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Drive Genius 2 trumps Apple’s Disk Utility by letting you repartition a hard drive without erasing it first.
Time Machine, Time Capsule, and the proliferation of affordable and large-capacity external drives have finally gotten it through the general population’s heads that backing up your data is important. After all, every Mac has a hard drive, and every hard drive will one day go belly-up, so you might as well be prepared. But besides backing up data, it’s smart to keep your hard drive in tip-top shape with regular maintenance, and that’s where Drive Genius 2 comes in.
Prosoft’s marquee drive utility has a brand-new animated user interface (if your Mac lacks Quartz Extreme support, however, the app automatically turns the animations off) and packs maintenance, management, and optimization functions onto one DVD that can boot both PowerPC- and Intel-based Macs. While every Mac includes Apple’s own Disk Utility, Drive Genius 2 performs far more functions, including defragmenting your drive (which will speed up read and write times), checking the integrity of the drive’s physical parts (controller, cabling, motherboard, head seek mechanism, etc) so you can tell if your drive is in danger of failing, repairing corrupted directories, erasing and reformatting drives, running benchmark tests, cloning a drive, resetting drive partitions, and more. In fact, if you purchase Apple’s $99/year ProCare plan for your Mac, the Genius Bar technicians use Drive Genius 2 to defragment and otherwise maintain your hard drive. And since you can boot your Mac from the DVD, you’ll be able to run Drive Genius 2 from the disc and diagnose problems in the event that your Mac’s boot drive refuses to work.
The user interface has been redesigned with animated eye candy.
In our tests, all of Drive Genius 2’s functions worked smoothly, and we saw slightly better read and write speeds after using the app to defragment our MacBook Pro’s 150GB hard drive. The ability to repartition a drive on the fly—that is, to set or move partitions without having to erase the drive first—came in especially handy. The 100-page PDF user manual clearly walks you through each function’s steps, but we’d also like to see recommendations for how often you should run each task. Prosoft is known for its stellar tech support: Real people (based in the United States) answer the phones and are glad to help answer any questions you might have, for no extra charge.The bottom line. It’s important to care of your data, but don’t forget to also take care of your hard drive. Drive Genius 2 makes it easy.