Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I'm running badblocks (or rather "e2fsck -c") on a 1TB drive and if the progress indicator is any indication (no pun intended), it's going to take almost forever to complete.

Right now it says 0.01% done, 30:20 elapsed which would mean the thing would take 17 weeks or so to complete, which seems rather excessive in my book.

Is that a normal amount of time for such a check to take or it simply that my suspicions are correct in that the drive is failing, thus causing the check to take only slightly shorter than eternity?

I found this question here, but that pertains to the amount of passes done.

share|improve this question
It almost certainly depends on the interface, the drive, and how bad the drive is, if there is actually any failures. I can tell you on one of my computers a badblocks scan took ~70 hours for a 1.5TB drive attached through SATA. If you where connected via USB2.0, or 1.0 it would be far longer. –  Zoredache Feb 2 '11 at 0:38
It is attached using e-SATA. I suppose I'll just give it a while and see how far along it is after a good night's sleep. –  Steven Don Feb 2 '11 at 0:43
@Zoredache - I think your comment should be an answer instead. –  Nifle Feb 2 '11 at 6:02
The time required would (also) depend on the mode badblocks is running in: read-only, non-destructive read-write or destructive read-write. Having said that, 30 minutes for 0.1% does seem long. –  SabreWolfy Jun 22 '12 at 14:10
That's 30 minutes for 0.01%, not 0.1%. Anyway, the question is rather old. The drive had indeed failed (spectacularly). –  Steven Don Jun 27 '12 at 9:28

3 Answers 3

In addition to Zoredache's comment above, different switches to badblocks cause it to perform different tasks, which will also affect runtimes, for example the -w switch.

share|improve this answer

Badblocks makes 4 runs. On a 1 TB external HD it usually takes around 70 hours.

share|improve this answer
For completeness, badblocks (only) defaults to four runs with the -w destructive-write flag. –  SabreWolfy Jun 22 '12 at 14:09

Try increasing amount of blocks processed together, like in badblocks -svn -b 512 -c 65536 /dev/sda. In this way, I can get a 1 TB hard disk drive checked in 8 hours.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.