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Thread: best way to wipe a drive

  1. #1
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    Jan 2013
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    best way to wipe a drive

    Hi!

    I would like get advice how wipe my old drive completely. I have read about hdparm, DBAN, HDDErase, wipe, dd, shred, bleach-bit, sfill,... I'm sure there are many more to be found.

    Which method is up to date and will work with most pc computers now?

    What about speed versus security (quality of wiping)?

    And how should it be used? Please show with command lines (if a CLI method)!

    TIA
    Last edited by roten; March 13th, 2013 at 10:43 AM.

  2. #2
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    Re: best way to wipe a drive

    I would use hdparm, as it will wipe parts of the drive which other methods simply can't reach.

    https://ata.wiki.kernel.org/index.php/ATA_Secure_Erase
    Cheesemill

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Re: best way to wipe a drive

    "Danger, Will Robinson!"

  4. #4
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    Re: best way to wipe a drive

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheesemill View Post
    I would use hdparm, as it will wipe parts of the drive which other methods simply can't reach.

    https://ata.wiki.kernel.org/index.php/ATA_Secure_Erase
    Thanks,

    The link has a lot of details

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Ubuntu 13.04 Raring Ringtail

    Re: best way to wipe a drive

    use a ubuntu live-cd
    :
    Code:
     shred -n 5 -vz /dev/sda
    or use dban, the new released one.

    hdparm is rocket science imho.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    Re: best way to wipe a drive

    Bugger DBAN, I'd use a frikkin large magnet.

  7. #7
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    Re: best way to wipe a drive

    Quote Originally Posted by Cheesemill View Post
    I would use hdparm, as it will wipe parts of the drive which other methods simply can't reach.

    https://ata.wiki.kernel.org/index.php/ATA_Secure_Erase
    Thanks

    This looks a little complicated, but there are several small steps and good explanations. So I'll try it. My drive seems to have the necessary properties, and I have an eSATA adapter, that can be switched on after boot, so that the BIOS won't freeze the drive.

    I'll be back and report my results...

  8. #8
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    Re: best way to wipe a drive

    Quote Originally Posted by Soul-Sing View Post
    use a ubuntu live-cd
    :
    Code:
     shred -n 5 -vz /dev/sda
    or use dban, the new released one.

    hdparm is rocket science imho.
    Thanks for the tips,

    The current version of DBAN booted but exited with errors for me. I tried in two computers with the drive to be wiped in an eSATA box. If hdparm turns out to be too hard I might try shred. But is it worth the wear and time to run 5 random writes?

  9. #9
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    Re: best way to wipe a drive

    Quote Originally Posted by roten View Post
    Thanks

    This looks a little complicated, but there are several small steps and good explanations. So I'll try it. My drive seems to have the necessary properties, and I have an eSATA adapter, that can be switched on after boot, so that the BIOS won't freeze the drive.

    I'll be back and report my results...
    I've done it a few times and it's easy enough to follow the instructions, there's only a few commands you have to execute.

    Just make sure you get the right drive before you start
    Cheesemill

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    Re: best way to wipe a drive

    Thanks for the warning tubbygweilo. And the manual man hdparm is pretty scary.

    Thanks for the tip pinballwizard. You are right about DBAN, but I don't want to brick the drive with a strong magnet, I'll try hdparm first.

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