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Thread: Wiping old HD before selling?

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    Wiping old HD before selling?

    I am selling my previous PC system and am wondering which is the best way to wipe info from the HD, I am of the understanding that a simple reformat does not get rid of everything.
    Just wondering what the best way to do it is?
    Cheers, Lani.
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    Try http://eraser.heidi.ie/ uses DoD standards.

    Writes 0 on all bits of the HD and then writes over them with random bits just in case.

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    Thanks for that, looks good especially as it's free.

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    Where I work we use a 4kg mallet and sell it without the harddrive - at auction. No chance of it being resurected.

    If you have ever used your credit card or stored passwords for internet banking then this is really theonly way to be sure the this information cannot be resurected. DoD (US requirement is write three different values to each bit and repeat this 7 times.

    You can use a product called Boot and Nuke which I believe is also reasonably secure. Personally I like the way work does it.
    Last edited by MarkW; 29-07-2009 at 5:54pm.

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    Well it certainly would solve the problem, and let out a bit of tension at the same time.

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    At work we drill a hole in the hard drives before send them to the tip.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pgbphotographytas View Post
    At work we drill a hole in the hard drives before send them to the tip.
    You IT fellas must have underlying violent streaks....hammers and drills.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lani View Post
    You IT fellas must have underlying violent streaks....hammers and drills.
    Maybe just a little bit

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    Lani,
    I've had some experience in the past of seeing how easy it is to recover data from old hard drives, including ones that have been scratched with drills/knives etc. Given how cheap new hard drives are at the moment, I would strongly suggest you sell the system without the HD and go to town destroying it. It is simply the only way to be sure your data won't end up somewhere else. It's easy enough for the buyer to go out and buy a basic HD and install a new O/S on it.

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pgbphotographytas View Post
    At work we drill a hole in the hard drives before send them to the tip.
    Is that Tasmanian Government Policy Paul? If so they need to change it, even the US Department of Defence has a wiping policy. Surely selling off the second hand drives and recouping some of the cost for the Tasmanian Tax payer is better than drilling and dumping.
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    I'm not sure how many thief's with the determination to retrieve and use your details, would actually buy your computer privately.

    What I would do is sell locally and use one of the free multi wipe programs out there.

    I would really like to know the actual figures for people buying private second hand computers for stealing bank details, I just cant see it myself.

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    http://www.dban.org/
    Darik's Boot And Nuke works for me.

    In Australia only selected Govt computer drives must be destroyed (some parts of Defence etc) the majority only require a reformat.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricktas View Post
    Is that Tasmanian Government Policy Paul? If so they need to change it, even the US Department of Defence has a wiping policy. Surely selling off the second hand drives and recouping some of the cost for the Tasmanian Tax payer is better than drilling and dumping.
    I am not sure what the "official" policy is, I know that all the computers we dump are beyond useful life and in the past we have sold some but the amount of time it takes to clean them up and confirm they work is more then to destroy the hard drives and dump them.
    95% of the time we use the computers until they break down at which point they are dumped, not many people want 10Gb hard drives any more

    If we have 100 computers and all need to have the hard drives wiped, check that they work, be boxed up and arrange to sell them that might take me 50 hours to do which would cost the tax payer 50 x my hourly rate which is about $1750. Maybe 1/3 will actually work so if you sell them for $25 each you are only making $825 then take away my wages you are still $900 worse off that is if you manage to sell them all as not many people want computer this old, we have tried in the past

    I can destroy 100 hard drives and take them and the computers to the tip in a day, that is 8 x my hourly rate which is about $280 plus $20 for the tip which makes $300 all up.

    I had real trouble with us throwing away computers to start with but when you do the sums it is cheaper then trying to sell them and you also have the issue of people buying them then coming back later on with issues or wanting help.......

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kym View Post
    http://www.dban.org/
    Darik's Boot And Nuke works for me.

    In Australia only selected Govt computer drives must be destroyed (some part of Defence etc) the majority only require a reformat.
    In NSW, as EnergyAustralia is a NSW Gov. Trading Enterprise (GTE) we are required to destroy the HDD as all of our staff with PCs have access to the "mainframe" (do they still call it that?) and therefore have to a degree access to our system control. Yes its password protected and our electrical systems are only normally accessible from our system control room but it is still LAN and WAN? connected to the entire distributioin area.

    Once your in the land of system control you can shut down or worse re-route the Sydney electrical system. You can shut down sub-stations and possibly destroy electical supply systems (I am sure we have interlocks but if you can get into this area then you have the ability to do real damage). You saw the debaccle when recent blackouts hit Sydney CBD. That was only half of the supply to the CBD, think what would happen if the whole lot dropped off.

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    Member ArtyChoke's Avatar
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    As far as software erasing goes,
    http://www.dban.org/
    Darik's Boot And Nuke works for me.
    is the best option, as programs like eraser won't be able to access all parts of the disc. Probably not worth bothering with the Guttman algorihm in DBAN though, as it was designed for a much older type of drive. Maybe use a 5 - 10 pass method.

    If you're really serious about destroying the hard drive and all data, this should do the job : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yd_O7...eature=related

    Edit: didn't notice how old this thread was! well hopefully this info is useful to someone.

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ArtyChoke View Post

    If you're really serious about destroying the hard drive and all data, this should do the job
    I liked that one.
    That is data erasure in it's purest form.

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