DBAN: Another open source application wins me over

As a mix of experience and precaution, I always blank the drive before I reinstall a system. I usually used Killdisk, which worked well and did the job liked I asked. I even suggested it a dozen times to other people on the forums.

I knew about DBAN for a long time but didn’t really feel like switching, until today when I tried it out in full and got a lot more than I anticipated.

Killdisk is good, but Killdisk makes me wade through four levels of menu choices, just to start blanking. And then there’s an eleventh-hour last-chance point-of-no-return double check, before it will get to work.

With DBAN, you can trigger the boot line to start in one of four or five modes, tell it not to bother probing the floppy drive, don’t verify — whatever you prefer. And then there’s the “autonuke” option, which just eradicates everything attached to the system, with no questions asked. :shock:

And with the entire system loaded into memory on startup, I don’t have to wait for CD access, like I did with Killdisk. Net conclusion: It’s faster and easier.

So I’m off Killdisk. I’ve put my 4.1 disc into the pile for recycling, and I’m going to pick up a mini CD at the 100-yen store tomorrow, and burn a permanent copy of DBAN for future use. Another open source application wins me over.

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6 Responses to “DBAN: Another open source application wins me over”


  1. 1 Danny 2007/09/19 at 1:09 PM

    I used to use Killdisk too, but I misplaced it and tried Dban. Haven’t gone back since. I made a Dban machine, like the one Free Geek Vancover made:
    http://freegeekvancouver.org/en/v/equipment/

  2. 2 K.Mandla 2007/09/19 at 2:15 PM

    That is AWESOME. I would love to build one of those. :mrgreen:

  3. 3 Danny 2007/09/20 at 12:36 PM

    Where you are, it might be a bit difficult. Then again, I have absolutely no clue about what is available where you are.

    I just used an almost dead celeron machine, and a powersupply I wouldn’t really need for much else. That power supply wasn’t enough. You will need at least a 300 watter. 250 is bare minimum for a Dban machine. At first, I didn’t think about the hard disc wattages.

    Any word from the Fluxbuntu people?

  4. 4 K.Mandla 2007/09/20 at 12:54 PM

    bodhi.zazen assures me it’s still alive, even if it seems stalled. I know their plan was to wait for Gutsy for their next release. Still, it’s never reassuring when an entire forum disappears and there hasn’t been an update to the home page in over a month. That’s what Ubuntulite did at first (although it has sparked back to life), and Lowarch is doing, and. … :(

  5. 5 Chris 2009/01/23 at 7:16 AM

    Hi, I’m just about to use DBAN, I have been assured that it is extremely effective, and data recovery that even the profeesionals and government agencies use cannot pick up data that has been wiped. Now I don’t know if that is true but it seems damn impressive to me, just one thing though, if you use the autonuke option (I understand DBAN works of a floppy) would it take out the data on the floppy?

    • 6 K.Mandla 2009/01/23 at 8:44 AM

      Once DBAN is loaded into memory you can remove that floppy, so no, I doubt it would blank itself out. It also keeps an option to write a report to floppy, so I don’t think it will erase the floppy. Double-check the home page though.

      By the way, you can also use it via ISO, which is my preferred method. It fits quite easily onto a business card-sized CD.


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