Building an SAS drive eraser from old desktop PC

We have a bunch of old SAS drives from retired servers and they need to be erased or destroyed, so we figured the most cost effective solution would be to get an old desktop, drop an SAS card in it, and use it as a designated drive eraser. We've got no time frame for when this needs to be done so if we can only two a handful each day, it's no big deal.

Has anyone ever used a rig like this before and will it work as intended?

Here's what we were looking at buying - https://www.amazon.com/SAS9211-8I-8PORT-Int-Sata-Pcie/dp/B002RL8I7M

Additionally, I assume we'll need one of those breakout cables so we can connect multiple drives at once.

Will Darik's Boot and Nuke detect the SAS drives and erase like normal, or is there another app I should use?
LVL 16
William FulksSystems Analyst & WebmasterAsked:
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David Johnson, CD, MVPConnect With a Mentor OwnerCommented:
@davidfavor just using Linux isn't the be all and end all of everything.
SAS is backward compatible with SATA, SATA controllers don't support SAS drives.

Back to the question, yes you will need a forward breakout cable.. (note the term forward)
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David FavorLinux/LXD/WordPress/Hosting SavantCommented:
Install latest Ubuntu on your old machine, then use scrub.

http://manpages.ubuntu.com/manpages/artful/man1/scrub.1.html provides details.

Using scrub is much easier than other approaches + does a very good job.
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Tom CieslikIT EngineerCommented:
Are you going to re-use those drives somewhere ?
If not, why not just hammer it ?
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Dr. KlahnPrincipal Software EngineerCommented:
I'm with Tom.  Even if you've got several hundred drives, figure the time to build a system to erase them, and the time to erase and validate each drive -- $100/hour internal recharge -- and it's probably a money-losing effort to try to resell them, plus an annoyance dealing with fleabay.  There is not much value in used SAS drives.

If you're not going to resell the drives there's no need to erase them before destruction.  Use the Engineer's Drive Dequalifier below, make two passes on each drive, and call it done.  

http://www.truevalue.com/product/Hand-Power-Tools/Hammers-Mallets-Sledges/Sledge-Hammers/4-Lb-Double-Face-Engineer-s-Hammer/pc/5/c/77/sc/1365/10132.uts
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William FulksSystems Analyst & WebmasterAuthor Commented:
Hammering them is kind of dangerous and we have about 60 drives to do.

What about the power connectors? Will I need a special power supply or can I get adapters?
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David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
SAS connectors have the power connector integrated with the data connector (not separate units like SATA) i.e. it is one connector not two connectors.  the controller will probably have a power connector.
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Gerald ConnollyCommented:
Find a company that will put them through a chipper thats the most secure way to wipe a disk

Supposedly its possible with the right equipment to retrieve some data from a disk even after a DoD erase cycle, and dont forget the data stored in the bad blocks that a software erase program will not be able to touch.
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Gerald ConnollyCommented:
Something like this https://www.geek.com/chips/meet-the-hard-drive-disintegrator-679721/ its old, but it shows a device built to chip/shred disk drives
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andyalderCommented:
Retired server/SAN hard disks can be their worth in gold if your hardware maintenance customer shouts out about demanding like-for-like replacements. Most 3Gb/s SAS HBAs work with DBAN and there's no benefit of using a faster card and of course there's no difference between a PC and a server as far as being a disk eraser is concerned,

Thumbs up for the hammer, once you smash the aluminium casting and give the platters a second hit they're toast, an electron microscope may be able to correctly read a sector or two but it's just as likely it mis-reads it so even valid data isn't trustworthy,
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William FulksSystems Analyst & WebmasterAuthor Commented:
Unless you're going to try and answer my question about the hardware required, please stop offering alternative destructive methods.
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andyalderConnect With a Mentor Commented:
You just need a SAS HBA (not RAID controller) plus cables such as http://www.scsi4me.com/i3229-1mc-sff-8484-to-4-sff-8482-fanout-sas-drive-cable-int-sas-32-multilane-sas-drive-power-x-4-0-5m-replaces.html - that's a 4 way SAS cable with power tap, there are also single port SAS cables with power tap. That cable is SFF-8484 though so for older 3Gb cards, I think your card has SFF-8087 though so http://www.scsi4me.com/lsi-07-00021-01-molex-74562-7500-internal-minisas-sff-8087-to-4-sff-8482-w-4-pin-power.html

scsi4me has just about every cable you would ever need to connect storage together.
the bottom of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serial_Attached_SCSI has good pictures of most SAS plugs.
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andyalderCommented:
Well? You've got specs for HBA, cables and software what more do you need?
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William FulksSystems Analyst & WebmasterAuthor Commented:
I think we're good, and I appreciate everyone's help and suggestions. I'd much rather use violence over tech as it would be a great tension breaker for the office, but that's just not a safe option!

We're going to order some parts and make sure we can get it all working, then I'll assign out parts.
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