound thanks for your Spinrite creation.

Recently I'd been transferring all my Patent work, and other high-value documents & settings to an older Acer laptop with Lubuntu OS which I use as a dedicated, secure work station.

During this massive, multi-platform undertaking, an OS update came thru and after re-starting, the Linux system was completely locked up: few files would even open, and no system operation would execute. It wouldn't even shut down!

I envisioned hours of reconstructing files from other backups (if even possible)...a massive headache with profound monetary implications if unsuccessful.

I decided to run my years old copy of Spinrite (5.0) on it, just to reassure that the bits would be readable with my adapter transfer hardware during the laborious HDD swap-and-read attempts.

Finished after 12 hours of plodding along, I decided to reboot the Acer just to see if anything would even function, then lo and behold, it was “all systems go!”: files recovered and system operations normal.

The English language is inadequate to express my relief, and further: in today's techno-centered, disposable world, it is nearly impossible to find any product that actually does what it says it will, and at a fraction of the cost compared to the alternative, but Spinrite is one that delivers.

My eternal Thanks, Steve.

Dunbar Pappy
Dec 2nd, 2018 (at 9:07pm) — An unsolicited article posted on Quora
In his Quora article, Anthony May (whom we have never met, do not know, and have no relationship with), explains how and why hard drives (and SSDs) are actually a lot “softer” then we would wish. The link to his articcle on Quora is here:

In Anthony's article, he notes one of our favorite observationa: “Remember, a hard-drive doesn't know there's a problem with a sector of data until it tries to read it and it discovers that the math doesn't add up any more.

And he winds up his lengthy article by explaining:

Again respecting the analog-y nature of the magnetic alignment of ferrous particles on the surface of the hard-drive and that they can weaken over time, you can 'exercise' the physical hard-drive medium by reading the data from the sector, inverting its 1s & 0s and re-writing that back to the sector, then reading that back, re-inverting its 1s & 0s and finally writing that back to the sector - the net result is the data is exactly the same, but you've pushed every bit through a write of a 1 and then a 0 then a 1, or vice-versa, leaving the sector freshly written, but at each step the hard-drive is monitoring the error-detection math to see if there's any sign of surface defect.

This is what SpinRite does, the commercial software I mentioned earlier. No, I'm not affiliated with Home of Gibson Research Corporation and Steve Gibson's SpinRite software, but I've used it for nearly 30 years, as have countless other computer pros, and it's rescued countless amounts of data from presumed death, because of this analog-y nature of spinning-disc hard-drives, and incredibly, the same results are now being achieved for SSDs, even though their failure mechanisms are entirely different, but the forward-error-correction math is still there, the spare sectors are still there, and so corrupted data can still be recovered, from both 'spinning rust' hard-drives and modern Solid State Drives.
Nov 4th, 2018 (at 9:07pm) — This was received via Twitter
Hey Steve,

I want to thank you for Spinrite. I recently had my old winblows box die. The computer was no real loss, but a single folder was critical. I'm a self-published author and the folder with all of my research, notes, cover images and drafts was on that computer. That system was setup for weekly backups, but it died on day six. I was left banging my head on the desk... I'd written 10,000+ plus words on the second book of my series that week and trying to redo it from memory really wasn't something I wanted to do. Spinrite came through for me. Twelve hours later, I was able to get the drive to mount and pulled that folder off without any extra problems.

So, thanks for saving a bit of my sanity.

Thanks again,
Oct 23rd, 2018 — “It really does fix SSDs! Thank God!”
Dear Steve & Leo,

Everyone says they love the podcast. I haven't said it before, so add me to that list. My daily commute is hell. (Since Leo is in Petaluma he knows.) Although you guys don't fix that, you make it more tolerable.

My Spinright story will not be as important to you as it is to me -- it could not be. But I hope you find this since others need to know what happened. Several years ago I switched to an SSD to get for more space but also since I figured a solid state storage drive would be failure proof. What could go wrong? It cannot crash. There's nothing but reliable solid state memory inside. So I was less careful about keeping backups. I did more at first, somewhat. But everything was working until last Monday morning when I turned the PC on after the weekend and it said "Missing operating system." I had done a huge amount of work using that computer and all that data was only there since I had stopped backing up. The first thing I tried was moving the SSD to a different computer to see if I could at least get back the data. But the other computer wanted to format the SSD and it was not accessible at all. My next thought was Spinright. Like you have said, it can be used for maintenance to keep this from ever happening in the first place. But it has also recovered other people's SSDs (I was thinking about that security camera crashing story). The subject of this eMail gives away the ending. I bought Spinright from your website and it was running on that SSD within a few minutes. I don't know whether you believe in the power of prayer, but I do. I write this letter because of the relief I felt when the entire drive reappeared, with nothing lost, after Spinright finished on it.

Bless you and bless Spinright. Thank you.
Sep 16th, 2018 — “SpinRite Catches the Bad Guy”   (Another SSD repair)
Justin in Olympia, WA


Long time SN listener, blah blah blah. Wanted to let you know how SpinRite helped to catch a criminal. Granted it was in a roundabout way, but still - it probably wouldn't have happened without SpinRite.

My security camera server was having issues. The normally rock solid software started crashing on a frequent basis. Everytime it happened, until I happened to notice it and was able to reboot the server, my system was down. It was getting really annoying.

I'd tried a lot of things to fix it, but I was getting the sneaking suspicion that the SSD start up drive might be the problem. Earlier this week, I ran SpinRite on level 2. While it didn't find any bad sectors, it did the trick. The camera software hasn't crashed since.

This is a VERY good thing, as today someone tried to steal some things I had in front of my house. I was *praying* that the camera software hadn't crashed and was thus able to record the attempt. And thanks to SpinRite the entire incident was recorded.

I was able to provide the clips of the guy to our Sheriff's office, and within an hour, he was in custody.

Oh yeah, he fought with the Deputy when he was being arrested, and got introduced to the business end of the K-9 unit. He also had several felony warrants outstanding - A real upstanding member of society.

Thanks to SpinRite a really bad dude is behind bars.

Thanks again!
Aug 29th, 2018 — Rick's Subject line was: "spinrite to the rescue"

I have built this machine for my fathers business and it had been running good for a few years. Over those years we replaced the motherboard and also the power supply and added a high end graphics card as he now pushed the computer to a large 50" 4K tv screen and wanted the best picture he could get.

Recently he started to get some pink screens of death. Yes, a pink screen and not a blue screen. Evidently when you are running NVidea 1070 or other high end video cards, the blue will change colors to pink. As strange as I found that, the point was that the machine was rebooting randomly. I also tested that concept. I took out the video card and did indeed continue to get BLUE screens with the card out.

I could not for the life of me figure it out. Lots of help on the internet for things like "make sure to update the intel videos drive even though it is not active" or "Run your windows updates" or "reset your RAM." I had individually tested all the individual pieces of hardware in a separate machine and all would run fine in the other machine. He was running a strange version of windows 8.1 so I even upgraded him to 10 and even put it on a 500 GB SSD which was new. However, I had cloned the disk over to the new one and then ran the windows upgrade. I finally thought, could I have cloned over corrupt data?

So I pull out my SpinRite on my bootable USB stick and ran it on level 2. I had no expectations of it working as I thought SpinRite would only fix damaged disk and not damaged data. What did I have to lose?

It has been a week and no reboots yet from pink screens. Yeah!!!

Rick Zich (pronounced ZEEK)
Tucson, Arizona
GRC Comment: Over the years we have seen many examples of this. When a drive's sectors are right on the edge of readability it's possible for them to be “miscorrected” by the drive's internal error correction code (ECC) and the drive is, therefore, unaware that this has occurred. This is what happened here. SpinRite actually recovers the drive's data since modern drives are a bit more “analog” than we might wish.
Aug 13th, 2018 —SpinRite pulls a drive back from death's door!
Jim Berry (via Twitter DM on Monday 8/13 at 6:58pm)

Testimonial: I have a HP Z200 used in a high priority security context at my job that was experiencing the "click of death" and it wasn't booting up at all. I was able to see the drive in Linux but Windows was a NO GO. I ran SpinRite on Level 4 over the weekend (500 GB drive) and it still clicks (getting it replaced ASAP) but now it boots up. So the drive is being imaged onto a replacement and the machine will be re-deployed with the hearty thanks from my customer (Warden).
July 26th, 2018 — SpinRite brings a drive back to life for its retirement:
Joshua Montgomery, Springfield, IL
Subject: SpinRite Saved one of our ATM's


I have been an avid listener since the beginning of Security Now. Thanks to you and Leo for all of the hard work. I Wanted to thank you for making this splendid product. It saved my neck. We had a very high traffic ATM hard drive fail. The tech said that they could not make it for 48 hours. I pulled the hard drive from the ATM and ran SpinRite on it. It fix enough of the drive that I could clone it to an SSD within 3 hours. Now we have one the fastest ATM machines in the North. Keep up the good work!
June 27th, 2018 — When is a drive good or bad?
Ben in Greensboro, North Carolina
Subject: SpinRite recovers bad sectors but afterwards SMART status shows "good"?
Date: 27 Jun 2018 07:53:12

Hi Steve!

Long time SN listener and SpinRite user/abuser.

I recently came across a situation I found odd. A client's machine was having issues staying booted and BSODing. First thing I did was run SpinRite at level 2 on the Windows partition and it it recovered SEVERAL bad sectors - which typically tells me that the drive is going bad. Luckily the machine is still under warranty so I contacted the manufacturer tech support and while on the phone it passed their built in drive diagnostic, Windows WMI SMART check, as well as Crystal Disk listed the drive as "good"... Usually when SpinRite recovers sectors for a machine that won't boot it will fail any subsequent SMART checks.

Do I have a fundamental misunderstanding of what recovery of a sector means?

I'm currently running a SECOND Level 2 scan on the whole C drive to verify it's operational before giving it back to the client and the ticket with the manufacturer temporarily still open (just in case I come across something).
GRC: Ben's question and Steve's full answer was aired on episode #670 of the Security Now! podcast. THIS YouTube link will take you directly to that moment of the show where Steve answers in detail.
June 2nd, 2018 — His subject was "Funny SpinRite Story"
Mark in Merced
Subject: Funny SpinRite Story
Date: 02 Jun 2018 10:02:20

I wanted to share a quick story with you.

My wife was using our household laptop when it started to lock up and display a "Wait/EndTask" message when opening the start menu and doing other things. So I ran SpinRite on the machine. It found a few bad sectors on the HDD and I said "Aha!" to myself. Needless to say, the laptop now works great again. So I hand it back to my wife and she gets back to work again on a Photoshop project. A bit later she wants to show me something she was working on before the incident. So that I can get a better look she goes over to the coffee table with the laptop on top of it and drags the table my way on carpet. I watch the laptop jiggling, bouncing and jarring on the table top and think to myself: "No wonder the drive needed SpinRite!"
May 18th, 2018 — Here's a sample of SpinRite's recovery of an SSD (Solid State Drive)
Jeff Karpinski in Elizabeth, Colorado
Subject: SpinRite does you know what
Date: 18 May 2018 16:57:50

Hey Steve. Happy SpinRite owner for over a decade. Used it many times on conventional drives but today was a first for me and SSD.

My shop PC, which runs CNC for my laser cutter and mill, became sluggish all of a sudden. A peek at the Windows system logs showed an explosion of drive write failure warnings. Promptly rebooted into SpinRite and did a level 1 for a quick assessment. It's only a 250G drive so the scan took just a few minutes - sure enough, some issues in the early sectors. Re-ran SpinRite at level 2 and it took an hour or so to beat through the problem spots.

After SpinRite finished "blessing the bits", everything was back to normal. PC performance was back and Windows logs were quiet.

Thanks as always for a fabulous product and keep up the great work with Security Now! Now that I'm retired, it's the only podcast I listen to.

Cheers, Jeff.
April 27th, 2018 — Every SpinRite success story is gratifying...
Lachlan Gabb in Sydney, Australia
Subject: Another SpinRite Success Story
Date: 27 Apr 2018 22:14:29

Hi Steve,

Just wanted to share another SpinRite success story. I am a security analyst living in Sydney Australia and also the go to guy for computer problems within my family and close neighbours. A couple of weeks ago, one of my neighbours called me to take a look at their computer that had been running very slow recently.

Before I had even arrived to take a look at the system, it had blue screened and was now refusing to boot at all, stating that no operating system could be found. I asked, but predictably there was no backup and the computer contained important photos of their grandchildren and documents dating back over five years.

I removed the drive and connected it to my computer to see if I could recover any data, however Windows would not recognise the drive at all. Being an avid Security Now listener I immediately thought of SpinRite, which I had been looking for an excuse to try out for a couple of months anyway. I went over and purchased a copy and let it run on the drive overnight. I think we know how the rest of this goes.

