Any way to WRITE-PROTECT an external HDD?

Discussion in 'Computer Software and Operating Systems' started by ravihpa, Jan 20, 2016.

  1. ravihpa
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    ravihpa GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Hi guys,

    I have a 1TB external HDD, FILLED TO THE BRIM with my precious backup of movies that I've collected all these years and some PC games.

    My friend is insisting I dump the entire collection of movies onto his PC, but am just afraid what if any virus or spyware or some other shit that's infected his PC will screw up the data on my HDD.

    Hence, I wanted to know, is there someway I can WRITE PROTECT my external HDD so that even if I connect my HDD to his PC, it can ONLY READ AND COPY/DUMP stuff off my HDD and not be able to write anything to it? I just wanna be safe.

    I would really appreciate it if you guys can help me out with this :)

    Thanx a lot in advance. Desperately waiting for a reply :)

    PS: My internal HDDs are full, so I can't even back it all up on my PC before giving him my external for the dump.
     
  2. Originality

    Originality Chibi-neko

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    I've had a quick look online and can only find three main ways to do it, however I think two of them only apply to your own computer. Plugging it into a different computer would lose the effect.

    The one that should work on any computer (I think) is to use NTFS permissions on the drive (of course, this assumes it's formatted to NTFS and not FAT32 - FAT32 requires an extra step to convert it). Right clicking the drive, properties, security, then editing the "Everyone" permissions to Deny Full Control, Modify and Write permissions. Remember to add permissions for your account for Full Control and Modify or you may be locked out too.

    Instructions pulled from this site. I can't say for sure it'll work, but enabling Write Lock in the registry or using a "Deep Freeze" app probably won't work, so NTFS permissions seems like your best bet.
     
    Last edited by Originality, Jan 20, 2016 - Reason: silly typo
  3. clubmaster

    clubmaster Member

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    Does not answer your question, but might be a solution to your concern:

    Boot some linux live distribution on your friends computer and copy over the data. This way you can assure that the operating system is clean.
     
    Pacheko17 likes this.
  4. Pacheko17

    Pacheko17 かっこい男の子

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    I second this.
     
  5. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    The ntfs permissions stuff is probably your best bet, however it is easy enough to override them -- my Linux setups do not care, XP if you have a big boy version (pro or enterprise or something) will tend not to care if you are an admin, being much like Linux then mac will not care (though I have not used all the various ntfs reading products as some were paid software).
    Equally said user can always run takeown and/or iacls https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc753024.aspx http://ss64.com/nt/icacls.html

    Either way you might still end up with some boot sector and autorun fun -- your files might be fine but you would still have to clear that up.

    So yeah boot a liveCD or tidy up your friend's machine first. Option 2. If you have a laptop (or a raspberry pi or something like that) then do a network share and set that to read only. Might not be as fast though, especially if it means USB2 is involved somewhere in this.