Does WIPE zero out EVERY location on the Harddrive?

Discussion in 'Acronis Disk Director Suite' started by mistypotato, Mar 10, 2009.

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  1. mistypotato

    mistypotato Registered Member

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    I want to know if Acronis Disk Director resets EVERY location on a hard drive to zero when you use the "WIPE" function?

    Or, does it leave the MBR or any other area untouched.

    The reason for this specific question is that it seems a virus I have/had on my system keeps mysteriously returning even when I install from a known UN-infected OEM disk and without connecting to the Internet and before adding ANY files to the computer.

    In other words, the infection seems to have never been completely "Wiped" off the hard drive.

    There are only two partitions.....ext3 and swap
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2009
  2. mistypotato

    mistypotato Registered Member

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    While waiting for an answer, I stumbled upon the answer to my question.

    No.

    Acronis does not write every sector / location on a hard drive with zeros when using the wipe command. I found this out because after wiping a drive, GRUB boot loader still appeared when I tried to boot the computer (knowing the drive was wiped).

    So, from this, it IS POSSIBLE that a drive "Wiped" with Acronis could potentially still harbor malware that could then re-infect your new installation.

    My solution was to use an OEM Maxtor Maxblast CD to LOW LEVEL FORMAT the drive. This process (as far as I know) does write the entire drive with zeroes (provided it is a TRUE low level format). (Not ALL Low Level formatting programs actually perform a full Low Level format.) This is to preserve hidden boot sectors usually from OEM computer suppliers like HP.

    If in doubt, you will need to boot your computer using a Disk like Bart-PE or some other means and then use a Bit level manipulator to manually write zeroes to those sectors still containing data. (I have actually had to do this on occasion to completely clear a malware infection).

    If you are battling malware, my opinion is that you should NOT rely on Acronis to completely clear your hard drive. Acronis may remove your personal data and files, but it appears it is not intended to clear your harddrive in such a way that would 100% clear all potential malware.
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2009
  3. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

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    DD will wipe a partition's space or unallocated space. Using the normal Wipe procedure does not wipe the MBR (the first sector). However, you can wipe any area of the drive using the Disk Editor (for example, you can zero-out the MBR).
     
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