When it comes to cleaning up an old hard drive, we usually think it doesn’t hold a lot of stuff. But when you actually look at it, you will be amazed at the tons of data. Endless albums of your family photos, medical records, bank account logins in your browser history, all there! If you must stay cyber safe and keep security threats at bay, you need to know how to go about wiping your hard drive. Because the delete tab doesn’t really delete!
Wiping the hard drive clean is essential if you don’t want your data to be retrieved. Anyone can effortlessly access them with simple recovery software. Therefore, if you don’t want your security and privacy to be risked, then learn to wipe your hard drive properly.
Reasons to Wipe Your Hard Drive
We have mentioned some reasons already. In addition, some other reasons are planning to donate or sell your old gear, passing your PC on to a friend or family member, receiving a donated computer, and so on.
You can also do it if you have a general concern to keep your cybersecurity intact. Instead of physically destroying your hard drive or trying some other drastic method, take a quick look at our suggested procedures.
Backing Up Important Data
Before you jump straight into the erasing mode, make sure you have saved all the important files, photos, and documents, which you need from your hard drive. Take advantage of these steps:
- Upload the files you need to the cloud.
- Microsoft OneDrive and Google Drive are great options in cloud storage services.
- Saving the data on an external hard drive is another option.
- Transfer this data to your new computer.
Erasing the Hard Drive for Windows Computer
If you have Windows 8 or 10, take advantage of a simple feature on the menu. You just have to click the following tabs:
- Update and Security.
- Reset this PC.
You can keep or remove select files from here. You have the option to remove everything and clean the drive. Once you do it, all your data is irretrievable. If you are selling or donating your computer, this is perhaps the best course of action for you.
If you have an older version of Windows, downloading software to delete files can help. One instance is DBAN. However, you may find this method a little more technical. You will have to follow the specific instructions according to the software you are using.
The processes are easier than handling Virtual Reality products so you can be sure that you can keep up.
Steps to Follow with DBAN Software
We have simplified the steps to erase the hard drive with the DBAN software:
- Down the DBAN software on your PC and save it.
- Save it on a USB drive or a disc.
- Plug-in the device you have saved the DBAN software.
- Restart your PC.
- Go to the DBAN main menu.
- Follow the prompts and instructions for the deletion process.
- Wait for the verification message that data deletion is complete.
- Shut down your computer.
Isn’t it as easy as Cox bill pay!
Erasing the Hard Drive for Mac
The deletion and erasing procedure is a little different for Mac devices. Therefore, we have covered them separately. However, the process is quite straightforward for Mac and all you need to use is the macOS recovery tool. It comes built-in in all Mac devices.
Take advantage of the following guide:
- Turn on your Mac computer.
- Press and hold the R and Command keys immediately.
- You will see a startup screen with a globe or an Apple logo.
- If prompted, enter your password.
- Click Disk Utility from the menu of macOS Utilities.
- Select the drive or drives you want to wipe.
- Click Erase.
- To ensure extra security, check drives again.
- When you are done erasing the data in drives, reinstall macOS.
- It will populate automatically.
Just like Windows, you can also take help from a deleting software for Mac. We are going to suggest some less technical ones.
Best Software Programs to Erase the Hard Drive
If you aren’t much tech-savvy and don’t want to deal with the IT side of things, no worries! We will suggest some helping hands to do the job for you. Firstly, you can take advantage of tech services. One instance is the Geek Squad. Then there are some internet services like Cox Customer service which also have optional technical services, so you can get their help.
The free deletion software for Windows is DBAN. For Mac, the best software to erase folders and files is Stellar. To speed up your Mac, consider using Mac Optimizer Pro. You can thank us later for this comprehensive guide!