In the morning, not only could I copy all the data from the drive, but it would even boot again. I promptly copied the data to a fresh drive and reinstalled it in the computer, along with a much needed lecture on the importance of backups. I was given immense gratitude and even a container of freshly baked cookies for saving the system. I wanted to pass on the gratitude to you, but I ate the cookies myself.

Thanks for the wonderful product and i'm looking forward to the next episode of Security Now.
Kind regards from Down Under,
April 26th, 2018 — This report shows SpinRite working with the drive to fix errors:
Bree Duffy in Oregon
Subject: Spinrite saves my sister's hard drive, and me, a headache
Date: 26 Apr 2018 00:19:50

I have the rather unfortunate distinction of being the go-to guy in the family whenever there is computer trouble. I love helping them, but figuring out obscure problems can be quite the headache. My sister brought me her computer which wouldn't boot into Windows, it couldn't even see the boot record. I had fortuitously just bought Spinrite and decided to give it a go. As with many such stories, while no errors were reported, all of a sudden the computer booted properly saving me the headache of either formatting, or buying a new hard drive and re-installing Windows and all of my sister's applications, etc.

Thank you very much for making this very useful tool. I look forward to the new versions when you get to it, and SQRL when it becomes available.
GRC: Many users report that SpinRite fixes problems "silently" where it doesn't show that it did anything. This is because modern hard drives have advanced abilities to remove flaky sectors from service, but they often need help. SpinRite gives them the kick they need and leaves everything recovered and working in its wake. The proof is in the pudding. After running SpinRite on a system... it works from then on.
April 15th, 2018 — Using SpinRite for periodic maintenance prevents drive troubles.
Mike in Dundas, Ontario
Subject: Overcoming SSE
Date: 15 Apr 2018 13:53:44

Hi Steve and Leo,

I have been waiting a long time to drop you guys a note. I decided the trigger for my correspondence was to be a miraculous save using Spinrite. That is why I titled this document Overcoming Spinrite Story Envy.

I, like many many others, I have heard on this podcast, I purchased a copy of Spinrite as a thank-you for the invaluable service you both provide. I have been listening to Leo for quite some time from very early when he spent a lot of time in Toronto. Thought I would give his new SecurityNow podcast a listen.

You had me from the very beginning. I guess I am a "SN0dder" (Security Now 0-day) er SN0D. :)

However, I've finally given up waiting for a drive to have trouble because I don't think it will ever happen to me personally: I practice Steve's Hard Drive Hygiene protocol to the point where I too have a dedicated Spinrite machine and my daughter uses Spinrite as a verb!

Just wanted to say thanks, and that you guys are the best!
April 9th, 2018 — A Tweeted question and answer:
J.D. Green (@Cybts1) / 4/9/18, 10:07 AM
@SGgrc Hi Steve, love hearing you on @SecurityNow each week. On last show you spoke about an email about spin-rite, I was wondering if spin-rite works on thumb drives. I have one that seems to be corrupted and I would like to recover it's contents. Thanks for all your work.
GRC: Yes. SpinRite works on thumb drives and on all other solid state drives.

As the cost of non-spinning storage media has declined, its popularity has steadily increased. But as solid state storage density has increased its reliability has suffered. In order to get more bang for the buck, flash memory cells attempt to store more bits per cell by using analog voltages to represent two, three, or even three bits. Sometimes those voltages are uncertain and the read-back data changes. So it turns out that many of the technologies SpinRite deployed decades ago and is still using today to recover the data from spinning drives is just as useful and successful when solid state mass storage gets itself into trouble.
April 3, 2018 — The eMail's Subject was: SpinRite did it again!
Dan Martins in Fairbanks, Alaska

Subject: SpinRite did it again!

Dear Steve, I'm writing to pass along my mother's ecstatic joy and thanks for what SpinRite did for her. I have been listening to you and Leo for years and I purchased SpinRite mostly to support you and everything you do for us. I've used it from time to time to check on the drives in my systems and it may have ben helping to keep everything working without any trouble as we know it can.

However, my mother's computer did not have SpinRite's maintenance help and it died without warning. Well, really, there was warning, but she did not know to read the signs. She explained that it had been taking longer and longer to start up in the morning, but she heard that computers slowed down. So she figured that was normal. And, naturally, she had not backed up about three months worth of work on the sequel to her first novel. The copy she had on a thumb drive would not read back, and it looked like a complete loss.

Since I am my family's go-to computer tech, she called in a panic and explained that she and her husband had tried everything and they feared the worst. But I knew one thing they had not tried.

Her computer has a DVD, so I created and sent her a bootable SpinRite CD. After it arrived I helped them start SpinRite running and told them to call me back when it was finished.

Since I've been listening to you and Leo for years, we all know how this story ends. When she rebooted her computer, everything was back to full speed like it was new, and more importantly, her nearly finished second novel was completely readable. She couldn't believe it... but I knew to expect it. Having had a "near death" experience, she will be backing up to multiple drives from now on.

So a happy Easter was had, and "thank you" hardly seems like enough.

Your avid listener and supporter,
Feb 27, 2018 — “Subject: Yet Another SRSTD story!”

First of all...THANK YOU for your great SpinRite product and have been meaning to pass along a story of yet another of SPinRite's successes or me for quite some time. I have often thought this may just be another "run of the mill" testimonial of how SR has saved the day but thought I would share it anyway and let you be the judge; besides, I had to say 'Thanks!'

A dentist's office was referred to me for support when their NAS device was indicating multiple drive failures and they could not access any of their data for the office (because the NAS wouldn't boot). Of course, I asked about their current backup process and was "shocked" (not really) to hear they had been meaning to address that hole in their process for some time.

This particular NAS was bootable from its USB port, so I booted it into SpinRite and let SpinRite go to work. By now, everyone knows that a happy ending usually ensues, and that is an understatement in this case. SpinRite plowed through the entire array and upon reboot was happily serving data again. For safe keeping and I was also able to get a copy of their never-backed-up data off of the NAS.

Needless to say they were ecstatic about the recovery and also now have a good local and offsite backup process in place. I did recommend to them to go purchase their own copy of SR to express their satisfaction and I believe they have done so.

Thank you again for ALL that you do! Look forward to listening to about 350 more SN episodes! Keep up the good work!

Eric in Wisconsin.
Feb 17, 2018 — Even NAS RAID arrays can use SpinRite's help...
Rick James
Location: Toronto, ON, Canada

I had a 2TB drive “die” in my Drobo Mini last week, and guess what, I ran [SpinRite on] level 4 on it and viola, all is good! SpinRite saved the drive.

Love the show, and your efforts. :)
Feb 17, 2018 — An example of how we treat our customers:

My name is David Stidolph. I have been a LONG time user of SpinRite, but I have an immediate need. I need to recover a laptop drive and I cannot find my iso. Any chance I can download it again? My current email is My previous email was (no longer active). If I cannot download it, please let me know.

GRC: This is never any problem for us or our customers. SpinRite licenses are for life, and we're always happy to lookup any licensed user's previous purchase and provide their “transaction code” with which any licensee can download the latest release of SpinRite at any time.
Feb 06, 2018 — “Subject: DJ Steve - SpinRite Gibson saves the concert”
From: Matej Bokan
Subject: DJ Steve - SpinRite Gibson saves the concert

Hi Steve.

I'm not a music producer but I've got a friend who is making music on a Korg Synthesizer which cost many many kilo dollars. These "beasts" have had SSDs in them for a long time now. On the day of the concert there was a sound check, and this synth has all the rhythms, beats and whatnot of the band stored inside. But on that day, it wasn't working properly. Everything was having such a lag, or wouldn't load properly, that the concert was in danger and in the process of being canceled.

I had helped this man setup and connect his living room with projector, surround and PC in my youth. So I got a call to ask if I could somehow transfer the data to another identical synth if they could find one on short notice.

I didn't even know about Korg Synths having SSD's but when I found out I ran SpinRite and half an hour later the Synth was singing like a rockstar. The concert wasn't canceled at the last second, and thousands of concert goers sadly don't even know that Steve Gibson was true Rockstar that day.

Jan 15, 2018 — “SpinRite saved the dentist for $60,000 investment”
Torkel Hasle
Location: Sandefjord, Norway
Subject: Spinrite saved the dentist for $60,000 investment

My daughter works for a group of dentists, and called me when the PC that runs the machine did not boot. The machine operated a huge OPG (panoramic radiograph), costing around $60 000, and installed around 10 years ago. No support for newer versions of the OS. This expensive machine was dead. Period.

But I offered to run SpinRite for a few hours. It worked for a long time with defective blocks, but after finishing the machine booted and did a file check. All was good and the $60,000 panoramic radiograph was alive again.

Since the machine was so valuable, and they had no backup, I bought a new harddisk (SSD), cloned the old disk which SpinRite made readable with Clonezilla (Linux freeware), blew dust away, and booted with the new disk. All set! Hopefully the OPG will last another 3-5 years, and postpone the $60 000 investment.

Torkel Hasle
Sandefjord, Norway
Dec 19, 2017 — Two public tweets about SpinRite successes...
Philipp / @pimiddy
@SGgrc #spinrite saves the day! SSD drive was failing. Had everything backed up...except my private GPG key. Damn! After a level 2 on the drive the drive was mountable again and I rescued the key. Thanks for a great product!

Grégory Paul / @paulgreg
My 2 USB keys booting my freenas NAS failed both around the same time. Thanks to @SGgrc for SpinRite, which bring them back online the time to migrate from USB keys to a SSD ! #freenas #spinrite
Jul 19, 2017 — Another classic data recovery report.
From: Steven Almas

My neighbor, who is a single mother, asked for my IT help. She had a external hard drive with 60,000 photos of her family and children, which was her only copy. The HD did not mount on any computer and she was very upset. I suggested that we purchase SpinRite and try that out. Since I work in IT, I took a dedicated machine and ran SpinRite on her external hard drive, and SpinRite was able to recover ALL but 13 of the 60,000 photos! She now has a comprehensive backup solution in place, and we are forever grateful to Steve Gibson and SpinRite!

Thank You from another Steve!
Jun 3, 2017 — A pair of tweets from a long time SpinRite user.
Al Spaulding (Al Spaulding) / 6/3/17, 11:23 AM
Steve, Another SpinRite story. I started getting Outlook errors, like can't load profile, and eventually, Outlook would not load at all. Company IT looked at it and created a new "profile". That worked for about 24 hours, then it all started again.

Al Spaulding (Al Spaulding) / 6/3/17, 11:23 AM
Finally, ran SpinRite and no problems for 5 days now. Thanks for a great product.
GRC Observation: Hard drives are deeply embedded in the operation of our computers, and as these SpinRite success reports show, hard drives often fail in quite unexpected ways that are not necessarily “all or nothing”. SpinRite doesn't “care” how the drive is failing . . . it simply fixes it.
May 30, 2017 — Following on from the note above, even a slow down can be fixed . . . 
From: "Jeff"
Subject: I <3 SpinRite!
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Just a quick note to say how much I love SpinRite. I bought it after listening to my first episode of Security Now something like a decade ago. Thankfully, I have never “had” to use your product. But there is no comparison for keeping things running at peak performance. Recently, a 2TB backup drive was running slow at the start of each backup, transferring just BYTEs for several minutes before eventually returning to normal speed. I knew SpinRite would fix it. Sure enough, after running SpinRite on that drive I just backed up 40 gig in half the time took me to type this note. Thanks again for all you do! PS -- if you need a beta tester for any future releases, I'm your guy!!
May 16, 2017 — SpinRite can also confirm a drive's impending demise:
Garrett Bane wrote:

I used my personal copy of SpinRite at level 2 on my work laptop with an SSD to confirm that the drive was, in fact, dying. The early warning allowed me to pull my backups together and prevent any loss of data.

Please feel free to share my story/testimonial and use my name.

Thank you,
Jackson, Wisconsin
May 8, 2017 — Here's another example of SpinRite “recommending” drive retirement:
Keith Pottratz (@KeithPottratz) - 5/8/17, 9:08 AM
@SGgrc Ran SpinRite on two computers that were not running slow. SpinRite revealed that BOTH drives were failing! Saved the day!
May 6, 2017 — SpinRite interprets the drive's SMART data to warn of impending failure:
Javier Figueiredo (@jfigueOK) -- 5/6/17, 8:09 AM
@SGgrc SpinRiting at level 2, a 2-year old Kingston SSD. Does this image look like a healthy disk?

