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Computer help needed, please

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Frankie

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We bought a new laptop. Now we have two older ones laying around the place. I'd like to give them away, but might have stuff on the hard drive that I'd just as soon someone else not see (bank acct #s, credit card #s, etc). Any suggestions about how to clean up the hard drive without killing the operating system? Thanks....
 

rockridgecattle

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There is absolutely no way to clean a hard drive of data and save an existing operating system.
You have to do one of three things

1. Overwrite with the operating system is an option but the data prior to overwriting is ghosted and can still be recovered. It is an option but you are taking a chance.

2. A program like wipe drive by white canyon is amazing. It will clean your hard drive to factory new and wipe any data to make it completely un recoverable. I use this program alot. Then i will re install the operating system on a cleaned drive. works great

3. the only other option other than wipe drive or another software like this is a hammer and smash the drive to several pieces.

These are your options.

If you have a laptop and did not get an operating system with it, check your computer...my computer...and look and see if there is a partian with another drive like D:. It will contain the operating system and you can make a recovery disc. If your computer is infected with spyware, mal ware, or a virus, you risk adding the potential problem to your recovery disc. You can also contact the manufacture of the computer...ie del, HP to get a recovery disc to reinstall the operating system to the computer.


Good luck
 

Running Arrow Bill

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Anyone who has watched any of the CSI programs and/or has knowledge of forensic science will understand that essentially any hard drive can be de-coded by the experts (same true of cell phones).

My recommendation is to remove the hard drive and install a virgin one. Otherwise, send the compter to the city dump to be 100% safe.

JMO
 

Running Arrow Bill

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rockridgecattle":sf6ppwkp said:
if you take it to the dump, make sure you smash the hard drive with a hammer or something. Wipe drive or programs like that are used by DND to wipe their computers.
http://www.whitecanyon.com/wipedrive-er ... -drive.php

one thing about this program is you can use it multiple times.

Don't really need to smash it unless yu want to. At our dump, we haul a small trailer load of stuff every couple of months and things are always in large trash bags. Just toss stuff over the edge...lol. At least around here, "dump diving" is outlawed and the guys running the Catapiller trash bulldozers probably haven't a clue about computers anyway...lol! One would risk life and limb climbing down into truck and trailer loads of trash... ;-)
 

S&WSigma40VEShooter

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Frankie":2x8tcv6q said:
We bought a new laptop. Now we have two older ones laying around the place. I'd like to give them away, but might have stuff on the hard drive that I'd just as soon someone else not see (bank acct #s, credit card #s, etc). Any suggestions about how to clean up the hard drive without killing the operating system? Thanks....


If you want to kill that stuff completely out of there you have to do a complete format and reinstall and that will "kill" the old operating system that is on it now.
 

rockridgecattle

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S&WSigma40VEShooter":1oal06wv said:
Frankie":1oal06wv said:
We bought a new laptop. Now we have two older ones laying around the place. I'd like to give them away, but might have stuff on the hard drive that I'd just as soon someone else not see (bank acct #s, credit card #s, etc). Any suggestions about how to clean up the hard drive without killing the operating system? Thanks....


If you want to kill that stuff completely out of there you have to do a complete format and reinstall and that will "kill" the old operating system that is on it now.

If you had been reading the posts a complete format and reinstall will not work. The images will still be "ghosted" for lack of a better word and can be retrieved.
The safest is a hammer to the hard drive
The next safest is a program that is DND or DOD compliant for wiping a hard drive

The most vulnerable is just inserting the operating system disc and reformatting the computer
 

Frankie

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Thanks for the recommendations. What to do with the old computers has always been a problem and they're starting to stack up around here. Don't want to turn into one of those "Hoarders". ;-)
 

S&WSigma40VEShooter

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rockridgecattle":h7eqgvon said:
S&WSigma40VEShooter":h7eqgvon said:
Frankie":h7eqgvon said:
We bought a new laptop. Now we have two older ones laying around the place. I'd like to give them away, but might have stuff on the hard drive that I'd just as soon someone else not see (bank acct #s, credit card #s, etc). Any suggestions about how to clean up the hard drive without killing the operating system? Thanks....


If you want to kill that stuff completely out of there you have to do a complete format and reinstall and that will "kill" the old operating system that is on it now.

If you had been reading the posts a complete format and reinstall will not work. The images will still be "ghosted" for lack of a better word and can be retrieved.
The safest is a hammer to the hard drive
The next safest is a program that is DND or DOD compliant for wiping a hard drive

The most vulnerable is just inserting the operating system disc and reformatting the computer

If you format c (hard drive) and totally wipe it clean there wont be no images of anything on there. I am a computer tech I do it for a living. I know what Im talking about. Sure it could be recovered with sophisticated software but the average joe would not have access to that. Then after it is completely formattted then you can reinstall winders and your stuff wont be there anymore. If you want to get rid of it so noone can ever recover it take two extremely large magnets and put one on each side of the hard drive after you take it out of the machine or simply smash it with a hammer.
 

KenB

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Why not remove the hard drive and keep it for your own use as a back up replacement, or for extra storage on a new computer.
Then you can do what ever you want with the old computer with out a hard drive in it.
 

perda04

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S&WSigma40VEShooter":23jds5hy said:
If you format c (hard drive) and totally wipe it clean there wont be no images of anything on there. I am a computer tech I do it for a living. I know what Im talking about. Sure it could be recovered with sophisticated software but the average joe would not have access to that.

Totally clean with no image, for the average joe does not mean totally clean with no image. A pass with a low level format does not sufficiently remove the information. The DoD level scrubbing tools make several passes of random 0s and 1s. There are white papers and processes that describe this. If a format command were sufficient, lots of business have wasted substantial amount of money scrubbing data.

Secure Deletion of Data from Magnetic and Solid-State Memory

In conventional terms, when a one is written to disk the media records a one, and when a zero is written the media records a zero. However the actual effect is closer to obtaining a 0.95 when a zero is overwritten with a one, and a 1.05 when a one is overwritten with a one. Normal disk circuitry is set up so that both these values are read as ones, but using specialised circuitry it is possible to work out what previous "layers" contained. The recovery of at least one or two layers of overwritten data isn't too hard to perform by reading the signal from the analog head electronics with a high-quality digital sampling oscilloscope, downloading the sampled waveform to a PC, and analysing it in software to recover the previously recorded signal.
 

dun

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Back in the day when "Winchester" was the buzz word for hard drives in PCs we would just pop the drive on a tape degauser and let it spin. Bad part was most times it hosed up the circuitry to the point that the drive didn;t work. Found it was quicker to just pull the media out of the drive and bend it enough that it broke into pieces then tossed the pieces in the burnbag.
 
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