HD Tune Pro Erase tool

Discussion in 'SSDs & Data Storage' started by polonyc2, May 18, 2009.

  1. polonyc2

    polonyc2 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    anyone use the 'Erase' tool in the Pro version of HD Tune?...I see that they have zero fill, random fill, DoD and Gutmann options available but I don't understand it...it seems like it runs in Windows itself...I always run my erase programs through a floppy that loads in DOS and didn't even realize that is was possible to run an erase program within Windows

    how can it erase the whole drive with Windows running...am I missing something or is this possible?...can anyone enlighten me?...or is it best not to use the HD Tune erasal tool and stick to my old Western Digital floppy zero fill erase tool?
     
  2. Dew

    Dew 2[H]4U

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    The best tool is DBAN. That said, it is perfectly safe to use a scrubber tool within windows. On your system volume, the scrubber tool will overwrite freespace, not space mapped to files.
     
  3. polonyc2

    polonyc2 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    I used to use DBAN all the time but they havn't updated it in a very long time...I think I remember having issues with the one of their newer versions

    if running within Windows will it also erase all your Windows files as well?
     
  4. Old Hippie

    Old Hippie [H]ardness Supreme

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    AFAIK there's no way to erase/clone an OS while it's being used.

    When you use Acronis to clone an OS drive while it's being used, it eventually reboots into DOS to complete the process.

    Maybe HD tune does the same if you're erasing the whole drive? :confused:
     
  5. Joe Average

    Joe Average Ad Blocker - Banned

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    Actually, Acronis True Image does live imaging of an OS in use; it's the restoration of that image that requires the reboot into the "DOS" bootloader or off the recovery CD you can create. But the actual image creation process happens in real-time while the OS is still running - when you initiate the image creation it'll "freeze" the system for a few moments and lock down the files that are in use and make copies of them for the image process.

    I've been doing live imaging with True Image for over 3 years now, never had one instance where it didn't work or gave me one iota of trouble with a restoration if it was necessary, and that's with Windows (2K, XP, XP Pro x64, 2K3, and Vista also). Haven't used it with Windows 7 so far, still waiting for Acronis to release a full blown fully certified Windows 7 ready edition.

    But, it does work, and it does image the OS while it's running - at least on the Windows platform.

    As for the hard drive erasing/secure wipe stuff, I've been using CCleaner to do that lately. A few versions back they added that capability to wipe free space, so that's good enough for me (1, 3, 7, and 35 pass choices). Less "iffy" than some other products that try to wipe the entire drive; I just select a drive and choose to wipe the free space on it, and only the free space is affected past that point. If you use it on a totally clean and freshly partitioned/formatted drive that is totally comprised of "free space," it'll do a clean wipe based on the level you've chosen, same principle.
     
  6. polonyc2

    polonyc2 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    but if it only wipes free space then what about the part of the drive already used up?...isn't that what you really want to be erased?...and can that then still be recovered if doing just a free space erase?
     
  7. Old Hippie

    Old Hippie [H]ardness Supreme

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    Yes, 'tis true.

    However, I was talking about the cloning operation while the drive is in use.

    I use Acronis 11.0 (build 8.053) and it will do most of the operation within Windows but reboot to copy all of the active files.
     
  8. Old Hippie

    Old Hippie [H]ardness Supreme

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    If you want to erase the entire drive, just go and get Hiren's Boot CD.

    Something on there is gonna work for ya. :)
     
  9. InvisiBill

    InvisiBill 2[H]4U

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    A free space wipe doesn't touch used space at all.
    Probably.
    It doesn't need to be recovered, because it hasn't been removed.

    You can wipe from Windows just fine - in regards to things that Windows would normally be able to delete while running. Free space, non-system files, secondary drives, etc. You can not properly wipe a full system drive from its own install, as it would eat itself at some point, and the wipe operation would fail. As Joe Average said, a freshly formatted drive is 100% free space, so a free space wiper would clear the entire drive. And like I just said, that obviously won't work on your Windows system drive.
     
  10. polonyc2

    polonyc2 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    I'm looking to wipe my entire drive so the HD Tune tool is not an option for me then...I've always either used the DBAN tool or my hard drive manufacturer's hard drive wipe tool which writes zeros to the entire drive (via the floppy DOS method)...I just found it strange that HD Tune allowed you to wipe the drive within Windows and it didn't make sense to me how it could wipe the drive while Windows was running

    now I understand that it only wipes the free space and not the entire drive...which doesn't really make sense either as when most people want to wipe a drive they want to mainly erase the used space...but oh well back to using the trusty floppy method
     
  11. PJP

    PJP n00bie

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    I think HD Tune's DoD 3-pass should be good for external hard disk drives.
     
  12. Meeho

    Meeho 2[H]4U

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  13. Tiberian

    Tiberian DILLIGAFuck

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    If you're using a physical hard drive, DBAN or Eraser (Eraser uses DBAN code).

    If you're using an SSD, hdparm can do a proper Secure ATA Erase which for an SSD is not writing zeroes to the entire fucking SSD cell structure which is a complete waste of PE cycles. Secure ATA Erase for an SSD is an entirely different thing: it sends a pulse through every cell simultaneously which wipes it and returns it to - minus the wear leveling status for the given cell - a clean unused state. It typically takes 2-20 seconds (depending on the SSD capacity and usage).

    I use Parted Magic for doing that for my SSDs and it's never been an issue. Some older SSDs take 10-20 seconds, newer ones under 5 so again it depends on the drive technology (SLC/MLC/TLC/etc) and usage based on the wear level at the time of the Secure ATA Erase.

    Don't ever do a zero wipe on an SSD, it's a very bad nasty evil thing. :)

    (and yes I noticed the thread necromancy but even so it's a chance to provide some useful information to people that might not otherwise know this about SSDs and the Secure ATA Erase for them specifically) :p
     
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