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Nuking hard drives

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hello everyone,

I'm going to be selling my PC tomorrow so I looked for a software to nuke my hard drives. I found a software called "Darik's Boot And Nuke". I installed it on a usb drive and booted it. I was surprised to find out that there are more than one method of nuking any storage device. There are also more than once pass for each method.

So here is my question, since when was filling a storage device with zeros is not good enough? Why are there so many methods of nuking a hard drive? and why are there so many passes? I thought filling a storage device with zeros once is the most secure way of deleting your data forever. Was there a way to recover data after filling a drive with zeros or random numbers that I'm not aware of?
    
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post #2 of 8
This is your best method.
http://www.dban.org/

The reason for multiple passes is to randomize the data on top of the magnetic disks.
If you do a single pass of zeros, it is possible to simply read the underlying information and recover the data.

With each pass, that becomes more and more impossible.
post #3 of 8
Hard drive (spinners) record and retain data by magnetizing tiny portions of the spinning disk. A magnetized portion equals a digital 1 and un-magnetized portion equals a digital zero. Since demagnetizing does not remove all the magnetism completely there is the possibility that the tiny amount of magnetism that's still left could be read by highly sophisticated equipment (think National Security Administration, Homeland Security, FBI, data recovery companies etc.). Making multiple passes just further scrambles the magnetism and makes it even harder to read. A few passes of writing 1's and 0s will render your data unreadable and unrecoverable by anyone to which you would likely be selling your drives.

To be 100% sure your data is completely unrecoverable:
Open the drive and remove the disk.
Break the disk into a least three pieces with a hammer.
Put one piece in your garbage.
Bury one piece somewhere where no one will ever find it.
Threw a third piece into a large, deep lake.

Solid State drives are much easier to render unreadable/unrecoverable.
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post #4 of 8
oh don't worry about it I always leave my private personal pictures on videos on the drives as I figure this is a service to mankind!!!! wink.gifwink.gifwink.gif
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by seross69 View Post

oh don't worry about it I always leave my private personal pictures on videos on the drives as I figure this is a service to mankind!!!! wink.gifwink.gifwink.gif

Hoping it does not contain photos of your dick or something like that tongue.gif
post #6 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by billbartuska View Post

Hard drive (spinners) record and retain data by magnetizing tiny portions of the spinning disk. A magnetized portion equals a digital 1 and un-magnetized portion equals a digital zero. Since demagnetizing does not remove all the magnetism completely there is the possibility that the tiny amount of magnetism that's still left could be read by highly sophisticated equipment (think National Security Administration, Homeland Security, FBI, data recovery companies etc.). Making multiple passes just further scrambles the magnetism and makes it even harder to read. A few passes of writing 1's and 0s will render your data unreadable and unrecoverable by anyone to which you would likely be selling your drives.

To be 100% sure your data is completely unrecoverable:
Open the drive and remove the disk.
Break the disk into a least three pieces with a hammer.
Put one piece in your garbage.
Bury one piece somewhere where no one will ever find it.
Threw a third piece into a large, deep lake.

Solid State drives are much easier to render unreadable/unrecoverable.
If you put the platters alone in a bag & spend a few minutes with a mallet, you can turn them into a fine dust surprisingly easily. That's a pretty effective method as well.
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Gigabyte Z170
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Brother's Machine
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i5-6600k GIGABYTE G1.Sniper Z170 EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 FTW Corsair Vengeance LPX 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR4-3000 
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Samsung 950 Pro 512GB M.2280 Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM LG WH14NS40 Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer Phanteks PH-TC14PE_BL 
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Phanteks PH-F140SP Phanteks PH-F140SP Phanteks PH-F140SP Phanteks PH-F140SP 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Phanteks PH-F140SP Phanteks PH-F120SP Windows 10 Pro Visio E601i-A3 
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Logitech K400 EVGA SuperNOVA 750 G2 Phanteks Enthoo Luxe Logitech G600 MMO 
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post #7 of 8
Hi @Fantasy!

So far writing zeroes is the best way to wipe your data. You can repeat the procedure two or three times because like @thrasherht wrote the more times you write zeroes, the harder it gets to recover the information on the hard disk.

As for a specific tool to do that, you can try the suggested third party app. If you have a WD drive however you can download and use Data Lifeguard Diagnostic and use it instead if you want:

http://products.wdc.com/support/kb.ashx?id=7FT5wn

Here's a KB article with the steps on how to do that as well:

http://products.wdc.com/support/kb.ashx?id=N8eCCW

Hope this helps and best of luck! cheers.gif
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Very interesting. That makes scene.

Thanks !
    
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel 3930K 5040MHz @ 1.48 - 1.53v @ VTT/VCCSA ... Asus rampage extreme IV Gigabyte GTX 970 G1 @ 1580/4050MHz @ 1.325V Corsair Vengeance 64GB (8 x 8GB) DDR3 2400MHz. ... 
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Samsung 850 Pro 256GB Seagate Barracuda ST3000DM001 3TB WD Black 1TB 64Mb Cache  WD Blue 500GB 16mb Cache 
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WD Black 4TB 64mb Cache LG DVD EK-FB KIT RE4 - Acetal EK-FC970 GTX WF3 Backplate - Black 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
Laing D5 Vario 12V DC Pump (MCP 655)  EK-BAY SPIN Reservoir - Plexi EK-CoolStream RAD XT (240) EK-CoolStream RAD XTX (120) 
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