How about thermite? If it can burn through an engine block it would destroy a hard drive.
It's a lot cheaper, a lot more fun and I'm convinced it would be more effective too :-P
Disk drives are extraordinarily resilient. I've seen one that had been run over, dropped in a toilet and then thrown out of the window of a seven-storey office block. It looked unusable. Kroll Ontrack managed to recover virtually all the data on it by drying it and taking it apart. picture of hard disk crusher Hard disk …
Title's inaccurate. I wondered what good a 60/day drill would do -- I could sledge-hammer them faster than that. 60 an HOUR though... that's pretty decent. This would be great for excessive amounts of disk disposal. I wonder if it'll clamp onto the old 5 1/4" drives (yes, we still get those in too.)
When a hammerdrill + a bench vice = ~$100-150 (if that)
OK - might take slightly longer than a minute per drive, but at that price you could buy two, and hire two monkeys.... err.. I mean students to do it.
Not Paris, 'cos I wouldn't want to drill her, even for $11,500
I dunno, if I was a first- or second-world country and I came across one of these "drilled drives" in an embassy dumpster, and I suspected that it had something tasty on it (the drive, not the dumpster), I'll bet I could find some means of navigating the surface. Atomic force microscope? How effective would it be to run a drill bit backwards through the spindle hole? Would that flatten the ripples enough to enable some faster method of scanning the surface? Maybe...
IIRC, US DOD standards for retiring drives that may have contained classified information require the drive to be disassembled and the oxide removed with a belt sander or grinder. I don't think this new machine is more effective.
I like the thermite, though -- even if the entire disk didn't get melted into slag, I imagine the heat would effectively randomize any remaining media. Much quicker than a belt sander, too!
Invest in a set of Torx, and open the drive up.
If it's a multiplatter, I've heard from HD recovery people that the platters are aligned using information on the platters itself. If you twist them apart, then the alignment is screwed up, and basically no information can be read.
If it's single platter, just take the platter out, scratch it up, and use it as a coaster.
One of those ink re-filler Syringes a bottle of your fave fizzy drink (Irn-Bru for me)
Fill the syringe and pierce the "air hole" and fill the insides with the drink. wait a few hours or so and drain. The Fizzy drink has eaten some of the surface of the platters, and the sticky gunk makes the drive motors useless.
Heck see what those drinks can do to your teeth! :-\ :-/
But Thermite or Pick-Axe are better stress busting way's to go.....
I have drilled a drive once (for destruction reasons), but those platters are fscking hard, maybe you need a masonry drill - but that doesn' cut through the case.
Harddisks are amazingly tough things to destroy. For simple end user block, all you need to do it to spin it up and then drop (i.e. its head is unparked so you create a head crash), but that is easy for a recovery company - you need real physical damage to the platters before you can be sure it'll be hard work.
As for sledgehammer use - that doesn't guarantee unreadable platters but it's quite fun in a destructive sort of way. And you sure as hell won't do 60 an hour :-).
It's called Jamie (nearly 8) who, armed with a selection of my screwdrivers, can reduce a drive to it's component parts in less than 15 minutes.
Once the platters have been in his sand-pit for half a day, I defy anyone to recover significant data :-)
He's got to be worth 20 squids a drive, any takers?
If you have loads of drives to destroy then a shredder would be loads quicker and leave the platters in teeny little bits.
Plus a shredder could be used to destroy other useless IT bits.
And, shredders are fun:
Pissed off with that cranky office copier? These people can bring you joy!
Hire Large computer illiterate.
Punch a couple holes with a pick axe.
Fill holes with K2 paint remover or other industrial solvent.
It will disolve the top layer of the platters.
The other option is the 100ton hydraulic press.
Put disk in sideways and crush, turn 90 degrees and crush to cube.
Not sure why a *hammer* drill is needed, since they require special bits intended for pounding apart masonry which do a worse job of going through metal than a regular drill fitted with a twist bit optimised for the task. Still, whatever floats your boat.
Wouldn't sticking them in a demagnetiser, then switching the thing off while the disk was still inside work? There are all sorts of warnings about not doing this in the instructions for a demagnetiser. Something about allowing the hysteresis curve to collapse gracefully.
