Are you thinking of selling your laptop? Do you have devices that you plan on giving to your kids or to charity instead of disposing them to the trash? Giving these devices to someone or having them recycled is a way better strategy to rid yourself of them, instead of putting them in the trash. After all, electronic waste is no joke and in fact, has become a major environmental problem. But before you give that laptop away, you have to make sure you have the device squeaky clean and does not contain your files (unless you want to give some important files like pictures and documents to the recipient of your device). You certainly would not want to suffer the same fate as some celebrities who had their phones or laptops repaired, only to have their very personal content leaked out to the world days later. In other words, you need to make sure that if you have files of the very private kind in your device, those are completely erased and cannot be retrieved or recovered.
Thus, what you need to do is to wipe your hard drive, meaning all the information on it needs to be completely erased. You might think, “But I’ve already deleted all my files in the hard drive” or “I’ve formatted the hard drive so I’m sure there’s nothing there already”. The thing is, deleted files can still be reconstructed and thus, recovered later. In the case of formatting a hard drive, file recovery software can still be used to recover files because those files are not really deleted; instead, they are just not indexed and are thus invisible. There’s that extra step you need to do for “wiping” the hard drive and making sure that all files cannot be recovered anymore.
Wipe your PC
So, how do you exactly wipe your PC? Just as there is special software to reformat your hard drive or recover files that you have accidentally deleted, you may also use various applications and tools to do the wiping for you. There are free versions and paid versions, so you may need to really look into the features and benefits of this software to see which one you should use to wipe your device.
Several applications will do an excellent job of wiping your hard drive or SSD, but Eraser is our favorite. It’s free, intuitive, and comprehensive. Since it needs to run within Windows, you can’t wipe the drive you’re running it from. If you don’t have an alternative drive to boot from, you might want to consider an alternative tool like DBAN.
Wipe your Mac
The way to wipe your Mac clean is not largely different from how you clean your PC, although of course you will need to look for software specially made for Macs and there may be a different procedure or two.
To enter recovery mode, restart your Mac and immediately press and hold Command-R. You can release the keys when you see the Apple logo.
Don’t forget to backup before you wipe!
Of course, whether you are wiping your Mac or PC, you may want to make sure that you have copies of your old files. You certainly do not want to be a victim of data loss, so make sure you do a backup of your files before you totally scrub your device clean.
Backing up of data can be as simple as creating duplicates of your important files or creating a full disk image. There are a lot of tools available at your disposal that you can choose from either of these methods for backing up your files. The factors that you must consider while picking up a data backup option are redundancy, security, and accessibility. Thus, review these parameters before zeroing-in on a specific backup method.
Now, if in the process of backing up your files, you discover that you may have lost some important ones, we can still help you recover them before you carry on with your hard drive wiping. Get those missing files back here: https://www.harddriverecovery.org/hard-drive-recovery-service.html.