Friday, November 25, 2022

How To Wipe A Laptop

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How Do I Factory Reset My Dell Laptop

How to Wipe a Computer Clean and Start Over – Windows 8.1 Free & Easy

Wiping a Dell laptop is the final troubleshooting solution when things go wrong with Windows 10. It’s also a recommended step when you want to give away your old laptop.

A factory reset restores a PC to the same state it was in when it rolled out of the manufacturers assembly line. Almost all electronic devices have this capability, and you can’t undo it once you start. So, make sure to back up your files. A Windows 10 factory reset will wipe your Dell laptop of all installed programs and files, so you don’t want to lose data.

Your Windows 10 will again work like new once all the updates are in place. There are two points to consider:

  • A factory reset alone wont solve performance issues since problems in the hardware can make your new OS installation error-prone too.
  • A factory reset will wipe data from the hard drive, but this data may still be recoverable to specialized data recovery software used by professionals.

Ready to wipe everything from your Dell laptop? Here are two easy ways to do it.

Overview On Wiping A Hard Drive

It’s common to most users to sell or give away computer or hard drive when they want to dispose of old device or upgrade to new ones. You may have already formatted the hard drive or deleted files on it in order to erase sensitive personal data and avoid becoming the victim of identity theft.

However, the fact is that wiping out a hard drive is not as easy as deleting data or formatting hard disk. Simply deleting files by Shift + Delete or emptying the Recycle Bin does not permanently clear data, as deleted files can easily be recovered by recovery software. Formatting a hard drive does not completely erase data either. Though operating system cannot see deleted or formatted data and the drive looks empty, average users are able to get back lost data easily with the help of hard drive recovery software.

If you view tech forums or comminutes online, you can see lots of users looking for an easy way to clean storage devices, and here is one of them:

“What is the best way to clean the hard drive of my laptop? I’m going to selling it to someone but want to ensure all personal files are securely erased. What I want to do is cleaning hard drive completely and reinstalling Windows 7 . Everything on the hard disk has been backed up to my external hard drive, I’m hoping one of you here can tell me how to clearing PC step by step? I know how to install Windows from CD but have no idea how to safely wipe hard disk. Many thanks!”

How does hard disk wiping works?

How To Wipe A Linux Laptop

If you’ve got a Linux-based machine, wiping any of the hard drives – internal or external – is a slightly fiddly process that involves using the command line.

Open up a command line terminal and enter ‘sudo fdisk -l‘. This will list all the storage drives currently connected to your machine. Find the drive you want to wipe, and note the drive’s device path.

Next, run this command – ‘sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sdb bs=1M‘ – via the terminal, making sure to substitute ‘/dev/sdb/‘ with the target drive’s correct device path. This method is known as ‘zeroing’, and wipes the drive by overwriting every byte of information with zeroes.

There is some debate as to whether or not this is more secure than overwriting the drive with random bits of information, but it’s usually quicker and is perfectly sufficient for protecting your data from the average buyer.

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How To Completely Wipe A Hard Drive

Ready to wipe your computer and remove all traces of your personal and financial history from your hard drive? It requires following a set of steps that will prevent you from accidentally sharing your documents, photos, passwords, financial information, and personal data when you say farewell to your old laptop or desktop.

Restore Your Pc To An Earlier Point In Time

How to factory reset a laptop

If you think an app or driver that you recently installed caused problems with your PC, you can restore Windows back to an earlier point in time, called a restore point. System Restore doesnt change your personal files, but it might remove recently installed apps and drivers.

Notes:

  • System Restore isn’t available for Windows RT 8.1.

  • Windows automatically creates a restore point when you install desktop apps and new Windows updates, if the last restore point is older than 7 days. You can also create a restore point manually at any time.

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Android: Due to the fragmentation of the Android platform, there are lots of different ways to go about deleting your data. Each different “skin” of Android may have a slightly different menu for resetting your device.

For example, to do a factory reset on a new HTC 10, you would go to the Home screen and tap the Apps icon, followed by Settings > Backup & reset. Then you’d select “Factory data reset.” You’d also want to select the option for “Erase SD card,” if using one. In contrast, the factory reset procedure for a Samsung Galaxy S7 would have you go to the Apps screen and take these steps: Settings > Backup and reset > Factory data reset > RESET DEVICE > ERASE EVERYTHING.

When in doubt, check your owners manual or the manufacturer’s website for the recommended protocol for your specific device.

It’s probably a safer bet to wipe your phone personally, and not trust the clerk at your local carrier store with the task.

