How to make sure all data is erased on a computer hard drive

Updated: 03/06/2020 by Computer Hope
Computer hard drive

If your concerned with data being read or recovered from your hard drive after it is sold or given away, we recommend trying the following utilities. These utilities remove all your existing data and make it impossible to be recovered or read. After your data is erased or overwritten, you can then reinstall Windows or another operating system.


If you have an OEM (original equipment manufacturer) computer (e.g., Acer, Dell, Hewlett Packard, etc.), the hard drive may have a hidden system recovery partition. Using the utilities below may erase this partition, making it impossible to restore your computer without a disc.

Product Web Page Info
DBAN (Darik's Boot and Nuke) DBAN official website Free
Blancco Blancco official website Free and commercial version
Disk Wiper Disk Wiper official website Cost
Eraser Eraser official website Free
ArcticSoft FileAssurity ArcticSoft FileAssurity official website Cost
Harddisk Eraser Harddisk Eraser official website Free
Permanent Erasure Permanent Erasure official website Free
SDelete SDelete official website Free