Author: <span>Ultratest</span>


Advanced Hard Drive Repair from Ultratest Genesis

Ultratest Genesis: Advanced Hard Drive Repair, Testing, and Data Erasure for Device Longevity


Genesis has the ability to restore the drive to its optimal operational state. This is achieved by implementing advanced technological tools for diagnostics and repairs.

Our team comprises highly skilled professionals. They have a superior understanding of the functional operation and software of a wide range of data storage devices. We have gained this knowledge from years of research and development-based engineering. Therefore, we are confident that our system will meet and exceed your expectations while delivering accurate results.

The repair process

The Genesis repair process begins with identifying the drive manufacturer and its generation (“family”). Post-identification, the system considers specific circumstances, such as known issues and nuances unique to each device, enabling the system to tune the processes during subsequent tests. This ensures the most accurate, efficient and effective repair process possible.

Genesis Hard Drive test ports for SAS and SATA HDD/SSD

During the initial testing phases, the software scans for critical issues, such as helium gas leaks in modern helium-filled drives. This early detection allows stopping the testing as soon as possible, which reduces the overall time required for testing. Consequently, it improves the efficiency of the testing process.

The Genesis platform utilises “dynamic schedules” to control the test and repair process. This feature enables flexible adjustments to the test process on the fly for any specific drive, including different methods for either Hard Drives (HDD) or Solid State Drives (SSD), among many other unique factors. The backend code has intelligent logic, which makes this approach highly efficient.

Reliable results every time

Our testing systems are designed to produce efficient and accurate results in the shortest possible time. We don’t simply clear defect tables to declare a drive usable. Instead, we use a highly developed advanced technique and engineering process specific to each manufacturer to perform actual repairs. These methods are far more sophisticated than simply resetting the drive. This allows us to provide more effective and long-lasting results.

To avoid any confusion regarding the criteria for a “good drive”, we created the Guardian Score, a grading system, to evaluate the quality of drives based on three categories: Grade A, Grade B and Grade C. These grades correspond to “fully functional”, “functioning with minor issues”, and “functioning with major issues”, respectively. Moreover, we have provided an option for our customers to customise the grading according to their specific needs based on either a drive-health percentage or the number of defects within the G-List.

Only drives where the media is defect-free are considered Grade A“.

States project lead: Mikhail Mavritsin

Data-Driven Results

An assortment of diverse testing conditions and criteria subject the drive’s repair procedure to rigorous evaluation to ensure the stability of the results. Passing all the tests and undergoing repair increases the likelihood of the drive’s longevity. To achieve accurate results, strict requirements for average performance in all operations, known as “timings,” are closely monitored. We constantly evaluate that the test criteria for the repair procedure align as closely as possible with the actual situation in a particular device. The test software can fine-tune the baseline criteria for each type of device, including features of SMR drives and SSDs, allowing optimal performance.

Ensuring the reliability of test results depends on countless factors derived from the vast amount of accumulated data and statistics. Statistics are based on results from over 4 million HDD & SSD devices. Including varying capacities, models, generations and many other unique attributes. Our data has shown that products processed by Genesis have an extremely stable and high yield with a minimum number of returns/warranty claims for our customers, typically well under 1%.  

Our commitment

At Ultratest, we take pride in our unique approach to test system development. We firmly believe that our personal and tailored approach with customers sets us apart.  We have the technical capability and willingness to conduct device failure analysis to investigate the most unusual behaviour for frequent or rare issues. This helps us promptly enhance test algorithms’ quality, assessment criteria, and the list of supported products.

Further product information can be found here, or contact the team to discuss in more depth.


Do I have to Erase a Network Switch?

Do I have to Erase a Network Switch? It’s a good question, why erase a Network Switch, a router, a firewall or even an access point? They’re not data-bearing devices like a Hard Drive or Mobile Phone. Surely a factory reset or a format or deleting the config will do the trick?

A Hackers potential delight!