It’s also smart to wipe your device using the suggested factory reset options outlined in your owners manual, but then follow up that “deep clean” with a Google search for “how to erase + ,” and follow that additional advice as well. This search will pull up more tips on properly deleting data, as well as alert you to any known issues with incomplete deletion that other users have experienced. Ideally, the comments section of those posts will have some workarounds for any known issues.

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Delete Your Files Permanently

A Factory Reset is essential, but a skilled hacker can still access the supposedly deleted files. The only way to eliminate them completely and for sure is to use digital shredding. Like a paper shredder, digital shredding hacks each file into pieces so small, it cannot possibly be recovered. Complete this step after youve backed up your files and before the Factory Reset using a device like Shred Cube rather than a downloaded shredder to limit your risk of exposing your computer to a virus. This is a good idea for individuals and businesses, as well, to prevent a data spill.

Bonus Tip:

While youre at it, its a good idea to wipe your USB drives. If youre planning to sell or lend your USB drives, or if you have a handful of old ones you arent using to the point you cant even remember whats on them its time for a cleanup. Double-check what material youre storing on there. Dont give one of them away if youre not completely sure youve never put private information on it. If the USB drive is holding information you need, put that one in a safe place. If theyre old files you no longer want, shred them.Contact Shred Cube today to speak with an expert and learn more about permanently deleting files

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Why Restore Laptop From System Backup Not Factory Reset Laptop

In the above sections, you know how to factory reset Windows 10/8/7 and how to restore the computer to an earlier date with MiniTool ShadowMaker.

Why?

Actually, you know laptop factory reset can restore laptop to factory settings, namely, all user data and programs after purchase will be deleted. Then you need to download and install these programs again. This is not a good way to solve system issues.

But, with the help of MiniTool ShadowMaker, you can make a system image and set to perform backup task regularly. Once your laptop gets something wrong, the system image file can be available to restore the computer to an earlier date quickly and effectively.

In addition, this freeware enables you to back up the entire disk to protect data. Now, free download this program for a try!

How To Really Erase All Personal Data From Your Laptop Tablet Or Phone

How to Reset Your Windows 10 PC

Our gadgets are an extension of our most private thoughts and feelings, and the idea of someone being able to access our late-night texts, family photos, or old tax forms is just plain disturbing.

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Our gadgets are an extension of our most private thoughts and feelings, and the idea of someone being able to access our late-night texts, family photos, or old tax forms is just plain disturbing. That’s why it’s so crucial to properly erase all of the personal data from your device before you sell it, recycle it, or pass it along to a friend or family member.

But getting your device squeaky clean isn’t always as easy as it seems. One CNN report highlighted the ongoing issues Android users are having with resetting their devices. Phones made by Google, HTC, LG, Motorola, and Samsung have all been known to retain personal data, even after being completely wiped.

Our guide will help you do the best possible job of deleting personal data from your smartphone, tablet, or laptop. We’ll cover best practices for iOS, Android, and Windows mobile devices, as well as tips for MacBooks and Windows laptops.

How to Erase Personal Data From Your Smartphone

iOS: To remove all settings and information from your iOS device, go to Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings. Apple has a helpful guide on prepping your device for resale, which outlines steps for clearing your device either remotely or while it’s still in your custody.

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Way 1 Factory Reset Pc

This method is the easiest one, because it doesn’t require any tools. To factory reset a Windows 10 PC, please follow the steps below:

Step 1: Choose Reset this PC from Windows.

  • Click the Start button and then selectSettings.
  • Go to Update & Security> Recovery.
  • In the right panel, under Reset this PC section, click Get started button.

Step 2: You will get two options: Keep my files and Remove everything. In this step, please choose Remove everything. The difference between the two options is as follows:

  • Keep my files: This option will remove apps and drivers the user installed, and change all settings to the default value, and reinstall Windows without deleting personal files.
  • Remove everything: This option will delete all personal files, user accounts, programs, and changes made to settings. Then, it will fresh reinstall Windows.

Step 3: No matter which option you choose, you will be asked to choose a way to reinstall Windows. For convenience, you can choose Local reinstall.

Step 4: No matter which option you choose, you will get the Additional settings window with the same Current settings. Please click Change settings. Now you should make the following 2 decisions:

Tip:

Step 5: Confirm the changes and click the Next button twice. Wait until the PC gets ready. Then, click the Reset button. Windows will then restart and take several minutes to reset itself.

Back Up Important Data

The first thing you must do is to ensure all of your files and folders are backed up and organised, do you don’t wipe anything that you may need at a later date. Even if you dont think youll ever access the data in future, you may need to reference something hidden away in archives in the distant future.

