How To Wipe Your HDD

I had the job to erase the HDDs of our oldest computer (100Mhz with Win 95). Since a villain could hypothetically get the data even if you do a format C: I searched the web for help. Eventually I came across dban which is just what I was looking for:

  1. small: dban fits on one floppy
  2. free: it’s open source!
  3. sophisticated wiping mechanisms

How to create a dban boot floppy on linux

  1. Download dban, pick the *.exe file
  2. Unzip the downloaded file: unzip dban-1.0.7_i386.exe
  3. Get a floppy, optionally format it and put dban on it: mount /dev/fd0 && dd if=dban-1.0.7_i386.ima of=/dev/fd0 bs=1024 && umount /dev/fd0
  4. Done

Now put the floppy in the target pc and boot it up. Make sure (via your BIOS) that a floppy has the highest boot priority. You should be welcomed by a screen with a warning, saying dban is dangerous, ‘cause it will wipe all your data. That’s just what I’m looking for - thanks!

Hit enter to get into the interactive mode and pick your wiping methods. I used the RCMP TSSIT OPS-II method with ISAAC PRNG. Don’t ask why - it sounded so nice :D


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Published on December 30, 2006.