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    Wiping hard drive

    I need to get rid of my old pc but want to make sure that any data and files in their can't be recovered.

    It runs Windows xp and is so old I can't get it to connect the inter anymore.

    I have read dban is a tool that will destroy things properly but I can't dl to the pc as cant connect to web, I've downloaded it on anotother pc to a usb stick. Can I boot it from the USB stick and get it to run on the pc I want to wipe?

    The pc won't be used again so I don't need it to work so doesn't matter if it wipes windows or drivers etc.

    I don't have a disc for the pc anymore.

    Failing that can anyone suggest any other methods that would ensure date and files are unrecoverable

    50 Comments

    smash HD to bits with a hammer, crude but effective

    +1 for the above, depending which brings the most joy.

    CCleaner

    http://i2.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/original/000/128/622/KILL-IT-WITH-FIRE-FUNNY-FORUM-PICS.jpg

    Original Poster

    random_dude

    smash HD to bits with a hammer, crude but effective


    Idk if that's sarcasm. I would smash, but how do I get the hard drive out?

    little_green

    Idk if that's sarcasm. I would smash, but how do I get the hard drive … Idk if that's sarcasm. I would smash, but how do I get the hard drive out?



    ​just open it up its not sarcasm that's probably the best way if u don't intend reusing the hard drive not very difficult open up a pc aswell a few screws or sometimes u can open them by hand aswell.

    I always smash them to bits with a axe

    Error440

    I always smash them to bits with a axe



    ​i would have never pictured you with an axe.

    Use an angle grinder on it.


    https://media.giphy.com/media/wxZ7HtZW2jE1q/giphy.gif

    +1 for smashing it, as there's software that can get back files even after formats etc..

    Send it to me.

    Everyone says smash, good but not great. Have it shredded by certified company if you want piece of mind. They'll degause it and then destroy. No way back after that. Can't imagine a home consumer would need that though. It's usually to keep companies compliment with ISO 27001
    Edited by: "corrazy" 11th Feb

    Original Poster

    MynameisM

    ​just open it up its not sarcasm that's probably the best way if u don't i … ​just open it up its not sarcasm that's probably the best way if u don't intend reusing the hard drive not very difficult open up a pc aswell a few screws or sometimes u can open them by hand aswell.


    OK I'll have a look at how to locate the hard drive

    Open case. Remove HDD (either carefully or brute force it out) and take a drill to it with a metal drill bit. Drill several holes through it into a block of wood underneath. Job done.

    If you want to be extra-sure, burn the carcass afterwards but no one ordinary is going to be interested in a naffed HDD discarded in the rubbish. Not unless it's labelled "State Secrets" or "Private [email protected] Collection" or something! Hehe. I wouldn't worry too much if you follow some of the examples mentioned.

    Regards, Phsy.

    my son smashed our last two with a hammer in the garden, do take care though as they have a tendency to fly around a bit , or maybe that was just my sons enthusiasm oO

    little_green

    Idk if that's sarcasm. I would smash, but how do I get the hard drive … Idk if that's sarcasm. I would smash, but how do I get the hard drive out?



    ​open case, locate HD (Google photo if unsure), normally 4 little screws and a couple of multiplugs to remove.

    not sarcasm, most commercial PC trashers put HD's through what amounts to an industrial grade shredder

    Just take the circuit board off it and snap it in half. No one is going to hunt ebay for a circuit board on the off chance it might have bank details on it.

    Has it really got stuff on it that you dont want anyone else to see?
    How about burying it 6ft under somewhere encased first perhaps in a bucket of bleach?
    Use some dubious delivery company to send it somewhere - they can lose it for you?

    Take a drill bit to the hard drive. Just as effective as hammering but with less chance of cutting an artery.

    little_green

    Idk if that's sarcasm. I would smash, but how do I get the hard drive … Idk if that's sarcasm. I would smash, but how do I get the hard drive out?



    Smash the computer itself. Making sure to smash everything inside. It's very rewarding and cathartic. Then, try get it repaired under warranty. (_;)

    Get one of the many free hard drive destroy /wipe ​programs off net. Burn to disc or USB stick. Fire pc up and get in the bios and alter to boot from disc drive or USB stick at start up. This wipe destroy the hard drive. Don't take long. It's the best way and always keep to use again

    tardytortoise

    Has it really got stuff on it that you dont want anyone else to see?How … Has it really got stuff on it that you dont want anyone else to see?How about burying it 6ft under somewhere encased first perhaps in a bucket of bleach? Use some dubious delivery company to send it somewhere - they can lose it for you?



