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  1. #1
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    Erasing a dead hard drive

    I have 2 old IDE hard drives 1 is 10 years old and works the other is about 8 years old and dead.
    I fond this out because I wanted to erase them before throwing them away, my weapon of choice was DBAN set to DOD short which does 3 passes. I have it running on the working hard drive now on old computer.


    The newer and larger drive doesn't even power up, I think the molex connector on the drive is broken because one of the pins is a bit wobbly.

    So what ways of destruction can you recommend to destroy this hard drive that cannot be erased?
    I already have a huge magnet attached to it but after reading some websites it seems magnets do very little to erase or even corrupt modern hard drives
    Last edited by keefy; 12-22-2013 at 14:48.

  2. #2
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    A hammer.

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  4. #3
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    Burning it is the best guaranteed option.

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    I just take apart the drive and remove the platter/s and use em as shiny coasters...
    but for more secure methods .. http://www.pcpro.co.uk/blogs/2009/08...ction-methods/

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    Well I do have an angle grinder, hammer and drill.

    Since first post the hard drive is only at 64% of the first pass.

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    DBAN takes hours. Use it a lot at work when getting rid of hardware

  8. #7
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    Autonuke is ridiculous. 35 times on a 1TB drive will take days maybe even weeks which is why I do not use that option, 3 to 5 wipes is about my limit.

    The drive I am erasing is only 80GB and it is completed, not sure what time exactly because I didn't babysit it.

    As for the other drive, All that is left is the 2 platters, the rest is in the bin, will try another day for complete destruction.
    Last edited by keefy; 12-22-2013 at 16:36.

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    If you have plenty of spare cash and want to get rather creative, buy some gallium and spread it over the platter. The ions of the gallium will forcibly weaken the atomic structure of the aluminum within the platter, essentially rendering the metal a soft, deformable mush. This would make the data perfectly unrecoverable.



    If it's a ceramic or glass mixture in the platter (probably not the case since it's an older harddrive), then I imagine rapid heating and cooling would make it exceptionally prone to destruction by kinetic impacts. Just make sure your face/eyes are shielded, because it'll probably make a mess. Have fun.

  10. #9
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    You're a Spark aren't yea ? Just break out your MFT and zap them with 1000 Volts :P

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    Quote Originally Posted by John25 View Post
    You're a Spark aren't yea ? Just break out your MFT and zap them with 1000 Volts :P
    Lol didn't think of that, would it do any damage to the data?

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  13. #12
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    Total physical destruction is the only 100% guaranteed method, or so I believe..

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    Quote Originally Posted by Malt View Post
    Total physical destruction is the only 100% guaranteed method, or so I believe..
    Yeah.....probably the only way to get rid of all that porn....errr....I mean....."data".
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  16. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rapture View Post
    A hammer.
    This is exactly what you do.

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    Uh huh, we are totally convinced that your HDD data is highly valuable lol

  18. #16
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    I don't even know what is on it, it was broken to begin with and my new motherboard doesn't have any IDE connectors.
    The other drive I erased using DBAN was erased on an old computer without an operating system, I just popped the USB in the port and booted it up.

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    if you aren't able to confirm that it works or doesn't, you can just buy an adapter off ebay for about $5 here...maybe it's similar in UK. the adapter sticks on the back of your HDD and then you can connect SATA calbe to it.

  20. #18
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    I've always just taken them apart for the magnets (just from where I'm sitting I can see 6 of them on the wall, holding something up by a nail in the stud or on a door hinge). From there you can take a hammer to the platter or maybe an axe.

    I have 10 old HDDs in a box somewhere with no idea of what's on them but just too lazy to go about checking them or taking them apart. So there is always that option to just hoard them.

  21. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ttech10 View Post
    I've always just taken them apart for the magnets (just from where I'm sitting I can see 6 of them on the wall, holding something up by a nail in the stud or on a door hinge). From there you can take a hammer to the platter or maybe an axe.

    I have 10 old HDDs in a box somewhere with no idea of what's on them but just too lazy to go about checking them or taking them apart. So there is always that option to just hoard them.
    They have been hoarded, these are 10 years old, 1 for sure and the other very close. I have 2 SATA drives that are dead, 500GB and 150GB Raptor.
    Last edited by keefy; 12-28-2013 at 19:42.

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