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Decommissiong old Macs - Mac Applications & Software

A physician friend of mine asked me to sell a bunch of his computers (SEs and the like) on eBay, but I've decided that it'd cost as much to ship them to buyers as they'd sell for. So, I'm probably just going to scrap them. However, since they contain patient information on the hard drives, I want to make sure that stuff's wiped off -- probably by formatting. Problem is, these babies are so old I can't find the utilities I need to do this. So, I'm looking for a source of either System 7 disk tools or an old ...

  1. #1

    Default Decommissiong old Macs

    A physician friend of mine asked me to sell a bunch of his computers
    (SEs and the like) on eBay, but I've decided that it'd cost as much to
    ship them to buyers as they'd sell for. So, I'm probably just going to
    scrap them.

    However, since they contain patient information on the hard drives, I want to
    make sure that stuff's wiped off -- probably by formatting.

    Problem is, these babies are so old I can't find the utilities I need to do
    this.

    So, I'm looking for a source of either System 7 disk tools or an old copy of
    Norton's that might have this.

    I'd appreciate any advice. And/ or if someone can email me a stuffed disk image from an old system Disk Utilities disk, that be even more fabulous.

    Thanks for any help.

    Greg

    (P.S. I though of taking a really strong magnet to the hard drives, but I don't
    feel comfortable cracking the SE cases.)
    --
    uwm.edu UWM University Communications 414/229-4454
    http://www.uwm.edu/News/ FAX:414/229-6443


    Greg Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    If you have the original system disks for whatever operating system you are
    using (Mac OS 7.01 or beyond), simply insert the first disk (DiskTools) into
    the floppy drive and navigate to the Format option.

    Then erase the drives and reload the operating system or not (as you choose).

    That should keep most parties from accessing any previous data on the hard
    drives.
    HTurbevill Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    On 2 Aug 2003 17:15:03 GMT, Greg F Walz Chojnacki
    <csd.uwm.edu> wrote:
     

    How about a bulk eraser from an old sound studio someplace? That'd
    pretty much wrap it up for the data on the hard drive. = )

    forge Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    In article <aol.com>,
    com (HTurbevill) wrote:
     

    That's really not good enough. You really need to use a utility like
    Nortons Wipe Info to repeatedly overwrite the files. Especially for
    things like medical records.

    The safest thing to do is remove the hard drive and either bash it with
    a big hammer or drill a few holes in it. But the SE case is a bit trick
    to get apart without the right tools and working around the CRT can be
    intimidating. I've heard it can hold a charge for quite after it's been
    turned off.

    --
    Real Address-> neoluddite0comcast.net <- replace 0 with
    Bill Gates couldn't innovate his way out of a paper bag.
    NeoLuddite Guest

  5. #5

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    sledgehammer - crack the cases open
    drill - drill a hole through the drives

    Greg F Walz Chojnacki wrote: 

    Fetch, Guest

  6. #6

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    Greg F Walz Chojnacki <csd.uwm.edu> writes:
     

    If I may make an alternative suggestion, if they have patient data please
    physically destroy the drives.

    When I'm through with a computer, I remove the hard drive, pull off the
    stickers that say Warranty Void If Removed, un all the s, take
    out the platters, and hammer each platter into submission, then twist them
    into right angles, wrong angles and generally make sure the data they
    contain can not be recovered by guys in lab coats with incredibly sensitive
    machines that can read erased data down to a couple of dozen levels of
    erasure.

    It really is that important.
    --
    Philip Stripling | email to the replyto address is presumed
    Legal Assistance on the Web | spam and read later. email to philip
    http://www.PhilipStripling.com/ | my domain is read daily.
    Phil Guest

  7. #7

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    On 02 Aug 2003 12:35:48 -0700, Phil Stripling
    <zzn.com> wrote:
     

    My roomie wanted me to take some of his old CDs and make absolutely
    positively sure the data on them would be unreadable forever - so I
    coated them with olive oil, salt and pepper, and baked them at 350 for
    half an hour. Then I took them out and rolled the aluminum foil they
    were sitting on into a tight cylinder and folded that in thirds. I
    don't think those can be read now.

    forge Guest

  8. #8

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    In article <com>, forge
    <bellsouth.net> wrote:
     
    >
    > My roomie wanted me to take some of his old CDs and make absolutely
    > positively sure the data on them would be unreadable forever - so I
    > coated them with olive oil, salt and pepper, and baked them at 350 for
    > half an hour. Then I took them out and rolled the aluminum foil they
    > were sitting on into a tight cylinder and folded that in thirds. I
    > don't think those can be read now.
    >[/ref]

    MicroWaves work real well too on CD's too :)

    Not sure if it does the MicroWave any good though..

