dumb question

This is a discussion on dumb question within the Tech Board forums, part of the Community Boards category; can you wipe the free memory of your HD?...

  1. #1
    cereal killer dP munky's Avatar
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    dumb question

    can you wipe the free memory of your HD?
    guns dont kill people, abortion clinics kill people.

  2. #2
    C++ Developer XSquared's Avatar
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    Yes. Its called formatting.
    Naturally I didn't feel inspired enough to read all the links for you, since I already slaved away for long hours under a blistering sun pressing the search button after typing four whole words! - Quzah

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  3. #3
    cereal killer dP munky's Avatar
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    i want to wipe everything, wipe as in reset every memory locations value to zero. When you format, it just deletes everything, but it doesnt reset the information in every address to zero (leaving garbage behind). and thats what i want to do
    guns dont kill people, abortion clinics kill people.

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    You need to do a low-level format. You can usually get a utility to do that from the manufacturer of your HDD.

    Information can still be recovered from it even if you do a low-level format.
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  5. #5
    cereal killer dP munky's Avatar
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    Originally posted by damonbrinkley
    Information can still be recovered from it even if you do a low-level format.
    .......CIA type stuff huh?
    guns dont kill people, abortion clinics kill people.

  6. #6
    Refugee face_master's Avatar
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    Do what i did to destroy evidence: sledge-hammer
    Please direct all complaints regarding this post to the nearest brick wall Have a nice day.

  7. #7
    Me want cookie! Monster's Avatar
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    There are some tools that you can try, for example:

    East-Tec Format Secure
    East-Tec Eraser 2002
    Sure Delete

    Just search the net...

  8. #8
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    Originally posted by dP munky
    .......CIA type stuff huh?
    Yeah, I suppose, probably very expensive. Quite a few people have told me that the only way to make a HD non-recoverable is with gas and a match
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  9. #9
    Hidoi Ryuujin
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    Do a search for a little program called gwscan. It is small and slow, but it gets the job done. Start her up and come back the next day and you will have nothing but zeros on your hard drive.
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  10. #10
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    There are two ways to go about it, depending on what exactly you want to do. If you want to totally wipe the drive, (prior to selling it for example) then a LLF is the way to go as has been suggested. Download the appropriate utility from your HD manufacturer's website. Be aware that this returns the drive to it's original state, unpartitioned and unformatted.

    If you want only want to clear free space leaving your setup intact, (to keep anyone from recovering deleted files you don't want want them to see, for example) then use a defrag utility and check the wipe free space option. (This works for Nortons, not sure about others but it should.)

    In practical terms either method will make the data unreadable for ordinary people. It is true that it you have the resources of a major country that it might be possible to read it. That's why the military, cia, etc. recommend things like multiple passes alternating ones and zeros, or even physical destruction of the drive for highly classified data.

  11. #11
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    If I want to completely wipe my HDD i just delete the files I dont want and fill up the rest of the drive with Documents full of crap. But this happens several times before it works.
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  12. #12
    I hate Sinus infections
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    if you want secure deletion, just pour acid over it, then burn it, then bury some parts of it in diferent places, others in the trash, down the toilet, and down the sink.

    Did i miss anything?
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  13. #13
    Seven years? civix's Avatar
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    I agree with windoze victim.

    The only way to surely destroy information on a drive is to completely destroy the drive itself.

    No wonder kermi3 goes through so much money... j/k

  14. #14
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    Could not you unlink (delete) all the files and then fill the drive to capacity again? repeat this a few times and the drive is not only wiped but it could bbe used again, which I think is the point of writiing zeros, obviously a boltcutter would do the trick but destroy the drive in so doing.

  15. #15
    Visionary Philosopher Sayeh's Avatar
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    First, read and write the entire drive with one letter of the alphabet in every location (so you cycle 26 letters through each byte on the drive). Do this twice. That exceeds DOE standards.

    Then, understand that a Hard Drive cannot be read if the reference timing marks are gone. Period. The manufacturer may have a utility to eliminate and reestablish these marks.

    Eliminating these reference marks is a measure _below_ "low-level formatting". It's the ultimate in erasure, normally only done by the manufacturer when the drive is first calibrated and formatted.

    Reestablish the marks and re-low-level format. Then high-level format.
    It is not the spoon that bends, it is you who bends around the spoon.

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