Content Policy

  • SpinRite v6.1 Release #3
    The 3rd release of SpinRite v6.1 is published and may be obtained by all SpinRite v6.0 owners at the SpinRite v6.1 Pre-Release page. (SpinRite will shortly be officially updated to v6.1 so this page will be renamed.) The primary new feature, and the reason for this release, was the discovery of memory problems in some systems that were affecting SpinRite's operation. So SpinRite now incorporates a built-in test of the system's memory. For the full story, please see this page in the "Pre-Release Announcements & Feedback" forum.
  • Be sure to checkout “Tips & Tricks”
    Dear Guest Visitor → Once you register and log-in please checkout the “Tips & Tricks” page for some very handy tips!

  • BootAble – FreeDOS boot testing freeware

    To obtain direct, low-level access to a system's mass storage drives, SpinRite runs under a GRC-customized version of FreeDOS which has been modified to add compatibility with all file systems. In order to run SpinRite it must first be possible to boot FreeDOS.

    GRC's “BootAble” freeware allows anyone to easily create BIOS-bootable media in order to workout and confirm the details of getting a machine to boot FreeDOS through a BIOS. Once the means of doing that has been determined, the media created by SpinRite can be booted and run in the same way.

    The participants here, who have taken the time to share their knowledge and experience, their successes and some frustrations with booting their computers into FreeDOS, have created a valuable knowledgebase which will benefit everyone who follows.

    You may click on the image to the right to obtain your own copy of BootAble. Then use the knowledge and experience documented here to boot your computer(s) into FreeDOS. And please do not hesitate to ask questions – nowhere else can better answers be found.

    (You may permanently close this reminder with the 'X' in the upper right.)

GRC's “No Nonsense”
Forum Content Policy
TL;DR:  GRC's forums are heavily moderated by design. Posting here
is a privilege, not a right. If GRC or our moderators feel that a posting is
not in the general best interest of all, such postings may, and probably
will, be removed without apology.    For more about why, see below...

In any open public forum, answering the question of what constitutes “acceptable content” is tricky and is often avoided. But because the topic is important, if not critical, to the facilitation of smoothly functioning and civil discourse, it needs to be addressed and made crystal clear.

All fans of Star Trek know Spock's famous dying statement regarding how
“The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one.”

The first potential misconception to resolve is any confusion regarding the applicability of the first amendment of the US Constitution. The first amendment applies to the restriction of “free speech” by the US government ONLY – not by ANY private institution such as Twitter, Facebook... or GRC. So please have no illusions about whether or not we – GRC and our appointed moderators – have the legal right to censor and delete anything that we deem to be counter to this community's goals and interests. As a private enterprise we do have the right, and we will exercise it, without apology.

The second potential misconception is the purpose of these forums. Unlike many other public forums on the Internet, these are corporate forums. The hardware, bandwidth, storage and management which supports these forums is provided at GRC's expense for the sole purpose of supporting its commercial customers and advancing GRC's commercial interests. GRC has no interest in hosting content which is counter to GRC's interests and such content will be removed.

GRC has operated somewhat related public NNTP-style newsgroups for decades. During that time we've weathered a number of upheavals when discussions became heated and boiled over. Our early attempts to formulate a regulating policy to prevent this failed, until we finally understood that what must be avoided are topics that arouse passion. We understand that passion is fun and engaging, and we, ourselves, are quite passionate about many subjects. But, without exception, this is not their place. In online forums such as these, passion too often and easily gets out of control. We've learned the hard way that there is no safe way to discuss “hot” and controversial topics. So, PLEASE check them at the door, and do not bring them with you, in here.

Generally speaking, in these technology-oriented forums, anything like that will be wildly off topic anyway. So it will likely be removed if only for that reason. But it also happens that members develop an affection for these groups and for the people here, and with the best of intentions they wish to share other things in their lives that they care about. Our response to that is that the Internet is a large place and there are many other places where content that's inappropriate here can be posted and shared. That's where it needs to go. While here, you must exercise judgment to keep all of your postings within bounds.

Secondarily, there's another famous and wise imperative that has developed in online communities: “Do Not Feed The Trolls”. It will help everyone if you resist being baited into replying to anything that you feel is inflammatory, whether or not you agree with its premise. The first link under every posting is “Report”. You will be helping everyone here if you exercise your feelings by clicking that link rather than being baited to reply.

Finally, aside from the danger of engaging overheated passions, we very much want these groups to remain focused and on topic. The test we continually use is imagining what a typical newcomer would see and think upon their first visit here. Will they see an orderly and civil community where people are getting along and engaging in worthwhile and interesting on-topic conversations? Or will they see a food fight and feel the need to duck and cover?

Anything appearing here that is not relevant to our topics, or which might develop into a skirmish, will be removed immediately upon being seen.

Our explicit policy is that it's better to be safe than
sorry, and that no posting is too valuable to eliminate.

This may seem harsh and unappreciative. It's not meant to be. But we believe that an adherence to these guidelines will create a useful environment and knowledgebase for the benefit of all members and visitors.

Thank you for your understanding. Really.