    They allow tourists into the Chernobyl zone now, take it there and throw it in the cooling pond.

    Download and use this software to wipe the drive: eraser.heidi.ie/

    Original Poster

    wayners

    Get one of the many free hard drive destroy /wipe ​programs off net. Burn … Get one of the many free hard drive destroy /wipe ​programs off net. Burn to disc or USB stick. Fire pc up and get in the bios and alter to boot from disc drive or USB stick at start up. This wipe destroy the hard drive. Don't take long. It's the best way and always keep to use again


    How to I select to boot from USB to I need to go into safe mode

    Dont trust any silly programme to do the job, just smash yhe thing and if you can't figure out which thing it is or how to open the case just smash that too, you can make a office space style YouTube video of you doing it too if you want

    Original Poster

    Pressing f8 I can't see an option to boot from USB.
    Have tried hitting f12 but doesn't do anything.
    Not sure how I can get it to boot from usb

    try f2, some use that

    if you can get to BIOS you can change boot order

    According to the brilliant TV show Silicon Valley, drilling holes in it is the only sure-fire way to destroy it properly.

    geebeegooner

    +1 for smashing it, as there's software that can get back files even … +1 for smashing it, as there's software that can get back files even after formats etc..



    ​Yep. Very true I've done it! +1

    little_green

    How to I select to boot from USB to I need to go into safe mode



    ​Depends on pc. Some older pcs won't let you boot from usb. I just burn to disc and keep as I have used many times on friends, family computers. A quick Google will tell you how, but if nothing comes up then you probably can't boot from usb so go the cd route.

    Enet

    ​Yep. Very true I've done it! +1



    ​Not if you use a Wipe and Nuke program. It will write random data over the top of your current data and is considered to be a good option. I know that some punch a hole in the drive, but let's be sensible. Just use the Nuke software and take to recycle center and throw in. Sorted.

    You don't have to destroy the hard drive. It makes me laugh when you see people selling laptops on ebay and it says hard drive removed for security reasons. What are people going to do with laptops that have eMMC drives. I asked our IT guy at work and he gave me a copy of a programme called "Kill Disc. It wipes it and over-writes each sector something like 10 times.

    To run DBAN, you have to use the BIOS access key, varies with systems, they will often flash "press F2 for setup", otherwise search for the model and bios setup to find the code. Adjust the boot order so it will boot USB first - if it's too old to boot USB, then you'll need to a CD version and boot from CD.

    You may see mentions of "Gutmann method", but it's not needed for modern drives - the Gutmann erase uses multiple patterns optimized to erase traces that could theoretically remain under older drive recording methods.

    Modern drives operate at such high densities that there is not really any room left for traces - the modern PRML read channel is already operating at the very edge.

    On ANY drive, old or new, a single overwrite pass puts things beyond any utility based recovery, Gutmann was only ever useful for erasing theoretical traces that maybe a forensic lab could attempt to recover with the drive platters in a test rig

    Smartguy1

    You don't have to destroy the hard drive. It makes me laugh when you see … You don't have to destroy the hard drive. It makes me laugh when you see people selling laptops on ebay and it says hard drive removed for security reasons. What are people going to do with laptops that have eMMC drives. I asked our IT guy at work and he gave me a copy of a programme called "Kill Disc. It wipes it and over-writes each sector something like 10 times.



    Running any program which does multi overwrites on the HDD is likely going to take hours or possible days, depending on the size of the hard, the program used and how many passes you opt for.

    The OP is going to save much much more time by removing the drive and smashing it up, since it will not be reused or resold. It will take all of 10 minutes to remove and destroy as suggested above - that would be my preference too.

    ask my hermes to deliver it to your nan in the lake district... more chance of them throwing it over a rainbow than there is of it arriving!

    Why don't you buy an enclosure from ebay, connect it to your new pc, format it and use it for storing movies or something.

    joshp

    Running any program which does multi overwrites on the HDD is likely … Running any program which does multi overwrites on the HDD is likely going to take hours or possible days, depending on the size of the hard, the program used and how many passes you opt for.The OP is going to save much much more time by removing the drive and smashing it up, since it will not be reused or resold. It will take all of 10 minutes to remove and destroy as suggested above - that would be my preference too.



    Maybe you should try Killdisc for yourself before speculating.

    Smartguy1

    Maybe you should try Killdisc for yourself before speculating.



    I wasn't speculating (_;)
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