Question how to wipe clean a previously used SSD?

Discussion in 'Networking & NAS' started by thedoc735, Nov 30, 2018.

  1. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    how to wipe clean a previously used SSD?

    The drive in question was used in a synology 218+ NAS and I have managed to erase and un-initialise one drive, so apparently there is nothing on it now!
    The second drive has had 'the packages' erased but I cannot un-initialise this SSD!

    I have tried to view them with a USB dock plugged into a laptop (with windows pro 10/64) but the drives remain UNRECOGNISED! Despite the fact that synology DSM says they are 'clean'? I beg to differ because a brand new SSD would be recognised by windows 10 before it is partition/formatted! So there must be something still on there like formatting that is preventing it from being viewed?

    Any links/apps./useful suggestions please?

    PS: I belong to synology forums but I'm not allowed to post on there as a new member.
     
  2. blue max

    blue max
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    Any drive you insert into a Synology NAS will be formatted for use. That's a two-bay nas, so it likely had SHR set up. That means you would have had duplicate data on each disk. It would allow you to erase one copy, but the other would have had the 'system' on it. Like a computer, you can't erase the system disk. You can erase the data of course, but not the basic system.
    There should be no reason you can't format them on a regular computer. That is what you need to do. Maybe the usb dock is the problem?
     
  3. mickevh

    mickevh
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    Even "formatting" often does not erase the contents of a hard disc drive (SSD or otherwise) - it just re-initialises the partition tables and so forth. If you went in with a sector editor or disc rescuer, the data could still be there.

    If you are looking to securely erase as disc, then it's probably best to format as "something" (anything) - say NTFS if you're a Windows user - then use a tool such as SDELETE (free from MS) with the appropriate switches set to write random junk all over the disc. (It'll take a while.)

    If you're "just" looking to play with the partition table to delete and/or reorganise the partition structure and formats, then there are some Windows tools that can do it such as Disc Manager, though I tend to boot up a Linux distribution and use GPartEd which "understands" more formats and file systems than Windows Disc Manager. For example (and I'm completely making this up without checking) Windows might not recognise ext4 or xfs partitions and report them as "unrecognised" or something similar whereas GPartEd probably does.
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2018
  4. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    The dock is working fine as I tried it with a 3.5" HHD that I wipe some time ago and it showed up no problem!
    In windows I can erase the system disk, now-a-days with windows 10 installation disk! One of the first screens to appear on the setup contains the options to delete partitions and re-format any drive before installing windows. You can stop the process there after formatting without installing windows. It is then recognised in a USB dock as a clean drive. In the old days we used DOS F-DISK and before that I've forgot what was possible! (LOL).
    I can't format them on a regular computer because the "USB mass storage device" is unrecognised by windows 10. (yellow exclamation triangle!).
    unrecognised mass storage device - SSD from 218+.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2018
  5. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    1)
    1) yes, this I know.
    2) yes, windows 10/64 and I would do what you suggest if I could access the drives, but they are unrecognised by windows? i.e. secure erase with random data.
    3) yes, I need something that 'understands' whatever format and file system is still remaining on there! (e.g. Btrfs) I was hoping for a windows app. that would do this e.g. say: "windows format recogniser tool" but that doesn't seem to exist? Unless there is some sort of DSM 6.2 virtual machine that could be installed inside windows that is capable of 'over writing a load of old cods codswallop' that fixes the recognition issue?
    Many Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2018
  6. blue max

    blue max
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    How about this then... Bit of a faff, but might do what you need.

    Put your spare disk into the nas and setup from scratch with that as the only disk. Then add the SSD. Set it up as a separate volume and not part of a raid. It then may be visible in windows.
     
  7. mickevh

    mickevh
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    If you are uncomfortable booting to "live" Linux distro, then maybe there's a "Barts boot disc" type tool out there, though I haven't used Barts in well over a decade or Powerquest used to offer similar tools though I haven't use those for even longer since I discovered I could do it free from Linux.
     
  8. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    Yes I may try that out, but it means sacrificing my spare drive to the synology 'stranglehold', i.e. I won't be able to use it for anything else except synology, just like my two SSD's! the 218+ still recognises them as synology drives, but that both need the re-installation of DSM 6.2, packages & pools. But that means that there definitely is something intact that the NAS didn't erase first time round and as I said before, one of them is still initialised but otherwise empty and blank (even though the data may still be there i.e. not written over but just flags removed). So they are no longer as new.
    I tried Linux File Systems for Windows by Paragon Software but that didn't recognise the drives either. Even though it's supposed to recognise Btrfs EXT4!
    And I don't know how to use command line apps.
    Many Thanks!
     
  9. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    Like you I used Powerquest in the past and heard of barts but never used.
    I have no knowledge of live linux distro, what would that involve please?
    Many Thanks!
     
  10. stevelup

    stevelup
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    I would use GParted:-

    GParted Live on USB

    Follow the instructions to make a bootable USB stick, boot up your computer with -only- this dodgy drive connected (better safe than sorry), and delete all the partitions. Create a single FAT32 or NTFS partition, then reboot into Windows and see if that's sorted it for you.
     
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  11. mickevh

    mickevh
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    They are often a version of a Linux install disc that you burn to portable media (these day, probably USB or SD card, in olden days a CD) that you then boot off it and it gives you a version of the OS to "play" with and the option to install if you like it (don't do the latter of course.) However...

    Sounds like Stevelup has something even better that works much the same way, but just has desktop and the GParted tool on it and omits all the bloatware and OS install files which should make for a smaller download.

    If you're old enough to remember such times, it'd be like when we used to carry around a floppy diskette with a bootable version of DOS and FDISK & FORMAT for emergencies. Some of the A/V "rescue" disks work on a similar sort of paradigm.

