How to defeat an IDE password?

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by techie, Jan 5, 2004.

  1. techie

    techie Guest

    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.
     
    techie, Jan 5, 2004
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. techie

    Enkidu Guest

    On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 19:40:50 -0600, techie <>
    wrote:

    >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.


    I don't believe that there is a way to bypass the password on a lappie
    HD.

    Cheers,

    Cliff
    --

    Christmas comes but once a year, thank the gods. I don't think
    that I could cope with twice.
     
    Enkidu, Jan 5, 2004
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. techie

    only-me Guest

    "techie" <> wrote in message
    news:p...
    > 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?
     
    only-me, Jan 5, 2004
    #3
  4. techie

    harry Guest

    Enkidu wrote:
    > On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 19:40:50 -0600, techie <>
    > wrote:
    >
    >> 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.

    >
    > I don't believe that there is a way to bypass the password on a lappie
    > HD.
    >
    > Cheers,
    >
    > Cliff


    I've seem this before and its a known issue with old Toshies
    Heres
    http://www.uktsupport.co.uk/reference/biosp.htm
    and this
    http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~skynet/private/Toshiba Pin Password Reset.htm
    <sucky midi warning>
    http://www.pwcrack.com/bios.shtml
     
    harry, Jan 5, 2004
    #4
  5. techie

    harry Guest

    harry wrote:
    > Enkidu wrote:
    >> On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 19:40:50 -0600, techie
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >>> 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.

    >>
    >> I don't believe that there is a way to bypass the password on a
    >> lappie HD.
    >>
    >> Cheers,
    >>
    >> Cliff

    >
    > I've seem this before and its a known issue with old Toshies
    > Heres
    > http://www.uktsupport.co.uk/reference/biosp.htm
    > and this
    >

    http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~skynet/private/Toshiba Pin Password Reset.htm
    > <sucky midi warning>
    > http://www.pwcrack.com/bios.shtml


    Cliff is right though
     
    harry, Jan 5, 2004
    #5
  6. On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 19:40:50 -0600, techie wrote:

    > The IDE standard includes a system for password-protecting a drive, with
    > the password stored on the drive itself.


    If you can't remember the password, the only real solution is to replace
    the drive.

    If it's old+small, you'll want to do that anyway.
     
    Uncle StoatWarbler, Jan 5, 2004
    #6
  7. From a exToshiba Service Centre Technician.

    Only way to break this is to go to Toshiba and get thme to remove it.

    If I remember correctly to get the HDD password utility one had to sign a
    waiver, for this exact issue, before one was given the software to add the
    password.

    "techie" <> wrote in message
    news:p...
    > 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.
     
    news.inspire.net.nz, Jan 5, 2004
    #7
  8. techie

    Enkidu Guest

    On Mon, 5 Jan 2004 15:44:46 +1300, "harry" <> wrote:

    >harry wrote:
    >> Enkidu wrote:
    >>> On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 19:40:50 -0600, techie
    >>> <> wrote:
    >>>
    >>>> 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.
    >>>
    >>> I don't believe that there is a way to bypass the password on a
    >>> lappie HD.
    >>>

    >> I've seem this before and its a known issue with old Toshies
    >> Heres
    >> http://www.uktsupport.co.uk/reference/biosp.htm
    >> and this
    >>

    >http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~skynet/private/Toshiba Pin Password Reset.htm
    >> <sucky midi warning>
    >> http://www.pwcrack.com/bios.shtml

    >
    >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.

    Cheers,

    Cliff
    --

    Christmas comes but once a year, thank the gods. I don't think
    that I could cope with twice.
     
    Enkidu, Jan 5, 2004
    #8
  9. techie

    techie Guest

    On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 21:55:05 -0600, news.inspire.net.nz wrote:

    > From a exToshiba Service Centre Technician.
    >
    > Only way to break this is to go to Toshiba and get thme to remove it.
    >
    > If I remember correctly to get the HDD password utility one had to sign
    > a waiver, for this exact issue, before one was given the software to add
    > the password.


    More trouble than it's worth, then. Oh, well, I had at least a dollar's
    worth of fun just playing with the thing.

    Just for general info: MaxBlast doesn't see it at all, and Powermax
    shows it as a slave. However I've quaduple-checked the docs and it's
    definitely set up as a master drive. I'm assuming the password checking
    must be switching it over as a means to further complicate access.
    Unfortunately I'm away from home and none of the computers around here
    can handle two drives at once unless I spend some money on various
    things, so I can't just try to use it as a slave and see what happens. I
    don't have any jumpers with me but tommorrow I'm going to try to find a
    way to kludge it as a slave and see if maybe the switchover turns it
    into a master. Probably not but it keeps me off the streets. :)

    Interestingly, Powermax can access it as a slave drive after spending
    about a minute looking for something. It can test the sectors and even
    fill them with zeros, so the drive is accessible on some low level. I
    wiped the whole thing that way but booting afterwards gets the same old
    password prompt.

