How to delete, format and erase drives?
Delete and format drives are the daily operations to free up disk space, we’ll make a simple guide on how to do that with some screenshots.
Erase drives, on the other hand, are not that commonly used but a required step before you sell your old hard drives or donate them, to erase them is to make them clean like they were out of the factory, besides, erased drives won’t keep sensitive data or other personal info.
How to delete drives?
We can delete drives in Disk management, you can press right-click on the Start button and choose Disk management to run (Windows 10 and Windows 8), then in the disk map, again right-click on the target partition and click Delete Volume, you'll then be prompted to confirm this operation, click Yes to it.
How to format drives?
There're many ways to format drives, you can do it in Windows Explorer, command line prompt, and Disk management, we'll use the Disk management way, since we just opened this tool due to the above mentioned method.
Still the same, right-click on the target drive and choose Format… and confirm this step when prompted with warning message.
How to erase drives?
Deleted and formatted drives or partitions can be easily recovered by data recovery programs, most of which have the option to recovery partitions directly. So when you don't want recovery anything from any formatted drives, erase them instead
Windows doesn't have default tool to erase drives, so we can use third-party data sanitization software instead. Download ByebyeData Eraser for example, install it and then run it as administrator, then:
Click Entire drives and then click or select target drive(s), then in the security column specify a wiping method for the drives, default setting is zero-filling, then click Erase Now and confirm.