    You might have to fiddle your machines BIOS if it's boot order goes for the resident HHD before any removable media.

    If you've used Partmagic and similar tools before, I doubt you'll be daunted by GParted, it's very similar. Though Linux device naming conventions might have you scratching your head for a couple of minutes.

    As ever with these tools, just be really careful and check everything before you hit enter - but it sounds like you're experienced enough that we don't need to tell you that. (Even though I just have - Ironic? Moi?) :D
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2018
  12. cjed

    cjed
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    If you just want to clean the disks under Windows 10 it should be possible with the diskpart utility which you can run from a (Administrative level) command shell. It needs care to use, but the "list disk" command should show you all mass storage devices connected. You then select the disk you want to clean with "select disk N" and show what partitions are on it with "list partition". If you're sure this is the disk you want to clean, then just issue the "clean" command. Seagate have a tutorial here.

    Once you've cleaned a disk, you should be able to initialise it using the standard Windows Disk Management GUI (right-click on Start icon).
     
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  13. maf1970

    maf1970
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    You don't say what make the SSD is, so have you checked the manufacturer's website for utilities to work on their SSDs ???
     
  14. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    may try - thanks
     
  15. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    Yes I may try the linux memory stick/'trick', many thanks to you both!
     
  16. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    I,m not sure about "under windows 10", because i feel certain that it has something of the Btrfs EXT4 format/partition still left on there, so maybe diskpart won't see it? Also, do you mean for me to install windows 10 on another SSD drive so that I can use diskpart? Or somehow creating a boot stick with diskpart onboard? Cheers! Thanks!
     
  17. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    its: Kingston A400 240GB SSD. No I haven't checked there website for solutions. Cheers!
     
  18. cjed

    cjed
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    It shouldn't matter how the disk was partitioned/formatted. diskpart works at the block level.
    No, any machine running Windows 10 that you can connect the disk to. Preferably by SATA/eSATA, but using a USB/SATA bridge (such as the USB dock you mentioned earlier) should work as well. diskpart is supplied with the Windows OS, it's the newer version of the old DOS fdisk utility.
    No, that isn't required.
     
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  19. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    Yes, diskpart does come up in the command line! - now what? lost? (LOL)
    "any machine running Windows 10 that you can connect the disk to"...
    ....the disk doesn't connect! i.e. remains unrecognised!
     
  20. bubblegum57

    bubblegum57
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  21. cjed

    cjed
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    I meant physically connect the disk. What did the "list disk" command show ? Just because Windows GUI isn't showing a disk doesn't mean that diskpart doesn't see it. Having said that it, if you don't have a correct driver for the USB-SATA bridge device, even diskpart (or any other low-level tool) won't be able to see it.
     
  22. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    Hi,
    yes the SATA SSD was physically connected to the windows laptop via USB doc, with correct driver. However, haven't yet tried it with list disk command, because I stumbled upon a synology migrate SSD(s) from one NAS to another solution which I have yet to try out. This is because I was trying to wipe the SSD's so that I could place them in an upgrade synology NAS, i.e. transfer SSD from one synology NAS to another! As it didn't work simply by transferring it physically from one NAS to the other (not recognised) - that's when I thought of wiping it 'clean' to start again because I had no idea that there is an official migration process for this procedure! Silly me!
     
  23. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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  24. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    well I tried disk part and it still didn't see the SSD's. Synology migration didn't work because it didn't reinstall properly from me erasing it the other day i.e. not the full DSM!
    I wanted to try gparted on a memory stick but the only one I had still contained a util called sandisk U3 and once again I could not reformat that either and now it's acting like a virtual CD drive? And it is showing as no bytes used and no bytes available. So I tried burning to CD and changing the boot order in bios, but it still boots to windows so I must have burned it wrong?
    CD image for gparted.jpg
     
  25. stevelup

    stevelup
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    Hi

    Did you just copy those files to the CD, or did you 'burn the image'?

    To burn an image, right click on the ISO file you downloaded and choose 'Burn Disk Image'

    Steve
     
  26. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    I just dragged and dropped!
    "BUT!" ~ I then read to burn the image somewhere rather than copying it! So, burned another CD and this time it worked! I was able to clear one of the SSD's completely but the other one did not recognise at all? So I used the cleared SSD in the 218+ and it took it straightaway and installed the full DSM 6.2.1. So, I thought the other SSD that was not recognised by Gparted might just go back in the 218+ to be used as the second drive in JBOD. It worked! Don't know why! ~ I also managed with GPARTED to recover 99% of the U3 Sandisk thumb drive and create an NTFS partition; the other 1% could not be recognised or accessed by GPARTED? So, I've got 7.45GB to play with as NTFS portable drive, the other 5GB are completely unknown to GPARTED and U3 is gone for good - thank god! U3 was decommissioned in 2007 anyway. Apparently, MS took over development and called it "startkey" but I guess that's gone now too?
     
  27. stevelup

    stevelup
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    Glad you got it sorted. I have a USB key on my keyring with gparted on - solved all kinds of emergencies with it over the years.

    To be honest, I'd just buy a new USB stick and bin that old U3 one - they only cost a couple of quid now! There used to be tools to reconfigure the U3 sticks to act like normal ones, but they don't work on any modern OS.
     
  28. thedoc735

    thedoc735
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    I couldn't even remember what it was when I first rediscovered it! But when I plugged it into windows 10/64 pro with latest updates, the trusty old U3 fired straight up with its interface on the desktop ready for action, AND it was difficult to kill! (LOL).
    Cheers for your advice, much appreciated, all the suggestions on this thread.
     

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