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TOPIC: Erasing or re-formatting a hard drive

Erasing or re-formatting a hard drive 10 years 2 months ago #16821

  • Stephanie
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I need to erase all the data, OS, files, everything from a Windows 2000 PC. What is the best and easiest way to do this. I want a completely clean hard drive. This unit is being donated and the OS on it (Windows 2000) was probably not a legal copy.
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formatting 10 years 2 months ago #16822

  • Arani
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hi,
it would be rather fruitless to use a third party software to completely shred raw data on the hard drive, as the old installation of windows will still be there.
the best i can think of is, to boot up the computer in DOS mode using a boot up disk, then use the age old FORMAT command with no special criteria, and do a clean format of the entire hard drive.
then do a clean install of a legal version of whatever OS you want to install, and then use a third party software to clean up the unused space on your hard drive before you go about installing anything else.
Picking pebbles on the shore of the networking ocean
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Re: Erasing or re-formatting a hard drive 10 years 2 months ago #16826

  • Smurf
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Here is a fantastic free piece of software. Its a boot disk that loads a flavour of linux and then it will completely wipe a hard disk. It gives you loads of options to wipe it to different standards such as DOD/MOD. I use this a lot when i am disposing of computers and need to ensure is securely wiped.

http://dban.sourceforge.net/

This is worth while to everyone who needs to be sure that all data is wiped :)
Wayne Murphy
Firewall.cx Team Member
www.firewall.cx

Now working for a Security Company called Sec-1 Ltd in the UK, for any
Penetration Testing work visit www.sec-1.com or PM me for details.
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Re: Erasing or re-formatting a hard drive 10 years 2 months ago #16828

  • DaLight
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Nice call Smurf. I use Dban all the time and it's a fantastic piece of software.
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thanks 10 years 2 months ago #16831

  • Arani
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thanks smurf, that was a good piece of info. now that DaLight has corroborated your suggestion, i will go ahead and use it too. i have a lot of decommissioned pc's that i use to recycle for other stuff, maybe this is a good way of removing all history of previous usage.
thanks again
Picking pebbles on the shore of the networking ocean
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Re: Erasing or re-formatting a hard drive 10 years 2 months ago #16838

  • Smurf
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No worries, unfortunatley it will do a total erase of the whole drive so if you are only after wiping data and keeping the OS intact this software will not really work.

Usually thought its best to do a full wipe anyway and leave it upto whoever takes them off your hands to re-build with OS if they are recycling :)
Wayne Murphy
Firewall.cx Team Member
www.firewall.cx

Now working for a Security Company called Sec-1 Ltd in the UK, for any
Penetration Testing work visit www.sec-1.com or PM me for details.
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