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Clearing Out Pc

#1 User is offline   SistemError 

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Posted 05 June 2011 - 11:41 PM

I'm in the process of selling two computers, one is a Hp pavilon laptop and the other is an Dell Inspirion 530 desktop, both are running windows Vista SP2. I want to clear them out of any personal data that i may have stored in them, this would normally mean reformatting the computers and doing fresh installs, the problem is that the laptop didn't come with a Vista installation disk, and I'm not even sure I have the desktop's CD either. Any advice on what i could do as an alternative to formatting would be greatly appretiated.
If I create the recovery disks now and use them, or if I use system restore, will that work?

Thanks in advance
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#2 User is offline   LincolnSpector 

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Posted 06 June 2011 - 07:39 AM

View PostSistemError, on 05 June 2011 - 11:41 PM, said:

I'm in the process of selling two computers, one is a Hp pavilon laptop and the other is an Dell Inspirion 530 desktop, both are running windows Vista SP2. I want to clear them out of any personal data that i may have stored in them, this would normally mean reformatting the computers and doing fresh installs, the problem is that the laptop didn't come with a Vista installation disk, and I'm not even sure I have the desktop's CD either. Any advice on what i could do as an alternative to formatting would be greatly appretiated.
If I create the recovery disks now and use them, or if I use system restore, will that work?

Thanks in advance

Hi, SystemError.

Actually, merely formatting and reinstalling wouldn't give you significant protection. Data can be recovered off a formatted drive. You need to wipe your drive, securely deleting what's on it.

About the recovery issue: For some time now, most computers have shipped with recovery tools in special partitions on the hard drive, rather than on discs. You might want to check with HP and Dell to find out how to restore the OS.


If you do find a way to restore Windows to its factory state, use Darik's Boot and Nuke (DBAN) to wipe the drive, then restore Windows.


Otherwise, you can use any number of programs to wipe individual files. Eraser is pretty good. And CCleaner or CCleaner Portable will wipe unused space on your drive. That way, you can simply delete all of your data files, then wipe the free space.


Lincoln
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#3 User is offline   SpiritWind 

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Posted 06 June 2011 - 11:39 AM

Hi :

Should consider looking into a very good file erase
program called "BCWipe", available at
http://www.jetico.co...-small-business .
For the very Best in Life :

http://www.ctftoronto.com
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#4 User is offline   cyberknight 

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 12:24 PM

The best option would be to use Ccleaner like Lincoln suggested. Go to tools & use the "Drive Wiper". If the partition does'nt contain OS, wipe the entire drive using "DOD 5220" or "NSA" security algorithm. Don't use "Gutmann" as it will take forever even for a 80GB HDD! For the partition with OS, first delete all your personal files & then wipe the free space with Ccleaner.
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#5 User is offline   LiveBrianD 

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Posted 10 June 2011 - 01:17 PM

Another thing: download Darik's Boot and Nuke, burn it to a cd, then boot from the disc and it'll nuke all your data. Note: that also nukes the OS
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#6 User is offline   LincolnSpector 

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 10:01 AM

View PostLiveBrianD, on 10 June 2011 - 01:17 PM, said:

Another thing: download Darik's Boot and Nuke, burn it to a cd, then boot from the disc and it'll nuke all your data. Note: that also nukes the OS

Although I was the first on this thread to recommend Boot and Nuke, I now take that back. Bad advice on my part.

DBAN wipes the entire drive, not selected partitions. That will wipe out the recovery partition.

Lincoln


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#7 User is offline   LiveBrianD 

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Posted 12 June 2011 - 10:32 AM

Yeah, but he could burn recovery discs first.
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#8 User is offline   smax013 

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Posted 18 June 2011 - 05:53 PM

View PostLiveBrianD, on 12 June 2011 - 10:32 AM, said:

Yeah, but he could burn recovery discs first.


Not all manufacturer's let you burn recovery discs from the recovery partition.

In the past, Dell has NOT had that option because they actually supplied you with recovery discs (in the form of an actual Windows install disc plus discs for drivers and applications). I honestly don't know if they are still that way or not.

I know that HP does allow for burning of recovery discs since they don't supply them, but I want to say that they only allow that once if memory serves. If that is the case, then if a set has been burnt before, then you would be outta luck.
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