Mac 7 pass erase time

There are two versions of Disk Utility commonly in use: For the most part, the steps in the process are the same for both versions of Disk Utility. The only real difference is the look of the UI. This process will absolutely remove the data that currently occupies the selected drive.


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If you need any of the information, make sure you have a backup before proceeding. Selecting a volume will only erase the individual volume or partition you selected.

How long does it take to complete a 7-pass erase on a hard disk?

Selecting a drive will erase all volumes and partitions associated with the drive. Pick a format type to use. This is not a secure erase option and does not overwrite data. This is the default erase method that just erases the catalog entries. Single Pass of Zeros: Erases the catalog entry plus writes a single pass of zeros to all locations. This option erases the catalog entry and performs a 3-pass write to all data locations. The first two passes use random data; the third pass uses a known data pattern.

This option meets the minimum DOE requirements for securely erasing a drive. Most Secure: This secure erase option erases the catalog entry and performs a seven-pass write over all data locations. This method meets the DoD OS X Snow Leopard and earlier also offered a pass secure erase option that is quite excessive, and takes a very, very long time to perform. Selecting a drive will erase all volumes and partitions that were created on the drive. The time the secure erase will take is dependent on the secure erase option you selected. Selecting the Most Secure option can take a large amount of time, while the Single Pass of Zeros is quite a bit shorter.

Mac 911: How to erase your Mac's hard drive the right way

The Most Secure option is appropriate if you need to meet the DoD requirements, but be prepared for a very long wait. Once the Utilities window opens, select Disk Utility, and then follow the instructions above to perform a Secure Erase. Using the same secure erase techniques as those used for hard drives can be detrimental to an SSD, decreasing its operating lifetime because of the excessive number of writes involved.

Luckily, securely erasing an SSD is actually easier and faster. I once did a 3-pass erase on a GB HD and stopped it the next morning before it was ready. Jul 4, 4: I've done this before it takes about one and a half days for the most secure option on snow leopard for a gb hd for a iMac Jul 4, 6: How long does it take to complete a 7-pass erase on a hard disk? I did a single pass secure erase on the GB internal hard drive. On my 24" early iMac, with a 3. The erase progress box indicated that the erase would take 1 hour and 30 minutes.

I did not watch it until the end of the erase but, at the rate it was progressing, I would estimate that it took less than 2 hours to complete.


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To answer another user's remark, I don't know how interested anyone might be to uncover my data, and it is unlikely that they would have the skills and tools necessary to do it, but better spend a little computer power to avoid finding out the hard way. It took very little of my time, since I started the secure erase just before I went to sleep.

Jul 4, 9: Jul 4, I began the secure erase at Since the actual formatting of the drive takes less than a minute with Apple's Disk Utility, the disk formatting time is negligible. Therefore, the 7-pass erase on the gigabyte drive took 18 hours and 22 minutes total minutes. Jul 5, 2: Of course you are right. I was just trying to find some kind of benchmark.

As I was going to use an internal drive, I expected my secure erase to be faster. Yes it is. From Jul 5, How long does a Secure Erase take More Less.


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Communities Contact Support. Sign in. Browse Search. Ask a question. User profile for user: Mac OS X Speciality level out of ten: How long does a Secure Erase take I am erasing my internal hard drive and reinstalling the system before giving my 24" iMac Early 3. How long will it take to erase the drive using Disk Utility's Most Secure option?

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