Building A Simple Degausser

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    Hi Guys,

    Long time, no posts … I’m retired now so I concentrate more on writing (and DIY) than IT :)

    I have some hard drives I want to get rid of (old SCSI ones, no idea what’s on them) and, whilst I am aware I could simply hit them many times with a hammer or throw them in a fire, I’d prefer to demagnetise them. I also run a small home computer support business so it occurs to me that if I did have such a facility I could assure customers that any old drives they give me (for example, when upgrading) will be completely wiped.

    Now, a degausser (as I understand it) is just a magnetic field generator, is that right?

    It occurs to me that if I were to get hold of, say, a 15cm plastic pipe, neatly wrap a lot of wire around it and attach it to the mains in such a fashion that current flows in a loop (live to neutral), that would generate a magnetic field. The question then becomes firstly, would such a field be strong enough to destroy the data on a hard disc placed inside said pipe (UK current is 240V, 13A, alternating)?

    Another question … would a degausser destroy data on an old style DLT or Ultrium tapes?

    Thx :)


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