Can I erase everything on my computer at once?

millytac781

New Member
Can I erase everything on my computer at once? Or do I have to delete every single file by itself? Please help! Thanks
 

DavidHB

Active Member
millytac781 said:
Can I erase everything on my computer at once? Or do I have to delete every single file by itself? Please help! Thanks
The only way you can do this is by using DBAN (see companion forum). But that is a program which really requires some technical knowledge, and does not work on many more modern machines.

You can certainly erase multiple files and folders with Eraser, and even whole drives (though not the C: drive on which Windows and Eraser are running). But a proper answer to your question requires us to know a bit more about your intentions. what do you mean by erasing 'everything'. What is your plan for this machine; for instance, do you want to sell it on with Windows in place? And is it a laptop; if it is a desktop, is it branded (HP, Dell or whatever)? Advice on what to do will to some extent depend on the answers to these questions.

Also, for general information on using Eraser, please read the FAQ topic 'Getting to know Eraser 6'.

David
 

millytac781

New Member
Thank you, it's a laptop- Dell PC, with windows vista and intel, and I wanted to give it away but I don't want my info on it.
 

DavidHB

Active Member
millytac781 said:
Thank you, it's a laptop- Dell PC, with windows vista and Intel, and I wanted to give it away but I don't want my info on it.
That's the commonest reason for your question, but I needed to be sure.

I'll assume for present purposes that you only have Drive C: on this machine. A Dell laptop which is sufficiently recent to have Vista will have some arrangement for restoring the machine to factory condition. Most likely it is a recovery partition with one or both of (1) a program to make a restore disk or disks (from which you will boot the computer to run them), and (2) a program actually on the machine that does a full factory reset. You need to run one of these; (2) is usually easier. Your Dell documentation, which is as likely to be in the form of pdf documents on the machine as of a paper manual, will have the details of how to do this.

The factory reset will format your C: drive, and install Windows in the state in which it originally came with the machine. Your personal data will not be visible, but it will still be recoverable, at least in part. You need to install Eraser on the newly reset machine, and run a free space erase on the C: drive. This will 'complete with errors'; when you look at the log, you will find literally thousands of entries telling you that cluster tips could not be erased on particular files. Do not worry about these errors; if, at this point, the erase has otherwise completed normally, your personal data will not be recoverable. More details about the process are in the FAQ topic I referred you to in my previous post.

David
 
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