    Anyway thanks to all. I'm not done playing with this toy yet and will
    post any other interesting discoveries in this thread.
     
    techie, Jan 5, 2004
    #9
  10. techie

    techie Guest

    On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 20:14:41 -0600, Enkidu wrote:

    > On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 19:40:50 -0600, techie <>
    > wrote:
    >


    >
    > I don't believe that there is a way to bypass the password on a lappie
    > HD.


    Maybe a demagnetizer? :)
     
    techie, Jan 5, 2004
    #10
  11. techie

    techie Guest

    On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 21:13:12 -0600, Uncle StoatWarbler wrote:

    > On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 19:40:50 -0600, techie wrote:
    >
    >> The IDE standard includes a system for password-protecting a drive,
    >> with the password stored on the drive itself.

    >
    > If you can't remember the password, the only real solution is to replace
    > the drive.


    I don't 'forget' my own passwords - I put them in a small electronic
    address book. It's password protected so if someone steals it they
    still need the master password to get at all my other passwords.

    If anyone does this, be sure to fill any data connectors with epoxy.
    Otherwise a lot of these machines will let someone download the
    unencrypted data onto a computer without having entered the password.

    Also be sure to get one with good backlighting so you can read it in a
    dark room.

    Of course, you can also store your passwords on your computer - but
    they're not as portable that way. Personally I don't care to store any
    more passwords than I have to on an Internet-connected machine.
     
    techie, Jan 5, 2004
    #11
  12. In article <>,
    lid says...
    > I don't 'forget' my own passwords - I put them in a small electronic
    > address book. It's password protected so if someone steals it they
    > still need the master password to get at all my other passwords.



    No way would I consider doing that. I watched once a few years ago as a
    friend tried to pull an address out of hers, and the thing locked up on
    her. For good.
    She lost about 5 years worth of people's addresses, paswords ... she was
    devestated (she had NO hardcopy).

    I prefer the old pencil and ringbinder method, which is also eminently
    portable and I use my private lil' encryption method so it'd be useless
    to anyone who found it and tried to abuse it.

    -Peter
     
    Peter Huebner, Jan 5, 2004
    #12
  13. techie

    Brendan Guest

    On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 23:24:18 -0600, techie wrote:

    > On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 21:55:05 -0600, news.inspire.net.nz wrote:
    >
    >> From a exToshiba Service Centre Technician.
    >>
    >> Only way to break this is to go to Toshiba and get thme to remove it.
    >>
    >> If I remember correctly to get the HDD password utility one had to sign
    >> a waiver, for this exact issue, before one was given the software to add
    >> the password.

    >
    > More trouble than it's worth, then. Oh, well, I had at least a dollar's
    > worth of fun just playing with the thing.
    >
    > Just for general info: MaxBlast doesn't see it at all, and Powermax
    > shows it as a slave. However I've quaduple-checked the docs and it's
    > definitely set up as a master drive. I'm assuming the password checking
    > must be switching it over as a means to further complicate access.
    > Unfortunately I'm away from home and none of the computers around here
    > can handle two drives at once unless I spend some money on various
    > things, so I can't just try to use it as a slave and see what happens. I
    > don't have any jumpers with me but tommorrow I'm going to try to find a
    > way to kludge it as a slave and see if maybe the switchover turns it
    > into a master. Probably not but it keeps me off the streets. :)
    >
    > Interestingly, Powermax can access it as a slave drive after spending
    > about a minute looking for something. It can test the sectors and even
    > fill them with zeros, so the drive is accessible on some low level. I
    > wiped the whole thing that way but booting afterwards gets the same old
    > password prompt.
    >
    > Anyway thanks to all. I'm not done playing with this toy yet and will
    > post any other interesting discoveries in this thread.


    Tried using a powerful magnet to scramble the data ? Maybe it'd scramble
    the password too.

    --

    .... Brendan

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    ALONE, adj. In bad company. -- Ambrose Bierce
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Note: All comments are copyright 5/01/2004 7:16:44 p.m., and are opinion
    only where not otherwise stated, and always 'to the best of my
    reccollection'.
     
    Brendan, Jan 5, 2004
    #13
  14. techie

    ~misfit~ Guest

    Brendan wrote:
    > On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 23:24:18 -0600, techie wrote:
    >
    >> On Sun, 04 Jan 2004 21:55:05 -0600, news.inspire.net.nz wrote:
    >>
    >>> From a exToshiba Service Centre Technician.
    >>>
    >>> Only way to break this is to go to Toshiba and get thme to remove
    >>> it.
    >>>
    >>> If I remember correctly to get the HDD password utility one had to
    >>> sign a waiver, for this exact issue, before one was given the
    >>> software to add the password.

