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Author Topic: erase hardrive software  (Read 3549 times)

aivoryuk

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erase hardrive software
« on: October 22, 2007, 08:19:20 am »

Anyone know of any good (pref free) software that will completey erase a hardrive. I've already tried just doing reinstall with the system disks but I'm not convinced it works all that well.

Any Ideas would be great
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bblackwood

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2007, 08:24:01 am »

Why not just format the drive and reinstall?
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Brad Blackwood
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Barry Hufker

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2007, 09:07:52 am »

If you have a Mac, and REALLY want your hard drive erased -- I mean to the point where the government would have a hard time rescuing anything from it, open "Disk Utility" and see "Erase Drive".

Barry
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aivoryuk

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2007, 12:08:07 pm »

bblackwood wrote on Mon, 22 October 2007 13:24

Why not just format the drive and reinstall?



well i thought i had done that when i used the system disks but i'm not sure, i'll have another look. it is a laptop so not sure if it's a different procedure compared to a desktop
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bblackwood

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #4 on: October 22, 2007, 12:14:50 pm »

Mac or PC?

With the PC, you can do it as part of the installation process (at least on XP - I'm not going anywhere near Vista) - it's been so long since I reinstalled an OS on one of my Macs I don't recall if it's an option there or not. If you have two macs, you can always boot one into Firewire Target Mode and then do what you wish from the other machine (including installing the new OS).
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Brad Blackwood
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aivoryuk

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #5 on: October 22, 2007, 12:24:24 pm »

bblackwood wrote on Mon, 22 October 2007 17:14

Mac or PC?

With the PC, you can do it as part of the installation process (at least on XP - I'm not going anywhere near Vista) - it's been so long since I reinstalled an OS on one of my Macs I don't recall if it's an option there or not. If you have two macs, you can always boot one into Firewire Target Mode and then do what you wish from the other machine (including installing the new OS).


its PC with xp if thats any help
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bblackwood

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #6 on: October 22, 2007, 12:33:12 pm »

Well, on XP, when you start the installation process, you get the chance to either 'quick format' (erases header info, iirc) or a full format. That will do it. If you really want to go over the top, you  can download a boot disk (assuming you don't have one) and run fdisk from the command prompt (without launching windows). From there you can do a low-level format.

IME, doing the full format in installation does plenty.

I'm not a computer geek, so take this for what it's worth...
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Brad Blackwood
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PookyNMR

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #7 on: October 22, 2007, 01:58:01 pm »

For the sake of posterity, for those using a Mac, it is best to do a "zero format" on all new hard drives or before any full re-install of an OS.  From what I was told by a Mac tech, the zero format will map out all the bad sectors (if any) on the drive so that they will not be used.

This function can be found in /Applications/Utilities/Disk Utility.  Within Disk Utility, after you have selected the proper drive, click on the Erase tab.  From there you will see a button that says "security options" - click on it.  Now you will see a dialog where you can choose "zero format".

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Nathan Rousu

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #8 on: October 22, 2007, 11:31:12 pm »

Barry Hufker wrote on Mon, 22 October 2007 06:07

If you have a Mac, and REALLY want your hard drive erased -- I mean to the point where the government would have a hard time rescuing anything from it, open "Disk Utility" and see "Erase Drive".

Barry


And then select the option to write all "0's" to it, either the once or several times option, and what's gone is gone.

masterhse

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #9 on: October 23, 2007, 06:52:20 am »

As Brad said, boot from a CD, repartition the drive, reformat, reinstall. Should take care of it.
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Tom Volpicelli
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PP

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #10 on: October 23, 2007, 11:41:41 am »

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aivoryuk

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #11 on: October 23, 2007, 02:10:04 pm »

PP wrote on Tue, 23 October 2007 16:41

“Anyone know of any good (pref free) software that will completey erase a hardrive. I've already tried just doing reinstall with the system disks but I'm not convinced it works all that well.”



Hi Alex.

The details are thin on the problems you are actually experiencing which have led you to come to this point.  But I will take a big guess, and share what’s worked for me, and hopefully you will gain a few options and find one that will work for you.  I trust so and good luck with it.

I too am convinced that it can happen sometimes that the drive doesn’t seem as clear as one might imagine. (Of course the information is in reality still there under the surface, this is how data recovery can work).

Forgive the analogy.

It’s a bit like paint that hasn’t properly cured.

When you apply an additional layer, the thinners in the overcoat ‘reawaken’ the still curing thinner in the coat beneath, and you have a reaction and thus a problem. I’m sure sometimes something similar can at times happen with Software and Hard Drives during reinstallations, especially if you have had repeated O/S re installation attempts that have been not quite successful. It doesn’t normally, but it can happen.

The DOS word DELTREE used in the Command Prompt wipes absolutely everything from the drive but is pretty drastic altogether and I would keep it as a last resort if needed.

Although I normally install an O/S doing all my deleting, partitioning and formatting, using the O/S Disc. (This is the easiest and neatest way).  Always choose a complete reinstall. And always pick the Entire Format rather than the Quick Format option whilst doing so (The latter just wipes the main sector points). You can choose a Repair Option and overwrite the O/S should you wish to. The Recovery Console can be useful.

