Disk benchmarking and information tools are a dime a dozen, and you’ll find so many of them out there that it becomes to make the right pick. We at AddictiveTips have ourselves covered a lot of such tools, generic and specific both, such as DHE Drive Info for detailed hard drive statistics, AS SSD Benchmark particularly for SSD drives, and even a guide on performing benchmark testing on your hard disk, USB drive and optical drive. The problem with most of these tools, however, remains the fact that they present you with synthetic benchmarking numbers, figures that you are most unlikely to meet in real life situations.
For a more realistic and accurate measure of how your disks will perform in real time under stress, try DiskBench. It is a portable Windows application that uses your current filesystem to save, read and manipulate data. Details after the break.
The interface of the application presents 5 tabs, namely Copy File, Copy Directory, Create File, Read File and Create File Batch. Each tab caters to the normal file system operations, and handles all read/write functions with ease. What sets DiskBench apart from others is the fact that it utilizes files already present on your disk, and plays with the file system in its current state. Hence, if your file system is fragmented, for instance, the performance will be lower, and vice versa.
Usage is as simple as it gets, without any options to configure. For copy file test, for example, mark a source file, select a destination to which it will be copied, and choose whether to delete the copied file after the test is completed. Hit Start Bench and you’re good to go.
The bottom panel will populate with results from your current benchmark test, and will list the type of test, the size of file being used, time taken and transfer rate. All these values represent real time statistics, giving you a more accurate picture of how your hard disks are performing for certain operations. DiskBench supports multithread operations, as well.
It should be noted, however, that once you start a benchmark, the application goes into a halt until the test is finished. The lack of a progress bar is also something inhibiting, but we can’t complain much about it, since the app delivers what it promises. DiskBench is portable, takes around 25MB of memory, and should work on all versions of Windows, provided you have .NET Framework 4.0 or higher installed.