How do I clean the data off these donation-bound hard drives?
August 10, 2007 4:14 PM Subscribe
How do I clean the data off these old hard drives without using software or a mallet?
posted by jamaro to technology (14 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I have a number of old hard drives pulled from computers I've used in the past. I'd like to donate them to CRC
or a similar organization for possible reuse. Currently the drives are all uninstalled, sealed in static-free bags, and I do not need to recover the data that is on them.
I've googled for information on how to wipe them, the advice all falls into two categories: wipe the drive using software or physically destroy the drive, e.g. smash it or take it apart. I want to avoid the later as I hope they could be reused (none of them are bad, they were pulled to make room for larger capacity drives). I can't do the former as all of them have an interface (SCSI) that none of my current computers use. I'd prefer not to spend any money on purchasing adaptors, enclosures, or spend time fiddling with finding an old computer and reinstalling them.
I also read using a very powerful magnet might wipe them but would the scrambling a magnet cause also render them un-initiable? Would the magnet treatment 'get' everything (in other words: render all my data unrecoverable)? Are ~9-20 GB hard drives worth this effort to donate?