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How to defeat an IDE password?

 
 
Uncle StoatWarbler
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      01-05-2004
On Mon, 05 Jan 2004 17:44:44 +1300, Enkidu wrote:

>>Cliff is right though
>>

> I hope so, thanks! I believe that the make of the machine is not
> particularly relevant since the same is true of HDDs from Compaqs.


It's true of ALL HDDs which support passworded access, whether they're
laptop or desktop drives.

Passwording is part of the ATA-5 specification and almost every drive made
in the last 2 years supports it - which brings up some interesting
questions if you use passwording and the DIA seizes your system...



 
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techie
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      01-05-2004
On Mon, 05 Jan 2004 06:02:45 -0600, Brendan wrote:

> On 5 Jan 2004 22:8:36 +1200, Tom Parker wrote:
>
>>>Tried using a powerful magnet to scramble the data ? Maybe it'd
>>>scramble the password too.

>>
>> Wouldn't it scramble the servo too, rendering the drive useless?

>
> And render the drive useless ? Like it is at the moment ?


But then I wouldn't have anything to play with.

I'm off on an extended visit to a rural area where the big event of the
week is going to the grocery store. I need to squeeze all the
entertainment I can out of this thing.

Things got rather interesting last night. I'd already given the other
machine back to its owner so now I had only two machines to work with: A
FreeBSD laptop that I'm using to play with the HD on because it's easy
to slide out the caddy and change drives; and a relative's Windows
laptop with a flaky modem that doesn't handle large downloads well. I
needed to download powermax and put it on the floppy. What you have to
download is powermax.exe, a windows-excutable installer that also
writes the image to a floppy under Windows. I can't run it under FreeBSD
and it's not just a self-extracting zip file so I couldn't get at a disk
image that way. It would almost, but not quite, run under WINE.

OK, so now I have to get powermax.exe onto the windows machine and run
it there to create a floppy. But then after a little head-scratching I
confirmed that neither machine can read floppies written on the other.

Fortunately I just happened to get a PCMCIA smartcard reader for
Christmas. So now I had to download rawrite for Windows, save it and
powermax.exe to the flashcard, transfer the flashcard to the other
laptop, create the floppy, read the floppy image, save it to flashcard,
take that back to the FreeBSD machine, write the image to a floppy disk
on that machine's drive, and finally I was ready to play with my $1 HD
some more.

Working with computers is a lot like being stuck inside an adventure
game.

> Don't know if it'd harm the drive though. Maybe he could take it into
> the local TV repair outfit and get them to run the degauser over it for
> a while ?


Hmmm... wonder where I can find an MRI machine around here?

> Beyond that, carefully unscrewing the metal covers to expose the
> platters (wear latex rubber gloves so you do not harm the platters) and
> then carefully scrubbing them with a soft tooth brush and soapy water
> can clean unwanted data from a HD.


Or I could poke a hole in the case with a sharp awl, inject a little
hot soapy water, and run it through a few spin cycles...
 
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techie
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      01-05-2004
On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 20:24:10 -0600, only-me wrote:

> "techie" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news(E-Mail Removed) .invalid...
>> I picked up an old Toshiba 6-gig laptop HD for a buck at a garage sale
>> not too long ago. The guy said he'd enabled the IDE password and then
>> forgotten it. I figured it would be a cinch to low-level format the
>> thing, but you can't even do that without the password. I've spent all
>> day trying to get around the system without any luck. On my dell a
>> prompt pops up for a password. After three wrong answers the drive
>> 'disappears' and can't be accessed even from a bootable floppy. On
>> another system that doesn't recognize IDE passwords the drive simply
>> fails to appear, as if it isn't even plugged in.
>>
>> Before anyone suggests it, this is NOT a BIOS password I'm dealing
>> with. The IDE standard includes a system for password-protecting a
>> drive, with the password stored on the drive itself.

>
> Can you flash the firmware?


If I can find the file. It's an old drive. I've been looking around but
the Toshiba site was useless and I can't find anything anywhere else.
 
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Jerry
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      01-05-2004
On Tue, 6 Jan 2004 01:03:21 +1300, Brendan
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>On Mon, 5 Jan 2004 21:14:56 +1300, ~misfit~ wrote:
>
>>> Tried using a powerful magnet to scramble the data ? Maybe it'd
>>> scramble the password too.

>>
>> Isn't the password stored in a chip?

