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Honored Contributor
Posts: 23,681
Registered: ‎05-22-2016

Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

I mean total annihilation of everything on it. How did you install Windows back on it?

Honored Contributor
Posts: 48,804
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

I wipped out an iPad using dooBdoo's instructions (bless her).  I of course didnt have Windows, but I saved everything "in the cloud".  It all turned out fine.  Why don't you do a shout out for her and ask for help?

New Mexico☀️Land Of Enchantment
Honored Contributor
Posts: 31,078
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

[ Edited ]

@SilleeMee

 

GEEK SQUAD

https://youtu.be/ewisIDG-K-E

 

I agree though...@dooBdoo explains so succinctly and I trust her!

~Have a Kind Heart, Fierce Mind, Brave Spirit~
Honored Contributor
Posts: 23,681
Registered: ‎05-22-2016

Re: Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

@Kachina624@LTT1

 

I know how to wipe it clean but I don't now how to reinstall Windows after it's wiped.

 

Help @dooBdoo. Your assistance is needed. TIA

Contributor
Posts: 49
Registered: ‎11-17-2017

Re: Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

 

I think I've seen @gardenman @glb613 & @hckynut @hckynutjohn post about this.

@LilacTree too.

 

hth! @SilleeMee!

 

Honored Contributor
Posts: 12,997
Registered: ‎03-25-2012

Re: Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

Here you go.  Just make sure you have your data backed up, unless you don't want it.

 

by Tim Fisher

Updated April 02, 2018

To wipe a hard drive means to completely erase the drive of all its information. Deleting everything does not wipe a hard drive and formatting does not [always] wipe a hard drive. You'll need to take an extra step to wipe the hard drive completely.

When you format a hard drive or delete a partition, you're usually only deleting the file system, making the data invisible, or no longer blatantly indexed, but not gone. A file recovery program or special hardware can easily recover the information.

If you want to make sure that your private information is gone forever, you'll need to wipe the hard drive using special software.

Important: See Tip #2 at the bottom of the page for information on a "simple" wipe using the format command in Windows 10Windows 8Windows 7, and Windows Vista.

Follow the easy steps below to completely wipe a hard drive:

How to Wipe a Computer Hard Drive

Time Required: This could take several minutes to several hours depending on how big the drive is and what software/method you choose to wipe it with.

  1. Back up anything you want to keep. When the hard drive wipe is complete, there will be absolutely no way to get anything on the drive back.
    1. Tip: If you've already been using an online backup service, you can safely assume that all your important files are already backed up online.
    2. Important: Sometimes multiple drives exist on a single hard drive. You can view the drives (volumes) that sit on a hard drive from the Disk Management tool in Windows.
  2. Download a free data destruction program. Any of the first eight programs we recommend on that list will work great because they can be used to wipe a hard drive from outside of Windows, a necessary feature if you want to wipe the hard drive that Windows is installed on.
    1. Tip: I'm a big fan of DBAN, our first pick on that list. It's probably the most widely used hard drive wiping tool. See our How to Wipe a Hard Drive with DBAN tutorial if you're nervous about hard drive wiping or prefer a more detailed walkthrough (yes, with screenshots).
    2. Note: There are actually several ways to completely erase a hard drive but using data destruction software is the easiest and still allows the hard drive to be used again.
  1. Next, complete whatever steps are necessary to install the software or, in the case of a bootable program like DBAN, get the ISO image on a CD or DVD disc, or a USB device like a flash drive:
    1. If you're using a CD or DVD, this usually involves burning the ISO image to a disc and then booting from the disc to run the program.
    2. If you're using a flash drive or other USB drive, this usually involves burning the ISO image to the USB device and then booting from that USB drive to get started.
  2. Wipe the hard drive according to the program's instructions.
    1. Note: Most data destruction programs utilize several different methods to wipe a hard drive. If you're curious about the effectiveness or methods used to complete the hard drive wipe, see Data Sanitization Methods.
  3. After properly wiping a hard drive, you can be confident that whatever information was on the drive is now gone for good.
    1. You can now install Windows on the drive, create a new partition, sell or give away the hard drive or computer, recycle or dispose of it, restore your backed up files, or whatever else you need to do.

 

Formerly Ford1224
We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented. Elie Wiesel 1986
Honored Contributor
Posts: 23,681
Registered: ‎05-22-2016

Re: Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

Thanks @LilacTree!

 

 

Honored Contributor
Posts: 31,078
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

@SilleeMee

 

This link tells you how to factory restore your computer. HTH

 

 

https://youtu.be/N0o2KMXowUo

~Have a Kind Heart, Fierce Mind, Brave Spirit~
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 7,652
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

@SilleeMee, isn’t this forum great?  Good luck!  LM

Honored Contributor
Posts: 25,929
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Has anyone here ever wiped clean a computer hard drive?

We had to replace an old desktop but had a cousin who wanted it so DH took it to someone and had the hard drive erased and then some basic software  reinstalled to make it operational. The cost to have that done was minimal.