How to shred/wipe disks/partitions

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If I decide to sell or when I have to return a hard drive I want to make sure not everyone can access my data.
To do that I’ve often used the command shred this way:

shred -vzf -n 5 /dev/sdb

-v; show progress
-z; add an extra pass of zeros to hide shredding
-f; change permissions to allow shredding (when needed)
-n; overwrite N times instead of 3 (the default)

NB: Make sure to replace “sdb” with the correct hard drive you want to wipe.

I often leave the -n parameter to 3 as that is enough for my needs.

Furthermore, you can also shred a single partition replacing /dev/sdb with /dev/sdb3 for example and also a raid partition (eg: /dev/md0).


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