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How do I wipe hard drive?


laptopdunce
Resolved

Likes # 1

I have a laptop I want to give to a friend, (upgrading) it is about 5 years old now, an acer, I have the Aver back-up and windows reload disks, and I want to wipe the drives before I give the laptop away (just to be certain there are no passwords/personal info etc., left on the computer) my question is: How do I wipe the drive clean? do I have to wipe both the C & D drive? and what will happen when it is totally "clean"? will the windows and reload disks have to be used to start the computer up again? thanks PCDIMWIT

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proudfoot

Likes # 0

Fruitbat. I don't think formatting removes the data/software etc. it deletes the File Allocation Table. The only safe way is to put random O's amd 1's on the disc using the software I suggested.

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laptopdunce

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Rdave: I dont know if there are two seperate C & D drives, when I open up the "start" "my computer" it shows: "hard disk drives" = ACER (C:) and ACER (D:) . C drive on "properties" says: Used space 27gb, free space 26.1gb and on D drive on properties it says: used space 10.7gb and free space 42.9 gb (this is a 120gb laptop) - I presume these are two seperate drives?? I really dont know.

Not sure what Romanby1 means about deleting the files still being on the hard drive, and only the "file allocation table" being changed? I know that things sent to recycle bin and then deleted are still hidden away somewhere but as FruitBast/\0/\ says in his last message, I think that restoring the original factory settings from the 2 disks I made when i first got the laptop is the only SAFE way to be sure that C & D drive is totally wiped of any passwords/sensitive personal info?? for the purpose of giving a "clean" laptop to a friend. thanks LAPTOPDUNCE

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rdave13

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laptopdunce , my guess is one HDD partitioned to two. Restoring to factory settings should be good enough. romanby1 has a point in that if someone from the FBI, or whatever, wants your details off the drive then restoring would not be good enough. Unless you're an international criminal I wouldn't worry about it. If you are then buy a new hard drive and use the Acer discs to restore to factory settings using the new hard drive.

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laptopdunce

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OK, Im in England and I dont think this laptop will ever end up in FBI/CIA hands - Ha ha, I just want to make sure that the person I give it to cant find any passwords or anything personal I have ever had on the laptop can be retrieved - So, if I restore everything to factory settings using the Acer disks - How do I actually DO this?? once I have saved the photos and docs how do I actually proceed to use the restore disks?? Do I just put them in the DVD drive and let it do it itself? or how do I begin to restore everything to have the reovery disks re-install the factory settings? I think as FruitBat said, this is the most reliable option, but how do I do it? thanks LAPTOPDUNCE

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rdave13

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Never bought an Acer but this might help, link.

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laptopdunce

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OK thanks for that, I will use the option "restore from CD/DVD's" - I had to to this once before and even though there are 2 DVD disks it only used the first one and windows opened once the first disk loaded (took about 20 mins) - will have to save all my photos and docs to an external drive and make a paper list of all the programmes I want to download again as I remember it only restored to the very minimal factory settings when it was new. Thanks LAPTOPDUNCE

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lotvic

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Fruit Bat /\0/\ gave step by step instructions on page 1 at 9:07AM however if you are still not sure how to reset back to factory settings the easy way here they are again complete with a video http://acer.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/2631 and a very nice man telling you which buttons to press :)

The hard drive should have 3 partitions. EISA hidden partition containing the factory image. C: has the operating system (XP, Vista or whatever). D: is for your personal data files that you made. You can check if you have one hard drive partitioned in this way by doing as Fruit Bat /\0/\ said: Right click My Computer - select manage - disk management - and if there is only one long rectangle divided into 3 bits then that is what you have.

If you want to start the reset when you have already booted up then follow this video http://acer.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/12869

Maybe you would like to make a fresh set of Discs with Acer eRecovery Management http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=737wBusvs8w&feature=player_embedded

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laptopdunce

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when i right click on my computer and manage and then disk management I get a window that says: volume Acer C & Acer D and then PQservice ( all are "partioned" then underneath this is a summary that says: Disk 0 basic 117.9gb, then in 3 sections it says: PQService: 4.38gb FAT32 Healthy EISA - Acer C - 53.21gb FAT32 Healthy (system) - then: Acerdata (D) 53.7gb FAT32 Healthy . Does this mean it is one Hard drive partioned into three sections as you said? thanks for the links to the vids that Acer have set up to explain how to do this system restore from the back-up disks, I just dont want to attempt it till I kinda understand a bit about what I am about to carry out, thanks LAPTOPDUNCE

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Fruit Bat /\0/\

Likes # 0

Yes its one drive partitioned

PQservice is where your restore image ie located do not touch it

Click on D and select format(after you have backed up)

then do the factory restore with your disks.

installing ccleaner and using drive wipe over the free space will do what rommanby1 says and will put 0s over the data.

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lotvic

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Yes, it is one Hard drive partitioned into three sections.

PQSERVICE, contains the necessary files to:

restore the operating system via the eRecovery program. (the factory image)

create Recovery CDs or DVDs.

reinstall the preinstalled drivers and applications.

In other words it is your eRecovery program that has to be kept separate from the Windows operating system on C: or you you would not be able to wipe C: and restore the factory image that the EISA partition contains.

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