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Are "clean all" and Secure Erase the same?

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a c 99 G Storage
January 12, 2012 4:15:09 PM

Is DISKPART's "clean all" command and a "Secure Erase" program the same for SSDs?

For those who don't know what either is, here you go:

DISKPART is part of Windows command prompt in DOS (XP or newer. It replaced FDISK). I think "clean" erases or resets the MBR of the drive, including all partitions, etc. And "clean all" write zeros to all the blocks of the drive, not erasing, but zeroing out. I don't know if it works for drives in RAID (why not? It sees it), as I always remove the array, or set SATA to ACHI from RAID.

Secure Erase is a program included in OCZ Tooldbox for SSD updates, etc. There are other secure erase programs, like HDDErase (won't see my hard drives, because of my chipsets), MDD (slow), and DBAN (really slow, and writes, not deletes). I think secure erase tells the drive itself, beit SSD or HDD, to reset itself to a "fresh" state using the drives internal controller. I don't think it over-writes or erases anything.

I know "clean all" works, as I can run it from the Windows 7 install disk (using repair option, getting to a command prompt).

But, OCZ Secure Erase must be run in Windows (7), and you can't erase the boot drive(s). This, in itself, is a big PITA. I do have a work around, as I have another PC that I can plug the drive(s) into to run it as a secondary, non-boot drive. But then there a "frozen" or "locked" states for the drive(s). I use DISKPART to "offline" the drives, then I can use secure erase. So I have to get into both anyway.

I've done both, clean all first, then secure erase. But I don't like having to crack the case open on both PC the reset my SSDs.

For so those in the know, are they the same? I know writing to SSDs too many times is bad, but one more time out of 10,000 ain't gonna kill it.

More about : clean secure erase

a c 289 G Storage
January 12, 2012 5:40:17 PM

Judging from this: http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/52129-disk-clean-c... , and I have found SevenForums to be pretty reliable, clean all writes zeros to every sector and is not the same as Secure Erase. Going mostly by "You do not want to use clean all on a SSD disk often. Having every sector written over to 0 on a SSD can help reduce it's life span."

You and the dogs should visit chesteracorgi some day. Doggy play date.
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a c 523 G Storage
January 13, 2012 1:50:03 AM

foscooter said:
I think secure erase tells the drive itself, beit SSD or HDD, to reset itself to a "fresh" state using the drives internal controller. I don't think it over-writes or erases anything.


Yes it does.

When you Secure Erase any SSD that supports the ATA command, a charge pump sends an electrical charge to all of the NAND chips on the drive and it returns the drive to "Fresh-out-of-the-box" condition. You then essentially have a blank drive that needs to be initiallized and formatted again before it can be used.


But, OCZ Secure Erase must be run in Windows (7), and you can't erase the boot drive(s). This, in itself, is a big PITA. I do have a work around, as I have another PC that I can plug the drive(s) into to run it as a secondary, non-boot drive. But then there a "frozen" or "locked" states for the drive(s). I use DISKPART to "offline" the drives, then I can use secure erase. So I have to get into both anyway.

I've done both, clean all first, then secure erase. But I don't like having to crack the case open on both PC the reset my SSDs. said:
But, OCZ Secure Erase must be run in Windows (7), and you can't erase the boot drive(s). This, in itself, is a big PITA. I do have a work around, as I have another PC that I can plug the drive(s) into to run it as a secondary, non-boot drive. But then there a "frozen" or "locked" states for the drive(s). I use DISKPART to "offline" the drives, then I can use secure erase. So I have to get into both anyway.

I've done both, clean all first, then secure erase. But I don't like having to crack the case open on both PC the reset my SSDs.


Use OCZ’s Linux boot disk to secure erase your drive.
All you have to do is download a Linux .iso file and burn it to a CD or USB thumb drive.
You then reboot your pc and change your 1st boot device to the CD or USB drive.
Once you’re in Linux you just double-click an icon that says "Secure Erase". You don't have to know any Linux commands, just double-click an icon.

The longest part of the whole process is creating the boot disk the 1st time.
The next time forward when you want to secure erase your drive the whole process takes less than 5 minutes. All you’re doing from then on is just changing your 1st boot device in BIOS.

You can also use the same disk to update the firmware on your OCZ drives. It downloads the latest firmware version so you don’t have to burn a new disk whenever a new firmware version is released.

I like using it better than the OCZ Toolbox to update the firmware on my drives because it updates the firmware on ALL attached OCZ drives. With the Toolbox you have to run the update process separately for each OCZ drive you have.

Here's the link for the Linux bootable tool: http://www.ocztechnologyforum.com/forum/showthread.php?...
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a c 99 G Storage
January 13, 2012 5:37:50 PM

Dereck47: Oh yah! I forgot about that!

Burning a Linux Bootable CD will be much easier than whatever I was doing (did it last night :( ), playing swap the drives between cases. I'll even try to make a bootable USB.

And updating the firmware for all drives sounds great! I just got 2 drives, one had FW v2.15, the other v2.11. Go figure.

So I'll stay away from DISKPART clean all, and stay with Secure Erase. I don't do it often! I just have installed Windows a few times lately, due to faults of my own.

But on the OCZ website, there is no mention of Secure Erase for Linux. How do you do it? And it appears as if the firmware update is codeline command based.
Unless you install it the way the link provides (duh!). My bad.
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a c 99 G Storage
January 13, 2012 5:38:13 PM

Best answer selected by foscooter.
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