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suzycat1
Bronze

How to "erase" a hard drive?

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I have an old Dell Dimension PC that runs on Windows that I want to donate or give away, as I recently upgraded to an Inspiron.  I have heard that even though you delete things and send to recycle bin, that it never really "goes away".  How do I clean out the hard drive so that none of my personal information can be found?

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RobinBredin
Diamond

Re: How to "erase" a hard drive?

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Only companies will have the equipment to scrub an HD. What I would do is to take out the HD, and ask them to put in their own HD. This will mean that they will have to a clean install, but it will protect your private data.

      

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shesagordie
Diamond

Re: How to "erase" a hard drive?

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suzycat1


I've found Darik's Boot and Nuke, very effective for erasing all the data from a hard drive.

It's a funny name, but a good product.


Bev.

 

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Forum Member since 2001
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SlamX
Gold

Re: How to "erase" a hard drive?

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Also Killdisk and Eraser work well.

suzycat1
Bronze

Re: How to "erase" a hard drive?

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I went to the site that you linked me to.  I see that I can download it.  The PC that I want to erase the hard drive can't currently be hooked up to the internet.  Can I download it onto a CD on my new computer and then use it in the old computer?  If yes, will anything happen to my new computer when I download it?

Thanks!

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shesagordie
Diamond

Re: How to "erase" a hard drive?

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suzycat1

 

Nothing should happen to the system you download it to, providing the progam is saved to 'My Documents' or desktop and then burnt to a CD or a USB flash drive.

 

Bev.

 

 

If my answer was helpful, please use the 'Did this answer the question' and click: Yes
Forum Member since 2001
I am not employed by Dell

Re: How to "erase" a hard drive?

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Hello suzycat1, I would suggest following other member's suggestions..

lpprikej
Platinum

Re: How to "erase" a hard drive?

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Sorry all my post was deleted for violating TOS.  Not sure how, as there was nothing in it so i don't know. I even have a copy of what i posted and see nothing wrong with it. Oh well, first time for everything.

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suzycat1
Bronze

Re: How to "erase" a hard drive?

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To Hanspuppa:

Thanks for your suggestion.  Unfortunately, I don't understand the technical language you used.  What is a partition and a full format?  Could you please explain it on very simple terms.  Thank you so much.

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jackshack
Diamond

Re: How to "erase" a hard drive?

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If I might make a suggestion, you could try this.

1.  Use Windows Explorer to find your data and delete it

2.  When your data has been deleted, empty the recycle bin

3.  Go to My Computer, right click on your C: drive, choose Properties, and Tools.  Choose Chkdsk.  Make sure that the option to fix file system errors is marked.  This should give you a message that Chkdsk will run when you restart the computer, so restart to run it.

4.  When Chkdsk has finished and you have your desktop back, go back to My Computer, right click on the C: drive again, Properties, and Tools.  This time choose to run Defrag.  This will take a while so let it run while you are watching TV or something.

When Defrag has finished you will have eliminated the fragmented files, and in the process of performing the defragmentation, you will have overwritten your old deleted data several times.  This will prevent anyone using common commercially available tools from accessing your data.

If you are still worried, Shesagordie mentioned an excellent disk eraser.

 

Dell Forum member since 2005