The amount of data being created and stored by users is constantly increasing, making a range of storage devices popular for use. As the amount of existing data grows, it becomes increasingly important to have a Mac utility tool to monitor, configure, and use these devices.

While Apple’s Disk Utility can perform basic functions, software such as Drive Genius 4 Mac utility offers a more robust range of features designed to speed up, clean up, and protect data storage devices.

Mac Utility for Drive Repairs

The First Aid tool in Disk Utility is useful for detecting and repairing minor disk errors. In contrast, Drive Genius 4 has several different utilities for detecting and repairing various errors.

Drive Genius 4’s Consistency Check will run several passes on a drive to verify the integrity and detect file and folder corruption. Running the Repair utility will correct file and folder errors to prevent the problem from becoming more severe, as well as the potential for data loss.

Cases that cannot be resolved using Repair indicate that the drive is suffering from some physical failure. To verify this, Drive Genius 4’s Physical Check can be run to detect hardware issues. Physical Check also provides an option to run an Extended check, which will verify the read and write ability of every area of the drive. While this extended test will take a large amount of time due to the stress placed on the drive when interacting with the data, it can find faults even when other tests, other utilities or vendors themselves declare the drive to be in good condition.

Mac Utility for Partitioning

The partitioning feature in Apple’s Disk Utility offers several functions. It allows users to create, resize, rename and reformat partitions. Drive Genius 4’s Repartition utility offers all these features and more.

In addition to the previously mentioned functions Drive Genius 4 allows partitions to be moved into other locations on the drive containing free space. Drive Genius will automatically select the new location for maximum compaction of the disk. Users can also Hide/Reveal partitions to make them accessible/inaccessible using Finder and other applications.

Mac Utility for Erase and Formatting

Disk Utility’s format operation is great for initializing and reformatting storage devices into both Mac and Windows file systems. Initialize in Drive Genius 4 offers the same functionality. An important thing to note, however, is Disk Utility claims erasing a drive will destroy all data stored on it.

While Disk Utility’s erase operation does delete all data and creates a new file system, a majority of the files will still be accessible using recovery software such as Data Rescue 4. To erase the data and make it truly unrecoverable, new data must be written over the old data. Drive Genius 4’s Secure Erase utility allows users to write 0’s to the entire drive over the course of 1 to 35 passes, making all data unrecoverable. This can also be done for free space only for drives that will continue to be used. Also, an option is included to format the drive for Mac after this process completes.

Mac Utility for Defragmentation 

With standard rotational hard drives fragmentation occurs when there is not enough contiguous space to store a complete file, resulting in the file being written in fragments across different locations of the drive. Over time, increasing fragmentation can slow down a Mac. While defragmentation is not possible through Apple’s Disk Utility, Drive Genius 4’s Defragment feature allows for both individual file and drive defragmentation.

Mac Utility for Drive Monitoring

One of the biggest advantages of using Drive Genius 4 over Disk Utility is the DrivePulse feature. DrivePulse will automatically monitor drives connected to the system for corruption, hardware issues, and fragmentation. The tests run by DrivePulse are done in the background when the computer is not being actively used so that the process does not interfere with the user’s work. This makes it easy to keep track of the health of your hard drives, without having to run manual checks.

Overall Drive Genius Mac utility is capable performing all of Disk Utility’s functions and offers additional features to better monitor hard drives. Most importantly, Drive Genius 4 can run these utilities on several different drives simultaneously, making the process of maintenance both quick and easy.