5-6-17 Testimonial Image
Note: Those RED squares shown on the top line of the SMART System Monitor screen are NOT GOOD! This shows SpinRite exercising the drive and the drive reporting its own lack of health in requiring excessive error correction (ECC). You can also see the ram correction counts in the table in the lower half of the display.
May 2, 2017 — Simple and to the point:
Engrpiman (@Engrpiman)
@SGgrc SpinRite saved my database server. RAID 1 disk failed. Used SR to bring drive back to life. Made Backup, Got new drives, restored from backup.
Apr 19, 2017 — This sort of story means a lot to us:
From: "KeenDreams"
Subject: A slightly different spinrite story with an apology
Date: Wed, 19 Apr 2017

Dear Steve, First off thanks for the informative podcast, I've been listening since I started grad school five years ago and have learned quite a bit thanks to you. I was recently feeling nostalgic and decided to buy an old Win95 laptop off Ebay to play some of the DOS games from my youth. It was great at first, but my excursions into the world of Commander Keen were interrupted a week later when the laptop stopped booting. The first thing I thought of was my copy of Spinrite which had saved my butt back in undergrad once or twice. When I booted it up, however, I was surprised to see a name I didn't recognize at all in the license field. Confusion came over me as I starred at the screen, but then it dawned on me, I must've pirated it. I felt so bad that I couldn't start the scan until I sent a yabba dabba doo (a SpinRite license purchase) your way, but needless to say the old machine was back up and running after my now legitimate copy of SpinRite worked its magic. My sincerest apologies Steve, I would use the excuse of being a poor undergrad who desperately needed his research papers back, but that doesn't change a SpinWrong into a SpinRite.
Apr 18, 2017 — And it's not just for PC's!
Patrick McFarland (@pmcfarlandia)
@SGgrc SpinRite saved the day again! My son's Xbox 360 hard drive was failing. Plugged it into a PC and ran SR on Level 4. Good as new!
Apr 4, 2017 — Another data recovery example:
From: Brett Parks
Subject: SPINRITE saves the day, yet again.

I've been using SpinRite for, what, 20 years now or more. When all else fails, it will =at least= bring a HD back to where it will at least boot or be readable. And it just did that again with the 1TB HD on my primary machine went belly up, and took my accounting, taxes, email & client lists, yadda yadda yadda along with it.

It took a couple of runs, but SpinRite got it back to where I could get EVERYTHING off it.

Not bad for "old school", eh?

Thanks yet AGAIN!

Brett Parks
Lexington, SC
Mar 28, 2017 — Nothing else provides SpinRite's sensitive hard drive condition feedback
Hi Steve. I've been a long time listener and a long time, regular, proactive SpinRite user. I have never lost any data yet... knock on wood. But I have always changed drives whenever I see that SpinRite is finding an unusually high number of incidents, as it has a number of times. Additionally, your podcasts and research in security and health have made me a healthier safer life. Thanks.
Mar 6, 2017 — Sometimes it's NOT the drive that's the culprit!
Sean Kloeckner
Location: Huntington Beach, California
Subject: Took your advice on CRC errors

Hi Steve,

I've been a listener for probably a couple years now and I appreciate all the advice you give on the show. I sent in a previous note about Syncthing and what you think of it since I heard you complaining, in a good way, about BTSync previously. Syncthing is totally open source. I have to say it's been functionally everything BTSync is and works great as a dropbox replacement. I no longer need to worry about my data in a company's hands and it replicates to all my other PCs.

Anyway, I wanted to let you know I have been an avid listener and bought SpinRite recently. I am a Linux user and don't really need to buy software, but I know SpinRite would come in handy and thankfully haven't needed it for anything other than testing and maintaining drives in my lab.

I recently bought new PNY drives and use them for a ZFS root system using proxmox and noticed whenever I scan my Zpool, there would be checksum errors that it would correct. Few weeks went by without me touching them and everything works generally OK but everytime I would perform a scrub on my pool, it would still return errors. I learned in more detail that certain drives can return junk when under duress but this is on a fresh install every time with the same result.

Anyway, long story short after seeing CRC errors in the syslog and then running SpinRite confirmed the CRC errors, I took your advice and replaced the cables. I ran some further benchmark and dummy data tests on my pool and SpinRite ... and lo and behold, no more checksum errors!

Love the show and wanted to pitch in my 2 cents for other listeners out there who may be in the same situation. What you do is a public service.
Note: A checksum error will force a repeat of the failed operation. So the guaranteed consequence will be somewhat reduced performance. But the BIG WORRY is that checksums are small and fast and are therefore NOT guaranteed to catch every error. If cables are throwing a lot of errors, some WILL get past the checksum test... resulting in corrupted data being read from or written to the drive.
Mar 1, 2017 —“SpinRite Testimonial”
From: Jordan (via Twitter DM)

Hey Steve, [SpinRite Testimonial] - The CEO of my agency, recently brought in her personal laptop, which held her recently created but NOT filed tax return.

The laptop was basically on life support, I don't even think Dr. House could have brought this thing back.

The OS loaded but you couldn't do anything. Right clicking took over a minute to register. The laptops hard drive was just replaced not even a year prior. But, I decided to break out SpinRite. I started a scan at level 2. The scan got to 0.14% complete and reported corrupt bits. At 0.16% I realizing that this called for the big guns. So I stopped the scan, and turned it up to 11 (restarted on level 4). I kicked off the level 4 scan and let it run again. It got to 0.19% but it was running very slowly. So I stopped the scan and thought to try it on level 1. Bingo....Level 1 found and corrected the corrupt bits and the rest of the drive was scanned, checked, and marked good.

Rebooting the machine, the OS came up normal and the laptop was running as if it were a new drive all over again. The CEO got to file her taxes, which made me look like a super hero. Upon payment for my services, there will be another yaba-daba-doo coming your way. Thanks again for the best HDD recovery tool out there.....I'm not sure why your competition even tried.... :) Thanks,

Feb 21, 2017 — SpinRite easily repairs another laptop
Bob McKinstry in St. Louis, MO

Hey Steve:

I'm a listener of Security Now since year 1 and a SpinRite owner. A few days ago, one of the residents in our training program asked how he could get help with his Dell laptop as our IT department doesn't support machines they don't own.

The story is classic: After a power outage his laptop would not boot into Windows. It would blue screen, reboot, rinse and repeat.

Without hesitation, I told him about SpinRite. I lent him my trusty SpinRite CD (told him he'd have to purchase SpinRite if it did fix his machine). I told him he had to be patient and let the program do its work. He fired up SpinRite and went to bed. When he woke up in the morning, he was good to go. Just like that.

SpinRite is a great product. Another drive saved. Another happy customer. Thanks for all that you do with GRC and thanks for all the great podcasts that you've done with Leo on the TWIT network.
Feb 14, 2017 — SpinRite rescues a Ham's data
From: David Goldenberg

Hi Steve,

I've been a happy owner of SpinRite for a few years now, it's my secret weapon in the technology trenches. I am the family tech guy, I help out at my kids school, and have my own part time business fixing PC's, training and networking. SpinRite is always within reach, and never lets me down.

Last week I had been preparing a laptop for a presentation for my ARES Amateur Radio group, I volunteered to get a new program running to send text messages and email type communications over the radio. After several days, I had everything working great, and spent several hours getting screenshots for the PowerPoint I was to prepare.

I was getting together with another HAM to go over what I had and to get his machine working, so I started up my laptop and got the dreaded BSOD and an un-mountable boot volume. I did not break a sweat, or even worry, as I knew from experience that SpinRite would save the day, and needless to say, two hours later the drive scanned, several sectors were repaired, the laptop booted perfectly and everything I needed was ready to go!

You're great! THANKS!

David Goldenberg
Feb 1, 2017 — Two Tweets
From: Arcane Code (@arcanecode) 2/1/17, 6:09 AM
Not much longer for #SpinRite to run on this laptop. Crossing my fingers @SGgrc !

[then... a few hours later]

Arcane Code (@arcanecode) 2/1/17, 9:29 AM
YAY! #SpinRite fixed my hard drive, my laptop now works without the hard drive constantly churning. Thanks @SGgrc
Jan 2, 2017 — SpinRite often fixes “mysterious” problems, too.
From: Glasair pilot (@Glasair pilot) - 1/2/17, 7:38 PM

Hey Steve: A SpinRite story for you. Anyway, I built a RAID 10 recently using four identical Western Digital Black Caviars. To my surprise, the RAID went critical twice in two weeks shortly after. (Interestingly, the drives didn't have a problem rebuilding. Therein lays a clue.) n

I was disappointed, since the drives were new. Since I thought I might have to fight WD over RMA's, I decided to run SR so I could document bad sectors or any other problems. I started out running Level 3, but SR reported that would take 3 days. So I ran Level 2 instead. Still took a day, but at least it would report bad sectors.

Surprisingly, no bad sectors! And SMART data was good too. After running the drives at Level 2, no more Critical RAID errors!

I think what's happening is similar with what SSD guys are finding. If I have it right, a RAID Controller waits a certain amount of time for a drive to acknowledge a write is complete. If the drive takes too long, say, due to a sector relocation, then the Controller assumes the drive has failed and takes it off-line, and marks the RAID critical. (Ostensibly the WD Red NAS drives mitigate this in their firmware.) By running a drive through SpinRite at Level 2, any questionable sectors are exercised out. And viola! The RAID hasn't failed since!

[about two months later, we received a follow-up]

From: Glasair pilot (@Glasair pilot) - 2/27/17, 1:29 PM

FYI, it's been almost two months since I did SR L2 on the two spinning drives (out of four) in my RAID 10. Zero Warnings since then, & array has not gone Critical since.
Nov 15, 2016 — A note from someone who's been using SpinRite for decades
Paul O Kirwan in the UAE
Subject: SpinRite in Riyadh, the Worlds Largest Airport Project

Hi Steve, Just a testimonial and a thank you for your product.

I first came across it back in the 1980's when we were opening Riyadh Airport. At that time we had a small selection of PC's for VIP (Ruling Family and Air force Generals) staff, and back then the drives were very unreliable. A combination of heat , dust, cigarette smoke (they all smoked heavily) meant it was a full time job to keep these things working. And nothing was able to do that except SpinRite.

I now own my own copy and, believe me, it has saved my bacon more than a few times. I have used it many times since, and now for preventative maintenance. I talk about it because it's often amazing, and people are skeptical when I tell them that a 30+ year old piece of software can recover their drive... but they are always impressed when it does.

Thanks again. The interface is so familiar I can almost run it blindfolded!

Thanks to you and Leo for a great podcast and thank you for such a great and enduring product.
Oct 12, 2016 — User's Subject: “Spinrite saves a guitar lesson :-)”
From: Colin Wills
Location: Dorking, England

I worked from home today using my bitlockered Windows 7 work laptop so that I could take my daughter to her guitar lesson. But last night I thought I was going to have to go in to the office and that we would have to skip the lesson because my laptop wouldn't boot. It had recently hung at some point during the boot but had recovered at a second attempt. But last night it repeatedly got stuck. Being a Security Now listener almost from the start, I immediately thought of Spinrite. The work laptop is locked down such that I cannot boot my Spinrite CD so I transferred the HD to my personal laptop and Spinrote it quickly at level 2. Of course the fact it was bitlockered didn't matter and Spinrite cut through the disk like a knife through full fat butter and completed after about an hour. After that the work laptop booted, I worked from home and we made it to the guitar lesson.

Thanks for the great product!

All the best to you and Leo,
Oct 9, 2016 — User's Subject: “How SpinRite kicks butt”
From: Bob Port
Location: Albany, NY


It finally happened. I knew it eventually would. A 5-year-old HD on a perfectly servicable Dell Windows PC started acting up. It was just getting old, like all of us always are. I downloaded your utility, SpinRite, and, viola, my HD was back in business, virtually good as new. How simple can life be?

My eternal thanks,

Bob Port
Albany, NY
Oct 10, 2016 — Customer says “SpinRite saves the day” for him
Via Twitter: 3n0m41y (@3n0m41y)

So yet again SpinRite saves the day for me...

Had an old drive with baby pictures on it.. would not read at all... knew that if I am not able to recover pictures wife will put me out with trash.. ( kidding )

Pulled out my trusty copy of SpinRite and, on level 2, it fixed drive!
Now I have all pictures back! Thanks for an awesome product!

Just sent you a “Yabba Dabba Do” for another copy because you saved day!
Sep 27, 2017 — SpinRite fixed this customer's USB drive and smartphone
Via Twitter DM: Anthony Cunningham (@kaylore92)

Hi Steve. As I listened to last weeks Security Now, Father Robert made a comment that I thought I might be able to help with, plus it would work as a SpinRite story.

Close to the end of the podcast, he mentioned he wished you could get SpinRite to work on cell phones, and I would like to note that might be possible already. A previous SpinRite testimonial talked about using it on a virtual machine to do multiple runs at the same time. At the time that got me to try it... and what do you know it worked! I also used it on a live Linux USB distro that was at the time not working right and it fixed that as well! Recently the cell phone I use at work as my podcast/streaming player was getting rather slow and laggy, so I thought “what the heck I'll try SpinRite on it!” and see what happens.

