“Nuke” Your Hard Drive – Protect Your Assets and Privacy
Getting ready to sell that old notebook or desktop and get yourself a super-cool Tablet PC? The easiest avenue to sell your computer might be eBay or Amazon.com. Perhaps you will donate it to a school or charity? Maybe you plan to give it away.
No matter where your old computer is headed, every activity that occurred on that machine is most likely retrievable. All your financials, credit card purchases, emails and sensitive documents are right there. Simply reinstalling Windows with the recovery disk will not remove this information, it only marks the space on your disk as “available”. If you wouldn’t feel comfortable handing out your Social Security number to whomever you plan to pass your old machine to, then you need to “nuke” your disk!
There are many great utilities available to remove information from your computer and prepare it for sale or disposal. The only drawback is the cost. You can easily find yourself throwing down $30-$50 just to use the software one time. The price is discouraging enough for many users to simply skip erasing their disk and send there sensitive data out to the world. If the thought of risking your privacy and spending some hard-earned cash for a piece of software that you will probably only use once is disturbing, then we have a great FREE solution for you!
Welcome to “Darik’s Boot and Nuke”. This software almost literally does what the tiltle implies! If you have a few days to run it, you can destroy the data on your hard drive to the point that the FBI’s best won’t be able to recover one byte!
(Note: You may create a bootable CD-ROM to run Darik’s Boot and Nuke, however we recommend the floppy version as it can generate a log file to the disk and confirm that the “wipe” was a success.)
To get started you will need a floppy drive. We used an external USB drive:
Next, you will need to insert a floppy disk. Then you will need to download the software from: http://dban.sourceforge.net/ . Unzip the folder, then run the installer. The readme file in the folder is very helpful. By following the instructions, you will create a “bootable” floppy disk.
Next, restart your computer and boot with the floppy drive. If your machine will not boot off of the floppy disk, you will need to reset the drive boot order in your computer’s bios.
Once you have made it into the “Quick Commands” screen, you can choose the wiping method needed. If you choose any of the top versions (dod, ops2 or gutmann) you will be waiting a day or two for the wipe to complete. The good news – that disk will truly be “nuked”, hence the name of the application.
You can also customize each of the wiping methods by choosing whether or not to “verify” each pass and deciding how many times or “rounds” you wish to complete.
If you have only basic stuff to erase, the “Quick Erase” method should still suffice. Our test run took nearly ten hours to run on a 60GB drive! Darik’s Boot and Nuke doesn’t mess around!
For further information, go to the official website: