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How do you manually erase data from a microchip? Answered

What will happen to a microchip if I short out all the pins together?  It is not in a working circuit, I just want to delete the data on it.  I really don't know how or want to connect it to a computer so somebody please help!


No device I can think of is erased just by shorting its pins.


Though running a current beyond the chip's rating through it may let the Magic Smoke out. On the other hand, that's really the same answer as "hit it with a hammer.".

But hitting it with a hammer won't release the magic smoke. It just frightens the magic smoke into stunned inaction.

What microchip? If it's hard in the the silicon you can't without destroying it.
If it's soft, shorting the pins won't do it.
What is it?


Yeah, I've met him in person, and chatted with him....

From the pen of the minor god, Bob Pease of National Semiconductor

On Bob Widlar, one of the great analogue/linear designers

We still have a sign around our lab, "This is not a black-smith shop." But there were times when Bob would discover he had wasted a day or two, just because one bad part had screwed up his circuit. He would bring this bad part -- a capacitor, a pot, a transistor, an IC, or whatever -- over to the vise and lay it on the anvil part. Then he would calmly, methodically beat it with a hammer until the smallest remaining part was indistinguishable from the dust on the floor. Then he would go back to work and get the right answer. He explained that it makes you feel much better if you do this, and, you know that bad part will never come around again and goof you up. He was right. And I recommend that you join me in doing this "Widlarizing" when a bad component fools you. You will feel a lot better.

....we ALWAYS induct our new employees into "Widlarizing" faulty parts.

What type of chip is it? The printed numbers & letters on the chip will help identify it.
Shorting out the leads on an unpowered chip will do nothing at all to it. I've never found any programmable chip that can be erased by this method.