HDD Password vs Standard Password

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by Infected, Mar 29, 2015.

  1. Infected

    Infected Registered Member

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    Which do you think is better? I know with Windows login, you can buy a program that you can boot up with and reset the password. What about HDD password? Can you pull the motherboard battery and clear CMOS, would that erase the HDD password?
     
  2. trott3r

    trott3r Registered Member

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    I dont use the feature but lenovo thinkpads can put a password outside of windows on a hard drive.

    Maybe google for it?
     
  3. Robin A.

    Robin A. Registered Member

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    I´ve read in Dell forums that a if a password-protected disk is removed from the computer and it´s installed in, or connected to, another machine, it can´t be used due to the protection. This can be very inconvenient if the computer fails. Too much security for me.
     
  4. trott3r

    trott3r Registered Member

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    That sounds about right.

    I think its possible to clear the password by hardware means but i cannot remember if its resetting the bios or even a separate chip.
     
  5. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    Same here. I've experienced more Motherboard failures than HD failures.
     
  6. Raza0007

    Raza0007 Registered Member

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    I did some research on this topic some years ago, the information is dated but I am sure it is still valid today.

    1) What you call as standard Password is just a Operating System Password and can be easily bypassed by booting the computer through a bootable CD or bootable OS.

    2) The HDD password is actually set on the hard drive itself and is stored on a chip on the HDD controller. It can also be stored inside a hidden sector on the hard drive itself. A HDD with such a password can be removed from one PC and used with another as long as one remembers the Password. This password is usually set through the manufacturers utility. You need to to boot through the utility to set this password.

    3) The third password is a BIOS password and it is set on the BIOS in the motherboard. It is stored on the nonvolatile memory so, removing the CMOS battery will not erase this password. Some branded PCs like Dell, HP etc, combine the BIOS and HDD passwords, so if you set a BIOS password from the PC firmware, it also sets the same password on the HDD. In such a case, the HDD can not be taken and used with another PC, so if you motherboard dies, your HDD becomes useless.
     
  7. Infected

    Infected Registered Member

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    That's good to know thanks. I do have a newer Dell laptop which has a BIOS password.
     
  8. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

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    I run a Samsung. I use a password for my SSD that is set via the BIOS. (The BIOS password is separate and I don't use that.) I like it because you can't boot the machine in any fashion without the password. I still have very, very basic Windows passwords just to keep someone from messing with my machine if I leave near the family and such.

    As for a drive failure, I don't care if it dies. I have data backups and full images if I need them...
     
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