There has been the odd time in the past when I’ve found it necessary to use a Floppy Start Up Disc, and thus still include a Floppy Drive in some important New Computer Builds because of this. (I have built or completely rebuilt during major upgrading 8 Computers this Year, and several are Vista or XP/ Vista Dual Boots for future proofing purposes).

If you use a 98SE, ME or XP/ME Floppy, you can let the Oak technology Drivers load, then at the Command Prompt Type....

FDISK

This should allow you to Delete and Reformat the entire Hard Drive at your leisure.

What’s more you can do it with FAT 32 and I have found that switching from NTFS (if you are on XP) to FAT and back again, at times help’s reoccurring problems disappear altogether that seem to stubbornly reappear.

As best I recall you can create a Boot Up Floppy in Add Remove Programs.

Or you can download it if you search the net.

The other thing is, sometimes I have had MB Drivers give the type of problem, I described above, and I have found that changing the order in which you actually install the Driver (or whatever) Software to the O/S can also clear a problem up that keep reoccurring when it shouldn’t do so. Often this simple solution works well I have found because the new software is laying over an entirely different area of the Hard Drive.

For additional partitioning and Hard drive management on XP I have found Partition Magic very good but costs money.

    http://www.symantec.com/norton/products/overview.jsp?pcid=sp &pvid=pm80



However I prefer to plan my partitioning thinking in advance planning mode, and if you do this, then you shouldn’t ever need an additional application. And of course, they are not always, successful I have found.



How to partition and format a hard disk in Windows XP

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/313348



Have a look at these because you can often find free versions with some of the Computer magazines.



Paragon Hard Disk Manager 8.0 is also good.

http://www.paragon-software.com/hdm/corporate/professional/



Moreover, I have a lite version of this free software below with the recent PC Utilities issue 91

East-Tec Eraser 2007

             http://www.5star-shareware.com/Windows/Internet/IntPriv/east tec-eraser.html

http://www.tucows.com/preview/195486


Although I don't use it myself.

Maybe its worth having a look in WH Smiths because these, and many other types of Hard Disk Utilities, are often freely available, and of course, very handy, ready to install from a Disc. Also in the above links you may find free downloads that you can use to fix the problem without needing to purchase anything.



But you should be able to fix things with a Clean Reinstall of Windows from your O/S System Disc.

Remember this, use the Delete (D Enter L) Create New Partition (C) and Full NTSF Format of the Hard Drive.

Can you see? Don’t just reinstall, but delete the drive partition, create it anew, and reformat it.

This is normally enough to fix anything troublesome. But in a few instances, the additional solutions above have worked for me when nothing else seemed to.

You may laugh at this, but the last time I performed in Manchester. The Halle Orchestra was at the Free Trade Hall and we had a Concert there.

It's a Massive Hotel now isn't it?


Best Wishes and Good Luck.






P


wow thanks for the information much appreciated.
I've managed to fix the problem I was having. I used some software that erases the hardrive by overwriting it several times. Seems to have done the trick cause i was still having the problem when i just used the recovery disks.

I've only lived in Manchester in the last year and half and have yet to hear the Halle orchestra, they are now resident at the Bridgewater Hall near Deansgate. I kep meaning to go as i like going to live performances.

I been lucky over the last week as I've been to 3 gigs around Manchester.
Saw Ray Lamontagne for the 2nd time this year, and also some up and coming bands who have just been signed.

thanks to all the guys that have replied to my thread.


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Greg Hartley

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #12 on: October 23, 2007, 02:36:19 pm »

Hello all! A little late with this I suppose, but I like my first posts to be contributions. Smile

There's a free program called Darik's Boot and Nuke (or, DBAN) that work's well in this purpose. I've used it several times when I've had odd OS installation issues. As far as I know, it's PC only (although it may work with Intel Macs, too).  

http://dban.sourceforge.net/

On a very brief side-note; I'm completely stoked to be a new member in these forums and to have the opportunity to learn from such prominent individuals in the business. Thanks for making this possible!
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Ian Visible

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #13 on: October 24, 2007, 09:30:08 am »

This is very good for erasing things (on Windows machines) so that they stay erased:

http://www.heidi.ie/eraser/

TB-AV

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Re: erase hardrive software
« Reply #14 on: October 24, 2007, 09:45:06 am »

If your intention is to simply re-install the Windows OS get a copy of fdisk on a floppy or whatever means.

Type fdisk /mbr  hit Enter

That will erase the master boot record.

Then simply run fdisk and delete the partitions. If you can't delete them gt a copy of Delpart and run it.

It's all free. Once the drive is cleared of the partitions and master boot record, you should be fine to go back with a new install of XP. When you boot the XP cd it should see a large unpartitioned space. Press C to partition it.

I've used that system for years on hundreds of drives and never had a problem.

Disclaimer: Some laptops and desktops for that matter, have a small recovery partition and usually a cd to access it. You will loose that if you do the above as I suggested.
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