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Clearing laptop hard disk

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Clearing laptop hard disk

I have a laptop that I can't get repaired. It won't boot (loops) but I know that it is not a hard disk error.
Am planning to try to get a few bob for spares (it is in very nice condition) but want to clear the HD first.
Don't want to take it out and scrap it because there is nothing wrong with it.
Please could someone tell me if this is possible to do? I can easily remove the hard disk.
12 REPLIES
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 6,474
Thanks: 590
Fixes: 49
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

poppy, You might want to look at this http://www.dban.org/about
Not used it myself but it sounds like it ought to do the job. You're going to need to be able to get it to boot from a CD though...
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,773
Thanks: 257
Fixes: 20
Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

or this one http://www.ultimatebootcd.com/ which also includes dban amongst others.
N/A

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

Biker - have you used Ultimate Boot CD to clear a HD? Can''t see if it would do this.
Sorry, but it looked a bit complicated so wonder if you could explain? I know how to burn an ISO though.
The Dban looks as if it is made for the job so am going to try to burn a CD from the download page laater today.
Thanks for the links and help.
Have had someone telephone as have advertised it in the local supermarket but if anyone is interested it is a 15" Elonex and very clean.
Just had a new power supply and connection. It has an 80GB HD 512MB RAM. Don't have the original XP disk.
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,773
Thanks: 257
Fixes: 20
Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

No I haven't used it, but usually you boot from them and they present a menu or a GUI and you select what you want to do from there, You could put it on a usb stick if you use unetbootin (I think there are versions for M$ and Linux) saves wasting a cd.
Just playing with sysrescuecd which is similar without the data wipe and it presents a GUI (xfce desktop actually)
Ben_Brown
Grafter
Posts: 2,839
Registered: 13-06-2007

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

I've used dban, it takes a while to run but it's thorough, to US military spec I believe. You just boot it up, and IIRC it drops you at a 'boot:' prompt. You can either hit enter to run it interactively or type 'autonuke' and hit enter, then leave for a while.
N/A

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

Ben - thanks for the information and I wonder if you could just walk me through it (if you have time)?
I have downloaded the Dban zip file and am going to unpack it. There is an iso file and I presume I click that and it should
burn to disk with Roxio?
Lurker
Grafter
Posts: 1,867
Registered: 23-10-2008

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

Dban is my preferred weapon - its also used by a lot of administrators (in the fiscal sense!) when they are clearing company assets prior to resale/disposal.
Running it in Autonuke is fine @Poppy, there are lots of other settings, but they are really not worth worrying about!
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Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

Had a job to get into BIOS and change the boot order - does it sometimes, then not others.
Got it going but not sure if it was Autonuke as it wouldn't respond to down button so had to just hit enter.
It said that it was cleared although it worked very quickly - not a long time like Ben said.
Afterwards it went into a white screen which I haven't seen before so does this mean that it is OK now?
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,773
Thanks: 257
Fixes: 20
Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

If it was quick it didn't run in deep mode, it should have been several hours for 80Gb.
I would retry running it.
N/A

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

Yes, I was concerned about that so thank you for replying. I have just got it back into the disk (it is hit and miss) but the autonuke setting is at the bottom and it doesn't tell you which key to press to initiate it - all the other options have F1 or another key assigned to it. Can anyone help with this one please?
Community Veteran
Posts: 6,773
Thanks: 257
Fixes: 20
Registered: 16-02-2009

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

Poppy.
just d/led it and ran it in a VM. you need to TYPE autonuke in to the boot: menu rather than pressing a Fn key.
HB
N/A

Re: Clearing laptop hard disk

Oh, thank you very much for that biker. I will have another go to see if I can get it to boot from disk.
Seems funny that it does it very occasionally - most times it just flashes up and goes back to the Elonex screen.
Makes a clicking noise for a few minutes then stops.
T'other half has found someone who will have a look to see if anything can be done.