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Diabolikal
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10 Jan 2012, 3:48 pm

I have this old PC at my house we've been trying to get rid of after wiping the disk for security, but it's not working, so I'm writing to ask if anyone knows about or has any suggestions for wiping a hard drive on an old PC. I'm doing my best at the moment to wipe the data, but the computer just seems too slow and stubborn, and any program I find is either worthless(Disk Wipe), or the website to download does not show up at all (DBAN).



BTDT
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10 Jan 2012, 3:54 pm

Microsoft has a program for securely deleting files.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysi ... s/bb897443

The only way to ensure that deleted files, as well as files that you encrypt with EFS, are safe from recovery is to use a secure delete application. Secure delete applications overwrite a deleted file's on-disk data using techiques that are shown to make disk data unrecoverable, even using recovery technology that can read patterns in magnetic media that reveal weakly deleted files. SDelete (Secure Delete) is such an application. You can use SDelete both to securely delete existing files, as well as to securely erase any file data that exists in the unallocated portions of a disk (including files that you have already deleted or encrypted). SDelete implements the Department of Defense clearing and sanitizing standard DOD 5220.22-M, to give you confidence that once deleted with SDelete, your file data is gone forever. Note that SDelete securely deletes file data, but not file names located in free disk space.



Last edited by BTDT on 11 Jan 2012, 6:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

1000Knives
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10 Jan 2012, 4:23 pm

For reformatting a hard drive, I tend to just put the hard drive into some other computer, and just right click on it and go "format ____" and that's that. Takes like 2 minutes not counting taking the hard drive out.



Asp-Z
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10 Jan 2012, 4:27 pm

1000Knives wrote:
For reformatting a hard drive, I tend to just put the hard drive into some other computer, and just right click on it and go "format ____" and that's that. Takes like 2 minutes not counting taking the hard drive out.


You do realise that actually wipes f**k all, right? Anyone could recover every single file from that hard drive very easily.



1000Knives
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10 Jan 2012, 4:35 pm

Asp-Z wrote:
1000Knives wrote:
For reformatting a hard drive, I tend to just put the hard drive into some other computer, and just right click on it and go "format ____" and that's that. Takes like 2 minutes not counting taking the hard drive out.


You do realise that actually wipes f**k all, right? Anyone could recover every single file from that hard drive very easily.


Well, good to know I guess, but meh, I just do it when I want a fresh OS on a machine.

If you're just throwing the computer out, just take the hard drive out, and then just smash the hard drive with a hammer a bunch of times or something. Light it on fire? Put a big retrieving magnet on top of it? Sorry, I guess those obvious things aren't very tact.



Asp-Z
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10 Jan 2012, 4:36 pm

If you actually want the files wiped, just do a proper wipe, i.e. overwrite it a few times. Any secure wiping software should offer this option. Seven zero out passes is meant to be secure.



Oodain
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10 Jan 2012, 5:12 pm

it can take ages to do though,

what are the nature of the security risk??

only your own financial information or is there actually a confidenciality issue,

if its only your own data you can overwrite the specific files with many secure deletion tools and they will be properly gone within minutes.

if thwere is a large colection of files wiping the entire HD is preferred


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Asp-Z
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10 Jan 2012, 5:16 pm

Meh, just do the whole HD and leave it to run overnight.



Diabolikal
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10 Jan 2012, 8:05 pm

Oodain wrote:
it can take ages to do though,

what are the nature of the security risk??

only your own financial information or is there actually a confidenciality issue,

if its only your own data you can overwrite the specific files with many secure deletion tools and they will be properly gone within minutes.

if thwere is a large colection of files wiping the entire HD is preferred


Well, I just want to clear the drive to be safe, and plus I have no idea what HD means in this context. Oh wait, it means hard drive. It's a small collection of files, i don't even know if there's really anything there except what's in the recycling bin or trash.



Oodain
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10 Jan 2012, 8:59 pm

unless you have a good reason for securely deleting something (such asold banking files or similar) a normal high level format should do,

when you insert the next operating system you want to install it will give you the option of defining a partition, therte you simply delete the current partition and create a new one in its place.
when you create a new one it will give you formatiing options for your new partition.
install the os and you should be back to an empty computer,

if what you want is an empty computer with a clean operating system that is, if its important that the data is actually wiped you should download a bootable cd with formatting tools on them, most have the option of securely wiping your hard drive before you partition and format them.
usually these come in an .ISO format that can be directly written to a cd using activeisoburner or similar
been ages since i used anything but HP software for that, maybe azp-z or one of the other geeks in here will be able to come with a good (free) suggestion.


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Diabolikal
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10 Jan 2012, 9:21 pm

Oodain wrote:
unless you have a good reason for securely deleting something (such asold banking files or similar) a normal high level format should do,

when you insert the next operating system you want to install it will give you the option of defining a partition, therte you simply delete the current partition and create a new one in its place.
when you create a new one it will give you formatiing options for your new partition.
install the os and you should be back to an empty computer,

if what you want is an empty computer with a clean operating system that is, if its important that the data is actually wiped you should download a bootable cd with formatting tools on them, most have the option of securely wiping your hard drive before you partition and format them.
usually these come in an .ISO format that can be directly written to a cd using activeisoburner or similar
been ages since i used anything but HP software for that, maybe azp-z or one of the other geeks in here will be able to come with a good (free) suggestion.


Well, we don't have the operating system disk, and it's just to get rid of the computer, and I did find one called DiskWipe that I'm trying to use, it is directly on the desktop of the computer, and has the stages like choosing the OS, but every time it says "Are you sure you want to secure and format erase this drive?" and I click yes, it just gives an error message and does nothing.



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10 Jan 2012, 9:48 pm

Programs that entirely wipe the disk need to be on their own bootdisks. Their installers typically have you burn a CD-ROM and you boot from that. You'll never be able to entirely wipe the drive if it's running the OS you're using to run the program. Man that is an awkward sentence but that's grammar for ya

DBAN is good, you should be able to find it somewhere, it boots into a little Linux OS and you wipe whatever.



bergie
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11 Jan 2012, 12:54 am

If you're just wiping it to throw away, nothing beats the old hammer. Plus it's fun.



Oodain
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11 Jan 2012, 1:53 am

incidently if you have an old microwave you can have your own little miniature 4th of july celebration.


**disclaimer: do not put strange objects in microwaves, this post is meant as a joke and should not be tried at home, ever**


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11 Jan 2012, 11:35 am

bergie wrote:
If you're just wiping it to throw away, nothing beats the old hammer. Plus it's fun.
Oh I can second this, definitely.
It's immensely satisfying. 8)


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