snippets > wipe-filesystem-and-partitions-from-devices

July 23, 2020

Wipe any filesystem data and partitions from devices on Linux

wipefs should work in most cases to clean filesystems.

# View filesystem data from device
wipefs /dev/<my_device>

# Wipe any filesystem found
wipefs --all /dev/<my_device>

If wipefs can’t detect a filesystem, you can quickly wipe the header data of the device with dd.

dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/<my_device> bs=1M count=100 oflag=direct,dsync status=progress

You may need to restart your machine to make the filesystem deletion known to the OS, if your device is a “LVM2_member” for instance.

Also, as a last resort, you can completely wipe the device, if everything else failed.

dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/<my_device> bs=1M count=5000000 oflag=direct,dsync status=progress

To clear partiptions, sgdisk will serve you well.

sgdisk --zap-all /dev/<my_device>