zeroing out a harddrive

This is a discussion on zeroing out a harddrive within the Tech Board forums, part of the Community Boards category; I'm looking to zero out my hard drive for a clean install of the os. I want to write over ...

  1. #1
    essence of digital xddxogm3's Avatar
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    zeroing out a harddrive

    I'm looking to zero out my hard drive for a clean install of the os.
    I want to write over the current data with all 00000 or 111111.
    I've heard it refered to as zeroing out the drive.
    How do I do this?
    I have a few pc books in regards to linux and windows, but nothing lists this procedure.
    Is it called something other than zeroing out the drive.
    I can delete the partion and start from there, but does zeroing it out provide more security of sensitive data?
    please help.
    thanks
    "Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence;
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    and the hat of wrongness Salem's Avatar
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    A lot of the partition managers (even the free ones) can zero a partition for you.
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    PC Fixer-Upper Waldo2k2's Avatar
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    it doesn't really matter if you're installing an OS over top of it again....the data will be overwritten and unless the gov't comes after you no one's going to get what you had.
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    Registered User major_small's Avatar
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    I agree... it just costs too much for the average "I want to know" person to try to recover your information after a clean OS install...
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    essence of digital xddxogm3's Avatar
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    i've heard of an os that has forensic tools that can reconstruct deleted data.
    it also has a port scanner, ras, and other control tools.
    i have an old computer that has had passwords, etc.
    i want to turn this pc into a server for hosting.
    if it will be live online 24/7.
    i think this would give time and access to attempt to strip sensitive data out of it.
    call me parinoid, but since i have been getting more into programming, i have noticed
    the pure power we wield.
    "Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence;
    supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."
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  7. #7
    essence of digital xddxogm3's Avatar
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    I have a few questions along the same line.

    (1) Using apachessl, can I prevent unauthorized attempts to extract personal data? Is the ssl security protocal useful for prevention of this type of access?

    (2) Is there a recommended (affordable or free) linux security software that is available to prevent this type of access? It needs to allow https access w/o allowing other forms of criminal hacking. I've attempted to load tripwire, but with no success (I'm using slackware).
    "Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence;
    supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."
    Art of War Sun Tzu

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    o.o code your xp-patches yourself man..seriously. Your not gonna get security if you don't know what your securing.
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    essence of digital xddxogm3's Avatar
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    I'm not going to be running xp.
    I also will be only compiling digital signed software for linux.
    Granted this doesn't mean secure, but my coding has not gotten to the level of writing my own server software, or a complete os.
    "Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence;
    supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."
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    PC Fixer-Upper Waldo2k2's Avatar
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    if you're running linux, that will stop 90% of the crap.
    combine that with a good firewall, port scanning, and maybe some third party software and you should be rock solid. Make sure you use a well patched version of the kernel...you may also want to consider BSD for the server.

    Chances are, people aren't going to spend much time trying to hack you...a few script kiddies will be the bulk of your problems, unless someone thinks you're the NSA they're not going to waste their time unless they know there's some huge easter egg that's readily avaible....not including having to reconstruct data.
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    essence of digital xddxogm3's Avatar
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    I'm still in the market for a good firewall for linux.

    (2) Is there a recommended (affordable or free) linux security software that is available to prevent this type of access? It needs to allow https access w/o allowing other forms of criminal hacking. I've attempted to load tripwire, but with no success (I'm using slackware).
    when you say bsd, do you mean freebsd (unix)?
    "Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence;
    supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."
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    PC Fixer-Upper Waldo2k2's Avatar
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    i use freebsd occassionally so yes, and I can vouch for it's security...there should be a recently patched kernel out for it so you may not have to go with the older v. 4.9 . Yeah it's unix based but the diff between linux and unix is so small that you'll adjust pretty much seamlessly. I'd at least try it out for the hell of it, after all it is free.
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    essence of digital xddxogm3's Avatar
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    I was thinking about doing that.
    I haven't had a reason yet.
    So does freebsd have as many free apps like linux?
    "Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence;
    supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."
    Art of War Sun Tzu

  14. #14
    PC Fixer-Upper Waldo2k2's Avatar
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    as many or more, it also has a linux emulation layer to run linux apps

    hdd partitioning is different...make sure to go into the bios and write down the correct drive geometry as your bios sees it (heads, sectors, cylinders ...in some order) because BSD relies on that info and no matter what it try's to figure out during install will probably be wrong, in which case you just enter it in by hand...no biggie if you have that stuff written down ahead of time.

    Also, be warned, when you pick packages to install...it doesn't actually install them. It creates makefiles for them and you can either download the current sources from the net or off the cd later...i suppose that's to make for a quicker basic install...like I said a little different from linux distros...think of it sorta like gentoo portage.
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    essence of digital xddxogm3's Avatar
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    So I have been doing some reading on the BSD.
    It looks like we have 4 main flavors.
    Can someone give me an opinion on these.

    BSDI
    FreeBSD
    NetBSD
    OpenBSD

    Which one is prefered?
    Which one has the most stable software?

    So far I have been leaning toward FreeBSD.
    Is there any disadvantages to this option.

    Another thing is I tried to register on unix.com, with no success.
    It is the same as cprogrammings board, in it is powered by vbulletin.
    But it doesn't like my email address I use, but I used the same one for this board.
    Anyone know if the unix.com does like a microsoft email server?
    "Hence to fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence;
    supreme excellence consists in breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."
    Art of War Sun Tzu

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