There are a few ways of doing this and the most practical for you will depend on how much data you need to copy. If you are backing up files selectively, or there aren’t many of them and you have a fairly good internet connection, then backing up to the cloud is an option.

The most complete and quickest way, however, is to back up to an external hard drive that’s directly connected to the laptop.

You will need to figure out how much storage you need. If everything is stored on one drive (usually the C: drive in Windows, right-click on the drive icon to see how much data is taking up space there.

Once you have connected the external drive to the laptop you want to wipe, you can check that it is big enough to store all the data you need.

To backup, you can simply connect an external drive to the laptop and drag files and folders to it. You can use the Windows Backup feature in Windows 7 of File History in Windows 8. Windows 10 has both features and adds the ability to backup and restore system images.

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What Are The Risks Of Not Wiping My Hard Drive

As the line between the real and digital worlds blurs, its important to understand how cybercriminals work. A security product like Norton 360 Deluxe helps protect your personal PC files, financial information, and your familys devices. But when you discard your device without properly wiping the hard drive, you run the risk of losing your data.

Cybercriminals value your personal data, everything from your email address, passwords, and Social Security number to your drivers license details and credit card information. Once they have access to this information, they can sell it on the dark web.

Cybercriminals can also buy the information and launch cyberattacks to commit other kinds of crimes like identity theft and extortion. They could open bank accounts in your name, purchase items with your credit card information, or take out loans and default on them, leaving you with the consequences.

Thieves also look for private and confidential information. This may include non-disclosure agreements, personal photographs, private chat conversations, and other details you may not want others to see. If a hard drive wasnt wiped clean, cybercriminals could retrieve this information to blackmail you with it.

Wiping A Laptop Before Returning It To The Office

How to reset windows 10 laptop

Whether a stint of remote working is coming to an end or someone is off to pastures new, a laptop wipe is one way of keeping cyber security and data security headaches at bay. But before you go looking for that clean slate, there are a few things to consider:

  • Is there any business-critical information you need to keep?
  • Is there any information saved on there you may need at a later date?
  • Is there any personal information that you wish to delete?

If youre the employee in this situation, its best to check with your IT department for guidance on what to do next. Once youve got the all-clear, you can start the digital cleanse.

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Use A Program To Wipe Your Drive

Special software programs can permanently erase your hard drive. If you use these programs, theres little chance youll be able to recover your erased data. Thats good news: No one else can use data recovery software to recover your erased files.

Most of these data-destruction programs overwrite deleted files with zeros and other incomprehensible data. This makes it impossible for data recovery software to recover the files.

DBAN is an example of a free data destruction program* that completely erases files on a hard drive. This includes all personal files, operating systems, and installed programs.

Its smart to use a program like this to wipe your device. Most products offer proof of erasure. Some even provide information about what was done to the drive and its data. This helps when wiping a company laptop or PC.

How To Wipe A Computer Clean Of Personal Data

Before selling, donating, or recycling your outdated laptop, protect your privacy with this important step

Got an old laptop laying around? By selling it or donating it to someone, you can clear up space in your home, maybe earn a little cash, and extend its useful life, delaying the inevitable one-way trip to the local landfill.

But how do you keep the next owner from accessing photos, financial documents, and other private data once stored on the hard drive?

Short of removing the drive altogether, the best solution is to perform whats known as a factory reset.

As for why you cant simply clear out your Downloads folder and log out of your accounts, Matt Ham, owner of the service company Computer Repair Doctor, explains that manually purging files isnt enough.

You’re likely to forget things like passwords saved in browsers and personal data in the deleted items folder. Or you can miss deleting some important files altogether,” he says. “Reinstalling your system before sale is a much safer alternative.

In most cases, wiping a computer with a factory reset will be sufficient to safeguard your personal data. So if you’re handing off your old computer to a friend or sibling, or donating it to a well-known charitable organization, the steps listed below should suffice.

The gold standard in hard drive security consists of using a pointy nail and a few swift swings of a hammer, he says half-jokingly. Just make sure you’re wearing safety glasses.

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Create And System Image Backup

  • Open Control Panel.
  • Click on System and Security.
  • Click on Backup and Restore.
  • On the left side, click Create a system image link.
  • When asked Where do you want to save the backup? select On a hard disk option.
  • Select the location to save the backup using the On a hard disk drop down menu. Save the backup.
  • If you have any other additional drives that you want to include in the backup, select them now.
  • Click Next.
  • Click Start backup.
  • Your computer will now start a full backup of its entire system and files. After a few minutes, the backup will be complete, and your device will be ready to start the data removal process.

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