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GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive (Read 43097 times)
Pleonasm
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GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Apr 8th, 2006 at 5:37pm
 
Can GDisk be used to wipe an external USB hard disk drive?  An external FireWire hard disk drive?

"Words of wisdom" on using GDisk to wipe a drive are welcome.
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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John.
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #1 - Apr 8th, 2006 at 7:25pm
 
By wipe, I would say no, from the description of the functions, although I have never used it myself:

http://service1.symantec.com/SUPPORT/ghost.nsf/docid/1998081911285525/

For wiping, have you ever tried Erase 5.8 ?

http://www.heidi.ie/eraser/


 

Ghost4me  Ghost 9, 10, 12, 14, 15.  Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7
 
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #2 - Apr 8th, 2006 at 10:42pm
 
Pleonasm

Here's the response from attempting to run *gdisk.exe* from a command window from within WinXP:

Quote:
C:\Program Files\Norton SystemWorks\Norton Ghost>gdisk /?
GDisk cannot run on Windows NT.

Please boot your system into Dos and then run GDisk.
Press any key to continue.

So, it will only run if booted to DOS.

Ghost 2003 DOS USB drivers would not allow successful access to USB HDD for using PartitionMagic--but the Panasonic USB DOS drivers seem to work very well--I also used those drivers to do Ghost4me's Disk editing of the Disk ID successfully.

And I used the Ghost 2003 Firewire DOS drivers to access my Firewire HDD to also successfully edit the Disk ID using the disk editor.  I have not had reason to try PartitionMagic using the Firewire DOS drives--so I don't know about that.

But, I've not tried *gdisk* for either USB or Firewire HDD--but now that you have asked, I'll try to set up a test run in the next couple days.
 

No question is stupid...but, possibly the answers are Wink !&&
 
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El_Pescador
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #3 - Apr 9th, 2006 at 11:40am
 
Pleonasm wrote on Apr 8th, 2006 at 5:37pm:
"... Can GDisk be used to wipe an external USB hard disk drive?  An external FireWire hard disk drive?..."

CLICK HERE to view the source of the quote below (albeit the thread topic started off on a very different note):

Quote:
"... Now, for the very first time, rather than having to rely on ribbon cables attached to the MASTER IDE port to conduct my low-level maintenance of IDE HDDs through the use of boot floppies I could instead access an external HDD - whether "purpose-built" or mounted in an enclosure kit - via USB 2.0.  In retrospect, I have no doubt a very similar approach would work with FireWire devices as well, and the nature of the mounted HDD itself - IDE or SATA - would become immaterial where either USB or IEEE 1394x connections existed..."


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Pleonasm
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #4 - Apr 9th, 2006 at 12:38pm
 
Ghost4me, GDisk has the command-line parameters "/DISKWIPE" and "/DOD" which may be used to erase (i.e., wipe) a disk.  Eraser 5.8 appears to be oriented toward erasing individual files and folders rather than a complete hard disk drive, from beginning to end.  (Thanks for the reference, however!)

NightOwl, I appreciate your willingness to conduct a test of GDisk with the Panasonic USB DOS drivers.  Please do post the results of your experiment when you have a moment.

El_Pescador, the citation you provided does seem to suggest that GDisk will work when loaded from a WinME/Win98 boot floppy.  I'll be interested to learn if the same is true with the Panasonic USB DOS drivers.
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #5 - Apr 9th, 2006 at 5:49pm
 
Pleonasm wrote on Apr 9th, 2006 at 12:38pm:
"... El_Pescador, the citation you provided does seem to suggest that GDisk will work when loaded from a WinME/Win98 boot floppy.  I'll be interested to learn if the same is true with the Panasonic USB DOS drivers..."

CLICK HERE to view the source of the quote below:

Quote:
"... To get serious about a clean reformat, there is nothing like "low-level formatting", i.e., using a zero-fill routine.  My hands-down favorite is included with every copy of Symantec Norton Ghost 2003 and is a DOS-based utitlity called GDisk. The routine I recommend is the switch
'GDISK
drive no.
/DISKWIPE'
.