    Milton Aupperle
    Milton Guest

  9. #9

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    In article <bggrin$cr1$edu>, Greg F Walz Chojnacki
    <csd.uwm.edu> wrote:
     

    Find someone with a drill press, install a large enough bit and punch a
    hole all the way through. I seriously doubt even the best tech would
    be able to recover anything from these HDs.

    BTW, you may want to sell off the parts. You may be suprised what a
    power supply may go for.
    Mike Guest

  10. #10

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    forge <bellsouth.net> writes:
     [/ref]
     


    You can not erase any modern HD with the Gauss available in a handheld
    demag or a even a studio type. There's this distance factor involved.

    If they are SCSI, pull them off and reformat on a PeeCee with SCSI.
    Ditto IDE.

    --
    A host is a host from coast to com
    & no one will talk to a host that's close........[v].(301) 56-LINUX
    Unless the host (that isn't close).........................pob 1433
    is busy, hung or dead....................................20915-1433
    David Guest

  11. #11

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    In article <020820031125533598%com>, Mike C <com>
    wrote:
     

    Then you might be surprised. Ask Drive Savers about such.

    --
    Today, on Paper-view: Pulp Fiction!
    Howard Guest

  12. #12

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    In comp.sys.mac.system Phil Stripling <zzn.com> wrote:
    : Greg F Walz Chojnacki <csd.uwm.edu> writes:

    :> However, since they contain patient information on the hard drives, I
    :> want to make sure that stuff's wiped off -- probably by formatting.
    :>

    : If I may make an alternative suggestion, if they have patient data please
    : physically destroy the drives.

    : When I'm through with a computer, I remove the hard drive, pull off the
    : stickers that say Warranty Void If Removed, un all the s, take
    : out the platters, and hammer each platter into submission, then twist them
    : into right angles, wrong angles and generally make sure the data they
    : contain can not be recovered by guys in lab coats with incredibly sensitive
    : machines that can read erased data down to a couple of dozen levels of
    : erasure.

    Old hard drives are a treasure-trove for data. Especially with patient data,
    I second the recommendation to destroy the drives. There was an MIT study
    about this recently, Simpson Garfunkel I believe. They examined 100 hard
    drives from eBay and trash bins and reported on what they were able to recover.

    An electric drill with 1/4" bit, drill a couple of holes all the way through
    each hard drive, then discard.

    From another point of view, you would not be doing anyone a favor to give or
    sell them a computer with an old hard drive. I always replace the hard drive
    when I'm working with a used computer.

    Drill and trash the hard drives!

    -- Sally
    --

    Sally Shears (a.k.a. "Molly")
    com -or- org
    http://theWorld.com/~sshears
    Sally Guest

  13. #13

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    On Sun, 3 Aug 2003 03:31:42 +0000 (UTC),
    Sally Shears (com) wrote: 

    It was an MIT study -- the authors were Simson Garfinkel and Abhi Shelat.
    They examined 158 HD purchased from various sources (including eBay), and
    could recover data from a substantial number of them. The recovered data
    included 5000 credit card numbers, gigabytes of personal email and
    ography, and bank ATM transactions (with account numbers) for one year.

    Here's a link to the full study published in the IEEE Security & Privacy:
    http://computer.org/security/v1n1/garfinkel_print.htm
    and here's the MIT press release:
    http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/nr/2003/diskdrives.html

    I will add my voice to the other recommending various methods to destroy
    the drives. If they contain patient information, you would be very remiss
    not to do so.

    Bev
    --
    Bev A. Kupf
    Bev's House of Pancakes
    Bev Guest

  14. #14

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    Am I missing something here?

    Why not just low level the hard drive and zero all the data (using the
    appropriate disk utility software, ie. Hard Drive Setup or whatever it's
    called that came with Mac OS 8.1 and later, or possibly even before v8.1)?

    Does "zeroing" all the data/low level formatting not destroy all
    information that was previously there?

    Why physically destroy the hard drive?

    If all the bits are reset to zero during a low level format, all the data
    is gone, just like a light switch is off when you flick the switch to off.

