Please see the Support page for information on how to report issues.

Known Limitations

  • Only ATA drives (both PATA and SATA), various USB to ATA bridges, and drives behind some RAID controllers are supported for now. The main reasons for this are:
    • We can't support drives which don't work with smartmontools. This affects drives which don't support SMART or don't export SMART data correctly (e.g. some USB enclosures, RAIDs, etc…).
    • Smartctl's output for SCSI drives is completely different compared to ATA. Also, SCSI drives are rarely found in desktop systems and the servers rarely have X11 / Gtkmm running, so this is a low priority task.
  • Immediate Offline Tests are not supported. We have not found a way to reliably monitor them. Besides, they run automatically anyway if Automatic Offline Data Collection is enabled.
  • Testing is only supported on drives which correctly report their progress information in their list of capabilities.
  • Not all drives support disabling Automatic Offline Data Collection, even if they report otherwise. Unfortunately, there's no way to detect such drives.

Custom Smartctl Options

GSmartControl tries its best to guard the user from having to specify smartctl options. However, this is not always possible due to drive firmware bugs, unimplemented features, and so on.

GSmartControl provides the ability to specify custom options to smartctl. The smartctl manual page contains detailed information on these options. Additional information is available at

Permission Problems

You need to have root / Administrator privileges to perform anything useful with GSmartControl. This is needed because most operating systems prohibit direct access to hardware to users with non-administrative privileges.

In Windows, UAC is automatically invoked when you run it. In Linux / Unix operating systems, running gsmartcontrol-root (or using the desktop icon) will automatically launch GSmartControl using the system's preferred su mechanism - PolKit, kdesu, gnomesu, etc…

Please do not set the setuid flag on smartctl binary. It is considered a security risk.

SMART Does Not Stay Enabled

Specifications say that once you set a SMART-related property, it will be preserved across reboots. For example, when you enable SMART and Automatic Offline Data Collection, both will stay enabled until you disable them.

However, BIOS / UEFI, your operating system, your other operating systems (if present), and various startup programs may affect that. For example, UEFI may enable SMART each time you start your computer, so if you disabled SMART previously, it will be re-enabled on reboot.

The easiest way to work around this is to set the desired settings on system startup. You may use smartctl or smartd to do that. For example, to enable both SMART and Automatic Offline Data Collection on /dev/sda, one would write the following to the system startup script (e.g. boot.local, rc.local or similar on Linux):

smartctl -s on -o on /dev/sda

For more information, see smartctl and smartd documentation.