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hdparm provides a command line interface to various hard disk ioctls supported by the stock Linux ATA/IDE device driver subsystem. Some options may work correctly only with the latest kernels. For best results, compile hdparm with the include files from the latest kernel source code.


  • Syntax/synopsis:
hdparm [ flags ] [device] ..

Example usage

% hdparm -t -T /dev/hdc  # HDD benchmark
  Timing buffer-cache reads:   1652 MB in  2.00 seconds = 836.00 MB/sec
  Timing buffered disk reads:  198 MB in  3.01 seconds =  36.08 MB/sec


When no flags are given, -acdgkmnru is assumed. See man page for details.


Note: The following is from How fast is your disk?.

% gcc -O2 seeker.c -o seeker

or if you're lazy or don't have compiler at hand, you can also download the binary below. Then run it like this:

% seeker /dev/hda

Just like hdparm, it needs superuser privileges to access the raw disk device. The output looks like this:

Seeker v2.0, 2007-01-15, http://www.linuxinsight.com/how_fast_is_your_disk.html
Benchmarking /dev/sda [17501MB], wait 30 seconds..............................
Results: 167 seeks/second, 5.95 ms random access time

See also