13 March 2015

A thumb drive designed to fry a computer

An article about the bomb-drive, first posted on the Russian website Habrahabr.ru by its designer, describes its design and intended effect:
"The basic idea of the USB drive is quite simple. When we connect it up to the USB port, an inverting DC/DC converter runs and charges capacitors to -110V. When the voltage is reached, the DC/DC is switched off. At the same time, the filed transistor opens. It is used to apply the -110V to signal lines of the USB interface. When the voltage on capacitors increases to -7V, the transistor closes and the DC/DC starts. The loop runs till everything possible is broken down."
Scary. Of course, anyone who picks up a thumb drive and pops it into their computer is asking for trouble.


  1. i am going to try it now. ha-ha, it dodn'r wo

  2. Reading other entries on the topic it seems as though this will only kill the USB port that the drive is attached to rather than the whole system, unless there is poor grounding for that port.

  3. I'd like to put a few of these around our building to identify bad behaviour.
    No matter how many times you tell people NOT to connect unknown media to the company's devices... they do.
    ...And I'd much rather fry one of our laptops than expose our company's intellectual property because Jane or John Doe on floor 7 found a CD or thumb drive labeled 'bitcoin_account', 'j_beeber demo', or 'I_love_you'.

    1. Perhaps that's why the author "is actually considering a Kickstarter campaign or something of the sort" - to market them to corporate IT directors...

  4. Actually, I'd buy one of these the next time I upgrade my computer and 'toast' my old one ...

  5. This will not fry your entire computer unless there is a physical problem with it.


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