GRC | Hard drive data recovery software  

SpinRite v6.0 achieves complete operating system independence by incorporating the FreeDOS operating system. This allows it to be used on any and all Intel/AMD PC systems. As you can see from the Windows screen image above, SpinRite 6.0 can create a bootable diskette or generate a standard, CD-R burnable ISO file to create a “SpinRite boot CD”. A bootable SpinRite can also be “installed” into any other motherboard bootable devices, such as USB flashdrives for easy, portable booting and use.

via GRC | Hard drive data recovery software  .

I wonder how this differs from just running Knoppix and mounting the “dead” hard drive.

Here’s a FAQ.