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How to erase a hard drive completely


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4 replies to this topic

#1 candelo

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 07:34 PM

Hi,

Can someone please advise me on how to completely remove data from a hard drive.

Thanks

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#2 Budapest

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 07:37 PM

Does this hard drive have your operating system on it?
The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it.

—George Bernard Shaw

#3 ZaneTech

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 04:11 AM

What you're reffering to is something known as a reformat. I'll presume you already have an operating system installed on your HDD (HardDiskDrive) otherwise you wouldn't really be taking anything off it.

First off, what you do is, transfer all the data from the HDD that you need such as important documents and save them onto an external HDD or CDs. Once this is done, with your computer/laptop, look for the "Product recovery" or "System recovery" CD; should have come in the box that your pc or laptop was in when you bought it. Alternatively, you might have an OS (Operating System) CD and you can use this instead.

NOTE: IF YOU ARE USING THE OS CD YOU WON'T HAVE THE DRIVERS FOR YOUR PC OR LAPTOP READILY AVAILABLE AS THEY WOULD MOST LIKELY BE ON YOUR PRODUCT RECOVERY CD. POST HERE IF YOU DON'T HAVE IT BUT IF YOU DO, MAKE SURE TO CHECK THAT YOUR PRODUCT RECOVERY CD DOES HAVE THE DRIVERS ON IT Drivers are the things that you need to install to get your hardware working at full capacity or, in some cases, working at all.

Once you have sorted that all out, put the CD in your system and reboot your computer. Make sure to go into the BIOS (this is done at the beginning when you start and it says to press F*) and change it so that it boots from CD and not from the HDD. Don't fiddle with the BIOS too much, just change it to boot from CD. Alternatively, some Computers boot from CD before they boot from HDD anyways, so if you leave t first and check if it loads the CD you won't have to fiddle with anything. You will know that it works if it loads a screen different to what you normally see :thumbsup:

Once the CD is running, just follow the on-screen instructions and it will take you through the whole process.

Best of luck!

#4 Platypus

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 04:44 AM

candelo, please don't proceed with any operations on your drive before responding to Budapest's question, and giving us more detail of exactly what you wish to achieve.

If you want to ensure that any data currently stored on the drive is obliterated, and cannot later be accessed and recovered by an unathorised party, simply re-formatting typically can't be depended on to achieve this.

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#5 Joe C

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 08:59 AM

the best way to remove all data from being retrieved from the drive, is to take it to a machine shop, have them drill a 1/2 hole straight thru the drive. After that toss the drive into an incinerator and let it burn



If you need to keep the drive and just remove all the data, then you can use a program like Killdisk to zero out the drive
http://www.killdisk.com/downloadfree.htm

Edited by Joe C, 13 July 2010 - 09:13 AM.





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