Hard Disc

Discussion in 'Computer Support' started by Zygy, Aug 15, 2006.

  1. Zygy

    Zygy Guest

    I want to donate one of my pc's to a school, but before I do that can anyone
    tell me where do I acquire software that would wipe clean the hard disc?
     
    Zygy, Aug 15, 2006
    #1
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  2. Zygy

    Guest

    "Zygy" <> wrote:

    >I want to donate one of my pc's to a school, but before I do that can anyone
    >tell me where do I acquire software that would wipe clean the hard disc?
    >


    Just came across this in another group http://dban.sourceforge.net/


    --
    Dry Ice Bombs.
    http://strmz.com/Clip2382
     
    , Aug 15, 2006
    #2
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  3. Zygy

    thanatoid Guest

    "Zygy" <> wrote in
    news::

    > I want to donate one of my pc's to a school, but before I
    > do that can anyone tell me where do I acquire software that
    > would wipe clean the hard disc?
    >
    >


    Very commendable.

    If you don't want to bother installing extra software, for all
    practical purposes, doing a full format 3 times will take care
    of it.

    Make sure you delete any partitions (if you had any) and then do
    a full format of the complete drive.

    Not like anyone at the school is interested in who you are or
    what you do, or has $5,000 of forensic software which they
    inspect every computer with. They will just be grateful.
     
    thanatoid, Aug 15, 2006
    #3
  4. Zygy

    PeeCee Guest

    "Zygy" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >I want to donate one of my pc's to a school, but before I do that can
    >anyone tell me where do I acquire software that would wipe clean the hard
    >disc?



    Zygy

    If the HD is under 8GB then the IBM "Wipe" utility on this page
    http://www.digitalissues.co.uk/html/os/misc/ibm-wipe-zap.html is excellant
    for zeroing out every bit of a HD. Copy it to a bootable floppy and just
    type wipe 0 and press the enter key.

    If you have a bigger drive then you may like to use Eraser 5.7
    http://www.download.com/Eraser/3000-2092_4-10231813.html to clean up most of
    the drive after removing data and extra software so the used space is under
    8GB. Then finish it off with Wipe.

    Alteratively go to the HD manufacturers site and download their free tools
    (copy to Floppy or burn to CD). Most of them have a Zero option in them
    somewhere.
    Probably the best way to do it though is to download the Ultimate Boot CD
    from here http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/ and burn it to CD.
    The advantage with this is the UBCD has all the HD manufacturers diagnostic
    programs on it 'and' other erase programs, as well as lots of other usefull
    maintenance tools.

    Cheers
    Paul.
     
    PeeCee, Aug 15, 2006
    #4
  5. Zygy

    Ingeborg Guest

    Zygy wrote:

    > I want to donate one of my pc's to a school, but before I do that can
    > anyone tell me where do I acquire software that would wipe clean the
    > hard disc?
    >
    >


    Killdisk <http://www.killdisk.com/> will do.
     
    Ingeborg, Aug 15, 2006
    #5
  6. Zygy

    Ron Martell Guest

    thanatoid <> wrote:


    >
    >If you don't want to bother installing extra software, for all
    >practical purposes, doing a full format 3 times will take care
    >of it.
    >


    Actually formatting a hard drive does not do anything to the data
    contents of the drive, other than the root directory and file
    allocation table. For the rest of the drive all that a format does
    is to test read the sectors looking for possible problems.

    In order to overwrite the data contents you need a disk wiping utility
    as suggested in the other responses.

    Good luck

    Ron Martell Duncan B.C. Canada
    --
    Microsoft MVP (1997 - 2006)
    On-Line Help Computer Service
    http://onlinehelp.bc.ca
    Syberfix Remote Computer Repair

    "Anyone who thinks that they are too small to make a difference
    has never been in bed with a mosquito."
     
    Ron Martell, Aug 15, 2006
    #6
  7. Zygy

    thanatoid Guest

    Ron Martell <> wrote in
    news::

    > thanatoid <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>
    >>If you don't want to bother installing extra software, for
    >>all practical purposes, doing a full format 3 times will
    >>take care of it.
    >>

    >
    > Actually formatting a hard drive does not do anything to
    > the data contents of the drive, other than the root
    > directory and file allocation table. For the rest of the
    > drive all that a format does is to test read the sectors
    > looking for possible problems.