Using Virtual Box on Linux, I plugged in the phone to the USB, had Virtual Box set it as a raw disk, spun up a VM with SpinRite and pointed it at the cell phone. SpinRite did it's thing, and about an hour later it was done, I unplugged the phone, rebooted it, and after that it was running faster and more stable than it had for over a year! If the phone can be seen as a mass storage drive over its USB port, SpinRite can fix it!
Sep 13, 2016 — SpinRite may have fixed Windows Update Hang.
Subject: Spinrite Rescues a Stuck WX Update

My Windows 10 Version 1607 patches got stuck today, and this isn't the first time in all, although it is the first time for a version 1607 update. Retrying didn't and doesn't help. So usually I would just revert using system restore and try re-updating again. But this time I tried SpinRite... and IT WORKED!
Sep 13, 2017 — Another SpinRite / SSD fix report
Paul in Worthing, UK shares his recent SpinRite success with SSD's...


I cannot remember how I came across SpinRite - think it may have been at v5 back then.

I assumed when I switched my system drives to SSD that I would be using SpinRite a lot less - I used to have the habit of running SpinRite regularly on my system drives every few months, or if the system started to slow. It always was great, and I have recovered drives that blue screened or failed to start completely...

I built a new machine last year using a SANDISK SSD, I chose an enterprise version with a 10-year guarantee because as a commercial photographer I need speed but value reliability even above speed. It was great, SANDISK dedicated software allowed me to monitor it and run a TRIM command. I had a big project running (layered photoshop files sized between 3 and 7 GB on disk) and the system slowed, particularly on start up, BUT some days it was fine - fast and no problems. Sandisk emailed to tell me I should update the firmware (but backup everything on the disk first...) and also update the dedicated SanDisk SSD Dashboard software. First I updated the SanDisk SSD Dashboard software and it FAILED COMPLETELY it just destroyed the existing working version. No worries just 'roll back' the system (I use Farstone recovery software). No good, install the old version of SSD Dashboard, another no - OK I should have downloaded and copied it like I always used to but these days you don't need to do you? By this time I am tearing what is left of my hair out so of course I started thinking 'what I need is SpinRite for SSD'.

To cut a long story short, I dug around the Internet and discover that SpinRite can help SSDs. OF COURSE IT DID! It found one defective and unrecoverable sector close to the beginning of the drive and two further ones that it recovered. Rebooted the machine and since then the machine has been running like lightning again.

I, for one, know that SpinRite is one of the most cost effective software purchases I have ever made. I look forward to its future fixing BOTH my spinning and my non-spinning mass storage.

Thanks for your great software and the Security Now! show
Aug 16, 2017 — Trying SpinRite is simple, so try it first...
From: David L in Omaha, Nebraska
Subject: SpinRite saved me once again... and our high school yearbook!

Hello Steve, I am a high school student who really enjoys listening to you and Leo on Security Now every Wednesday. Love the depth you go into your topics! Anyway, I was working on a paper due the next day on my desktop and everything on my computer had been running very smoothly, as if nothing was wrong. I noticed that some updates were waiting for me to install. I didn't have time to install them right away, so I decided that I would let them install when I head off to school. In the morning it boots up just fine, but when I come home, I'm greeted by a screen that read "No active partition found." Normally I need to confirm to restart the computer, as it was sitting on the Windows Update screen when I left. I began to panic, as most of my schoolwork had resided on that computer along with some photos that I needed to copy to a flash drive for the high school yearbook. Trying to figure out what to do, I was Googling the error message. It turns out that others have fixed it through the Windows 7 install DVD. I didn't want to do that as I was afraid it might corrupt the drive even more. So I ran SpinRite. I selected my drive, and ran it on Level 2. I let it run. About an hour or two later, I was greeted that SpinRite found no errors. I was prepared for the worst then, as I did not back up this computer (even though I should) as we do not have the best Internet speed. I was afraid I was going to lose everything and let our yearbook staff down. I rebooted the computer, only to find it prompting me to select "Last Known Good Configuration or Profile 1". I selected Profile 1, and the computer started right up into Windows. I am in the process of backing up my data to a safe place and giving the important photos to our yearbook staff like nothing even happened. Thank you Steve for your amazing work!

David L
Omaha, Nebraska
GRC Observation: You may find that SpinRite fixes things with little fanfare. As happened above, even when SpinRite does not report having fixed anything, its deep scan of the drive can still reveal problems to the drive's own internal micro-controller, which enables it to repair the trouble on-the-fly.
Jul 26, 2017 — A brief Twitter dialog about S.M.A.R.T.
[Note: SMART is an acronym for the “Self Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology” which has been built into all drives for since the 1990's.]

From: Ralph Griesenbeck / @RandomGravy
In a recent Security Now! episode you recommended looking at the SMART screen in SpinRite. However that only works if it's supported in BIOS. In my experience the systems supporting SMART in BIOS are not that common. Even if SMART data is available interpretation is a bit of an art as each drive maker has different implementations. Am I missing something?

Our reply: Hey Ralph,
Some BIOSes can and do support SMART probing. But SpinRite does its own, directly to the drive's hardware, and it does this continuously during operation. So, SpinRite does have access to the drive's SMART data, even when the BIOS is “not so SMART”

SpinRite also performs some SMART interpretation for the user and succeeds in eliminating some of the drive-to-drive variations, though you're right that differences between drives can be confusing.

See these pages for some additional clarification:
Jul 12, 2017 — Another instance of SpinRite inducing a drive to repair itself
Via Twitter: Dave Jones / @DVJones89

Hi Steve,

I wanted to drop you a quick message to add yet another success story to your ever-growing pile of SpinRite testimonials. I'm a Software Engineer living in Edinburgh, Scotland, though I'm originally from England, where my folks still live. As I suspect will be the case for many of your listeners, I provide Tech Support for my friends and family.

On my latest visit to my parents, my Dad asked me to look at his Windows 7 laptop that, over the previous months, had slowly ground to a crashing, unresponsive halt.

Over the course of a few hours, I followed your advice to upgrade Windows Update, install Never 10 and replace 3rd party AV with Microsoft Windows Defender. All of this knowledge accumulated over many years listening to Security Now - a valuable resource, not only for security, but also for staying abreast of Windows issues (not easy when you develop exclusively in OS X).

After auditing the laptop's software, I pulled out my copy of SpinRite and set it running at Level 4 on the laptop's hard-drive. After SpinRite finished, though the status screen reported no faulty sectors, I rebooted the system feeling quietly optimistic. Sure enough, SpinRite had forced the hard-drive to take a long, hard look at itself and the laptop is now running like a dream.

Thank you for your brilliant suite of tools, library of podcasts and methodical approach to problem solving.

Give my regards to Leo and his wonderful podcast network, I'll visit that studio some day! :)

Kind regards,
Dave Jones (dvjones89 in the chatroom)

P.S. Please feel free to share this on a future SN podcast, in fact, I'd love it if you did :)
Jun 24, 2017 — SpinRite's extreme ease-of-use can confuse reviewers
Jeremy Leik in Dimondale, Michigan
Subject: SpinRite mentioned on

Hello Steve,

I'm writing today because I'm a user of SpinRite, and a believer in its capabilities. It has saved many drives for me, and in one instance it allowed me to recover data from a RAID array that came out of a NAS with failed electronics.

I came across an article called "Technical Overview of Popular Software Data Recovery Procedures" over at Technibble. They mention SpinRite in their article. The part where they describe SpinRite seems pretty simplistic, and lumps it in with other software tools. But my own experience is that nothing else does what SpinRite can. I would be interested in hearing from the horses mouth (so to speak) what your thoughts are on this subject.

Thanks so much.

Jeremy Leik.
GRC's Response: It can be confusing that the world's most well-proven and capable data recovery solution could also be the easiest to use. People assume that a sophisticate data recovery system should be difficult to use. But one of SpinRite's long standing claims to fame is that it is very easy to use. SpinRite does far far more than is apparent on its modest surface. Anyone who is using SpinRite has already purchased it, so it doesn't need to show off to its user . . . it just needs to get the job done. And it does.
Jun 3, 2016 —A report from another happy customer
From: Corey Grant
Location: Livingston, Texas
Subject: Testimony


I am a network engineer in rural east TX and moonlight on the side for a few local businesses. I got a distress call about a PC that would not boot. This machine had lots of tax data from previous years that she was actively using for research. I have used SpinRite many times to increase performance of lagging desktops, but this was the first time I needed it to resurrected a dead machine! And it did! She is happy and I am a hero! Thanks to you.
May 23, 2016 — Subject: Long-time user finally uses SpinRite to recover data
From: Josh in Bartow, Florida

Hi Steve,

I'm a long time listener to the podcast. I appreciate the work you do each week to keep us safe and informed. Two years ago, I purchased a copy of SpinRite. Like many other listeners, I bought a copy just to support you and everything you do for us without asking for anything in return. I've used SpinRite in maintenance mode a couple of times, but never tried to recover data. Well, until yesterday, that is...

A friend of mine contacted me for help because his computer was acting "weird". He had rebooted the machine and suddenly it was asking him to "Insert Boot Media". The BIOS didn't recognize his hard drive and Windows would not load. He did have a partial backup on an external hard drive; however, it had been a couple of years since the last time he backed everything up. He has two small children and he was worried that he had lost a LOT of precious and irreplaceable photos, along with lots of other files.

I loaned him my copy of SpinRite, recommending that he run it on level 2. This evening, he sent me another message. SpinRite fixed the problem. Windows booted normally and all of his files were intact. My friend is now hard at work backing up all of his files to his external hard drive. I told him to buy a copy of SpinRite for himself so he can maintain the drive. He is planning to do that.

Thanks again for making such a great podcast and such a great piece of software.
May 25, 2016 — Subject: YAST! Yet Another SpinRite Testimonial!
From: Sitbit in London, Ontario, Canada

Just a short and sweet SpinRite story. I had an old 320 GB spinning disk salvaged from a laptop that I used to store some of my data. It wasn't terribly important, but I didn't want to lose it, so I had it mirrored to a backup drive. Well, the drive failed, so the directory I had it hanging off of showed up as empty so my mirroring software dutifully DELETED MY BACKUP, thinking the files had been purposely removed. Long story short, I caused Steve to hear a Yabba-Dabba-Do and two hours later my drive was back in action.

Thank you for this wonderful product!
Thanks again,
May 23, 2016 — Subject: Long-time listener finally uses SpinRite to recover data
From: Josh in Bartow, Florida
Subject: Long-time listener finally uses SpinRite to recover data

Hi Steve,

I'm a long time listener to the podcast. I appreciate the work you do each week to keep us safe and informed. Two years ago, I purchased a copy of SpinRite. Like many other listeners, I bought a copy just to support you and everything you do for us without asking for anything in return. I've used SpinRite in maintenance mode a couple of times, but never tried to recover data. Well, until yesterday, that is...

A friend of mine contacted me for help because his computer was acting "weird". He had rebooted the machine and suddenly it was asking him to "Insert Boot Media". The BIOS didn't recognize his hard drive and Windows would not load. He did have a partial backup on an external hard drive; however, it had been a couple of years since the last time he backed everything up. He has two small children and he was worried that he had lost a LOT of precious and irreplaceable photos, along with lots of other files.

I loaned him my copy of SpinRite, recommending that he run it on level 2. This evening, he sent me another message. SpinRite fixed the problem. Windows booted normally and all of his files were intact. My friend is now hard at work backing up all of his files to his external hard drive. I told him to get Carbonite (using the SECURITYNOW offer code, of course). I also told him to buy a copy of SpinRite for himself so he can maintain the drive. He is planning to do both.

Thanks again for making such a great podcast and such a great piece of software.
May 20, 2016 — Subject: My personal experience with an old friend “SpinRite”
From: Curt M in Southern California

Dear Steve,

In the 1970's, you would call the TV repairman to replace the tubes in your TV.

They were very expensive, and went out often. In the 1980's, computers were much the same.

Hard drives, though more reliable than floppy discs, for anyone who still remembers, that's not saying much.

As a young man in the 80s, I spent many an hour working in computer repair. The problems were many, from Compaq, and Mac-128K power supplies, to 30mb Seagate RLL drives - which was really just a 20MB drive with a different controller. Drives of that era were just not very reliable.

Over the course of my lifetime, I have repaired hundreds, if not thousands of hard drives. You know how many times after all those years SpinRite failed me?

0, Zero, nada. Wow!

To me, SpinRite is the Rock of Gibraltar. I've always felt, that if you know SpinRite, you know the man behind it. I believe it was a labor of love, and it shows in the end product. And if you love what you do, then you understand in intimate detail the principles of what makes it all tick. It's clear that you do.

Thanks for giving the world a product they can truly trust. I can attest that with SpinRite, you can trust it like an old friend.

Curt M.
May 14, 2016 — Subject: SpinRite success on iMac SSD
Brad in New South Wales, Australia

Hi Steve and Leo,

I have been listening to your show for about 3 years and really enjoy it.

I need to give a bit of background to this story as there is a lot involved.