    Just a thought.....




    In article <bghvmu$lni$std.com>, Sally Shears
    <com> wrote: 
    recover. 
    anonymous Guest

  15. #15

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    >Does "zeroing" all the data/low level formatting not destroy all 

    Not quite.

    Just as when you record over a cassette tape, you can sometimes still hear the
    remnants of what used to be on the tape, so does recording over the information
    on a hard drive leave a trace of the data that used to be there.

    Digital data is binary, but a hard drive platter is still a magnetic medium,
    and magnetic media are inherently og, not digital. It is possible to
    recover data from a hard drive even if the data you are trying to recover has
    been overwritten seven times or more.

    Of course, doing this is extremely expensive and time-consuming. The
    electronics on the drive are designed to filter out just the sort of og
    noise that you have to examine in order to recover the "erased" information;
    for that reason, it is usually necessary to disassemble the drive in a
    cleanroom, remove the platters, and use special equipment to recover the
    information.

    Still, you should never trust that a reformatted drive is really erased beyond
    recovery.

    There's an excellent white paper on the subject at

    http://www.cs.auckland.ac.nz/~pgut001/pubs/secure_del.html

    --
    Rude T-shirts for a rude age: http://www.villaintees.com
    Art, literature, shareware, polyamory, kink, and more:
    http://www.xeromag.com/franklin.html

    Tacit Guest

  16. #16

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    On Sat, 02 Aug 2003 23:23:13 -0500, anet
    (anonymous) wrote:
     

    There's one or two utilities out there that do a, I forget what it's
    called, DoD overwrite I think. The Dept of Defense wants drives
    overwritten 4, 5, 6 times with random information, which I guess is
    plenty to get rid of the old data.

    forge Guest

  17. #17

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs


    Uh, for destroying things there's nothing like firearms
    and there are always people ready to help if, for whatever
    reason, you ain't up to it. (I can see it now, instead
    of sporting clays an SE banking over the field and a
    load of steel shot patterned to match...)

    --dan

    Dan Guest

  18. #18

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    In article <com>, forge
    <bellsouth.net> wrote: 


    Again, why not just low level format once *while* zeroing all the data?

    This reformats the hard drive on a Mac, while setting each and every bit
    on the hard drive back to zero state. (The two states being 0 and 1, since
    we are talking binary information here).

    With every bit set to zero during the format, everything is wiped out
    forever including the directory information. End of story. Permanantly.


    Why go to the trouble of drilling holes into or shooting bullets into the
    hard drive? Or for that matter overwritting 4, 5, or 6 times with random
    infomation/data.

    After low level formatting and zeroing all the data, the information on
    the hard drive is all gone. Forever.

    It's not rocket science nor is it some magical voodoo. It's quite simple really.

    Please discuss.
    anonymous Guest

  19. #19

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    In article <newsguy.com>, Howard S
    Shubs <net> wrote:
     
    >
    > Then you might be surprised. Ask Drive Savers about such.[/ref]

    Just so happen I did send them an email to Driver Savers. I told them
    that someone drilled a one inch hole into my HD and asked if they could
    recover the data. They said sorry, that could not help me and
    recommended I back up my data from now on. They seem to specialize in
    recovering data from storm or water damage (after the fire deparment
    has put out the office or home fire).

    Which comes to another issue, most people may remember to destroy their
    HD, but forget about all the backup CD / DVDs they made over the years.
    How many of you have just thrown your CD back ups in the trash? shame
    on you, well actually shame on me, I admit I have done it but will vow
    not to from here on out.
    Mike Guest

  20. #20

    Default Re: Decommissiong old Macs

    In article
    <mts.net>,
    anet (anonymous) wrote:
     
    >
    >
    > Again, why not just low level format once *while* zeroing all the data?[/ref]

    try pgp (encryption software).
    It will allow to overwrite data several times (can be specified up to 32
    times). It also uses patterns that minimize recoverability.
    First delete all critical files (or all files), then create a big file
    to fill the drive, and wipe it with pgp.

    That should do it.

    HTH

    Marc

    --
    Marc Heusser - Zurich, Switzerland
    Coaching - Consulting - Counselling - Psychotherapy
    http://www.heusser.com
    remove the obvious CHEERS and MERCIAL... from the reply address
    to reply via e-mail
    Marc Guest

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