    Are you serious? I've NEVER heard that before.
    In any case, without some rather expensive skills and software,
    wouldn't it be rather difficult to recreate the root/FAT???

    (FWIW, my preferred method is a sledge-hammer or a set of fancy
    screwdrivers bits to get inside, disassemble, and make x-rated
    bikini tops out of the platters ["cum" to think of it, why not
    bottoms as well?]. Yes, for the girlfriend I don't have.

    The ultra-strong-ultra-low-range magnets have LOTS of
    interesting uses as well...)

    And tiny screws are ALWAYS impossible to find.
     
    thanatoid, Aug 15, 2006
    #7
  8. Zygy

    anthonyberet Guest

    thanatoid wrote:
    > Ron Martell <> wrote in
    > news::
    >
    >> thanatoid <> wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >>> If you don't want to bother installing extra software, for
    >>> all practical purposes, doing a full format 3 times will
    >>> take care of it.
    >>>

    >> Actually formatting a hard drive does not do anything to
    >> the data contents of the drive, other than the root
    >> directory and file allocation table. For the rest of the
    >> drive all that a format does is to test read the sectors
    >> looking for possible problems.

    >
    > Are you serious? I've NEVER heard that before.
    > In any case, without some rather expensive skills and software,
    > wouldn't it be rather difficult to recreate the root/FAT???
    >

    This package is freeware:
    http://www.pcinspector.de/file_recovery/UK/welcome.htm
     
    anthonyberet, Aug 16, 2006
    #8
  9. Zygy

    Ron Martell Guest

    thanatoid <> wrote:

    >Are you serious? I've NEVER heard that before.
    >In any case, without some rather expensive skills and software,
    >wouldn't it be rather difficult to recreate the root/FAT???


    There are a number of utilities, including some free ones, that will
    unformat a hard drive. Recovering the names of the folders in the
    Root directory is actually quite easy, once you look at the contents
    (file names and sizes, subfolder names etc). Rebuilding the FAT can
    be tricky, especially if the drive is significantly fragmented, but a
    well maintained drive can actually be unformatted with very little
    file loss in most instances.


    >
    >(FWIW, my preferred method is a sledge-hammer or a set of fancy
    >screwdrivers bits to get inside, disassemble, and make x-rated
    >bikini tops out of the platters ["cum" to think of it, why not
    >bottoms as well?]. Yes, for the girlfriend I don't have.
    >
    >The ultra-strong-ultra-low-range magnets have LOTS of
    >interesting uses as well...)
    >
    >And tiny screws are ALWAYS impossible to find.


    Most government agencies and many private companies have pretty strict
    policies about having to physically destroy the hard drives in
    computers that are retired/scrapped.

    Ron Martell Duncan B.C. Canada
    --
    Microsoft MVP (1997 - 2006)
    On-Line Help Computer Service
    http://onlinehelp.bc.ca
    Syberfix Remote Computer Repair

    "Anyone who thinks that they are too small to make a difference
    has never been in bed with a mosquito."
     
    Ron Martell, Aug 16, 2006
    #9
  10. Zygy

    Frosty Guest

    As the sun rose on Wed, 16 Aug 2006 03:16:35 GMT, the distinguished
    and oh so talented Ron Martell <> climbed up to
    the podium, shuffled some papers, took a sip of ice water and shouted
    in a loud voice:

    <snip>
    >>
    >>(FWIW, my preferred method is a sledge-hammer or a set of fancy
    >>screwdrivers bits to get inside, disassemble, and make x-rated
    >>bikini tops out of the platters ["cum" to think of it, why not
    >>bottoms as well?]. Yes, for the girlfriend I don't have.
    >>
    >>The ultra-strong-ultra-low-range magnets have LOTS of
    >>interesting uses as well...)
    >>
    >>And tiny screws are ALWAYS impossible to find.

    >
    >Most government agencies and many private companies have pretty strict
    >policies about having to physically destroy the hard drives in
    >computers that are retired/scrapped.
    >
    >Ron Martell Duncan B.C. Canada


    Only in Canadia Ron.
    The rest of America, if not the world, is sane.
     
    Frosty, Aug 16, 2006
    #10
  11. Zygy

    thanatoid Guest

    Ron Martell <> wrote in
    news::

    > thanatoid <> wrote:
    >
    >>Are you serious? I've NEVER heard that before.
    >>In any case, without some rather expensive skills and
    >>software, wouldn't it be rather difficult to recreate the
    >>root/FAT???

