//Tips tagged dd
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Give the finger to forensics.

dd if=/dev/zero of=DELETEME; sync; rm -f DELETEME

will zero all free space on your partition. (/dev/random can be used if you're paranoid)


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Backup your MBR:
dd if=/dev/sda of=/root/mbr.img bs=1 count=512

Restore MBR:
dd if=/root/mbr.img of=/dev/sda bs=1 count=512

Restore only bootstrap (part of MBR):
dd if=/temp/mbr.img of=/dev/sda bs=1 count=446

Restore only partition table (part of MBR):
dd if=/temp/mbr.img of=/dev/sda skip=446 seek=446 bs=1 count=64

If you want to learn more about mbr check here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Master_boot_record


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You can use the following to output your microphone to a remote computer's speaker:

dd if=/dev/dsp | ssh -c arcfour -C username@host dd of=/dev/dsp

This will output the sound from your microphone port to the ssh target computer's speaker port. The sound quality is very bad, so you will hear a lot of hissing.


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Simply convert .nrg (Nero format) images to .iso format images with dd:
Nero writes a 300kb header onto the iso, so dropping the first 300kb results in a .iso format image.

dd bs=1k if=NRG_FILE of=ISO_FILE skip=300


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Recently I needed several files of certain sizes for testing the transfer speed between two machines. Files like this can easily be created with the dd command which lets you create an empty file of desired size.

$ dd if=/dev/zero of=dummy_file bs=1k count=2048
2048+0 records in
2048+0 records out
2097152 bytes (2.1 MB) copied, 0.0190557 s, 110 MB/s

$ ls -lh dummy_file
-rw-r--r-- 1 user group 2.0M 2009-05-11 10:05 dummy_file

/dev/zero is a special file that provides as many null characters (ASCII NUL, 0×00) as are read from it. In the above example, the bs option sets both input and output block size to 1k. The count option specifies 2048 input blocks, so that command will create a file (named dummy_file) with a size of 2MB (2048k).


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