Old Hard Disk Disposal

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Oldmanmac, Aug 7, 2012.

  1. Oldmanmac macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2012
    #1
    Hard disks keep getting bigger and bigger. How do you dispose of the older, smaller ones? Can't drill a hole into it.
     
  2. NogbadTheBad macrumors regular

    NogbadTheBad

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #2
    Bash it with a hammer, you'll hear the platters shatter.
     
  3. murphychris macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    #3
    While this article on ATA Secure Erase is for SSD, it works for HDD as well.

    The gist is that Secure Erase is a feature of drives since ~2000. It's a firmware based erasure so it will work faster, and it's more thorough in that all sectors on the disk are subject to erasure, not just the ones with LBAs (many do not have LBAs as they are reserved as bad sectors with latent data, or as replacement sectors). It's unfortunate we don't have this option in Disk Utility, it's necessary to use Linux to do this. You can use a Fedora 17 Live CD, which I think has hdparm on it - if not 'yum install hdparm' and it will be installed (even when booted from the CD).

    Does not work through most USB/FW bridge chipsets, so more than likely you need it directly connected to a SATA bus.
     
  4. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    (Central) NY State of mind
    #4
    I take my power drill and drill a few holes through the case and into the platters
     
  5. misterminibus macrumors newbie

    misterminibus

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2012
    Location:
    Manchester UK
    #5
    H2o will do the trick, just submerge it in a bucket
     
  6. Mumford macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2006
    Location:
    Altadena, CA
    #6
    I'm pretty paranoid about my previous hard drives. I usually will do both murphycrhis' method and an overnight DBAN pass.
     
  7. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2009
    #7
    This....

    ----------

    and a little of this as well....
     
  8. laxman101 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 6, 2011
  9. carestudio macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2008
    #9
    why dispose it? you can use all the old drives as JBOD disk. get a eSATA dock or IDE dock and keep using them :)
    save the resource and save this Earth.
     
  10. murphychris macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    #10
    From everything I've read, nothing else is as effective as a single Enhanced Secure Erase (which is also mentioned in the originally cited how to article, but farther down).

    http://www.destructdata.com/secure-erase.html
     
  11. WesCole macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    Location:
    Texas
    #11
    I agree with this. I have several hard drives that I am not currently using sitting around since I don't have enough enclosures for them all. Maybe one day when Thunderbolt drive enclosures go down in price I will start using them again.
     
  12. Oldmanmac thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2012
    #12
    "why dispose it? you can use all the old drives as JBOD disk. get a eSATA dock or IDE dock and keep using them save the resource and save this Earth."

    OR physically destroy the drive........

    I was curious about the physical disposal of the drives as well.
    After smashing them with a hammer, do you just throw them into the trash?

    I'm wanting to have LESS clutter on my desk , hence not reusing them.
     
  13. Mumford macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2006
    Location:
    Altadena, CA
    #13
    There's a reason that these are my old disks and not my current disks. Either they've started to fail, or they're too small to be useful. Disposal, for me, means sending to a reuse/recycling center, not chucking into the trash. So there's no worries about saving the Earth.
     
  14. robgendreau macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #14
    You'll need a much bigger drive if you want to save the Earth to it....

    Physical destruction is secure enough, and much quicker. Electronic recyclers will take the drives in my experience. You could also remove the controller (usually held on with a few screws); they might recycle that separately.

    Macsales sells a Newer Technology universal drive cable. I have used stuff like that with some very old disks to make bootable Linux, DOS and/or XP drives. Come in handy sometimes. Linux in particular. For example some of the hard drive utilities for erasing run off Linux drives.

    Rob
     
  15. murphychris macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2012
    #15
    I am curious if an HDD recycling facility has a preference on the state of the drive they receive? Do they prefer a drive without holes or do they not care?

    Drilling a hole or two in a drive is faster than Secure Erase, and for all practical purposes are the same. So if the recycler doesn't care about holes, pick the easiest method for you.
     
  16. Kebabselector macrumors 68030

    Kebabselector

    Joined:
    May 25, 2007
    Location:
    Birmingham, UK
    #16
    Another vote for this ^^^^

    In fact here's one I did about 8 years ago

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I was going through a destructive phase as can be seen here.....

    [​IMG]

    The end of a pretty bad dvd burner - yep it got burnt
     
  17. Mr. Retrofire macrumors 601

    Mr. Retrofire

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    www.emiliana.cl/en
    #17
    Professionals use probably special heat sources like thermite (heat destroys magnetic information). I would open the HDD with the appropriate screwdriver (or another suitable tool), then i would cover the printed circuit board (PCB) and the platters with 1-2 pounds(s) iron oxide based thermite. The generated heat should destroy the information on the PCB and on the platters of the HDD.
     
  18. carestudio macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2008
    #19
    If you really want to dispose it. You do not have to "destroy it". It would only take you 10 to 15 minutes to take it apart. Look at the bottom of the drive, unscrew them, remove the PCB board, take out some screws again, and open the HDD case, there are platters inside, you can then break the platters. The rest of components can be reused by Hard disk companies I believe.

    Gosh, they should offer a recycle program. Sending back each HDD case and motor and get 10 dollars credit or something. This is to save the Earth :)
     
  19. ThePreditor macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2012
    #20
    Exactly this. That or a solid magnetic degausser.

    ----------

    Nope, not unless there's power running through it. There's a possibility the platters will rust and corrupt, and removing the controller isn't 100% secure either but the best way is physical shattering or destruction, which is why I drill through any old drive I'm ditching.
     

Share This Page