    >
    > There are a number of utilities, including some free ones,
    > that will unformat a hard drive. Recovering the names of
    > the folders in the Root directory is actually quite easy,
    > once you look at the contents (file names and sizes,
    > subfolder names etc). Rebuilding the FAT can be tricky,
    > especially if the drive is significantly fragmented, but a
    > well maintained drive can actually be unformatted with very
    > little file loss in most instances.


    <SNIP>

    > Most government agencies and many private companies have
    > pretty strict policies about having to physically destroy
    > the hard drives in computers that are retired/scrapped.


    If I may bother you one more time...

    Are you saying that the extensive FAQ's and assurances from most
    of the authors of those "wipe-drive" programs (some of which,
    for instance, do five (or more) passes of random number
    overwrite of all data and say it will be impossible to recover
    anything even with magnetic scans) are NOT true?

    IMO, gov't agencies and businesses tend to be a little paranoid,
    usually for good reasons.

    Thanks in advance for your reply.
     
    thanatoid, Aug 16, 2006
    #11
  12. On Wed, 16 Aug 2006 05:14:27 +0000, thanatoid wrote:

    > Are you saying that the extensive FAQ's and assurances from most
    > of the authors of those "wipe-drive" programs (some of which,
    > for instance, do five (or more) passes of random number
    > overwrite of all data and say it will be impossible to recover
    > anything even with magnetic scans) are NOT true?


    I don't know if Ron is, but I am: what they said is true. But you seem to
    be confusing their statements with the person who suggested formating the
    drive three times--an entirely different thing. Writing random garbage
    over the entire drive surface at least three times is in fact th way to
    go, although it will take a LOT of time for a large drive. And if you have
    an electron microscope and a lot of patience you can still read what was
    there before ... :)


    --
    Gary G. Taylor * Pomona, CA * 34.074°N 117.754°W
    gary [] donavan [] org * http://www [] donavan [] org
    "The two most abundant substance in the Universe are hydrogen
    and stupidity." --Frank Zappa, R.A. Heinlein and many others
     
    Gary G. Taylor, Aug 16, 2006
    #12
  13. Zygy

    thanatoid Guest

    "Gary G. Taylor" <> wrote in
    news:p:

    > On Wed, 16 Aug 2006 05:14:27 +0000, thanatoid wrote:
    >
    >> Are you saying that the extensive FAQ's and assurances
    >> from most of the authors of those "wipe-drive" programs
    >> (some of which, for instance, do five (or more) passes of
    >> random number overwrite of all data and say it will be
    >> impossible to recover anything even with magnetic scans)
    >> are NOT true?

    >
    > I don't know if Ron is, but I am: what they said is true.


    Sorry, I am TRYING to understand, but I see a (possibly
    accidental) contradiction, especially in view of what you say
    later.

    > But you seem to be confusing their statements with the
    > person who suggested formating the drive three times--an
    > entirely different thing.


    That was me - I REALLY didn't know that formatting doesn't
    actually overwrite the entire disk. I thought the reason it
    takes so long is because it IS doing just that. Oh well. I have
    learned something valuable.

    > Writing random garbage over the
    > entire drive surface at least three times is in fact th way
    > to go, although it will take a LOT of time for a large
    > drive. And if you have an electron microscope and a lot of
    > patience you can still read what was there before ... :)


    So how many random passes until you're electron-microscope-
    protected?
    And HOW long would it take to read the damn thing with an
    electron microscope? Wouldn't you just be writing down 0's and
    1's that you could "kind of" see with your eye through the lens?

    Or do I have NO clue about the process? Is there actually an
    electron microscope-computer interface which can recreate the
    contents on another computer as the e.m. "reads" the supposedly-
    gone data?

    Mind-boggling.
     
    thanatoid, Aug 16, 2006
    #13
  14. Zygy

    Ron Martell Guest

    Frosty <> wrote:


    >
    >Only in Canadia Ron.
    >The rest of America, if not the world, is sane.


    Wanna bet? Check out the rules and regs regarding retired/scrapped
    computers from any U.S. Government agency, especially ones connected
    with the military, national security, or government policy of any
    kind.

    Ron Martell Duncan B.C. Canada
    --
    Microsoft MVP (1997 - 2006)
    On-Line Help Computer Service
    http://onlinehelp.bc.ca
    Syberfix Remote Computer Repair

    "Anyone who thinks that they are too small to make a difference
    has never been in bed with a mosquito."
     
