Delkin Blog

Q&A on SMART (Self-Monitoring Analysis and Reporting Technology)

Engineer Reviewing S.M.A.R.T Data

 

Self-monitoring, analysis, and reporting technology—or SMART—is a feature found on many solid state drives (SSDs) today. The idea behind SMART SSDs is that they alerts users to signs of an impending drive failure, allowing them to take action and protect data before the failure actually occurs. All users can benefit from this kind of forewarning, and for data in industries such as healthcare and transportation, the service SMART provides is indispensible. Here are the answers to questions users frequently have about SMART.

 

How does SMART work?

Typically, SMART is automatically enabled in a platform’s BIOS (Basic Input/ Output System) and monitors the operations of the system’s storage device, transmitting the information back to the BIOS. The BIOS then determines if the storage device is showing any indications of a potential drive failure. If it is, the BIOS sends a warning message.

 

SMART also sometimes initiates a periodic series of self-tests. These tests scan the drive for electrical and mechanical performance issues and evaluate the read/write operations. SMART devices that allow for self-testing usually offer a shorter, limited self-test along with a longer, more thorough version.

 

What does SMART look for?

There is not an industry standard for what specific kinds of errors trigger warnings with SMART. Drive manufacturers can set processes and operational thresholds that are appropriate for their systems. The standards set for drives are called SMART attributes. Letting manufacturers set SMART attributes for their drives accommodates differing concerns, like the different abilities of  SSDs to tolerate extreme temperatures. Global SMART attributes would contribute to both over-warning and under-warning.

 

SMART attributes generally contain the following information:

  • Identifier: What the specific attribute is
  • Data: Raw data that is processed by an algorithm written by the manufacturer
  • Threshold: The point at which failure is possible
  • Value: The current attribute health
  • Worst: The smallest value ever recorded by the drive

 

What happens when a SMART warning occurs?

After a SMART warning is sent, what happens next will depend on the operator. Any SMART error can be an indicator that a drive failure is imminent and that backing up data is essential to prevent loss.

 

If the drive fails before being repaired or replaced, all data, programs, and documents on the drive may be irretrievably lost. Ideally, engineers should have plan in place for dealing with SMART warnings and emergency data backups in order to protect mission-critical information.

 

The Product Support team at Delkin is available to answer your questions about SMART and the other features of our industrial storage solutions. Contact us or for additional information about our products.

 

Contact

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Related Posts

Customer Success Story: Maximizing Speed and Performance with a Locked BOM

  For industrial customers, the prospect of frequently recertifying components like embedded memory is simply...

Understanding the Architecture of an SLC USB Flash Drive

  Flash drives are one of the most recognizable, widely used forms of memory. One...

FAQs About the Industrial CFast Card

  Industrial CFast cards offer high-capacity storage solutions for applications that are migrating to a...

Industrial SATA for Controls/Automation

  In recent years, an increased use of controls/automation has revolutionized efficiency in factory settings....

Customer Success Story: Application Lifecycle Challenges

  In 2009, mSATA was introduced to the market to address the demand for consumer...

Answering Common Questions About M.2

  Flash memory form factors that are widely compatible and appropriate for a variety of...

Temperature and SLC NAND Flash Memory: What You Need to Know

  NAND flash memory is the preferred form of storage for everything from consumer smartphones...

Concept of Communication Network Applications in City
Industrial CF Cards for the Communications/Networking Industry

  Which kind of embedded storage is best for industrial applications?  It is an understandable...

Delkin PRD SD MICROSD
The ABC’s of microSD and SD Cards

  It used to be so simple.  Just select a Class 10 card and you...

Delkin Devices M.2 2280, PCIe, 128 GB SSD featured for the new UltraZed-EV

Delkin Devices SSD, Internal, M.2 2280 is featured for NVMe SSD capability to the...