Unfortunately, not. Networking devices are data-bearing devices, not in the true sense of the word, in terms of user GDPR-type personal data, but they contain extremely precious and sensitive information. The config data can include passwords, IP Addresses, and Domain Names. If you can determine the device’s original location, it’s like leaving your keys hanging outside your front door. It could be a hacker’s delight.

Hang on; surely an IT Manager would change the passwords and config data when removing an asset from their network. You’ll be surprised to hear it’s not always the case. I recall a conversation from a few months back of a scenario where an IT Operator was tasked with upgrading the Firewall on their Network. To save time and effort, the simplest method to swap the device was to back up the data on the old firewall and restore the config to the new device. Hey, presto! Job done! However, the old appliance, now on its way to their trusty ITAD, had the same security credentials & passwords as the live device in the Network. Whoops!

OK, so how do you Erase a device?

So, how do you erase a Networking Device? Sadly, it’s not as simple as it should or could be. The Networking device manufacturers should have focused more on effective & safe data erasure than they have. There is now a ‘Write Erase’ command on some of the newer products, which does as it says on the tin. For everything else… it depends. The first issue is to find where the data is stored. Devices have multiple internal data storage media, including; NVRAM, Flash, and SSD, to name a few.

The challenge continues; identify all the storage within the product, and you must safely remove the data. We are all familiar that to erase data from a Hard Drive or SSD, deleting or formatting doesn’t remove data. It just informs the device that you can use that part of the media for storing new data; eventually, the old data will be over-written. The same theory can be applied to the storage media on a Networking device. As with an HDD or SSD, the only effective method to safely remove data is performing a complete overwrite of the media. Typically, this is done by writing a random data pattern to fill up the media, therefore overwriting any data that was previously there.

Is there a Solution available?

The market has reacted slowly, and even some of the largest Data Erasure Software providers have struggled to provide a reliable solution. The issue is that to perform this overwrite, you need to take control of the device. A compelling blend of hardware & software is the only reliable approach.

Ultratest offers a powerful solution named Nemesis, the only ADISA-certified Network Erasure Solution available. We invite you to learn how Nemesis can benefit you; read on…


Genesis recertified ADISA Product Assurance

Genesis recertified ADISA Product Assurance, including NIST 800-88

We are excited to announce that Genesis, the leading solution for repairing, testing, and wiping Hard Drives & SSDs, has successfully recertified through the ADISA Product Assurance Scheme.

Genesis was the first product certified under the Product Assurance scheme in 2019.  The scheme has been enhanced to now include NIST 800-88 compliance verification.

Genesis, the most advanced solution

Over many years, Genesis has earned a reputation as the leading solution for processing used Hard Drives & SSD. Unlike other products that merely test and erase devices before resale, Genesis utilises advanced techniques and processes, typically reserved for the drive manufacturers, to restore health and ensure the highest quality. Furthermore, Genesis boasts a remarkable yield rate thanks to its superior ability to unlock drives that other solutions cannot.

Over many years, Genesis has earned a reputation as the leading solution for processing used Hard Drives & SSD. Unlike other products that merely test and erase devices before resale, Genesis utilises advanced techniques and processes, typically reserved for the drive manufacturers, to restore health and ensure the highest quality. Furthermore, Genesis boasts a remarkable yield rate thanks to its superior ability to unlock drives that other solutions cannot.

Who is ADISA Certification, and what is Product Assurance

ADISA Certification is the go-to organisation for product and service certification. Their ADISA Research Centre (ARC) is an independent certification body that conducts product certification. The certification schemes’ purpose is to evaluate sanitisation software’s effectiveness using the Product Assurance (PA) scheme provided by ARC. This scheme scrutinises whether data sanitisation products can comply with sanitisation standards and guidelines, specifically NIST Special Publication 800-88 Revision 1 and/or IEEE Std 2882-2022, by assessing if the product can issue standard-compliant commands to storage media.

What is NIST 800-88?