I have a 2009 iMac that hasn't missed a beat since I purchased it. A year ago, it started to slow down somewhat. Not wanting to fork out a few grand just yet for a new machine, I managed to pull the machine apart and upgrade the optical drive and 3.5" mechanical drive to 2 new HDDs. One a higher capacity spinning drive, the other, an SSD. The SSD was installed by a built for purpose blanking plate in the shape of the optical drive and was installed in the optical drive's original location. Once the SSD was in place, the machine ran like new.

Recently, the SSD was showing signs of failure and was no longer booting properly. Not wanting to pull the iMac apart again I researched a solution. I came across a video (I think you mentioned in a previous episode) where it was possible to run SpinRite from within MacOSX.

I installed OSX onto an external HDD and booted to it. I then downloaded VirtualBox and ran up a DOS virtual machine. I attached the dying SSD managed to the DOS virtual machine then booted SpinRite with its ISO file. I ran level 2 on the iMac's SSD and after rebooting she now runs just like new again.

Thanks for a great podcast!
May 10, 2016 — Subject: SpinRite Success Story
From: Kev Blythe

Hello Steve. I would to say thank you for that magical item of software you call SpinRite.

A local garage called in a panic, a old diag laptop had failed with a BSOD and was going round in circles ( like the owner). So I picked it up for a look.

I confirmed a hard drive issue, and having worked in a local PC repair shop where I often witnessed the proof of the power of your software to get hard drives back into a boot-able state, I headed to GRC for my own copy of SpinRite. I grabbed a copy and before lunchtime the machine was repaired, imaged, returned and smiles all round.

Many thanks
Kev Blythe, UK... and a local garage
Apr 26, 2016 — Sometimes SpinRite repairs even without fanfair
Rob Peel in Geelong Australia shared a brief SpinRite anecdote...

I purchased SpinRite a few years ago, and when a when friends XP machine was failing to boot I had a chance to give it a go. I pointed SpinRite at the hard drive and came back once it had finished. It hadn't appeared to have found any problems, so I was beginning to think it could be just windows rotting away as it seems to do when it has users installing all those search bars... Anyway I restarted the machine and she booted straight up without any errors, magic.
Apr 18, 2016 — Subject: Spinrite recovers SSD's? YOU BET IT DOES!
Simon Byrne
Location: Canberra, Australia

G'day Steve,

I bought Spinrite years ago for no other reason than to support you and the Security Now podcasts.

Last Saturday I fired up my Macbook Pro with a 1 Terabyte Outer World Computing SSD installed. It got half way and then shut down...not good.

I do video production and generate very large amounts of data. I do have a good local backup regime but backing up over the web is impractical as I generate many gigabytes every day. However, I was working the day before offsite with no local backup so I was faced with losing a full day's work which equated to about 12 gigabytes.

I took the SSD drive out of my Mac and put it into one of my PC's and fired up Spinrite on level 2. 9 hours later Spinrite had finished reporting no errors recovered. I was dissapointed that no errors were shown so I was dubious as to whether it was going to work.

I tentatively put the SSD back into my MAC and turned it on and YES, it booted up perfectly! I immediately backed up all my data.

So yes, Spinrite absolutely can recover data on a SSD drive.

Thanks for a great product and your awesome Security Now podcasts.


Canberra, Australia
Mar 24, 2016 — A public tweet to Steve (@SGgrc)
Stuart Carroll (@stuart_carroll) / 3/24/16, 4:54 AM

After hearing about @spinrite on @SecurityNow for so long, I tried it yesterday & it brought my media drive back from the dead!

Thanks @SGgrc
Feb 11, 2016 — Some SpinRite stories (and successes) are a bit odd...
Rick Harvey in Melbourne, Australia

Hi Steve (and Leo)

Did you know that SpinRite can save your power bill? Yes, this is bizarre.. But I'll let you try to work out why...

I've an old (sentimental) testing laptop (Dell Studio) that pretty much spends its day idle, sleeping between test runs. But annoyingly, it's always running the fan. Task manager shows the CPU barely getting off the baseline. I've even tried reinstalling the OS. No difference. Just noise and heat. Not so great during the summer!

I bought a copy of SpinRite last year just to support your show and give you the pleasure of a Yabba Dabba Doo. So it finally occured to me to give that machine a spin. Also because I'm curious about your SpinRite powerhouse fitting into just 170K of code.

So created a boot USB and off SpinRite went on Level 4. When it finished everything was green. I rebooted and all was quiet. OMG! No more fan running. The icing was a comment by my wife who hadn't realized the screen was blanked. She quipped: "So, you've finally turned off that heap of junk?". Shhhhh! (Let's not tell her!)

Awesome. Yada, Yada...

Best regards...Rick
Feb 10, 2016 — Here's a new concept: SpinRite and “Zombie” drives
From: Fred Pollock
Location: Goodrich, Mi. (No I'm not on Flint water)

I have owned SpinRite for years and can't count the number of creaky hard drives it's brought back to life (just like the Terminator Movie) They just get up and go again. Sometimes it gets a little scary like a zombie you can't kill. (Good Zombie Good Zombie) LOL
Feb 9, 2016 — Sometimes SpinRite really makes a difference in people's lives
I wanted to let you know that thanks to SpinRite, I was able to recover the pictures my daughter had taken around Europe in the Fall of 2014 when she was doing a Study Abroad her Junior year of college. She thought they were lost forever, so she'll be getting the picture for her Valentine's Day present! She studied Marketing overseas and as a Photography Major she was very disappointed when the last week of her semester the hard drive "crashed". I was saving up money to send the drive off to a data recover group. Now she can add a few of the pictures to her web site

Thank you for creating a great tool!
Feb 1, 2016 — Another tweet, short and sweet
Dennis Stephens (@ParkerTechGuy) tweet at 2/1/16, 5:27 PM

@SGgrc System I use for my job, work from home died, ran my copy of SpinRite overnight, no errors reported, but then the system booted fine #Happy
Jan 26th, 2016 — Subject: SpinRite Success Story
David White
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Hi Steve,

A quick SpinRite story for you.

I bought a copy of SpinRite from you about 2 months ago, not because I needed it at the time, but just to give you a ‘yabba dabba doo’ in appreciation for the SN podcast, which I listen to religiously every week. (I’m also filling in my drive time by starting at episode one again).

I am a freelance IT guy in Auckland, New Zealand, and look after IT needs for a number of small businesses. This morning I heard my cell phone ringing before I had even gotten out of bed – never a good sign! It was a customer whose main Windows 7 PC (the one with their shared files and database on it) was getting stuck on the welcome screen immediately after logon. Once I got to their site, I was able to boot it into safe mode and attempted a system restore, which failed with an error indicating a problem with the drives volume shadow copy. I tried it a second time, and this time got a BSOD.

I booted back into safe mode, and ran chkdsk /r – 40 minutes later it reported that there were no problems on the disk, but my gut was telling me otherwise. I unplugged the PC , took it back to my office and booted it up with my SpinRite disk. Three hours later, I was on my way back to the customer with a fully working PC on the back seat.

The customer was of course delighted, so thanks a million for making me look good!

One last thing – it may be my over excited imagination, but I swear that PC ran faster after the SpinRite repair than it ever had since I installed it 5 years ago.

Thanks again,
Jan 12, 2016 — Subject: SpinRite helped a retired vet and saved my wife's sanity
From: Mark Clark
Location: Portland Oregon

Dear Steve,

My wife runs a nonprofit housing company and one of the tenants tends to visit the office when he has nothing better to do. His computer was not working so he was spending a lot of time in the office.

I happened to be in the office setting up a new computer and my wife asked me if there was a computer in the office she could give him. I asked him what was wrong and he said his screen was red and Windows would not boot.

So I told him to bring his computer to the office and I would look at it. I got out my trusted copy of SpinRite and let it go to work. I did notice the screen was not getting all the colors but I figured it was because I didn't have the video plug all the way in. SpinRite ran and had about 8,000,000 ecc errors and 600 seek errors, but otherwise it didn't complain.

Once SpinRite was finished Windows booted up just fine and let him know he could have his computer back, it was working again. He took it back to his apartment and when he tried to connect the video, the port fell completely off the motherboard. I told him to give it back to me and I would fix it. I went to the computer store and picked up an inexpensive video card. After installing the video card, I re-ran SpinRite on level four just to make sure. Now he has his computer back, which means he's not spending time in the office annoying the staff... and saving my wife's sanity. Thank you for a great product!

Mark Clark

06/18/2015 — Two Tweets and an eMail...
This user's experience perfectly illustrates what SpinRite owners typically experience:

First Tweet:
Peter Butler @satanssnaredrum - 1:35am · 18 Jun 2015 · Twitter for iPhone
@SGgrc hoping to have a testimonial in a few hours. #fingerscrossed being
spinwrited soon to be spinwritten.

Note that the green [R]'s are regions that were initially completely unreadable
“bad sectors” but where SpinRite successfully performed full data recovery.

Second Tweet:
Peter Butler @satanssnaredrum - 8:04am · 18 Jun 2015 · Twitter Web Client
@SGgrc Worked a treat... It's a brilliant product you have. Managed to save my ass again. I Messaged your GRC feedback page. :)

And here's what Peter wrote:
From: "Peter Butler"

Hi Steve, I'm a CCTV technician from Kildare, Ireland. I tweeted you a spinwrite pic earlier.

A customer rang me with an error on his CCTV DVR. The DVR had recorded some important footage, but when he was trying to play it back, the DVR was crashing and freezing. The recorder appeared to have written to a corrupt partition and was unable to read it back.

A serious "dumping" incident had taken place which the CCTV would have recorded, so the customer was very anxious to get the footage. So I thought of Spinwrite. I'm an avid listener of your Security now podcast for the past few years and thought I'd give it a go.

I started up Spinwrite on level 2 (for Data recovery) and left it overnight. This morning I returned to work, rebooted the machine and it started with no problem. It was SpinWritten. I was even able to boot into the DVR Software, Review and download the important footage, and give it back to the customer.

Thanks to all at GRC for an amazing product. It's saved my ass multiple times now... Thanks to Steve and Leo for a great podcast too... Makes my commute to work on a Wednesday morning very enjoyable.

Many thanks, Peter
Kildare, Ireland

07/07/2015 — NOBODY sells SpinRite better than its own users...
From: Steve Schafir
Subject: This is a great product

Hi Steve,

This is a testimonial for your product. I had a PC that was over 10 years old. The hard drive crashed and would not boot up without an error. I tried putting it in another computer and still could not access the hard drive. I ran SpinRite and after it was done I was able to boot from and access the files. I am very thankful for this as a lot of those files I did not have backed up. There was about 20 years worth of data on that drive. This is a great product. It would have cost me thousands of dollars from a data recovery service.

Thanks, Steve

Schafir in Davie, Florida

07/07/2015 — Even though SpinRite also keeps drives healthy, everyone waits until it's too late...
From: Kevin Wilhelm

After listening to Steve’s podcasts for years and hearing stories about SpinRite, I finally got to use it in a real critical situation.

I work for an IT company that for the most part does Managed Services, but sometimes get called for “break fix” work. On this occasion, we were contacted by a large national boat manufacturing company whose headquarters are local. I was assigned with going onsite to “revive” an old XP machine that had crashed a while back but they wanted to get data off it. Once I got there and learned of the whole picture, they were actually getting audited for accounting purposes and they realized that the only instance of a very old program resided on this one computer, and there was no support to be found anymore for this program. So, it was not just a matter of getting data off the drive, but really getting the operating system running, so we could attempt to run the program and get the data from it.

Well, I broke out my trusty SpinRite CD (which I honestly hadn’t used in over 4 years), and within 2 hours…..WOILA! The OS booted, the user could log in, and open the program like nothing ever happened. Needless to say, I lectured them on the all the things they did wrong that lead to this situations and which could so easily have cost them dearly. I was happy to be able to offer assistance with your product, and will certainly recommend it to many more for years to come!!!

Thanks Steve!

Kevin Wilhelm,
Senior Systems Engineer

01/08/2015 — SpinRite helped move from spinning to SSD...
From: "JS Cube" via Shaw in Canada

Hello GRC peeps.

This is not a query, but a testimonial. I wanted to leave one on your site, but I couldn't find a link to do so. You may not care, but I 'd like to leave a testimonial anyway.

I had an old but working hard drive that had bad sectors in it, which made it fail any previous attempts to clone it. Your product was my last resort, and it saved me a LOT of time reloading everything into my new SSD. I was able to clone my old hard drive, no problem. (I'm sure you hear this all the time) Thanks!!!

I love your product. It's f@@n' awesome.

Best Regards, JSC

12/21/2014 — Spinrite fixes PS3s too!
From: Tim Green in Germany
Subject: Spinrite fixes PS3s too

Just for a change, SpinRite also fixes PlayStations: We have a relatively old PS3 that we use mainly as a DVD and BluRay player and media center. It started acting up recently, hanging on bootup and exhibiting other strange stutters and pauses at unexpected times. So I took out the hard drive, connected it to a PC and let SpinRite at it on level 2. Just over an hour later I put the drive back in the PS3 and booted up for a complete transformation. Not only has it stopped hanging on startup, but it now also feels generally snappier and smoother.

