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Whats the best command to erase everything from a partition without deleating the partition and re-making it? I just want all the data gone.
rm -rf *

That will do it if you are in the top level of the first folder on the partition...but be careful, it will erase the entire file system if issued from /
you can also just recreate the file system on the drive ...

if it is /dev/hda4 ... to get a new ext3 file system ...

mke2fs -j /dev/hda4

tune2fs -c0 -i0 /dev/hda4

or on a system with reiserfs ...

mkreiserfs /dev/hda4
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