Thursday, June 4, 2009

Fully Erase Hard Drive With Darik's Boot And Nuke

Have you ever wanted to give your computer away but didn't want to have any confidential data left on the drive? Well there is a live CD called Darik's Boot And Nuke and what it does is it will erase all of the data on the drive by rewriting over the drive many times using one's and zero's. This is still not a completely fail safe way but it is good enough to ward off a very high majority of people who would would try to figure it out.

Now to get started. You will first need to download the image from: and you will need to burn the image to a disc. Then you need to set your bios settings so that you can boot from a CD. If you don't know how to do this go Here. Once you have booted onto the disc your screen should look similar to the image below.

Main Screen

Now you have a couple options to choose from and this will most likely depend on how secure you want the drive to be afterward. You can choose Autonuke which is just a standard wipe but may not be as secure as you need so the other option to choose is pressing Enter (this is the method I am going to be showing). When you press Enter you should be then brought to a screen like the image below.

Now from here you can change how the drive will be erased. If you push P it will then bring up a screen with two options you can select which ever you like but I just kept the top one selected. Once you have the one you would like to use just push the Spacebar.

PRNG (Pseudo Random Number Generator) screen

To change the Method used you will need to push M. This is where you can select a method that fits how secure you would like the drive to be afterward. When you scroll through the options it gives you a short description and also how secure the option is. If you want to have a high level of security I would sugest you use either the Gutmann Wipe or the PRNG Stream. I am going to choose to use DoD Short because I am just testing for this tutorial but normally I would use one of the more secure options. To select your option press the Spacebar.

Method screen

The next thing you are going to want to do is press V. This options lets you set whether you would like to verify that the drive is wiped on each pass or if you would just like to verify the last one (you can also turn it off but not recomended). You can choose whichever you would like but if you set it to verify each one it is going to take just a bit longer. I am going to set it to verify after each pass. To select your option press the Spacebar.

Verify options

The last option to change is the Rounds option. To select this you need to press R. Now once you are on that screen you then have the option to set how many rounds you would like to do. A medium security level is around 4 rounds and high is around 8 rounds. I am going to do 4 rounds. To get back to the main screen press the Enter.

Rounds screen

Now if you have everything set the way that you want it to be you can then just push Enter to select your drives then push F10 to start to wiping process. This may take awhile to complete usually a couple hours depending on how many passes you have chosen so just be patient.

Wiping drive

I hope that this can help you feel more secure about getting rid of your old hard drives.


Anonymous said...

I ran dban, but now I can't get the disk out of the cd drive? what now?

Anonymous said...

Use a paper clip.

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jaspreet singh said...

You can also have a look on how to wipe a hard drive, erase a hard drive, wipe a hard drive for more good software's.

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