Thanks once again for the only really useful hard disk maintenance and recovery utility I have ever encountered. And also of course for all your insight, information and wisdom in the show every week, which I have listened to as unfailingly as you have produced it ever since episode 1.

All the best to you, Leo and all of both of your loved ones for a happy and joyful Christmas break and thanks again!

Tim Green

11/04/2014 — SpinRite recovers a Samsung SSD 840 EVO from the “Performance Restoration Software”
From: Chris Day
Location: Princes Risborough, Buckinghamshire, UK
Hi Steve

I’ve been a SpinRite owner for several years now and used your excellent product from time to time on my systems & servers at home.

I recently heard about the problems with the Samsung Evo SSDs slowing down on your brilliant Security Now podcast with Leo (I’m a CISSP and learnt all I needed to know about crypto, hashing, etc. etc., to pass the CISSP exam just from listening to your podcast over the last 10 years). As my laptop has a Samsung SSD 840 EVO and Samsung have recently released the “Performance Restoration Software” to resolve the slowdown issues I decided to apply the update to my system. What harm could it do?? ;-)

I downloaded and ran the software following all the instructions (apart from the back-up as all my data is synchronised with my server and I have a base-build image of a patched Win 7 OS & core programmes as I rebuild my laptop every 6 months or so). So everything went smoothly, the drive firmware was updated, the laptop rebooted and the “Performance Restoration Software” went to work rewriting every sector on the drive and completed successfully. I left the computer, and the next day when I came to start work the laptop wouldn’t boot into Windows! I ran through several cycles of rebooting and not even recovery mode would work! So I grabbed my copy of SpinRite and ran a level 2 scan on my Windows drive. 30 minutes later SpinRite completed and its completion screen proclaimed all was well with nothing amiss. I rebooted the laptop and, as expected, it fired right up into Windows perfectly ;-)

Now, I can’t give you a great sob story of how my life’s work was on the machine without any back-ups and how SpinRite saved my children from destitution... but I CAN attest to the efficacy of the product, and tell you and your listeners that it’s the best $89 I’ve ever spent!

Chris Day
Long time “Security Now” listener & 1st time contributor

10/28/2014 — SpinRite fixes “KBOD” ‑ Black Screen of Death
See: Original Blog Posting Link

Universal fix for windows KSOD (Oct, 2014)

Ever had your Windows installation inexplicably die leaving your computer unusable without a fix? I have – more times than I’d like to count. The last time this happened was yesterday when Windows 7 would only boot into a black screen with a movable cursor, also known as the blacK Screen Of Death. It was a serious case considering none of the safe modes or repair function in the Windows boot options would work; each option would universally end in either a KSOD or the classic BSOD after hanging on aswRvrt.sys during safeboot. After exhaustively eliminating all possible “regular” fixes that were available on the internet, I decided it was time for the big guns: Steve Gibson’s Spinrite.

Prior to trying Spinrite I first tried Kaspersky’s Rescue Disc 10 which was entirely useless for my case. After booting from the rescue USB dongle I would always get a “Missing Operating System” error in the boot screen. Not reassuring. I have long been a fan of Steve Gibson’s Security Now podcast, which is why I knew of the tool. I knew the tool would be one of the few things that might do the trick, so I gave it a shot. After about an hour running Spinrite 6, and a few reboots later, my Windows 7 installation was working perfectly as if nothing had ever happened. Spinrite saved the day.

TL;DR Spinrite saved my machine from a perpetual and otherwise unbeatable KSOD scenario and my guess is that if you are having KSOD problems then Spinrite is one of few things that might help you too.

10/05/2014 — “SpinRite fixes anything”
From: Bob Guarda
Location: Ottawa, Ontario Canada

Hi Steve,

Just want to say hello and that I am a long time listener of Security Now! and I am also a proud owner of SpinRite!

As we all know, we "computer guys" do the support for family and friends, and I am no exception to this rule. Here is a story for SpinRite! A Success Story that is!

A friend of mine has a Netgear ReadyNAS network NAS box. When he purchased it I set it up for him with 4 drives and RAID 5 configuration. At the time I told him that this is a very good configuration because should 1 drive fail, the information is still available. The odds of 2 drives failing, well that is super high.

This would help in keeping all of his pictures and videos safe.

To make it even more safe, I set up the built in backup utility of the Netgear NAS, to do a weekly backup to an external drive connected to the USB port.

One morning, he gets an email from the device saying that Drive 1 had failed, and that another drive was about to fail. The NAS box had turned itself off for protection.

He calls me up in a panic and I tell him no problem, the worst scenario is that he has "lost" 1 week of work. He then admits that the backup had not worked in months. He kept forgetting to tell me. Yikes!

He contacted Netgear for help and after a valiant effort from Level 2 and Level 3 support at Netgear, the "solution" was to get a data recovery company to save his data. It appeared that Drive 1, 2 and 3 were dead. When he enquired at a local data recovery establishment, cost was $ 3000 starting, and no guarantees. Yikes!

Then I remembered that Spinrite does not care what the file format is on the drive. Be it NTFS, FAT32, MAC OS, Linux, or RAID, it does it's magic.

So, I said to my friend "you have nothing to lose since you already lost it". He agreed, and let me attempt to save his data.

So, I did drive 1, 3, and 4 at level 2. Drive 2 was giving me the click of death, and the computer would not recognize the drive. I figured, well, it's suppose to be RAID 5. If I saved the other drives the Netgear box should rebuild it.

I replaced drive 2 with a new drive and placed the freshly Spinrited, (a new word?), drives into the NAS enclosure. I powered up the unit and voila! the RAID was starting to rebuild.

After the RAID finished rebuilding, all of his work files and most importantly, the videos and pictures of his 2 kids were available.

Thanks Steve for making such a great product.

And keep up the great work you do with Leo with Security Now! It is one of the best sources of security information there is out there.


Bob Ottawa, Ontario Canada

09/25/2014 — This short note (for a change!) says it all...
From: Matthew M. Power

I am a very satisfied owner of the SpinRite product.

Since my purchase, SpinRite has brought back THREE un-mountable drives! I firmly believe in this product. Because of SpinRite, people bring my their PCs when the other guys can't get it to boot.

Thank you!


09/10/2014 — Level2 “Look but don't touch” actually DOES save the day! Spinrite story
From: "Martin"
Location: Frankfurt / Germany

Hello Steve,

Thanks for answering my question about how Spinrite on level 2 actually fixes things on one of the last shows! Only a few days later I was witness to it actually fixing a huge problem by using level 2.

A friend's work PC refused to boot and his company's IT department gave up on it, without being able to recover ANY of his valuable data. Of course the backup had failed without him or any one else noticing and his data was gone... So we gave SpinRite a try on level two and it slowed down and started working a lot harder about a quarter of the way in, seemingly not to move any further. So my friend lost patience after a while and turned the machine off. I told him to not give up and just let Spinrite run for however long it takes. After about 8 hours of chewing on the drive, it finished, the PC booted again with complete data recovery. Hooray to SpinRite! Now I am his hero, but actually you are! Thank you very much on behalf of my friend who got all of his data back thanks to SpinRite.


08/22/2014 — “Spinrite saves a RAID array”
From: Patrick in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

I heard you discussing SpinRite and RAID arrays a few episodes back and thought I'd share a success story. I moved across the country about a year ago and during the move, a Synology disk array fell out of the back of the moving truck (while it was parked, but it was still bad). When I plugged it back in, all sorts of audible beeps, amber lights, and console messages indicated that one of the disks was past the point of repair and needed to be replaced. I took the damaged disk out of the array and put it into an old desktop then let SpinRite do its thing. When SpinRite was finished, I slipped the disk back into the array and it's been humming along for over a year now without any trouble. That's the second time SpinRite has saved me. Thank you for an amazing product and an amazing podcast.

08/12/2014 — “A resurrection at a funeral home”
From: Joe White in Honea Path, SC (honey-ah-path)

Hey Steve and Leo. Thanks for the show. I've been through the archives and digested them *all*.

I'm a funeral director at a small family funeral home, and being in a family business means wearing many hats. IT is one of my hats. One of our main workstations went down a couple of weeks ago, refusing to recognize it's hard drive any longer. I brought in my copy of SpinRite, let it do it's thing at level 2, and presto, it began working again. Our massive list of outlook contacts has been saved from destruction! I've imaged the drive just to be safe, but it appears that the level 2 scan has restored it to useful service.

Our thanks to you, Steve, for turning our mourning into gladness.
I think a site-license purchase is in order :)

07/28/2014 — Just a very short but sweet tweet
Ron Tyska (@rontyska) · 5:21pm · 28 Jul 2014 · Tweetbot for iOS
@SGgrc SpinRite revived a completely dead SSD, saved me $400. Thanks!

06/26/2014 — SpinRite recovers 3500 very important files...
From: "Steffen Zacher Nielsen"

Hello Steve

I've just purchased Spinrite, as the only tool which was able to solve the problem I had with a damaged hard drive. Spinrite was able to repair the drive so that I was then able to restore about 3500 VERY important files to another drive.

I must say, it is very satisfying to use a strong and cheap tool like Spinrite, and afterwards having such a good experience. Thank You very much, I can wipe off the sweat from my face and take a deep reliefing breath.

I've spread the good news of my experience with Spinrite to all my friends on Facebook, so perhaps your sales will increase in the future, who knows?


06/06/2014 — Erik Writes: pinrite saved me from going crazy
From: "Erik Ellsinger"
Location: Sweden


For a while now my computer has freezed up from time to time. It completely stopped responding to input, and the hard drive light was on constantly. It usually lasted for 10-30 seconds and then all was fine again. But lately it started to do that at least once every 5 min, which was driving me crazy because I got interrupted all the time with whatever I was doing.

I looked in the Win 8 task manager and saw that during the times the computer freezes the operating system hard drive is at 100% use. But the response time is 0ms and it's not reading or writing. But the hard drive has to be doing something, since the hard drive light on the computer is fully on. Has the hard drive encountered a sector it can't read and it's just retrying it until it gives up?

I've had SpinRite for a while now and thought I would give it a try. But I needed my computer for work so I waited to run it until school was over. After SpinRite was finished I booted Windows. And now, after using my computer for a day now I can say that the freezing problem is completely gone and cured and SpinRite saved me from going crazy!


05/25/2014 — Matt says SpinRite saved him and his team 100's of hours of work.
From: Matt
Location: Waterloo, Ontario

Hi Steve,

I'm a forth year Computer Engineering student at the University of Waterloo and SpinRite recently saved my team and me 100's of hours of work. During forth year, we have to come up with a design project that showcases what we have learned throughout our degree. My team had worked for over a year on our project, and had most of it stored on one member's Lenovo laptop. Three days before the project was due, his computer would no longer boot. We hadn't backed the project up in over a week, so it was critical that we got our data back. Since the system wouldn't boot, we tried putting the hard drive in an external enclosure to recover just the data. But the drive wouldn't mount on any of our systems. Desperate, I remembered that I had purchased a copy of SpinRite a few years back and had it burned on a CD at my apartment. I raced home to get the CD, and popped it into the laptop. 16 hours later, SpinRite had fixed and recovered the data in more than 50 bad sectors and we were able to pull the data we needed from the drive. Thanks for your hard work and for the excellent podcast.


05/07/2014 — A Remote Control SpinRite Story
Dear Steve,

I've always been my parents tech support guy. When I joined the US Air Force, they stationed me pretty far away from home. Thankfully, I've always been able to VNC into their computers and get things straightened out. This week I was presented with a rather unique challenge. My mother called to tell me that their computer was throwing a bunch of disk errors in Windows. Fixing this problem was particularly difficult for two reasons. First, VNC wouldn't help them if their hard disk suddenly crashed. Second, I'm currently deployed to Afghanistan, where getting a good enough connection to VNC into their computer can be difficult. I knew that SpinRite might be able to fix the disk errors but would I be able to walk my parents (who aren't the most tech savvy people) though it over the phone?

Believe it or not, I able to get a good enough connection to VNC into their computer and make a SpinRite bootable image. I was also able to instruct my mother, over the phone, how to boot into SpinRite and start the repair process. She called me the next day and told me that SpinRite had fixed 12 errors and that their computer was back to normal.

I cannot tell you how much we appreciate your product. It really saved the day.

