WhiteCanyon VP Nathan Jones walks me through a live demo of WipeDrive using a VMware ESXi 6.7 VM in TinkerTry’s home lab!

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White Canyon Software has been in the business of certified drive wipes for over 21 years! It’s about time I had a look for myself, here’s their WipeDrive 9 Product Page.

Disclosure
This unpaid video demonstrates WipeDrive by WhiteCanyon. Note, WhiteCanyon has run an occasional ad on TinkerTry.com within the past year, but their product is consistent with the theme of my site and I reached out to them to do this video.

Some hurried home lab enthusiasts may find themselves doing a DBAN (Darik’s Boot and Nuke) to get a drive wipe done before disposal or resale, or even something a little more elegant like Parted Magic. But when it comes to doing some actual consulting, quick-and-dirty isn’t going to cut it. Let me explain.

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During my recent revisit to the federal sector last year, I spent considerable time in the DC area doing hands-on consulting again, much like I had done in the early 2000s. This experience got me thinking that it sure would be good to bone up on how a proper drive wipe is done these days, with all the right certification documentation to prove that it was done properly. I’ve had some experience with this at prior jobs where customers paid more to choose the drive retention option to never allow a drive out of the datacenter, or they’d just pay a consultant to do the drive wipes for them. What about if a consultant wants to do a drive wipe themselves?

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So I reached out to White Canyon and I got a rather quick response. The VP of Sales offered to go through the product with me, along with its positioning in the marketplace. We fired up a web meeting, I hit the record button, we introduced ourselves, and we got going with the demonstration. I quite enjoyed the whole experience, I hope you will too, when you watch the video below.

WIPEDRIVEinESXi-by-Paul-Braren-at-TinkerTry
ISO mounted in a VM, with an NVMe drive passed through. Unsupported but convenient.

I had this crazy idea that a little twist might be fun, and that figuring out if I could also get their product working not just when booted from an ISO, but also from a running VMware ESXi host. How? How about about SATA drive pass through for motherboards that support it, or in my particular configuration, NVMe pass through for the NVMe SSD I had on hand. For those interested, I’ve documented how that’s done here, and for this run, I chose these VM settings (way overkill) using just my ESXi 6.7 Update 3 home lab, a stock 8 core Supermicro SuperServer Bundle:

  • CPU 2
  • Memory 4 GB
  • Guest OS Linux
  • Guest OS Version Ubuntu Linux (64-bit)
  • CD/DVD drive 1 / Datastore ISO File / wd-enterprise-dongle.iso

While full access to the underlying hardware should be available when you pass through a drive using SATA passthrough, NVMe passthrough, or even RDM mappings, I’d recommend going with a fully supported native boot if you’re actually doing consulting, not just preparing for it. Yes, normal people would use a fully supported configuration, imagine that!

Activate-WipeDrive
ISO mounted via iKVM, a supported method of booting WipeDrive.

The process is something just like this:

  • Download latest wd-enterprise-dongle.iso
  • Use Rufus to create a bootable USB flash drive out of it
  • Shutdown the system
  • Insert the drives to wipe, and remove all others if you can, I used a Samsung 960 M.2 SSD to demonstrate
  • Power up, then choose F11 (or similar) for the one-time boot device selection, picking the USB drive
  • Alternatively, use something like iLO, iDRAC, or in Supermicro’s case, iKVM, to remotely mount the ISO that you’re booting from

Hopefully this video below gives you enough of a feel for the product that you might consider giving it a go for yourself. They are very fast at turning around key requests, and of course they handle secure locations where a local key (rather than cloud activation) is required.

Video

Screenshots

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Disclosure
This unpaid video demonstrates WipeDrive by WhiteCanyon. Note, WhiteCanyon has run an occasional ad on TinkerTry.com within the past year, but their product is consistent with the theme of my site and I reached out to them to do this video.


See also at TinkerTry

how-to-configure-vmdirectpath-pass-through-of-nvme-using-vsphere-client

parted-magic-secure-erase-m2-nvme-update

See also

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