Selling a computer – what to do before it goes

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  • Selling a computer – what to do before it goes
  • wysiwyg
    Member

    Was there anything on it you wouldnt have wanted him to see when it was yours?

    dooosuk
    Member

    You need to wipe the HD completely, not just delete / remove doc’s and user profiles.

    Otherwise they can un-delete those photos of you/your partner that you don’t want them to see.

    5thElefant
    Member

    Remove hard drive and beat repeatedly with a hammer.

    rocketman
    Member

    Was there anything on it you wouldnt have wanted him to see when it was yours?

    No bud. tbh it’s always been a bit of a dog – a triumph of style over substance – and it’s only been used for lightweight browsing and a bit of emailing. The buyer has already had the opportunity to try it out and she liked it.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    Going to a friend of a friend, I’d probably just run whatever Sony provide for wiping and restoring it to factory defaults.

    For eBay or disposal you want to be looking at DBAN or similar, but I doubt friends of friends are going to be doing a forensic analysis of the disk looking for credit card details and grot.

    Premier Icon D0NK
    Subscriber

    DBAN then Remove hard drive and beat repeatedly with a hammer.

    if you’re really worried 🙂 but if you’re selling it with hdd intact dban with multiple pass then re-install windows.

    but I doubt friends of friends are going to be doing a forensic analysis of the disk looking for credit card details and grot

    true, unless your friend ebays it 2 weeks after you give it him

    klumpy
    Member

    Yeah, there’s all sorts a determined crim with a grudge could do to you when they buy your car, simply not register it in their name and drive it through a bus stop while dressed like you, wearing gloves to make sure only your prints are and DNA are on/in it. For example.

    But maybe the person buying your computer just wants a computer. I’d delete all personal files and browser history, un-install all software I wanna keep, and run the recovery/Windows disk – or just do a format (full not quick) and install if you can.

    Murray
    Member

    Wipeall the free space after you’ve deleted your files.

    If you’re being paranoid, remove and physically destroy the hard drive. I’m not that paranoid.

    rocketman
    Member

    healthy normal paranoia is alive and well on STW eh? 🙂

    I’ve never bought anything while using it and the browsing history would just be endless entries for STW, Bike Radar, Pinkbike and the Met Office

    Does it still need a format/restore?

    Murray
    Member

    Nope, but leaving it on all night after you’ve wiped it won’t take any real effort and your friend will be getting shiny, clean disk space.

    It it’s got a “factory install” option that will be good for your friend as Windows still slows down over time as cruft accumulates. If you’re really nice, make sure you then get all the Windows updates and install AV.

    rocketman
    Member

    OK that doesn’t seem unreasonable

    Thanks folks!

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    5thElefant – Member – Quote
    Remove hard drive and beat repeatedly with a hammer.

    Overkill by people who don’t know what they are on about.

    Factory restore from the recovery partition for a low level risk
    Linux Shred then re install from backup media (as I doubt they actually gave you discs but I reckon you don’t have the original image to restore from)

    rocketman
    Member

    Afternoon all. I’m selling a Vaio netbook to a friend of a friend. I’ve deleted my personal files and de-authorised/uninstalled my programs. I’m going to delete my user account/profile and create a new one in the buyer’s name.

    Is there anything else that needs to be done?

    Cheers

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    Overkill by people who don’t know what they are on about.

    Also,

    Has anyone ever actually tried to smash a hard disk using a hammer? It’s surprisingly difficult, they’re robust little bleeders.

    I once set about one with a claw hammer, it was a Fujitsu disk so nothing to do with data security and everything to do with blind rage, bastard things.

    clubber
    Member

    Drill, open it up, smash platters with a hammer. I’ve done it, not so difficult. There are also places that have huge shredders that literally shred the whole thing.

    But I’d probably use a digital shredder and then reinstall windows/whatever.

    purpleyeti
    Member

    also just hitting it with a hammer doesn’t really do much damage to the platters, Either user a secure wipe program or put the disk though a metal shredder, there isn’t much in between. obviously this depends on the person recovering it’s time skill and budget.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    Indeed. There’s quite a gulf between “possible” and “likely”.

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    Either user a secure wipe program or put the disk though a metal shredder, there isn’t much in between. obviously this depends on the person recovering it’s time skill and budget.

    Well one means the new owner doesn’t need to buy a HDD and the other does, the secure wipe is good enough for 99.9% of the paranoia out there and the methods for recovering the data from a double pass wipe are still theoretical. We used 4x with a write as 0 layer to be belt and braces.
    Beyond that is MI territory of paranoia (4x with a 0 wipe with Shred used to be US DoD standard)

    Premier Icon piedi di formaggio
    Subscriber

    Cougar, may I suggest a bigger hammer?

    clubber
    Member

    FWIW, blancco is considered sufficient as a wiping tool for export controlled, military data. I doubt anyone needs much more.

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    clubber wrote:

    FWIW, blancco is considered sufficient as a wiping tool for export controlled, military data. I doubt anyone needs much more.

    Seems like it’ a commercial version, just use Shred packaged with linux Live CD’s

    clubber
    Member

    Yep… my point really being that electronic shredding is perfectly capable.

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    clubber wrote:

    Yep… my point really being that electronic shredding is perfectly capable.

    Yep, get the point though I think US DoD backed away from software wiping due to an excess of tinfoil around the head issues. Can’t prove it can’t be undone etc…. the cat is alive & dead issues.

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