LinuxQuestions.org
Help answer threads with 0 replies.
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Security
User Name
Password
Linux - Security This forum is for all security related questions.
Questions, tips, system compromises, firewalls, etc. are all included here.

Notices

Reply
 
LinkBack Search this Thread
Old 03-20-2013, 04:09 AM   #1
Pingu4
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Feb 2012
Posts: 29

Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Erasing HDD - advice needed


Hi all

I've been using Linux for less than a year and I'm still a relative newbie. Currently I've got Lubuntu installed but since the latest upgrade it crashes quite often. Also as I was 'experimenting' I've probably downloaded too much stuff and not always good

In short I want to erase my HDD completely and start afresh - I'd be very grateful if I could get answers to a few questions:

1) Will the 'shred' command erase the disc securely and fully? Or what other commands/programmes are there?

2) If not, how about this option: install Windows XP and then use something like 'KillDisc' to erase HDD? I've done it before and I know it works.

3) If I've erased my HDD before, will it damage/ destroy HDD to do it again?

Thanking you in advance.
 
Old 03-20-2013, 04:22 AM   #2
pan64
Senior Member
 
Registered: Mar 2012
Location: Hungary
Distribution: debian i686 (solaris)
Posts: 4,001

Rep: Reputation: 1003Reputation: 1003Reputation: 1003Reputation: 1003Reputation: 1003Reputation: 1003Reputation: 1003Reputation: 1003
3. erasing the content of the drive usually safe, will not damage the device.
2. you can safely install anything without erasing the whole drive, you only need to remove the partition table.
1. Instead of shred I suggest you to use dd (to erase disk) and you can use fdisk to remove partitions.
http://www.upubuntu.com/2012/01/how-...ions-from.html
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 03-20-2013, 05:16 AM   #3
Pingu4
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Feb 2012
Posts: 29

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Thank you, pan 64.
 
Old 03-20-2013, 06:32 AM   #4
chrism01
Guru
 
Registered: Aug 2004
Location: Sydney
Distribution: Centos 6.5
Posts: 16,086

Rep: Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995Reputation: 1995
Also, if you just want to install a new OS, go ahead and do so, the install process will overwrite the old stuff; no need to erase.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 03-20-2013, 06:53 AM   #5
Pingu4
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Feb 2012
Posts: 29

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Thank you chrism01
 
Old 03-20-2013, 11:36 AM   #6
taylorkh
Senior Member
 
Registered: Jul 2006
Location: North Carolina
Distribution: CentOS 6 on my desktop, Ubuntu 12.04 LTS on my server, Ubuntu 12.04 on my netbook and the wife's PC
Posts: 1,170

Rep: Reputation: 95
Agreed. To simply reinstall the OS it is not necessary to wipe the hard drive. However, if you need to wipe a drive for some other reason such as before disposing of an old PC, have a look at DBAN http://www.dban.org/. It will do the job. BE CAREFUL.

Ken
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 03-20-2013, 03:08 PM   #7
Pingu4
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Feb 2012
Posts: 29

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Thanks, taylorkh.
I've looked at DBAN and frankly, I've got my doubts about using it. It might do the job but, as you said, it looks like Id have to be very careful and I'm not sure if I can use it without doing some irreversible damage to HDD
 
Old 03-20-2013, 05:56 PM   #8
273
Senior Member
 
Registered: Dec 2011
Location: UK
Distribution: Debian Sid + various in VMs.
Posts: 2,855

Rep: Reputation: 626Reputation: 626Reputation: 626Reputation: 626Reputation: 626Reputation: 626
Apart from the wear caused by writing to it something like DBAN pose no threat at all to your disk.
Also, there is no need to "clean" your disk unless you feel that you managed to leave some secrets on it worth a few thousand dollars. Especially if you you are keeping the disk to install something else on.
If you are that paranoid then, when your disk dies, smash it to pieces but until then it's just a rewriteable medium.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 03-20-2013, 08:38 PM   #9
ozar
Member
 
Registered: May 2004
Location: USA
Distribution: Arch Linux
Posts: 365

Rep: Reputation: 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pingu4 View Post
If I've erased my HDD before, will it damage/ destroy HDD to do it again?
Hello

I've erased many hard disks over the years literally hundreds of times and have never damaged any of them by doing so. Of course there will be any natural wear and tear associated with with such chores on a mechanical device.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 03-20-2013, 08:58 PM   #10
sundialsvcs
Guru
 
Registered: Feb 2004
Location: SE Tennessee, USA
Distribution: Gentoo, LFS
Posts: 5,048

Rep: Reputation: 953Reputation: 953Reputation: 953Reputation: 953Reputation: 953Reputation: 953Reputation: 953Reputation: 953
Certain devices (SCSI) do have a "Data Security Erase" command that can be issued to cause the drive to erase itself.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 03-21-2013, 02:04 AM   #11
Pingu4
LQ Newbie
 
Registered: Feb 2012
Posts: 29

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: Disabled
Thank you all very much.

I think I now know enough to do what I need, so I'm going to mark this thread as 'solved'.

All your help is greatly appreciated, thank you.
 
  


Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Nuke and Erasing a HDD metallica1973 Linux - Hardware 13 11-26-2008 03:53 PM
Advice needed on transferring data from HDD to HDD denimglen Linux - Newbie 3 03-04-2006 07:33 PM
ADVICE NEEDED: Best filesystem to use on second HDD when dual-booting? neocookie Linux - General 1 01-13-2005 07:10 AM
Advice (and some) Needed: Dual-HDD, Dual-Boot - Linux, WinXP elnomadkvn Linux - General 1 03-28-2004 10:11 AM
Safely Erasing a HDD with dd R4z0r Linux - General 1 06-29-2003 06:27 AM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:09 PM.

Main Menu
My LQ
Write for LQ
LinuxQuestions.org is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
Syndicate
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
identi.ca: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration