How to Check If Disk Is Failing in Windows/Mac [2023 Complete Guide]

Cici updated on Jul 20, 2023 | Home >Computer Instruction

As an essential device for storing most data, a hard drive failure may result in errors such as operating systems not booting, running slowly, or data being accidentally deleted. Due to different usage scenarios, you cannot accurately predict the life of a hard drive. There are some minimal signs before a disk fails. And you can't ignore these small symptoms before it becomes a full-blown problem.

Next, we will analyze signs on how to check if disk is failing and use professional tools to check the health of your hard drive on Windows/Mac. 

Signs on How to Check If Disk Is Failing

Hard drive failures are mainly divided into physical and logical failures. Both can be repaired when they are not particularly large. So, timely detection of hard drive failure symptoms can help us to take preventive measures to avoid data loss. You can check if disk is failing by looking at these phenomena:

  • Overheating
  • Strange noises 
  • Bad sectors
  • Computer runs slower
  • Operating system fails to start
  • Blue/black screen problems
  • Computer frequently crashes
  • Files suddenly disappear or cannot be opened
  • Files are slow to open or require multiple attempts

If any of these phenomena occur, it indicates that your disk is failing. Physical phenomena, such as heat, noise, etc., are easily noticeable. But there are some physical phenomena that we need to be able to detect before these problems appear.

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Next, we will use professional software to check if disk is failing and check hard drive health.

How to Check If Disk Is Failing on Windows

Physical damage can be done by removing the computer case, checking cable connections, and removing dust and debris. Logical corruption, on the other hand, is mainly done by using EaseUS Partition Master to check the SMART (Self-Monitoring, Analysis, and Reporting Technology) data on the disk. Or you can check the bad sectors on it.

Method 1. Run S.M.A.R.T Test

Method 2. Run Disk Surface Test

Method 3. Run CMD to Check Health

Let's see how to check if disk is failing by using the three methods. 

Method 1. Run S.M.A.R.T Test

SMART (Self-Monitoring, Analysis, and Reporting Technology) Hard Drive Test monitors different aspects of your hard drive. It can analyze threats of hard drive failure and reports the results. EaseUS Partition Master provides a Disk Health feature to support SMART technology and can easily detect disk health, temperature, performance, and more.

Free Download 

Windows 11/10/8/7100% Secure

The tool is easy to use. Please check the steps below to check if the disk is failing.

Step 1. Launch EaseUS Partition Master and click the blue arrow to activate the "Disk Health" feature under the "Discovery" section.

click the bule arrow

Step 2. Select the target disk and click the "Refresh" button. Then, you can see the health condition of your disk.

choose the target disk

With EaseUS Partition Master, you can also check the health status of the SSD.

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How to Check SSD Health on Windows 10 [Safe & Efficient Guide]

Knowing how to check SSD health is integral to protecting your data. Due to improvements in speed and reliability, more and more hard drives are being replaced by SSDs. 

check ssd health

In addition to EaseUS Partition Master, you can use CHKDSK(refer to check disk) or CMD on Windows to check the SMART status of your disks.

Method 2. Run Disk Surface Test

An increase in bad sector data is also a sign of disk failure. Bad sector corruption can also lead to information loss. And the accumulated bad sectors are hard to identify. In addition to slow computer operation or disk noise, you can use EaseUS Partition Master to run a disk surface test to determine the number of bad sectors. And it will mark the unusable sectors as red.

Free Download 

Windows 11/10/8/7100% Secure

Follow the steps below to check the disk for bad sectors to see if the disk is failing.

Step 1. Open EaseUS Partition Master. Right-click the disk that you want to check, and then click "Surface Test".

Step 2. The operation will be immediately performed and all bad sectors will be marked as red.

For many bad sectors, EaseUS Partition Master can perform a simple repair and fix the damaged file system. If there are a large number of bad sectors, then you need to clone hard drive or migrate the data on the disk to another disk and then replace the failed disk.

Method 3. Run CMD to Check Health

If you don't like to use third-party tools, Windows provides a command line to help you check the operating status of your hard drive. The following are the specific steps to use:

Step 1. Press and hold Windows+R and type cmd to open a Command Prompt window.

Step 2. Type wmic diskdrive get status and press Enter.

command prompt

Step 3. If it shows OK, your drive is running well. If it shows Pred Fail, it means your drive is failing.

Alongside checking if a disk is failing, sometimes, you may have doubts about defining if the disk is new, used, dying, or even bad, right? Follow the respective guide that interests you the most and learn tips for testing your hard drive now:

How to Check If Disk Is Failing on Mac

If you use a Mac computer, you may also be experiencing some strange noises, overheating, computer performance not adding up, and other problems. These signs are also indicating that your hard drive is getting damaged. You can test your Mac hard drive using the Disk Utility tool provided with your Mac. The following are specific step-by-step instructions:

Step 1. Open Application and select Disk Utility under Utilities.

Step 2. Select the target disk on the left side.

Step 3. In SMART status, check the status of the hard drive. Verified means your Mac hard drive is fine. Failing means your hard drive is bad.

check disk on mac


You may now be able to check if disk is failing after reading the list of usual indicators of hard drive failure above. And you can also check disk health or find bad sectors using EaseUS Partition Master. 

If your disk is deteriorating, replace it with a healthy one or fix the damaged sectors with a professional disk partition tool. The next part is some frequently asked questions and answers. If you are interested, keep reading.

FAQ of How to Check If Disk Is Failing 

The following questions are about how to check if the disk is failing in Windows. And I provide some short answers to it. Hope the following can be helpful to you.

1. How do I know if my hard drive is physically damaged?

When you access the drive, a clicking sound is produced. And the computer won't turn on or isn't working properly. Besides, if the hard drive is physically damaged, it opens files slowly, displays data access issues, or locks up with errors.

2. Do hard drives fail suddenly?

Hard drives have different lifespans depending on the device, but they all eventually fail. Some malfunction suddenly and without prior notice, while others may slowly deteriorate over time without the user's knowledge.

3. How do I test if my hard drive is failing?

Try EaseUS Partition Master to check the hard drive health:

Step 1. Open EaseUS Partition Master, and click the blue arrow to open the "Discovery" section's "Disk Health" option.

Step 2. Choose the target disk and press "Refresh." The state of your disk's health will then be visible.

If you need a more detailed guide, refer to this page for help: How to Tell If a Hard Drive Is Failing or Not

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Updated by Cici

Cici is the junior editor of the writing team of EaseUS. She accepted the systematic training on computers at EaseUS for over one year. Now, she wrote a lot of professional articles to help people resolve the issues of hard drive corruption, computer boot errors, and disk partition problems.

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