Enterprising Software

  • 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.)


New member
Oct 13, 2023
I have been asked by a friend for recommendations on testing USB flash drives. He has been tasked at work with coming up with software to test a new product they are making. My first and only recommendation was the GRC suite. Spinrite for their design verification and ValiDrive for manufacturing tests.

The issue is, ValiDrive does not lend itself to automated testing (avoiding mouse movers and clickers), as far as I know.

Has it ever been suggested that there be a paid for enterprise version of GRC utilities, that allow for running from the command line and getting the results in a more "automatable" format. I suggest paid for as such functionality would probably be used by people doing "work" and therefore paying for it would be fair.

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They are making them from scratch - putting down a flash chip and a controller etc.

Design validation - Testing at temperature extremes, physical shocks, radiated immunity. Spinrite would be great for highlighting errors after these tests. Limited number therefore not concerned with automating these

Manufacturing tests - Has the right chip been put down? Is it fully connected? ValiDrive is written by an expert and produces useful statistics that could highlight outliers.
If you are a dev you might be able to create your own utilities. I am not sure if Steve obfuscate his executables in anyway, but there are programs that you could use to see which APIs are being called and how. Combined with the documentation to those APIs you might be able to figure out how a program such as the usb utility works. I never tried that with any GRC utilities, so I don’t know how that would go. I do think some software suppliers ask that you not try and reverse engineer their programs and some software suppliers make software that do exactly that.
You will probably find that Steve's utilities are in Assembler, and, rather than using API's, he is doing direct hardware calls.