Does the write-benchmark of gnome-disks write back the original data after the test? It is destructive?

The Benchmark Settings window only states this: Please back up important data before using the write benchmark.

Furthermore, how does it handle mounted filesystems on the tested disk?

  • @don_crissti I would suggest you write that up an an answer. This seems an important question.
    – Elder Geek
    Commented Feb 16, 2017 at 18:12
  • @ElderGeek - I just run a quick test on a flash drive and it looks like it no longer requires the disk to be wiped (it has even preserved the few files on that partition). Unfortunately, I don't have the time right now to thoroughly test this and post a proper answer. Hopefully someone else will do it. Commented Feb 16, 2017 at 21:33
  • 1
    @don_crissti No worries, I think the survival of files might be something not to count on. It certainly seems far safer to assume the worst and backup regardless. I had a similar question on askubuntu that I answered here
    – Elder Geek
    Commented Feb 16, 2017 at 21:43

1 Answer 1


Yes, the write benchmark is non-destructive, but only assuming it finishes successfully; and it isn't possible for the write benchmark to proceed if the disk is mounted somehow. As stated in the tooltip text that appears when you hover the mouse over the "Perform write-benchmark" check-button:

Benchmarking the write-rate of a disk requires exclusive access to the disk (e.g. the disk or its partitions cannot be mounted or in use) and involves reading data and then writing it back. As a result, the contents of the disk is not changed.

If not checked, the write-part of the benchmark will not be done but on the other hand exclusive access to the device is not needed (e.g. the disk or device can be in use).

However, as the "Benchmark Settings" dialog advises anyways:

Please back up important data before using the write benchmark.

That way, in case the write fails for whatever reason (e.g. due to a power failure or program bug/error/crash), you won't have any missing or corrupted data.

  • 8
    Personally, I don't think that much information should be hidden away in a single tooltip, so I might file an issue regarding that if no one already has. As it is, gnome-disk-utility doesn't have complete or up-to-date official documentation for users. Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 10:02

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .