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Old 07-31-2007, 03:35 AM   #1
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Default Whatí* the best way to wipe a hard drive?

One of my drives died and it is covered under warranty. They want me to send them the old one and they will give me a replacement.
I would like to get rid of my files (work and personal info) on the old one before giving it to them. I have back-ups and donít care about data recovery.

I cant access it at all now - the drive screeches, sounds like it doesnít get up to full speed, gives an error and locks up computer when you turn it on.

Any ideas on how to wipe it without voiding warranty? Should I be concerned?
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Old 07-31-2007, 08:26 AM   #2
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Maybe try passing a really strong magnet over it several times? There'* no way to know whether it worked or not. I guess the real question is how much are you willing to pay for your privace...hard drives aren't that expensive.
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Old 07-31-2007, 09:55 AM   #3
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Unless you've got social security numbers or other information that could be used against you in forms of identity theft, I'd say don't worry about it. I don't really know about the magnet thing... Hard drives actually contain extremely(neodymium or something)strong magnets to operate the read/right heads.
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Old 07-31-2007, 10:06 AM   #4
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I would definitely suggest a neodymium magnet. One big enough (3" cylinder) would sure destroy the HD completely. Of course, those magnets cost a good chunk of money. You could get some smaller ones. If you don't have any lying around I guess it wouldn't make sense for me to link you to a website where you can get one as I'm sure you're in a hurry. But I will anyway.

Any of these should work great. I'd probably go with the 1" x 1" at the bottom.

https://www.magnet4sale.com/xcart4/h...ction=0&page=6
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Old 07-31-2007, 12:45 PM   #5
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You won't get a harddrive to erase easily by magnet, Trust me, its nearly impossible w/o spending some big cash.

You have three options:
One - call the vendor, let them know you have sensitive material on the drive and wish to physically destroy the drive before sending it in, per Dept of Defense standard practice. Tell them the drive will not pass wipe protocol 5220.22. They may let you once you mention DoD. If they say yes then drill holes straight thru the drive in the platter area. This is what they do with some of the drives at my work.

Two - destroy the drive and eat the cost. a new 500gb is $120 here. An 80gb'er is $40 on Newegg.

Three - trust the manufacturer not to be wasting time trying to recover your files justt o see what you have.
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Old 07-31-2007, 02:11 PM   #6
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my guess is they dont even care what is on your HD. But will this help?

http://ask-leo.com/how_should_i_eras...e_it_away.html


So the basic, and common answer is to reformat the disk, making sure to specify "unconditional" format. Depending on the version of Windows or MS-DOS you have, that'* typically a "FORMAT /U" at the command line, or making sure that "Perform a Quick Format" is not checked when using disk management tools.

And that'* my general recommendation.
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Old 07-31-2007, 02:13 PM   #7
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The magnet thing may void your warranty
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Old 07-31-2007, 03:07 PM   #8
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Drives gonna be ripped down and rebuilt dont worry about. These companies have better thing to do. Now if you brought it in to a local Compusa thats another story man do I have stories.
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Old 07-31-2007, 08:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow
Drives gonna be ripped down and rebuilt dont worry about...
Its not even worth their time to do that. At best it will get trashed and at worst it will get sold for salvage.
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Old 07-31-2007, 08:34 PM   #10
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http://www.drivesavers.com/

Yes, the platers are destroyed, depending on the drive it may be refurbished (motor) other than that they are sold for scrap. (gold and other precious metals)

a magnet wont have any effect.
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