Doing so on your MASTER HDD is a "no-brainer" using a boot floppy, but do exercise care if you have a SLAVE HDD.  A rather novel approach is to perform a zero-fill routine on an USB external HDD which can be accomplished by modifying
NightOwl's floppy-based Panasonic Universal USB Driver
routine..."

CLICK HERE to view the source of the quote below:

Quote:
"... Your current HDD just might need a thorough purging, and here is one way to do it..."

CLICK HERE to view the source of the quote below:

Quote:
"... I went on to generate three different floppies set up to use the Norton Ghost 2003 DOS-based GDisk utility with emphasis on the zero-fill and diagnostic capability - often improperly referred to as 'low-level formatting'.

They are: (1) a boot disk patterned on NightOwl's Panasonic Universal USB Driver routine essentially described back upstream; (2) the next boot disk - merely to prove the concept - substitutes the Norton/Iomega
aspiehci.sys
USB 2.0 driver for the far more flexible pair of Panasonic drivers; and (3) the last boot disk substitutes the Norton/Iomega
aspi1394.sys
Firewire 400/IEEE 1394a driver.  All three versions have performed flawlessly, and details of improved versions will be posted separately in the foreseeable future..."
 
CLICK HERE to view the source of the quote below:

Quote:
"... A feature of Norton Ghost 2003 is a DOS-based utility called
GDisk
which must be employed from bootable removable media such as a 3.5-inch floppy (its less useful Windows-based counterpart is called
GDisk32
). A key feature of GDisk (but not GDisk32) is the
/diskwipe
switch which wipes the entire disk, partitions, partition table, MBR, and all used and unused space.  When I encounter a troublesome HDD during a setup in an external enclosure kit, I (1) disconnect all other magnetic media in - or attached to - the PC; (2) set the the jumpers on the worrisome HDD to MASTER; (3) mount it in a PC at the distal end of an IDE ribbon cable; (4) boot from the GDisk floppy; and (5) run
GDisk
1
/diskwipe
...


Post Script: Note that this line of inquiry leading towards a fascinating tactic for improving HDD performance in the FAT32 file system format took place in July and August of 2005.  Hurricane Katrina truncated it with extreme prejudice.


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Pleonasm
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #6 - Apr 9th, 2006 at 6:26pm
 
El_Pescador, can you kindly point me toward a reliable source from which I may obtain the aspi1394.sys driver?  I don't have it on my Windows XP Pro SP2 installation, and I don't see the file on the Norton SystemWorks 2005 or 2006 Premier CD.

In addition, based on your experience, approximately how many hours would be required to wipe a 160GB external hard disk drive using the DOD method ("GDisk # /DISKWIPE /DOD")?

Thank you.
 

ple • o • nasm n. “The use of more words than are required to express an idea”
 
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John.
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #7 - Apr 10th, 2006 at 12:45pm
 
Just one word of caution from experience.  You should be sure any hard drive is well ventilated and cooled when wiping.  I had one case awhile ago where the hard drive completely died during a thorough wipe.  The drive became very hot, as would be expected if you are continually writing 010101's or other patterns onto the drive.

In that case you either could say
1) It was unreadable since it crashed.
or 2) The data wasn't completely erased, and platters could be removed and data recovered if needed.

A sledgehammer would be the only way to really wipe the disk platters at that point.
 

Ghost4me  Ghost 9, 10, 12, 14, 15.  Windows XP, Vista, Windows 7
 
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Pleonasm
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #8 - Apr 10th, 2006 at 12:59pm
 
By the way, the Gibson Research Corporation has the ASPI1394.SYS driver available for downloading.

Ghost4me, thank you for the 'words of wisdom.'  A sledgehammer may, in fact, be the tool that I use in the end . . . .

El_Pescador, based on your experience, approximately how many hours would be required to wipe a 160GB external hard disk drive using the three-pass DOD method ("GDisk # /DISKWIPE /DOD")?
 

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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #9 - Apr 10th, 2006 at 1:49pm
 
Pleonasm

Quote:
By the way, the Gibson Research Corporation has the ASPI1394.SYS driver available for downloading.

That's an interesting place to find that file!

Remember your Norton SystemWorks 2006 *NSW2005* self-extractin RAR file:  *X:\NSW2005\NSW2005.EXE*?

