Closed Pre-Release 5.06

  • 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.)

Many of the USB drives do this, as that saves on cost, and they sell a lot of the drives, so putting this function into the controller, and the appropriate interface, is a saving in cost, removing an expensive connector pair (gold plate is expensive), an extra board with components, and a few mm of space in the outer case.

I'd heard mention on the Security Now podcast that the final release of SR6.1 will not have the 137GB limit on USB drives? I have a couple of WD passport 2.5" drives that I cannot scan fully. WD, in their twisted wisdom, installed the USB 3.0 adapter directly to the drive board. I previously thought I could remove the drive from the housing then install into a system as an internal device to scan. Don't know if other manufacturers are doing this nasty trick.
I've got a friend with a WD drive exactly like this, and was very pleased to hear that Steve has addressed the BIOS problem that led to him adding this limitation in his earlier 6.1 PR candidates. I look forward to being able to run the full scan on this drive (and, here's hoping that the lack of direct SATA access to the drive doesn't impede Spinrite from fixing whatever is wrong with this one).