BCWipe Total WipeOut FAQ

Using BCWipe Total WipeOut

01. When wiping my disks with BCWipe Total WipeOut, computer power supply failed. Now my system asks for HDD password during boot-up. How can I get rid of this password?

Please prepare a boot media using the BCWipe Total WipeOut Wizard. Important: select 'Start BCWipe Total WipeOut in interactive mode' radio button on the 'Start options' page!

Next, boot your system using the boot media and look at the BCWipe Total WipeOut disks list. Locked disks will have 'LCK' status. Select a locked disk, press 'D' to invoke the disk menu and select the 'Unlock disk' command. If disk was locked by BCWipe Total WipeOut, the 'LCK' status will disappear.

02. I attached eSATA (or SCSI) disk to a system running BCWipe Total WipeOut, but the application does not detect it.

Some controllers do not advertise new device arrival to the system. Please press 'R' to rescan disks.

03. Can BCWipe Total WipeOut wipe bad blocks?

Yes, BCWipe Total WipeOut supports ATA SECURITY ERASE command. It erases entire disk are including bad or remapped sectors.

04. BCWipe Total WipeOut reports that ATA SECURITY ERASE is frozen. There is also 'ATA SECURITY ERASE is blocked by BIOS' record in the log.

Many modern BIOS disable ATA SECURITY ERASE command to prevent data loss. Please set the disk status to Not present/Disabled/None (exact value depends on BIOS version) and reboot.

05. Can BCWipe Total WipeOut wipe hidden disk areas?

Yes, BCWipe Total WipeOut can reset HPA or DCO hidden areas. It also supports ATA SECURITY ERASE command.

06. Can BCWipe Total WipeOut wipe Apple Mac systems?

Yes, BCWipe Total WipeOut boot media runs on Intel-based Macs (2006 or newer). If your Mac doesn’t have a CD/DVD drive please use the USB stick option.

07. I created .ISO file in BCWipe Total WipeOut Wizard. What next?

ou need CD-RW or DVD-RW drive. Insert blank CD or DVD and double-click .ISO file. Then follow Windows .ISO image writer instructions

08. Can BCWipe Total WipeOut wipe data stored on Solid State Drives (SSD) or Flash Memory?

Solid State Drives (SSD) use different media and storage technologies than conventional Hard Disk Drives. Since SSD uses compression and over-provisioning to increase device performance and lifetime, a single overwriting pass is not enough to clean a whole storage and traditional schemes may not guarantee the desired result.

Before selecting the wiping scheme to use for the wiping process, you should take into account the following factors:

  • Due to SSD's internal compression, only random passes can be effective on some drives
  • By featuring reserved area (typically 7-20%), a single wiping pass has no chance to overwrite the entire SSD; 2 passes minimum are required
  • Frequent or massive SSD overwrites reduce the drive lifetime

To achieve the best wiping results on SSD with BCWipe Total WipeOut use the 3-pass DoE wiping scheme and enable 'Replace the last wiping pass by ATA ERASE command' (last step in Wizard for BCWipe Total WipeOut).

While the first two passes overwrite the drive with minimal impact on lifetime, the last pass runs the ATA SECURITY ERASE hardware sanitization command followed by TRIM for the entire device (if supported by the drive).

We recommend to use the latest SSD firmware offered by drive vendors. According to a study conducted by the University of California, San Diego, some SSD firmware failed to implement ATA SECURITY ERASE correctly.