It has a *data.cab* file--inside that cab file is *F6588_
ASPI1394.SYS
.A0EE8843_6A6D_4EAE_931B_F412EEDDF228

Extract that and re-name it *aspi1394.sys* and there you have it!

 

No question is stupid...but, possibly the answers are Wink !&&
 
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #10 - Apr 10th, 2006 at 1:56pm
 
NightOwl, thanks for the reference to DATA.CAB.  I did look in the NSW2005.EXE RAR file, but neglected to look within the .CAB archive.

Question:  Can the USBASPI.SYS and ASPI1394.SYS drivers both be simultaneously specified in a DOS boot floppy CONFIG.SYS, with the objective of allowing GDisk to detect external USB as well as FireWire hard disk drives?  Or, is it an either/or situation – USB or FireWire in DOS, but not both?
 

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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #11 - Apr 10th, 2006 at 4:11pm
 
Pleonasm wrote on Apr 9th, 2006 at 6:26pm:
"... based on your experience, approximately how many hours would be required to wipe a 160GB external hard disk drive using the DOD method ("GDisk # /WIPEDISK /DOD")?...”

I recollect a DOD wipe on an 80GB IDE Seagate HDD going well past overnight, so I would allocate at 24-36 hours at the very least to be on the safe side.

Pleonasm wrote on Apr 10th, 2006 at 1:56pm:
”… Question:  Can the USBASPI.SYS and ASPI1394.SYS drivers both be simultaneously specified in a DOS boot floppy CONFIG.SYS, with the objective of allowing GDisk to detect external USB as well as FireWire hard disk drives?  Or, is it an either/or situation – USB or FireWire in DOS, but not both?...”

Never having attempted to do so, I certainly cannot speak from experience – but I have a gut feeling that the process will be completed with either hardware alternative despite some specious warnings.

BTW, as of my last inquiry there is no FireWire 800 (IEEE 1394b) driver for this application - but aspi1394.sys works just fine with both IEEE 1394b PCI ports and IEEE 1394b devices in my experience.

EP
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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #12 - Apr 10th, 2006 at 5:51pm
 
Pleonasm

Quote:
Question:  Can the USBASPI.SYS and ASPI1394.SYS drivers both be simultaneously specified in a DOS boot floppy CONFIG.SYS, with the objective of allowing GDisk to detect external USB as well as FireWire hard disk drives?

I just tested the following and it appears that *both* can be booted--but, PartitionMagic did not want work with the Firewire HDD with the Ghost 2003 DOS driver!  Here's the boot file info:

[config.sys]

Device=usbaspi.sys /v   
Device=di1000dd.sys 
device=aspi1394.sys /int /all   
lastdrive=z

[autoexec.bat]

guest.exe

[list of files on boot floppy]

aspi1394.sys
AUTOEXEC.BAT
COMMAND.COM
CONFIG.SYS
DI1000DD.SYS
gdisk.exe
GUEST.EXE
IO.SYS
MSDOS.SYS
Usbaspi.sys

Because the Ghost USB DOS driver is not loaded, there is no conflict between the Ghost USB driver and the Panasonic USB DOS driver--but the Ghost 2003 DOS driver for Firewire loaded without any conflicting error messages.

Running *gdisk /status* had all drives show up in the response--internal and USB external and Firewire external!
 

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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #13 - Apr 11th, 2006 at 9:50am
 
NightOwl, that’s quite an informative test.  A GDisk boot floppy is likely to become a handy tool for many.

Two questions:
  • Question #1:  Since GDisk does not operate using hard disk drive letters (e.g., “D:”) but disk ID numbers (e.g., “2”), ought it not to be the case that both DI1000DD.SYS and GUEST.EXE can be omitted from the boot floppy?
  • Question #2:  What is the function of the switches (e.g., “/INT /ALL”), and where can I find documentation of all the switch options for ASPI1394.SYS?
Thanks for your continued involvement on this thread.
 

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Re: GDisk:  External USB/FireWire Hard Disk Drive
Reply #14 - Apr 11th, 2006 at 10:44am
 
The reader of this thread may be interested in the following documentation related to GDisk.
 

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