What is the best way to destroy an old internal hard drive?
Question by Ruth Klaus /

Fortunately, I replaced my hard disk drive before it failed completely. I have the “old” disk and want to destroy it. What is the best way?

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Answers (22)
  • Sumaiya

    try boiling it..

  • Tom Rodman

    Have to agree with those who suggested drilling. It’s amazingly easy (with must drives, it’s like drilling through butter, if you have a metal bit), it takes only a moment, and is completely safe (just beware that you’ll get “drive dust,” for lack of a better term) everywhere, so do it someplace that’s easy to clean that up afterwards.

    With holes in the platters (I usually do four or five), the heads will catch in the holes of the platters and destroy themselves when/if the drive is ever powered-on again.

    Seriously, the whole process takes under a minute, and you don’t have to worry about burning-down your neighborhood! :-)

    • Ruth Klaus

      Thanks Tom. I’ll need to find someone to do the drilling for me. Oh wait, I have a dentist appoint next week!

  • rama moorthy

    cut the hard drive in to half .. then first give acid treatment and then burn it .then go to the middle of pacific ocean . tie the 500 kg of rock with the hard disk pieces and then sink it in the ocean .. safely reach the home . and reply me ..!

    • Ruth Klaus

      Hi Rama and other responders ~

      If I followed all of the suggestions, ie: cutting, pounding, drilling, acid washes, burning, shredding, and/or sinking it in the ocean….
      I’d probably kill myself so there wouldn’t be any need to protect my data. Also, I don’t think anyone would want to take on MY identity. LOL

      I’ve appreciated all of the humorous helpful hints.

  • Ruth Klaus

    Thanks everyone.

  • Jeff Taylor

    I would drill holes in it & then heat it for 15-20 minutes (maybe inside a gas grill on high). That should take card of it.

  • Ben Mordecai

    If the drive is bootable, use Darik’s Boot and Nuke.

    If the drive is not bootable, drill a hole in it with a power drill.

  • Paul Pruitt

    I just keep mine indefinitely.

  • jrasulev

    1st put you hdd on a strong magnet, 2nd put it into water for a night, 3rd put it into the fridge, 4th boil it, 5th pour acid over it, 6th burn it, 7th shredder it. I hope, if you destroy your hdd in the given order, then you will sleep without thinking that you left smth important on your hdd.

    • Achraf52

      There is no magnet strong enough to destroy data on Hard Disk but if it were to be it would be able to pull Iron from your blood, fail .

  • susendeep dutta

    Run DBAN bootable disk which will completely wipe out the data present in it –


  • Dave Parrack

    Wow, some of these responses are a little extreme. Drilling holes through it is probably your best bet.

    • Sebastian Hadinata

      I agree.. I think drilling holes is the best way. And burn it afterward. You know, just to be sure :P

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