NIST 800-88, also known as NIST Special Publication 800-88 (NIST SP 800-88), has become the industry standard for data erasure and provides comprehensive guidance on safely & effectively erasing data from storage media. The standard was initially created for the US government use but has since been adopted by companies and governments worldwide to ensure secure media sanitisation. 

The NIST guidelines cover all types of storage media, including magnetic, flash-based, and other technologies, and outline three sanitisation techniques: Clear, Purge, and Destroy. The ultimate goal is to ensure that all data stored on the media is permanently erased and cannot be retrieved.

ADISA ARC Test Conclusions

The Product Assurance tests include 14 separate examinations of compliance with the NIST SP 800-88r1 guidelines. To be considered compliant, the laboratory must verify the commands sent to the device in either Table A-5 or Table A-8 of NIST SP 800-88r1.

During the tests that required verification of NIST SP 800-88r1 CLEAR, the ARC determined that all tested devices were compliant because the software’s commands matched the specifications in NIST SP 800-88r1.

Similarly, during the tests that required NIST SP 800-88r1 PURGE verification, the ARC found that all tested devices were compliant because the software’s commands matched the specifications in NIST SP 800-88r1.

Steve Mellings, Founder & CEO of ADISA Group, commented…

“Compliance to NIST 800-88 guidelines means much more than having a dropdown on the software; the sanitisation engine must issue specific commands to drives based on their type and interface. The software must also react to the drive if the command is not supported again, issuing a different command to achieve the desired outcome. Our testing of Genesis was done over several weeks. It involved many combinations to ensure we are confident that it complies with the sanitisation requirements as listed in NIST 800-88”.

Thomas Gardner, Product Sales Specialist at Ultratest Solutions, continued…

“Certifications genuinely reflect the hard work, dedication, research, and investment it takes to create a market-leading product. Our solution has been endorsed by ADISA, the reputable certification organisation recognised worldwide. This endorsement assures our customers that our product meets all industry standards, such as NIST, giving them the utmost confidence in our solution”.

For further information, please get in touch with us here, or contact ADISA Certification at

Product Update

Expand your Hard Drive production with GenesisXP

Increase throughput, reduce cost and grow revenue.

Margins in the Hard Drive processing sector have been under pressure for some time. As a result, we have designed GenesisXP to reduce operating costs, increase revenue, and ensure compliance.

How does it work?

Genesis provides industry-leading technology and repair capabilities, not seen in any other solution. Uniquely, the functionality delivers unparalleled results with the highest possible yield. GenesisXP enables the expansion of your Genesis infrastructure by attaching additional Disk Enclosures (JBODs) for Test, Erasure & Grading.

What is equally important, failed drives from GenesisXP or passes at Grade B or C, maybe repairable. Genesis can recover and refurbish many of these devices. In essence; Increased throughput, reduced cost and revenue growth.

GenesisXP Server

All Genesis Systems (8, 16, 32, 64 & 96-Port) are compatible with GenesisXP.  The XP solution is connected through a dedicated Server with four SAS/SATA (SAS 3G/6G/12G) outputs attaching to your chosen Disk Enclosures.  The Server can be installed neatly in the Genesis cabinet, likewise externally in a Disk Enclosure cabinet of your choice.  GenesisXP is compatible with all the major enclosure brands, except IBM StorWize.

GenesisXP Screenshot
GenesisXP JBOD Selection Screen

Integrated Solution & GUI

GenesisXP seamlessly integrates into the Aurora GUI/TouchScreen.  Simply toggle through the enclosures to view individual drives on test.  The Ultratest Online Web Portal is used to manage all test/erasure processes.

View individual drives & test logs

Licencing options

GenesisXP licensing is available for all Genesis configurations, providing additional concurrent active ports, of; 32, 64, 96 or 120+. Testing of over 120 drives is possible with potential performance deficits. Installation of additional servers will provide maximum test speeds. We would advise running additional GenesisXP servers to retain the highest possible speed.

Contact us for further information and pricing.