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Failed Drive Erasure

Service engineers pull failing drives from storage arrays and replace them with new drives.  The removed drive becomes the property of the service provider (typically EMC, Netapp, IBM, etc. )  However, the failed drive contains customer data.  Our solution enables customers to securely erase data from failed drives and return the drive to the service provider avoiding costly hard drive retention fee contracts.

One appliance erases all drive types including Fibre Channel, SAS/SATA, SCSI, and NVMe.

Storage Array Erasure

Data should be securely overwritten (erased) from storage arrays and services prior to their removal from the data center.  Our appliances enable our clients to erase storage arrays to NIST or DoD specs, and produce a Certificate of Erasure for each array, showing by serial number, each drive which was erased. 

LUN Erasure

Our technology enables clients to present LUNs from various hosts to the appliance and then perform a secure overwrite, to NIST or DoD specs, of that LUN.  After erasure, a Certificate of Erasure listing the LUN name is produced.  Multiple LUNs can be erased simultaneously when desired. 

Product Features

Our software performs an extensive "handshake" with the drive prior to erasure, which enables the program to understand whether it is erasing a Flash based drive or a spinning disk.  This matters, because Flash based drives need to be erased differently than spinning magnetic disks.  When our software sees a Flash drive, it will perform (automatically) an overwrite appropriate for Flash media vs. one designed for erasing magnetic drives.  This removes an element of potential human error from the equation.

Hot Pluggable when erasing drives, i.e. drives may be inserted and pulled to/from erasure streams without impacting other erasures – vs. batch mode products from competitors where no drives may be pulled (or attached) until every drive erasure has completed.
Superior Diagnostics.  In the fast changing data storage industry, we are constantly seeing new drives types and formats, i.e. 12Gb SAS, SSD's & Flash, 4K block sizes, both native and emulated.  When clients run into a drive type that either our software or hardware doesn't recognize, log and debug files collect vital information about those drives - and send that information to development.  Using that collected information, we typically are able to deliver a fix in the next release of software (downloaded via internet) and give clients the ability to erase those new drive types.

We can erase any drive without changing the block size, i.e. some are 512 bytes, others 520, a few are 528, and newer drives are now 4K block size.  Lesser software may need to reformat the drive - which may invalidate the manufacturer's warranty.  Often, lesser software won't be able to address the drive to erase it - leading to a lower percentage of drives successfully erased.  Some of our clients successfully erase 90% of their failed drives - no other vendor can approach this number.

Interrupted work is not lost.  Life isn't perfect, and neither is our appliance.  In anticipation of this, we keep a log file of each drive or LUN during erasure.  That log contains very specific information about the erasure of its drive, including last block successfully erased, so in the event of an interruption we are able to continue erasure of that drive from the last successfully erased block.  This matters when you are erasing large capacity drives and are near completion. 
Certified Erasure Report – erasure reports are pulled from the log file.  The log file contains a hashing algorithm which flags the erasure report in the event the file has been altered.  Erasure reports may be output to secure PDF, CSV, HTML, and XML files.
It's fast.  Really fast when erasing arrays.  When erasing a few hundred drives simultaneously in an array, the system bus can become saturated and slow the per drive erasure speed from 100+MB/sec to maybe 5MB/sec.  Lesser software has to accept this limitation, but we built in a function that takes advantage of an embedded drive command called Writesame that limits the amount of data that must be transferred over the system bus, enabling our clients to finish their work much faster. 
We use a friendly GUI interface that is easily customizable to the array or drives being erased (below). From this GUI a user can right click and pull up a menu of options giving them the ability to view a log file, restart an erasure, resume an erasure from the last failure, and flash an LED.   
Data Erasure software GUI for erasing storage arrays


Red-X Anchor


Portability: Medium

Once a year shipment is okay.

Weight: Approx. 44 lbs

Erasing Failed Drives

The RED-X is a versatile erasure appliance best suited for medium to large data center applications.  The front of the appliance houses 8 dedicated bays for erasing any combination of Fibre Channel, SAS, SATA, or SCSI hard drives.  Drives must be removed from their drive tray (or caddy) to be inserted into the appliance.  Erasures of failed drives are performed at maximum write speed of the drive being erased.  The RED-X may be placed on a table top or rack mounted.

Erasing Storage Arrays

Erasing storage arrays – the RED-X is well suited for erasing most storage arrays.  The appliance will need to be placed on a crash cart and moved in proximity to the array to be erased.  A customer supplied keyboard, display, and mouse are also necessary.

Red X

Red X

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Mobile Lab Anchor

Mobile Erasure Lab 

Portability: Low
Built to stay within the data center.
Do not ship often.
Weight: 250-400 lbs
Erasing Failed Drives

The Mobile Lab is designed for deployment in larger data centers.  With the ability to erase high volumes of failed drives without removing drives from the drive tray, including Fibre Channel, SAS, SATA, or SCSI.  Simply attach the failed drive to the appropriate drive connector on a slide out tray and start erasing – no fiddling with drive tray removal.  Erasures of failed rives are performed at maximum write speeds of the drive being erased.  The Mobile Lab is built in a half rack enclosure on rolling wheels with an integrated Keyboard, Display, and Mouse.

Our v-block setup, shown below, enables easier mounting of the drive to the drive connector for single drive erasures.

Erasing Storage Arrays

The Mobile Lab is well suited for erasing most storage arrays.  Simply roll the appliance to the array which needs to be erased and get started – everything needed to perform erasure is included.


Cypher2 Anchor
Portability: High

Shipped properly in a custom case, this machine holds up well.

Weight: Approx. 25 lbs

Erasing Failed Drives

The Cypher 2 can have two integrated drawers for erasing failed drives, plus an optional Fan-out kit so that Fibre Channel, SAS, SATA, and SCSI drives may be erased using this appliance.  This is a medium duty machine that runs the same software as its relatives (RED-X, PEEK, and Mobile Lab).  When using the optional Fan-out kit, individual drives may be erased without removing drives from their drive caddy.  If optional internal disk drawers are included, failed drives will need to be removed from their drive tray to be inserted into the appliance for erasure.  A customer supplied keyboard, display, and mouse are required to use the system.

Erasing Storage Arrays

The Cypher2 is well suited for erasing most storage arrays.  The end-user needs to supply a keyboard, display and mouse as well as a crash cart.  Arrays are erased via direct attach to disk drawers using custom cables (supplied) that vary according to machine type/model being erased.

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