Jeremy Webb

04/28/2014 — SpinRite is finding lots of use in surprising SPEED UP of systems
From: Kyle Lyons
Subject: SpinRite Brings MacBook Pro Back Up to Speed
Date: Mon, 28 Apr 2014 08:34:27 -0700

Add me to the now typical MacBook success story. The system was taking 10-15 minutes to boot, and just as long to launch programs. The drive was reimaged to no avail. We hooked up the MacBook's drive to a Windows machine using an IDE/SATA to USB 2.0 adapter, mounted the drive to a VMWare Player DOS virtual machine, and ran SpinRite on it. Four hours later, the drive, and the MacBook, are running like new.

Thanks Steve!

04/12/2014 — Here's one where SpinRite improved his USB flash speed
From: Gary Foard
Subject: Spinrite testimonial
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2014 07:50:22 -0000

Hi Steve

Long time listener etc. Just thought I'd drop you a note that you might like. I get pleasure from keeping old computers working and appreciate basic but good programs that have a purpose and do a good job. So I was very happy when I saw how SpinRite worked and behaved. I use standard Ubuntu nearly everywhere now since Windows M.E. ran out and was then relying on Firefox to keep me safe. I installed a full working Ubuntu OS on a USB thumb drive (not a live install ISO) so I have a fully patched computer rattling around in my pocket on my keyring. Very handy.

However once in a while it becomes very slow. So I boot SpinRite and run it on the plugged-in USB drive. I have to run it on level 3 to do any good but the difference in its speed afterward is unbelievable!

So well done Steve for keeping my portable Ubuntu disc running sweet.

Regards Gary Foard -

03/16/2014 — Subject line was: “SpinRite saves the Music”
Hi Steve,

I'm a music major in college and have a LOT of Sibelius music files on my computer. (Sibelius is a program for music notation/scores.) My computer's hard drive died a few days ago and I had a backup on an external drive that was a week old. But during that week I had made quite a number of changes to woodwind and percussion parts of two movements of a marching band show for my former high school. The changes were quite precise, and I had sat down and consulted a professor to help me adjust the parts to the students' skill level. In short, if I lost these changes, it would have been a nightmare to reimplement them.

So I bought a copy of SpinRite, which I had heard about on the podcast. It took three hours to finish, and then the computer booted successfully and I got all of my files back. I have since set up Crashplan backup so that all of these important files get backed up.

Next step: Choreograph the drill (peoples' positions on the field). Thanks for such an awesome product and podcast! I can now get back to real work, without worrying about damage to anything I do in future. SpinRite is truly magic.

Dick Snicket, New York

03/14/2014 — A short and sweet Tweet (to @SGgrc)
Jeff Harmon @harmon_jeff (10:41pm · 6 Mar 14 · Twitter for iPhone)
Thank goodness for #SpinRite and @SGgrc! Repaired hard drive enough to pull off 350GB of photo/video to a new drive.

02/25/2014 — When all else fails... SpinRite!
From: Nathan Huebener in Marion, Iowa
Subject: Spinrite violates the laws of physics
Date: 25 Feb 2014 01:33:22

My brother's laptop was very slow when booting and while being used. The hard drive was suspected as being bad, Norton Ghost tried to clone it and failed. It was not pretty. I ran Spinrite at level 2, and then was able to clone it to another drive. It cloned over perfectly and no bits were lost. After the new drive was installed and running, I opened up the bad drive and looked inside. Inside were tiny metal shavings. From what I understand, if a piece of dust goes between the head and the platter it's game over for the drive. Somehow, Spinrite was able to fix the drive just long enough to clone it.

Spinrite has also fixed my Intel X-25 Extreme 64gb SSD, it was showing some sector access times over 600ms.

Spinrite user and Security Now listener since episode 1,

Nathan Huebener,
Marion, Iowa

02/21/2014 — Four drives recover with one copy of SpinRite
From: Caleb Marble
Subject: Thanks

Thank you for a fantastic product, in the few months I've used SpinRite it has recovered four drives from failure, including one hard drive for a local non-profit whose VID (very important documents) dating back to 2002 were stored on a single shared NAS from the early 2000 era with no backups (I later introduced them to Carbonite, thank Leo for me).

Thanks again,
Another satisfied customer

07/02/2014 — A short and sweet Tweet (to @SGgrc)
Who: Matt in Atlanta
Date: Fri, 07 Feb 2014
Subject: SpinRite is the hero; I get the credit


I started listening to Security Now 1.5 years ago and have been hooked ever since. During one of the episodes, you described how SpinRite worked and I decided to buy a copy to put it into my IT 'toolbox' on the off chance I ever needed it. Well, tonight was the night! I just took a Graduate Assistant position, doing IT support for a department in my school, and was setting up a KVM switch for a faculty member. Simple job, right? Computers were shut down, cables were hooked up, and power was restored, computer was in an blue screen of death loop and Windows recovery wasn't working. I thought for a second, got a smile on my face, and pulled out my SpinRite CD. Off it went, on Level 2. After it finished, one sector wasn't recovered, so I crossed my fingers and rebooted the computer. The Windows 7 start up sound never sounded so good!

It is finally my chance to say thank you for this awesome product! It will (and should have) come first in line to fix my problems.


Side note, I decided to run SpinRite on the drive a second time and the one unrecovered sector was good! I presume that was just SpinRite doing its thing.

01/18/2014 — SpinRite is FAR less expensive than Recovery Services!
Testimonial from Philip Cooke:

I started my day with a blue screen of death, advising that I had an unmountable_boot_volume!!

Efforts by a Dell tech only lead him to the conclusion that we should reformat the drive and lose all my data. Nothing would recognize the drive and all of the chkdsk commands in the book could not even see it or result in anything but the same blue screen on every reboot. A Maxtor utility I ran advised me to return the drive for a replacement. But I couldn't.

After getting estimates ranging from $400.00 to $2700.00 to recover my data and trying numerous other "tricks" recommended by online chats, etc, I was fortunate to come across SpinRite. At first the glowing testimonials seemed just too good to be true and I will admit that I thought they may even have been "fake"!

So, I invested the $89.00, downloaded the file and fired it up. At first I thought that it was going nowhere, cause after 4 hrs it still said 2% complete. I figured I would leave it running and imagine my surprise when I came in this morning, saw the message that it had completed, it booted up, ran chkdsk and then started Windows!! All I can say is WOW!

Thanks you for taking the time to create this program. It's bad enough losing data, but I also saved the hours it would have taken to recreate my desktop, links, etc. Needless to say I am impressed!

Philip Cooke

12/31/2013 — A great way to end the year!
From: Avril Kelso Subject: SPINRITE SAVES A TOWER!

I work for an engineering team working on a major new highrise development here in Jarvis Bay and we had a power failure on the site office and it killed our site server with some of the engineering files on it which were being worked on at the time. After restoring power and rebooting the server we found that some of the files couldn't be accessed and I immediately suspected file corruption. I decided to call a friend and use his copy of Spinrite. Ran spinrite on level 4 for about a day on the disk and we retrieved and backed up the files saving us many weeks and tens of thousands of dollars in delays!

THANK YOU Steve for Spinrite and thank you both Leo and Steve for an great show. Keep up the good work!

Avril Kelso
Jarvis Bay, Australia

12/26/2013 — He calls it “a (day after) Christmas miracle!”
From: Jonathan Bailey
Subject: SpinRite Testimonial

I was at a friends house on Christmas Day when she told us the hard drive on her laptop wasn't working. It wouldn't boot and even booting it off of a Live CD didn't give access to the data on it.

The laptop was old and it had a lot of important stuff, most notably the photos of her son's wedding a few years ago and there were no known backups.

I took the laptop home and, using my receipt, downloaded a fresh copy of SpinRite. Immediately, on the first sector, it seemed to freeze and it spent so long at zero percent that I considered aborting it.

However, being a listener of Security Now, I knew to be patient and put my faith in the SpinRite gods so I went to bed with it running. I awoke to the green "SpinRite Complete!" screen. Took the CD out, rebooted and huzzah the laptop booted right into Windows!

It was a true (day after) Christmas miracle! Thank you so much for your great product, after four years of ownership, I finally get to share my "SpinRite saved me" story!

Now to get on her about her lack of backups...

From: Jonathan Bailey X-Location: New Orleans, LA

12/04/2013 — These sorts of reports really make our day!
From: “Dale Francisco”
Subject: GRC and SPINRITE saved me

Steve, I am a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer.

Today I restarted an older laptop of mine, a Dell Latitude D820 that had been running Windows XP for years. This morning it was locked up, so I thought to myself OK a reboot is required, but then the laptop gave me the dreaded Blue Screen of Death 3 times, even after the Last Known Good Configuration was selected -OH dear!.

It has a half a terabyte hard drive, and because this laptop does a lot of stuff in the background on my home network, I dreaded the thought of having to replace the laptop or hard drive and getting everything installed again.

So I decided to try the SpinRite disk I bought from GRC a couple months ago. After 2 hours it reported that sector 1-2-5 were unrecoverable. I was crushed. I thought my life is chaos now. I crossed my fingers and prayed.

When SpinRite finished and I checked again, SpinRite reported that there were NO unrecoverable sectors! What!?!?! - How can that be, I asked myself? But sure enough, on further inspection SpinRite reported that there were no abnormal sectors on the hard drive.

So there I sat, after a total of 3 hour, hoping that SpinRite would salvage more than my day. Once again I crossed my fingers and removed the SpinRite boot disk and then restarted the laptop.

Steve, thanks for such a great hard drive maintenance and recovery software! It took only 3 hours or so to recover this hard drive and SpinRite saved me many more hours of reinstallation and possibly relicensing software. From this day forward, SpinRite will be a part of my normal backup routine.

Dale Francisco
Fresno, CA

11/19/2013 — Here's another of those... “it just works” stories.
Subject: SpinRite Saves a Party

Hi Steve,

I am owner of restaurant and we have iOS app where people can order the food, and customer can pick it up. It stores data on server in basement, which was bad design choice... But anyway, we get big order for lots of food for party for customer, and hard drive of server dies. Long story short, SpinRite has saved drive and we make food and save party for customer!

Thank you for great product.

11/11/2013 — Here's a short tweet we received (all tweets are short!):
From: Jeff Beard-Shouse (tweeting as @clarkehackworth)

@SGgrc just fixed my wife's HD with spinrite. It took several times going over the bad sectors but it fixed it. Thanks.

Here's a link to the original tweet at, if you're curious.

11/06/2013 — Here's another tweet we received:
From: Outhouse IT, Inc. (tweeting as @OuthouseIT)

@sggrc "Unmountable_Boot_Volume" no match for @spinrite 6! Thanks again @GibsonResearch 35 Minute scan of a windows xp drive, full recovery!

Here's a link to the original tweet at, if you're curious.

11/04/2013 — SpinRite repairs anything that spins (and even SSD'd that don't!):
Subject: more spinrite praise

I've written almost this same message to you before. Spinrite has once again saved my Tivo box! There was a bad storm that blew through Pittsburgh the other night and we lost power. In the process, power flickered on and off rapidly for around 10-20 seconds. Once power was restored, as I feared our main Tivo box started crashing repeatedly. I reached for Spinrite for the second time on this box and it once again brought the Tivo back to reliable service.

Thanks for such a great product.

Rick Reynolds,
Pittsburgh, PA

11/01/2013 — Running SpinRite across drives allows often allows them to repair themselves.
Subject: SpinRite saved me once again and our high school yearbook!

Hello Steve, I am a high school student who really enjoys listening to you and Leo on Security Now every Wednesday. Love the depth you go into your topics! Anyway, I was working on a paper due the next day on my desktop and everything on my computer had been running very smoothly, as if nothing was wrong. I noticed that some updates were waiting for me to install. I didn't have time to install them right away, so I decided that I would let them install when I head off to school. In the morning it boots up just fine, but when I come home, I'm greeted by a screen that read "No active partition found." Normally I need to confirm to restart the computer, as it was sitting on the Windows Update screen when I left. I began to panic, as most of my schoolwork had resided on that computer along with some photos that I needed to copy to a flash drive for the high school yearbook. Trying to figure out what to do, I was Googling the error message. It turns out that others have fixed it through the Windows 7 install DVD. I didn't want to do that as I was afraid it might corrupt the drive even more. So I ran SpinRite. I selected my drive, and ran it on Level 2. I let it run. About an hour or two later, I was greeted that SpinRite found no errors. I was prepared for the worst then, as I did not back up this computer (even though I should) as we do not have the best Internet speed. I was afraid I was going to lose everything and let our yearbook staff down. I rebooted the computer, only to find it prompting me to select "Last Known Good Configuration or Profile 1". I selected Profile 1, and the computer started right up into Windows. I am in the process of backing up my data to a safe place and giving the important photos to our yearbook staff like nothing even happened. Thank you Steve for your amazing work!

David L
Omaha, Nebraska

10/31/2013 — THIS is the kind of Halloween note you WANT to receive...
From: “Caleb Allen”
Subject: Spinrite Helping Elementary School Children Read

Dear Steve,

I work at a small, poor elementary school district in California's Central valley.

About two years ago I convinced my boss to purchase a site license for Spinrite 6 to use in our shop, after I heard about it on Security Now.

