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February 23, 2007 7:39 AM   Subscribe

AncientMacFilter: Best way to erase the hard drive on a Power Mac 6100/66?

In the course of my work, I sometimes need to erase the hard drives of old machines before they are sent off to "surplus" at my university. Usually I do this for Macs by booting into an OS install CD and erasing the hard drive from there. Today I've stumbled across a Power Mac 6100/66 running System 7.5 that needs to be erased. The oldest system software that I have is 8.6; this machine only has 16 MB RAM, which is not enough to run 8.6, so the system won't let me boot from the 8.6 install disk. Is there an easy way to either: trick the machine into letting me boot from the 8.6 install disk (doubtful), or, erase the hard drive in some other manner (slightly less doubtful but still pretty doubtful)?
posted by Kwine to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
 
The Eraser (works under Mac OS 8.6)
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:46 AM on February 23, 2007


Physically disassemble the drive and use an abrasive on the disk platters, or once they are disassembled find somewhere on campus that has a magnet tape eraser and use those on the platters.
posted by voidcontext at 7:46 AM on February 23, 2007


That'll do it! Thanks, Blazecock.
posted by Kwine at 7:55 AM on February 23, 2007


LiveCD. Or LiveFloppy, or whatever you've got the hardware for. The list that runs on PPC is admittedly fairly short, but you don't need too much out of it anyway. Just make sure you're getting a good (secure) erase, a simple rm -rf can be recovered from!
posted by anaelith at 7:56 AM on February 23, 2007


LiveCDs for PPC Macs usually don't work on [6,7,8]100 PowerMacs, since they're internally much more similar to the old 68k Macintoshes than the newer machines. (i.e., there's no PCI, no Open Firmware, etc. etc. etc.) however, it's just a regular SCSI disk in there. if you don't want to take a hard drive apart, you can shove it in something else that has SCSI and erase it from there. you may need to scrounge up either an old SCSI card or an adapter since it's the old 50-pin SCSI connector they use.
posted by mrg at 8:06 AM on February 23, 2007


You can download the system 7.5.3 install disks from Apple.
posted by andrewraff at 8:19 AM on February 23, 2007


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