Returning a Trading Computer

Discussion in 'Backup and Security' started by 1flyfisher, Nov 21, 2007.

  1. I am exchanging a pc/sending a pc back to the manufacturer that I traded with for a new pc.

    I imagine they wipe the pc clean and reinstall Windows.

    What do I need to do before I send it back?

    Thanks any help appreciated.

    Happy Thanksgiving
    Happy Trades
  2. If concerned about personal info, run a "hard drive wiper" like Eraser.
  3. I want to do this tomorrow am, is eraser a freeware? is there any freeware out there you recommend that can do this?

    I have the windows disc, I basically want to wipe it clean and then reinstall windows before i send it back.
    Think that would be enough?

  4. "They" say "reformatting is not enough".

    Eraser is freeware. I'm sure you can find it with a Google search... if not, let me know and I'll send you a copy of mine.
  5. Hey 1flyfisher,
    What you need to understand is that data isnt gone for good until it is written over. Formatting your Hard Drive and reinstalling Windows (XP assumably) will only eliminate about 3Gig of your old data and most of that would be old Windows data not your own. Alot of your personal data could be still intact on the drive.

    What I have done is reinstall windows and then fill the drive with large files. Hopefully your drive is only small at around 20-40 gig otherwise this will take a while. In the past I have just found a large file and repeatedly placed it on the desktop until the drive was full. I know there are programs out there but this method gives you assurance the job has been done properly.

    Obvioulsy make sure you have retrieved all your data first....documents,emails,photos,music,addressbook etc etc etc...there is a good backup utility in XP called documents and settings transfer wizard.

    Hope this helps....just let me know if there is anything you need help with.

  6. A hard drive works by writing layers over each other. If someone really wanted, they can always recover old data, no matter what you do. Even writing zeros to the drive won't help.
    However, expecting the manufacturer to care enough & spend the money toward doing this to some random customer, is pure paranoia.

    Hate to break the ego shattering news, but noone really cares that much about you.

    Come on man, just format the drive, or just delete the files.
  7. The "drive wipe" programs are actually "write over". As few as 1 time, and up to 35 times (that would take a while).

    FWIW... Should your HD ever house Top Secret data, the only way to legally dispose of it is either shredding or proper incineration.
  8. Maybe run the hard drive wiper more than one time, just a thought
  9. Thanks guy,
    after you mentioned ERASER I actually did go and do a google search and found it.

    Thanks for the help.

  10. #10     Nov 21, 2007