    Ron Martell, Aug 16, 2006
    #14
  15. Zygy

    DarkStar Guest

    http://www.heidi.ie/eraser/




    "Zygy" <> wrote in message news:...
    >I want to donate one of my pc's to a school, but before I do that can anyone
    > tell me where do I acquire software that would wipe clean the hard disc?
    >
    >
     
    DarkStar, Aug 16, 2006
    #15
  16. Zygy

    thanatoid Guest

    Ron Martell <> wrote in
    news::

    > Frosty <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >>
    >>Only in Canadia Ron.
    >>The rest of America, if not the world, is sane.

    >
    > Wanna bet? Check out the rules and regs regarding
    > retired/scrapped computers from any U.S. Government agency,
    > especially ones connected with the military, national
    > security, or government policy of any kind.


    Hee hee...

    Having spent a LOT of rather miserable years in the Great White
    North, I agree Canadians are a little weird (no offense, Ron,
    eh?) but the U.S. Gov't is just as crazy and INFINITELY more
    evil.

    Also, nobody REALLY knows anything about computers. I am half
    serious, too.
     
    thanatoid, Aug 16, 2006
    #16
  17. Zygy

    Guest

    Ron Martell <> wrote:

    >Most government agencies and many private companies have pretty strict
    >policies about having to physically destroy the hard drives in
    >computers that are retired/scrapped.


    In this area when there's a government auction, the hard drives from
    secret access areas have a band saw cut half way thru them.



    --
    Dry Ice Bombs.
    http://strmz.com/Clip2382
     
    , Aug 16, 2006
    #17
  18. On Wed, 16 Aug 2006 08:18:19 +0000, thanatoid wrote:

    > So how many random passes until you're electron-microscope-
    > protected?
    > And HOW long would it take to read the damn thing with an
    > electron microscope? Wouldn't you just be writing down 0's and
    > 1's that you could "kind of" see with your eye through the lens?
    >
    > Or do I have NO clue about the process? Is there actually an
    > electron microscope-computer interface which can recreate the
    > contents on another computer as the e.m. "reads" the supposedly-
    > gone data?


    Um, yes to the first question. As for the second, I'm not technically
    qualified to ansswer. --Understand that you're talking very arcane stuff
    now, that the electron microscope process is very expensive and
    time-consuming, and using it is only a matter of last resort. I'd say the
    three-pass method is quite secure for your purposes, unless you see black
    helicopters on the horizon.

    --
    Gary G. Taylor * Pomona, CA * 34.074°N 117.754°W
    gary [] donavan [] org * http://www [] donavan [] org
    "The two most abundant substance in the Universe are hydrogen
    and stupidity." --Frank Zappa, R.A. Heinlein and many others
     
    Gary G. Taylor, Aug 19, 2006
    #18
  19. Zygy

    thanatoid Guest

    "Gary G. Taylor" <> wrote in
    news:p:

    > On Wed, 16 Aug 2006 08:18:19 +0000, thanatoid wrote:
    >
    >> So how many random passes until you're
    >> electron-microscope- protected?
    >> And HOW long would it take to read the damn thing with an
    >> electron microscope? Wouldn't you just be writing down 0's
    >> and 1's that you could "kind of" see with your eye through
    >> the lens?
    >>
    >> Or do I have NO clue about the process? Is there actually
    >> an electron microscope-computer interface which can
    >> recreate the contents on another computer as the e.m.
    >> "reads" the supposedly- gone data?

    >
    > Um, yes to the first question. As for the second, I'm not
    > technically qualified to ansswer.


    Actually, you left FIVE of my questions in your post, not two. I
    assume you are not answering the first three though they were
    much easier.

    >--Understand that you're
    > talking very arcane stuff now, that the electron microscope
    > process is very expensive and time-consuming, and using it
    > is only a matter of last resort.


    Well aware of this, just curious how it works.

    > I'd say the three-pass
    > method is quite secure for your purposes, unless you see
    > black helicopters on the horizon.


    While I don't SEE them, I know they're there. Another subject. I
    don't think I will ever have a reason to be concerned about
    wiping any of my disks, just curious about how this works.

    Regards
    t.
     
    thanatoid, Aug 19, 2006
    #19
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