Completely erase computer hard drive data
How to completely erase computer hard drive data, including files, folders, free space and even the entire disk when I want to sell some of my old pc and the rest to donate? Although it is not sensitive data on the disk, I still don't want my private information go public, any suggestions?
If the secure program you recommend can boot from CD will then be the best, I have old pcs, some even installed Windows XP, also I have Windows Vista installed on another PC, I don't want to reinstall or wipe system out, and I just want to clean off data in them. What software shall I download? Not command line tools, I really not good at commands.
Actually, there're many programs can do great jobs on data sanitization. Freeware like DBAN and SDelete, are both powerful tools to make disk clean, although they are both command-based tools. Speaking of graphic design software, ByebyeData Eraser may be the choice, since it has all the functions DBAN and SDelete have, and it has more advanced features they don't build. In ByebyeData Eraser, you can erase disks, drives (partitions), free space, files and folders, with the built-intool create bootable media, you can even erase system drive and the disk running Windows System (From Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 to Windows 10 or Windows Server 2016).
In view of your situation aforementioned, keeping system and wipe data clean, you can erase all data partitions and erase free space on C Drive to make sure private data left no traces to software capable of recover data. In fact, there is no need to boot from CD if you don't want to erase system partition, although ByebyeData Eraser does have the option to create one.
ByebyeData Eraser to erase data and keep system:
- Uninstall unnecessary programs in C Drive:
In Windows 7, click Start Menu > Control Panel > Uninstall a program > click Uninstall on the program you rarely used.
In Windows 10, press Windows Button > Settings > System > Apps & features > Click one program > Uninstall.
If you cannot see the program list in the uninstall window, find the folder and directly delete it, or follow our steps to erase singe files or folders later.
- Run ByebyeData Eraser and click Erase Free Space, in the extended window, click C Drive and click one erasing method, DoD 5220-22. M method is available too.
- Click Erase Now and confirm it.
Free space left by deleted files and programs are now cleaned in C Drive, we didn't touch any of your system files. but if some files or programs cannot find it the uninstall list, we can locate the folders and click Erase files and folders option in ByebyeData Eraser.
We can now click Erase Drives again to wipe out all the data partitions in the same way. Please note that Erasing progress may take some time, especially when you're using large capacity hard drives.
But if want to completely erase hard drive data including OS, you can click Bootable Media to create a bootable CD first and click Erase Disks to wipe out everything.