>
>If it is the magnet wouldn't work I suspect it'll be on the disk itself
>- cheaper.
>
>On the other hand, he's got nothing to lose.


You'd have to take the disk apart to have any chance of a magnet
getting to the platters. Getting it back together, with no dust
inside isn't going to be an easy feat. They are assembled in clean
rooms, filtered air, by people in clean suits.

Jerry
 
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SteveM
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      01-05-2004
techie <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in
news(E-Mail Removed) .invalid:

> I picked up an old Toshiba 6-gig laptop HD for a buck at a garage sale
> not too long ago. The guy said he'd enabled the IDE password and then
> forgotten it. I figured it would be a cinch to low-level format the
> thing, but you can't even do that without the password. I've spent all
> day trying to get around the system without any luck. On my dell a
> prompt pops up for a password. After three wrong answers the drive
> 'disappears' and can't be accessed even from a bootable floppy. On
> another system that doesn't recognize IDE passwords the drive simply
> fails to appear, as if it isn't even plugged in.
>
> Before anyone suggests it, this is NOT a BIOS password I'm dealing with.
> The IDE standard includes a system for password-protecting a drive, with
> the password stored on the drive itself.
>


In my past life as a harware engineer, I have removed HD passwords several
times for customers.
There is a special .exe that you have to get through Toshiba tech support
(find a 5 Star Toshiba Reseller - ATL Systems, Portables Plus, Laptop
shop,etc). It is not publicly available for obvious reasons.
However, the cost to get one of these resellers to do this for you may
exceed the cost of the drive!

So whatever you do, don't physically destroy it!

SteveM
 
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KewlKiwi
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      01-05-2004
On Mon, 05 Jan 2004 11:52:46 -0600, techie <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> ....Fortunately I just happened to get a PCMCIA smartcard reader for
> Christmas. So now I had to download rawrite for Windows, save it and
> powermax.exe to the flashcard, transfer the flashcard to the other
> laptop, create the floppy, read the floppy image, save it to flashcard,
> take that back to the FreeBSD machine, write the image to a floppy disk
> on that machine's drive, and finally I was ready to play with my $1 HD
> some more.
> Working with computers is a lot like being stuck inside an adventure
> game.


[grin]

When I got my laptop I did a search on password bypassing and eventually found a program called "laptop keydisk.exe"
Never had to use it (and hopefully never will!) but it's filed away somewhere... yell if you want a copy to play with.
From memory, it's about 5k and it's to bypass the initial (i.e. the very first) password you would see when booting.

Bob


 
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colinco
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      01-05-2004
In article <(E-Mail Removed) alid>,
http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)lid says...
> I picked up an old Toshiba 6-gig laptop HD for a buck at a garage sale
> not too long ago. The guy said he'd enabled the IDE password and then
> forgotten it. I figured it would be a cinch to low-level format the
> thing, but you can't even do that without the password. I've spent all
> day trying to get around the system without any luck. On my dell a
> prompt pops up for a password. After three wrong answers the drive
> 'disappears' and can't be accessed even from a bootable floppy. On
> another system that doesn't recognize IDE passwords the drive simply
> fails to appear, as if it isn't even plugged in.
>
> Before anyone suggests it, this is NOT a BIOS password I'm dealing with.
> The IDE standard includes a system for password-protecting a drive, with
> the password stored on the drive itself.
>

If you hunt around xbox forums, there's some HDD password action there.
I'd give more hints but you seem to want some challenge on your trip to
the sticks
 
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Uncle StoatWarbler
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      01-05-2004
On Tue, 06 Jan 2004 12:26:58 +1300, ~misfit~ wrote:

> Is the drive actually made by Tosh? I've seen several different brands of
> drive in Tosh's.


Toshiba don't make hard drives.


 
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~misfit~
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      01-05-2004
techie wrote:
>
> If I can find the file. It's an old drive. I've been looking around
> but the Toshiba site was useless and I can't find anything anywhere
> else.


Is the drive actually made by Tosh? I've seen several different brands of
drive in Tosh's.
--
~misfit~


 
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~misfit~
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      01-06-2004
Uncle StoatWarbler wrote:
> On Tue, 06 Jan 2004 12:26:58 +1300, ~misfit~ wrote:
>
>> Is the drive actually made by Tosh? I've seen several different
>> brands of drive in Tosh's.

>
> Toshiba don't make hard drives.


That's what I thought.
--
~misfit~


 
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