Toshiba Corp developed a technology to predict troubles of hard disk drives (HDDs) based on data obtained from HDDs used in notebook computers such as the number of read errors and operating time and data collected from troubled HDDs.

The new technology allows to back up data before an HDD crashes, enabling to prevent important data from being lost. The technology will be added to Toshiba Smart Client Manager, a management tool for notebook computers in business use, as a new function and commercialized in fiscal 2013.

For the development of the new technology, Toshiba utilized HDD operation data collected from 1.66 million notebook computers that have Toshiba PC Health Monitor (software) and were manufactured by the company as well as data on troubled HDDs that has been accumulated at its repair centers.

Toshiba PC Health Monitor collects operation data of HDDs, cooling systems, batteries, etc, with the consent of users. By analyzing more than 750 kinds of HDD operation data created based on such big data, Toshiba realized a function to predict a period during which the probability of HDD troubles continues to be high. If the frequency of backups is increased during this period, the risk of losing data can be reduced.