    >>
    >> More trouble than it's worth, then. Oh, well, I had at least a
    >> dollar's worth of fun just playing with the thing.
    >>
    >> Just for general info: MaxBlast doesn't see it at all, and Powermax
    >> shows it as a slave. However I've quaduple-checked the docs and it's
    >> definitely set up as a master drive. I'm assuming the password
    >> checking must be switching it over as a means to further complicate
    >> access. Unfortunately I'm away from home and none of the computers
    >> around here can handle two drives at once unless I spend some money
    >> on various things, so I can't just try to use it as a slave and see
    >> what happens. I don't have any jumpers with me but tommorrow I'm
    >> going to try to find a way to kludge it as a slave and see if maybe
    >> the switchover turns it into a master. Probably not but it keeps me
    >> off the streets. :)
    >>
    >> Interestingly, Powermax can access it as a slave drive after spending
    >> about a minute looking for something. It can test the sectors and
    >> even fill them with zeros, so the drive is accessible on some low
    >> level. I wiped the whole thing that way but booting afterwards gets
    >> the same old password prompt.
    >>
    >> Anyway thanks to all. I'm not done playing with this toy yet and will
    >> post any other interesting discoveries in this thread.

    >
    > Tried using a powerful magnet to scramble the data ? Maybe it'd
    > scramble the password too.


    Isn't the password stored in a chip?
    --
    ~misfit~
     
    ~misfit~, Jan 5, 2004
    #14
  15. techie

    -=rjh=- Guest

    Peter Huebner wrote:

    > In article <>,
    > lid says...
    >> I don't 'forget' my own passwords - I put them in a small electronic
    >> address book. It's password protected so if someone steals it they
    >> still need the master password to get at all my other passwords.

    >
    >
    > No way would I consider doing that. I watched once a few years ago as a
    > friend tried to pull an address out of hers, and the thing locked up on
    > her. For good.
    > She lost about 5 years worth of people's addresses, paswords ... she was
    > devestated (she had NO hardcopy).
    >
    > I prefer the old pencil and ringbinder method, which is also eminently
    > portable and I use my private lil' encryption method so it'd be useless
    > to anyone who found it and tried to abuse it.


    I agree with techie, sort of. I use Keyring on a Palm, it encrypts all the
    information stored in it both on the Palm and on the PC. I think that is
    safer than paper. I used to use a notebook, but wouldn't go back to that
    now.

    Unlike with paper, the data is easy to backup, if the Palm breaks, it
    doesn't matter; in addition Keyring can generate passwords for you (using
    criteria that you set).

    Keyring is OS and is on Sourceforge.
     
    -=rjh=-, Jan 5, 2004
    #15
  16. techie

    Tom Parker Guest

    Brendan <> 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?

    --
    Tom Parker -
    - http://www.carrott.org
     
    Tom Parker, Jan 5, 2004
    #16
  17. techie

    Brendan Guest

    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 ? ;)

    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
    ?

    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.

    --

    .... Brendan

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    The worst aspect of `typical familyism'
    (as media-merchandised) is that it
    glorifies _involuntary_homogenization_.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Note: All comments are copyright 5/01/2004 11:43:33 p.m., and are opinion
    only where not otherwise stated, and always 'to the best of my
    reccollection'.
     
    Brendan, Jan 5, 2004
    #17
  18. techie

    Brendan Guest

    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.

    --

    .... Brendan

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    "Few people can be happy unless they hate some other person, nation, or
    creed." -- Bertrand Russell
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Note: All comments are copyright 5/01/2004 11:42:22 p.m., and are opinion
    only where not otherwise stated, and always 'to the best of my
    reccollection'.
     
    Brendan, Jan 5, 2004
    #18
  19. Tom Parker wrote:
    >
    > Brendan <> 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?


    Yes.
     
    Stuart Richards, Jan 5, 2004
    #19
  20. techie

    techie Guest

    On Mon, 05 Jan 2004 06:03:21 -0600, Brendan 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.


    I can't find any tech sheets on how it's handled, but during my research
    I came across a claim on a discussion board that the password is stored
    in a reserved area of the platter.

    One of the things a google search turned up was a post by a moderator on
    the Dell message boards warning that anyone who asked how to defeat the
    password or who provided an answer would be banned from the boards. That
    suggests that there *is* a way to get around it.

    > On the other hand, he's got nothing to lose.


    $1 :)

    It's getting to be quite an interesting challenge. I love this kind of
    thing - it exercises my technical ingenuity, and it's also a
    less-boring way to learn new things.
     
    techie, Jan 5, 2004
    #20
    1. Advertising

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

It takes just 2 minutes to sign up (and it's free!). Just click the sign up button to choose a username and then you can ask your own questions on the forum.
Similar Threads
  1. Silverstrand
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    636
    Silverstrand
    Sep 30, 2005
  2. Sens Fan Happy In Ohio

    SmileyCentral - A Way To Defeat The Spyware Within?

    Sens Fan Happy In Ohio, Jul 3, 2005, in forum: Computer Support
    Replies:
    3
    Views:
    1,272
  3. Replies:
    0
    Views:
    1,154
  4. AndyPaul

    enhanced ide vs ide

    AndyPaul, Jan 1, 2004, in forum: Computer Information
    Replies:
    1
    Views:
    784
  5. mdnchauhan

    IDE/SATA and IDE/ATA controller

    mdnchauhan, May 19, 2008, in forum: Software
    Replies:
    0
    Views:
    722
    mdnchauhan
    May 19, 2008
Loading...

Share This Page