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prevent access to a hard drive completely

My internal hard disk is dead: it makes a strange noise and remain in the position on indefinitely. I have installed Linux on an external hard drive (and I boot from a CD since this is an old laptop not being able to boot from USB). I would like to prevent the kernel to access the internal hard drive completely. Even if I do not access it; the kernel read a bit from it; among other to get information on the partition table. Is it possible to prevent the kernel to even see the drive? This is an IDE hard disk.


PS I am not currently on Debian but I like the list (and I am sure the answer to this question should be generic)

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