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Someone has set a HDD password on my Dell Laptop and has forgotten it. Now I have lost HDD access.

I've heard there's no way to recover HDD password, then I saw some tools like HDD Unlock Wizard which does the job, but the price is almost equivalent to a new HDD. Then I'd rather buy a new HDD instead.

Is there any free utility to recover or remove the HDD password? I don't mind if the data is lost.

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If you don't mind losing the data, can't you just reformat, or does the HDD password prevent that as well? – ChrisF Nov 13 '09 at 9:47
if it's a firmware HDD password (ATA password), it would prevent reformatting, at least from a controller chip that honored the password. – quack quixote Nov 30 '09 at 12:04
What password? What laptop? – Ярослав Рахматуллин Jul 19 '13 at 7:15
up vote 1 down vote accepted

In an answer to a similar question I found a link to an article on HDD passwords. The HDD password is defined as part of the ATA specifications, and it's implemented in the drive firmware. This is a simple lock, but since it's implemented in the drive, it can't be bypassed by clearing CMOS or connecting the drive to another system. Some technical knowledge (and possibly some additional hardware) is required.

It's not possible to recover the password (at least not without disassembling the drive controller chip), but getting around it could be accomplished with additional hardware. If it's your laptop's boot drive, you'll need to boot to CD/USB or connect the drive to another system.

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Have you tried this software:

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The utility is said to be free, but according to their webpage you need to pay for the service. – Wang Dingwei Nov 16 '09 at 0:58

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