Last week one of our Librarians told me of a problem where her library kiosk terminals were taking 5-7 minutes to logon. It was so bad, that most school children, many of whom were only given 5 to 7 minutes to run to the library at all, just abandoned the PCs. This was a huge problem, because these PCs are how the students look up book titles in the subjects their interested in.

After an hour or so poking around the multipoint server install (the kiosks are terminals all running off one host machine) I took it back to the shop for further work. The message stated that the User Profile Service was busy. I scoured the Microsoft network and internet forums trying to find a solution to the problem. In desperation, on the off chance that the problem might be harddrive related, I ran Spinrite on level 4 over the weekend.

On Monday morning I came in and tested the PC, and the login popped right up and took me to the desktop.

I returned it to the library, and now four students at any one time are able to do research and look up books thanks to Spinrite.

As a poor district, we've used Spinrite for a whole host of problems. It's gotten to the point where, in most cases, we just run Spinrite on level 2 before trying anything else. It's helped us keep our existing equipment running in the, sometimes, chaotic environment of elementary school classrooms. Kids are rough on the equipment, and our harddrives take a beating.

With Spinrite's help we've decreased down time, kept older equipment running, and recovered vital files such as grades, parent reports, and special education evaluations.

I don't know if a student in our district will someday be inspired because they had access to a PC we've gotten running again with Spinrite, but I like to think so.

Thank you so much for a great product,

Turlock, Ca

09/22/2013 — He doesn't think this testimonial is “interesting,” but YOU might!
Hi Steve,

Can't offer you an interesting testimonial. I bought SpinRite from you two years ago and have used it to fix misbehaving drives on three occasions: The drives wouldn't boot, I ran SpinRite, the drives worked. Nothing fancy, just solid and reliable as advertised! I suppose it's like a monkey-wrench or a screwdriver. You don't use it all the time, but when it's needed, it's there and just works!

Eliot Lincoln
Jersey, Channel Islands, UIK

09/20/2013 — Fixes laptop batteries too? What?!
I have listened to every Security Now Podcast from the beginning and have owned SpinRite for quite some time - using it for occasional maintenance.

Recently my work laptop became unreliable. It would freeze at times. Most problematic is that it could not wake from sleep or return from the screensaver. Because I work in a medical office, my employer requires the machine to blank and lock after 30 minutes and I am unable to change this behavior. The other problem was that battery life was rapidly diminishing. The IT department had all kinds of ideas and wanted me to give up the machine for them to look at.

One evening before I left work I popped my personal copy of SpinRite in and ran level 4. It instantly entered Dynastat mode and began to churn, performing its data recovery operations. When I returned the next day it was finished. I rebooted and voila - all better.

It is quite notable that my battery is fixed too. I assume that the machine must have been churning the hard drive trying to read bad sectors and hence running down the battery. But now I have a new plan that I don't think I have ever heard you mention - before replacing a battery that seems to be getting old and not holding charge: run SpinRite! You never know.

Thanks Steve.

Scott Siege

07/21/2013 — SpinRite sometimes creates problems... because it works!

On Security Now: episode 305, you read a letter from a SpinRite user who had an ethical dilemma. He was a collector of broken computer parts, and a friend gave him a dead hard disk. That friend had “tried everything” and thought that the drive was beyond recovery. His friend said he had lost some very valuable photos, but didn't expect anything to ever recover them. Without telling his friend, the listener thought he would let SpinRite have one last go. Of course, it worked.

He also found the valuable pictures, and was surprised to see that they were intimate pictures of his friend and his wife. Now he has a dilemma: If he doesn't tell his friend, he friend doesn't get his data back; but if he does, his friend will know that he has seen those pictures.

Maybe the listener can tell his friend about SpinRite, get him to buy a copy, and give the hard disk back to him to run -- pretending that it is the first time it is run on the disk. :)

Sue Hoylen
Brisbane, Australia

07/10/2013 — A man of few words wrote to say...
My two-word SpinRite testimonial is to say “It works!” Thank you for a great product Steve.

Charles Miller
San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico

03/20/2013 — SpinRite can also recover ENCRYPTED (TrueCrypt)drives, and SSD drives, as THIS posting shows:
By: Mel Highmore
GRC Observation: This wasn't a formal testimonial, but Wednesday morning, March 20th, 2013, my @SGgrc Twitter feed received a “mention” saying just “Thanks” and containing a link to a blog entry. In case the link has aged and died, its text appears below.

“R” is for recovered… Spinrite to the rescue!

I was able to login again after running Spinrite using the level one setting on my SSD with Truecrypt installed. I verify I wasn’t missing anything from my last backup. As precautionary measure, reformat the drive and reinstalled the Operating System. Everything is working well again.
Apparently, Mel's TrueCrypt encrypted laptop would not boot or allow him to login. This is doubly tricky with a drive that has been “whole drive encrypted”, since from the outside, where data recovery software must operate, there is no apparent file system. The entire encrypted drive appears to contain pseudo-random noise. But SpinRite doesn't care, and works anyway, because it recovers WHATEVER was last stored on the drive—even if it's a solid state drive as Mel's was—regardless of what the sector contains. So as Mel found, SpinRite repaired and recovered a sector that was preventing his system from booting.

Mel's original posting contained a photo of SpinRite running on his laptop showing the green “R” recovered sector. In case his posting is no longer up, you can see that photo here. (As you can also see from the timing data in the photo, SpinRite was running at about 200 gigabytes per hour. We've seen it do 300 gig/hour, but mileage does vary.)

03/18/2013 — This one is a bit long . . . but it provides great background and perspective for a prospective buyer:
From: Richard Curtis
Subject: I've Written a Testimonial

... but couldn't find anywhere on GRC's or SpinRite's pages to submit one. So I decided to submit it to your Technical Support eMail. Please let me know if there's anything else I need to do.

Just Another “Miracle” to Add to Your Enormous Collection

I have a Dell Inspiron 1520 laptop running XP Professional SP 3. In early September 2012 I got a BSOD on startup informing me that an essential system file in the boot process was corrupt. I had purchased the computer in 2008 so it was out of warranty. I paid Dell customer service $129 seeking their help in getting it up and running. The best they could give me for the price of admission was to tell me to reinstall the operating system.

Like everyone else I had thousands of pictures and my personal, professional, and financial life on that computer. Like almost everyone else I didn't observe a regular back-up schedule even though I own two 1TB Fantom external HD's. I wasn't about to do anything as drastic as a system reinstall before I could engage in data recovery, but I had previous experience with data recovery and knew it would likely cost me about as much as a new computer, if not a lot more. So I switched over to using my wife's new Asus laptop with a Core i7 processor and Win 7 while I pondered my approach to data recovery. Several months later, tiring of my monopolizing her new computer, she suggested I buy a new one of my own. Nice as her Asus is, I didn't want to pull the trigger on that kind of financial commitment either, so I began scouring the web to find recommendations for user controlled data recovery. Among several promising programs, SpinRite stood out.

I read absolutely everything on the SpinRite website about the program and how it worked. I'm no techie, but it all made sense. Impressed by Steve's background in computer hardware pre-existing the Internet and PC's, his long-term commitment to SpinRite for decades, SpinRite's nondestructive process, the glowing external reviews, the many user testimonials about not just data recovery but the restoration of failing drives, and SpinRite's money-back guarantee and lifetime updates, there was no question about the choice of program.

I paid my $89 lifetime license fee, burned SpinRite to CD on my wife's computer, and started it on my nonbootable Dell at 5 am. It finished its work nine hours later. Holding my breath I started the Dell up and wham! The Windows start screen appeared. It booted flawlessly and there were all my precious files. I'm writing this message on the Inspiron right now. All the previous warnings of impending doom such as hanging processes and stack dumps are gone. Add me to the family of true believers – SpinRite is the most reasonably priced absolutely essential program that every computer owner owes to him/herself to obtain and have on hand to stave off the inevitable failure of drives. I will be running it on the Dell, my wife's Asus, and my son's Dell (Vista) quarterly to keep them in shape. And I'll back up my files (I promise).

BTW -- SpinRite found comparatively few bad sectors, so I guess the drive is actually in fairly good shape.


03/04/2013 — There are MANY ways to run SpinRite, including within a free VirtualBox VM (Virtual Machine):

Hi Steve,

I am a long time Spinrite user. In Episode 386 of your Security Now! podcast, you mentioned a testimonial about a user accessing RAW data with SpinRite. I have had excellent results with a USB SATA/IDE dock, that I have run in a “DOS” VM in Virtual box. I dock a drive, and start the VM and I am off and rolling, all along giving me full access to my host system in the foreground while SpinRite runs in the background.

Testimonial: I saved a friends data, Larry, the owner of a golf shop, had all of his Tax info on his laptop. After letting his laptop sit for a little while (about 6 months) when they tried to boot up Windows gave them the “Un-mountable boot volume error”.

I knew right away what to do: I ran SpinRite for 30 minutes, and it completed the level 4 scan on the hard disk drive, error repaired. Then the system was able to boot without any trouble. Then, just to be thorough, I ran a disk frag analysis using the portable JKDefrag from The drive was 95% fragmented. So I ran a defrag and gave the system back.

They are now able to do their Taxes, they are very thankful to me and you, the creator of this great tool.


Gabriel Chartier
Loveland, Colorado

12/20/2012 — Most SpinRite users first purchase it for emergency data recovery. Then they use it to prevent any future trouble:

I've been a SpinRite user since 2008, when a Laptop with an encrypted hard drive failed to get past the Windows splash screen. SpinRite ran for about 4 hours and then laptop booted properly once again. Since then, I've used SpinRite for maintenance and have never needed it for recovery again.

Thanks so much,
Jason in Indianapolis, Indiana

01/13/2013 — SpinRite's simple slogan is: “It Works.”... because it really does:

From: Donn Edwards
Subject: Spinrite made a pensioner cry
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Dear Steve,

I'm a long time Spinrite user. On Thursday a family friend phoned me near to tears because her computer wouldn't boot properly, even after trying the “Last Known Good Configuration” option. She was starting to panic because there is financial information on the PC that will ensure she gets her pension this year.

I brought the computer home, booted up with Spinrite, and it soon found an unreadable sector, and did its magic to read and recover it anyway. After checking that everything is fine now that the sector has been fixed, I called her with the good news.

She just burst into tears. What can I say?

Thank you for a wonderfully helpful utility.

Best wishes, Donn

01/12/2013 — Sometimes even having backups doesn't help! Yikes!

Subject: SpinRite Testimony

I am a commercial video producer. I had a devastating turn of events: I caught my foot on the power cord to an external 3 TB drive and it crashed to the floor. Needless to say, it is history. But then the next day a large primary internal hard drive began to fail. There went my redundancy!

I was getting error notification upon boot up that the drive was failing. I immediately began attempts to backup the data, but the drive and Windows Explorer would seize up after only transferring one or two files, and when it would transfer, it was extremely slow. I spent a whole day and got virtually nowhere. Late in the evening, at my wits end, I finally purchased and run Spinrite. To my great relief, files started copying, and it is copying almost without a glitch if I don't try to move the files all at once. I am so relieved, I was certain this three year old drive was toast!

Spinrite retrieved irreplaceable files, and important video footage that would have taken days to hunt down and recapture from digital tape. Thanks for a great product.

Ron Finney, owner
North Woods Productions
Gig Harbor, Washington

Earlier SpinRite Testimonials
(for the truly skeptical!)
So . . . Does SpinRite TRULY work?

In a word . . . ABSOLUTELY! . . . and it will work for you.

The few samples above describe the successes that these people — like hundreds of thousands of others — have experienced with SpinRite.

You can wait until you're in trouble, and perhaps you'll be luckier than the hundreds of thousands of people who never used SpinRite for preventative maintenance until they were brought to the brink of disaster. But if that day comes, don't forget GRC.COM and SpinRite.

It works.

We'll be here 24/7 to help rescue your possibly precious personal computer data.

OR . . . you can become a SpinRite owner TODAY and head-off that future disaster before it strikes — as tens of thousands of SpinRite's owners do every day. Just occasionally run SpinRite overnight to keep an eye on your drives and prevent them from delivering a nasty surprise at the most inconvenient time. (Is there ever a good time?)

Click the left button to begin the process of upgrading or purchasing your own copy of the world's leading mass storage maintenance and data recovery utility.  Or click the right button to answer questions you may have about SpinRite's use and operation . . .

Click to purchase SpinRite v6.0     Click for answers to the most common questions

And if, by any chance, you need any more convincing that we know our way around data recovery disasters (or if you just want to read some more REALLY happy and true stories): You may enjoy reading a few of the reactions we received from users of our free FIX-CIH utility which rebuilt their hard drives after they were wiped out by the Chernobyl (CIH) virus.

(Some of these are really fun!)

In any event, thank you for your interest, attention, and consideration.

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