Erase a Computer Hard Drive

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Erase the hard drive on a computer by downloading a free program called Darik's Boot and Nuke, burning the program to a CD, installing the CD and following instructions to delete the hard drive. Consider erasing a computer hard drive before selling the computer, so that the new owner cannot access personal files, with insight from a software developer in this free video on computers.

Part of the Video Series: Computer & Internet Tips
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Video Transcript

Hi, my name is Dave Andrews. Today I'm going to show you how to erase a computer hard drive. Now if you're ever going to be giving away your computer, or auctioning it off, or putting it in a yard sale, it's a good idea to completely erase the hard drive on the computer. That way the person who gets it after you can't go through and find some of the files you've been working on, your budget, your business documents, things like that. What I recommend that you use is a program called Darik's Boot And Nuke. It's an absolutely free program, and you can download it at dban.org. And there's no charge of course, you just download it and burn it to a CD. So let's pop this Boot And Nuke's CD into our computer. And we just have to boot that computer up, and it's basically going to recognize that a CD is in the system, and boot directly to that CD. So instead of loading Windows, it's just now noticed that I have my Boot And Nuke CD in the CD drive, so it's going to load that up. So here we have the Darik's Boot And Nuke main screen, and it basically gives you warnings of what it's going to do, as well as the instructions for how to use it. If you want to completely erase the hard drive, just type the word autonuke, and press your enter key. Now let me tell you before you press the enter key, that there are no more warnings, no more click here to continues. Once you press enter, it just goes in there and completely erases your hard drive. And it's going to use the Department of Defense Standard for erasing this drive. It's going to override it seven times, with the random data in one's and zero's, and it's basically unrecoverable. My name's Dave Andrews and I've just showed you how to completely erase a hard drive.

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