Home » Hacking Computer (Hardware)

Test Fake or Counterfeit USB Flash Drives Bought from eBay with H2testw

26 August 2009 No Comment

eBay has lots of cheap stuff that you can buy. The price are normally lower than the retail suggested price to attract buyers but beware! Not all cheap stuff are good and some of them can be counterfeit. I know that almost anything can be copied because when I walk along the night market (pasar malam), I can see fake branded bags such as LV, Gucci, Prada and etc, perfumes, software, games, music CDs, DVD movies and many more being sold there. You name it, they got it.

Anyway, if you’ve ever purchased a second hand USB flash drive from a friend or even a new one from eBay, you should have it checked if it is a fake. Even though Windows might seem to be reporting the correct capacity of the drive, that information might not be sufficiently enough to prove that it is truly a 64GB flash drive. Here is a standard tool called H2testw that a lot of eBayers use to PROVE they have received a fake from a seller. It is extremely easy to use and proves detailed information. Created by Harald Bögeholz, the default language of the interface is in German but can be changed to English.

H2testw was developed to test USB sticks for various kinds of errors. It can also be used for any other storage media like memory cards, internal and external hard drives and even network volumes. To run the test for your drive, just plug in the drive, format it in Windows, run H2testw, select the target, and click Write + Verify button. H2testw writes files of up to 1GB to the chosen destination and names them 1.h2w, 2.h2w, 3.h2w and so on. If the target directory already contains such a set of files H2testw will offer to verify them. After it is done the software leaves its test files on the medium. You can erase them if you like or verify them again.
test fake usb drives
If the drive that you tested passes the test of H2testw without errors, then the advertised capacity is correct (minus a small overhead for operating system file formatting). However, if you are seeing a sample output like below, then it is a counterfeit. This is 4GB USB flash drive not a 64GB USB flash drive. As 4GB drive it should be about 3.9 GB not 3.8 GB formatted. This indicates in low level formatting a lot of bad sectors had to be locked out. Usually flash chips like these are rejected for major brands but somehow is being resold and reprogrammed.

The media is likely to be defective.
3.8 GByte OK (8084847 sectors)
58.6 GByte DATA LOST (122921617 sectors)
Details:710.5 KByte overwritten (1421 sectors)
7.6 MByte slightly changed (< 8 bit/sector, 15630 sectors)
58.6 byte corrupted (122904566 sectors)
710.5 KByte aliased memory (1421 sectors)
First error at offset: 0×000000003cef8470
Expected: 0xeb7ac43a237c5170
Found: 0xeb7a843a237c5170
H2testw version 1.3
Writing speed: 9.24 MByte/s
Reading speed: 10.8 MByte/s
H2testw v1.4

Don’t panic if H2testw detects an error on your USB flash drive. It could be other factors, so here’s what you need to do. Don’t use USB extension cords, make sure you insert it directly to the USB port on your computer. Try using a different USB/Firewire port especially the ones at the back of the case. Try a different cable if you are testing external hard drives. If you still get errors after following the guidelines above, then it’s surely something wrong with the drive.

The executable file H2testw.exe needs no installation and can be directly run. It was developed for Windows XP and Vista but I’ve tested it on Windows 7 32-bit which worked without problems.

Download H2testw

Leave your response!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.