PC diagnostics software/hardware

By Mark56 ยท 11 replies
May 23, 2011
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  1. Can anyone who has hands on experience with PC diagnostics software and/or hardware recommend any particular software or hardware testers.

    How good is AIDA64, a review I read on this looks quite impressive.

    There are many motherboard and general hardware testers on ebay, are there any that stand out as being particularly reliable that will also work on laptops..

    I am also interested in finding good data retrieval software for recovering data from faulty and/or corrupt hard drives. Are there any that perform better than Stella Phoenix.

    I repair a few PC's a month and it would be very useful to have some equipment that can confirm the health of mobo's and CPU's without having to diagnose by a process of elimination.

    I don't have the finance to experiment with the various testers that are available.

    Any recommendations would be appreciated.
  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    This type of Computer testing hardware and software is not really necessary or even useful to an experienced computer tech. The motherboard testers are only as good as the tech is. A shorted data bus will give false results at best. The useful tools include a spare power supply, an inexpensive power supply tester, spare memory, a spare IDE and SATA Desktop hard drive (and notebook drives) and a good true RMS multimeter... and that's it
  3. Mark56

    Mark56 TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 1,886

    And a USB hard drive adapter for easy backing up of customers important files just about completes the list. I was just wondering how good the hardware mobo testers are and if any of the diagnostic software that states it can do it all was worth considering.

    Anyway, thanks for your comments. I'd be interested in any links for power supply testers, that's one thing I don't have that could save a bit of time.

    The only thing you didn't pass comment on was data recovery, is Stella Phoenix about as good as it gets or is there some method I have yet to learn about for digging out data from a failing hard drive or more importantly recovering data from accidental deletion of files or partitions.
  4. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

    Yeah, I do have both a SATA laptop USB enclosure and a PATA laptop USB enclosure. I think there is free software available for data recovery from hard drives, but I haven't used any to date...

    I used to repair motherboards to the component level. It just isn't cost-effective any more. If a good visual inspection, a new CMOS battery and good memory don't bring a suspect motherboard back to life, it's time for a new motherboard. EBay can be a good source for the older motherboards, and even newer ones
  5. Mark56

    Mark56 TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 1,886

    Yup, I get most of my spares from Ebay. Thanks again for taking the time to comment.
  6. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 17,244   +234

  7. Mark56

    Mark56 TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 1,886

    Thanks for that Tmagic:)
  8. Row1

    Row1 TS Guru Posts: 343   +13

    not much to add, except...

    not much to add, except...
    don't be one of those repair guys who declares the computer is dead, and the solution is to start over.

    a repair shop told my father his hard drive was dead, and he would have to start over. My mom got upset because there were a lot of family photos on the hard drive.

    I told them the repair guy was wrong - and said make sure to get the hard drive back when they go pay for the new computer.

    I got that old, "dead," "unrecoverable" hard drive, plugged it in to my comp, and burned all of the files to DVD, and gave my parents the DVDs.

    Wow. That was really difficult.

    Now, they know the repair guy is either 1. not very good, or 2. deceptive.
  9. Mark56

    Mark56 TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 1,886

    Yes, I have heard many tales of so called computer repairers that as soon as they are faced with a problem their quick fix is to fit a new hard drive and reinstall windows and then charge a huge sum of money for their non existent effort at repairing an error in the system that they don't have the knowledge to find. Then you take it back because it is still faulty and they charge again for new memory, and so on until by the process of elimination they finally charge you for replacing the correct part. It's those kind of people that give the good guys a bad name.

    I am one of those good guy's. Why else would I be asking about file recovery software?
  10. mike1959

    mike1959 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,034   +55

  11. Mark56

    Mark56 TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 1,886

    Thanks for that Mike, I've added it to my list.
  12. Row1

    Row1 TS Guru Posts: 343   +13

    you'll make money

    you'll make money since word-of-mouth gets around.

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