Leave a comment

Nuke your hard drive before getting rid of an old PC

Nuke your hard drive before getting rid of an old PC
Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Are you getting ready to sell or give away your old PC? Hang on for just a moment. You might be giving away your sensitive personal information.

Deleting files and using the Recycle Bin is just not good enough. That deleted data can still be hanging around on your hard drive.

That means that almost anyone with a little know-how can recover it with a free program. The only way to completely secure your computer is to wipe the hard drive. That's where Darik's Boot And Nuke (DBAN) comes in handy.

DBAN will wipe and overwrite your drive several times so nothing is recoverable. It secures your personal information by making it impossible for anyone to recover the deleted information from your old computer.

To use DBAN, download the file and burn it to a blank CD or DVD. If you have any questions, visit the site's FAQ http://www.dban.org/faq for answers. Once the disc is done, boot your computer from it.

To boot from a disc drive, hold down the F8 key while your computer is starting. This brings up the boot menu. Then select to boot from your CD or DVD drive. Once DBAN starts, follow the directions.

DBAN securely wipes out the entire hard drive. When it's finished, the computer won't even have Windows. Then you can safely discard, sell or recycle the computer.

Download Instructions

Click the blue download button at the bottom of this page to navigate to the DBAN download page. To download the file, click the red "DOWNLOAD" button underneath the column labeled "DBAN." The download button should have text below it that reads "DBAN is intended for home use ONLY."

Once this link is clicked, you will be redirected to another page and your download will begin shortly. The page will contain ads for other downloads that request your email address. You don't need to sign up for this.

Warning: The downloaded file will be called "dban-2.2.8_i586.iso." When the download is complete DO NOT open or unzip the files!

This is very important. If you do open the file, you will end up erasing everything on the computer you are running. Burn these data files to a blank CD or DVD to be run on the computer you want to wipe clean.

Remember, check the DBAN FAQ page if you get stuck or have questions.

View Comments ()
Random Downloads

Essential tech tool every computer owner needs
Next Downloads

Essential tech tool every computer owner needs