I just dropped off an old computer for electronic recycling. Of course I did not want to leave all my personal data on the computer’s internal hard drive. One option would be to use a software utility to reformat the hard drive. But I decided to use a much faster — and I think more permanent — method to disable the hard drive mechanism.
This was my low-tech method:
- I removed the hard drive from the old computer.
- Placed the hard drive on a piece of cardboard in my driveway…
- …then pounded it several times with a heavy wood-chopping ax.
As you can see from the before and after photos, I’m quite certain the data will not be recoverable.