I wish I'd paid attention to Mr Miller's O level physics class now.
Alien because the hard sums involved might as well come from Arcturus for all I understand them.
I was under the impression thatThermit was the canonical method for the destruction of magnetic media.
Saying that though, I think the microwave idea is inspired and, since you could fit a fair few drives in an industrial microwave it ought to work.
My own idea (that just popped into my head) is to use induction-loop heating to melt them -- this should produce a similar result to Thermit, but without the need for combustion, I think the magnetic field might have some effect too.
For the money they charge the method is simply not good enough.
a new wafer fab was being built. One of the unix sysadmins walked out with a box full of dead drives, placed them side on and asked the road making team to run the road roller over them.
The mashed parts were shovelled up and mixed further on in the access road's concrete bed.
Eye protection due to flying plastic ;-)
Thermite has been suggested, but no-one seems to have thought of stacking drives and piling thermite on top. Depending on what the specific drives are made of, you could get through the whole lot in one run. Perhaps about 2 mins for 20 HDDs (pessimisstically).
Another possibility is to invest in a bolt driver or rivet gun. And for added extra carnage, power up the drive before-hand. A high-powered rivet smashing through spinning platters would be fun, spectaular and very, very effective.
Most people here seem to underestimate the durability of the average harddrive. It is easy to make sure that a drive isn't readable in a computer - just snap off a few of the surface mount components near the power jack. If you want to make sure that someone with some actual money to spend doesn't read them, you have to beat them up pretty hard.
I've heard that platters are pretty heat and chemical resistant, plus I doubt a microwave would even be able to penetrate the case (probably just damaged the external circutry in the above example.)
I don't know how these ripples work in the presented device, but I imagine that they wouldn't make recovery completely impossible. I do like the thermite ideas, or any other heat enough to actually melt the platters (could be difficult, those are made from some serious materials.) Nobody has suggested shaped charges though - just bend the drive into a doughnut, then melt it, within a fraction of a second. You could probably nail a few at a time too.
And explosives are far more fun than drills or hammers : -)
Do a search on YouTube for "hard disk crusher" and you can see the beast in action. While it makes a noise very much like a drill, and the conical ram does punch through rather than bend the casing, it is a crusher, not a drill. The ram does not rotate.
Then go and have a look all the related crushing and shredding videos! Whee! Fun!
The EDR site has a not so fun, FUD-filled flash presentation, explaining why theirs is the only solution. (Apparently degaussing a modern drive can fry the heads, but leave the data on the platters still readable(!). And those nasty hard drives might jam your heavy duty industrial shredder. Oooh!)
I think the main reason why a company would use one of these instead of more rough and ready methods is good old Health and Safety. *You* know that you can wield a hammer or pickaxe against a hard drive without causing self-injury, but H&S policy says you're not trusted to do this.
Going back to YouTube, did anyone consider the possibilities of the bench vice? It can crush a laptop drive sideways on, so a desktop drive held crosswise between the jaws could probably be crushed enough to buckle the platters.
"I have drilled a drive once (for destruction reasons), but those platters are fscking hard, maybe you need a masonry drill "
No a good quality metal speed bit is all you need. Takes me maybe 10 seconds to drill right through a drive with a 3/8" bit on my drill press.
Tried powering one up that I didn't drill through the board too. Boy did it sake!
Nothing like a 4000°C flame to make short work of a hard drive. You could line up a hundred drives and just burn right through the entire stack in no time. You can slice right through the heaviest gauge steel beams with one of them, a hard drive would not stand a chance.
Just put the drives in a hydraulic ram or log splitter and smash them lengthwise. Can get a decent one for a few hundred $. That ought to do it. For the really paranoid, drop the remains in a bucket of a fairly strong acid or base--like drain cleaner. Or spray the platters with oven cleaner---that would tend to do the trick too.
What you are paying for here, is not just a safe method of disposing of hard drives, but the peace of mind that you are not going to be sued by an employee who has just been mutilated beyond recognition by thermite, high caliber bullet ricochets or fizzy pop injections.
Whats the real 'cost of ownership' of your scrap heap challenge hard drive death machines?
Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019