How to Wipe a Hard Drive on Windows 11

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How to Wipe a Hard Drive on Windows 11.

If you’re upgrading to a brand new PC, likelihood is, you might be attempting to reuse the arduous drive out of your previous PC. If not, you might be planning to offer it to a member of the family or a good friend. But earlier than you proceed with any of those choices, you need to utterly wipe your previous arduous drive, in order that the following particular person begins recent with the arduous drive.

In this submit, we’ll cowl a number of methods to wipe a tough drive in Windows 11.

Why must you wipe a tough drive?

Before we bounce to the strategies, let’s take a minute to grasp why you need to wipe your arduous drives.

The more apparent cause behind wiping a tough drive is to flush all your private recordsdata and purposes from the drive, ensuring they’ll’t be recovered by information recovery instruments — after a manufacturing unit reset or not. Another cause for wiping the drive may very well be to easily achieve more cupboard space on your new recordsdata. Or perhaps you simply wish to arrange your PC from scratch with a clear set up of Windows and recent partitions on your arduous drive.

Whatever the explanation, let’s check out the stipulations to wiping your arduous drive.

What to do earlier than wiping a tough drive?

Before you wipe your drive, there are a few issues that you have to deal with.

  • Make positive you’ve copied all of the contents of the drive to a different location, stopping any information loss.
  • If you’re using a laptop computer to wipe the drive, we advocate connecting your laptop computer to energy as some strategies could take a very long time to finish.
  • Close any purposes or recordsdata which may be working from the arduous drive that you just’re attempting to wipe.

Let’s check out the strategies to wipe a tough drive in Windows 11.

: How to Map a Drive in Windows 11

How to format a drive on Windows 11 or 10

You can format a drive in a number of methods relying on the kind of entry you need to your system. Use one of many guides under that most accurately fits your present state of affairs and necessities. 

This is undoubtedly one of many easiest and quickest methods to wipe a tough drive. The course of merely takes a few seconds and is ideal for while you wish to make room for brand spanking new recordsdata in your arduous drive.

Note: This methodology will solely work for secondary drives in your system and never your boot drive. 
Here are the steps.
Press Win key + r to open the Run field. Type in ‘explorer’ and hit enter.
You’ll see a window titled ‘File Explorer’ open up. Click on ‘This PC’.

You ought to now see all of the drives related to your PC. Ours has three drives, out of which, we’ll be using the ‘Data’ drive for this information.

All you have to do is right-click the drive that you just wish to wipe and click on on ‘Format’.

You ought to see a small ‘Format’ popup open with a bunch of choices. If you wish to do a fast information wipe, with out messing with different choices, click on on the ‘Start’ button.

Tip: For a safer information wipe, untick the ‘Quick Format’ possibility after which click on on ‘Start’. Keep in thoughts, a radical wipe will take loads longer than a fast format.

Once the wipe is full, you need to see a message confirming the identical. Click ‘OK’ to dismiss the alert.
Your drive is now absolutely clear and prepared for use once more.
Method #2: Using Disk Management

Open the Start menu and sort in ‘Disk Management’. Click on the search outcome or the open button.

Here’s how the Disk Management device appears to be like like.

Right-click on the amount you wish to wipe, and click on on Format.

On the following popup, you need to have a handful of choices like altering the identify of the amount, the file methods, and more.

Again, similar to the earlier methodology, you need to keep the ‘Perform a quick format’ possibility ticked in case you don’t wish to wait for a very long time to wipe your drive.

Tip: For a radical wipe that ought to take away all traces of your information out of your drive, untick the ‘Perform a quick format’ possibility.

Click on the ‘OK’ button to begin wiping your drive.

Click on the ‘OK’ button to substantiate the info wipe and your drive ought to be clear inside minutes.

Method #3: Using Diskpart in CMD (command immediate)

Diskpart is a command-line utility that can be utilized to handle all of the drives related to your PC. You can do every little thing from itemizing the disks, creating and deleting partitions, and a lot more with diskpart.

Let’s check out how one can wipe your arduous drive with diskpart.

Press Win key + r to open the Run field. Type in ‘cmd’ and press the Ctrl + Shift + Enter keys as an alternative of simply the enter key. This will open an elevated Command Prompt.

The default path from an elevated Command Prompt ought to seem like this.

Type in ‘diskpart’ and press enter. You ought to now be within the diskpart utility.

Type ‘list disk’ and press enter. This ought to record all of the disks related to your PC.

To proceed with the disk wipe, sort in ‘select disk <disk#>’. Our laptop computer has two arduous drives, and for this information, we’ll be continuing with Disk 1, so we entered ‘select disk 1’ and hit enter.

Type in ‘clean’ and press enter.

Your disk ought to now be utterly empty and become unallocated house. Your next job ought to be to create partitions using the Disk Management device we used earlier. Simply run the device and initialize the disk. After that, you need to be capable to create partitions of any measurement that fits you best.

Method #4: Using the Reset Option

Windows 11 comes with an possibility referred to as ‘Reset this PC’ which resets Windows to its manufacturing unit settings. And one of the best part about Reset this PC is that it affords customers the choice to both keep all their recordsdata and reset Windows or take away every little thing whereas resetting Windows.

If you’re wiping your drive simply to reinstall Windows, we advocate you give this methodology a strive earlier than continuing with a clear set up.

Here’s how you are able to do it.

Open the Start menu and sort in ‘Reset this PC’. Click on the search outcome that pops up or click on on the open button.

Click on the ‘Reset PC’ button to set off the Windows Reset course of.

You ought to see a blue display with two choices. Click on ‘Remove everything’ to reinstall Windows whereas eradicating all of your recordsdata, apps, and settings.

The next display ought to ask you the way you wish to reinstall Windows. If your PC has an web connection, you possibly can proceed with the ‘Cloud download’ possibility, else proceed with ‘Local reinstall’.

Follow the remainder of the on-screen directions and very quickly, you’ll have your PC prepared with a recent set up of Windows 11 and no hint of your previous recordsdata and apps in your arduous drive.

Method #5: Using PowerShell

You may also format drives using PowerShell. Follow the steps under to format a drive using PowerShell on Windows 11. 

Press Windows + S in your keyboard and seek for PowerShell. Click on ‘Run as administrator’ as soon as it reveals up in your search outcomes. 

Type within the following command to get an inventory of all of the volumes from disks put in in your system. This will enable you establish and discover the disk you want to format. 

get-volume

Choose the amount you want to format after which use the command under to pick it. Replace X with the letter assigned to the involved quantity. 

choose X

Now use the command under to format the chosen quantity. Replace NAME with a reputation of your selection that will probably be assigned to the amount as soon as it has been formatted. 

format-volume -filesystem NTFS -newfilesystemlabel NAME

And that’s it! The chosen quantity on the involved drive will now be formatted. Wait for the method to finish and shut the PowerShell to make use of the disk as regular. 

Method #6: Using a third-party utility

There are tons of partition managers on the market that may enable you handle and format all disks put in in your system simply. Follow the information under to get you began. We will probably be using Gnome Partition Manager for this information which is a long-trusted trade device that’s utterly free. Use the hyperlink under to obtain it to your native storage. 

Once GParted is downloaded to your system, you possibly can merely mount it like another ISO and get began. If you want to clear and wipe your boot drive, then we advocate you mount the ISO to a detachable media which ought to assist you to format the drive outdoors of your present Windows 11 set up. Once mounted, restart your system and entry the Gnome Partition Manager out of your boot menu. We will probably be using Rufus to mount the disk image to detachable media after which reboot our present system. 

Note: Make positive safe boot is disabled in your system to be able to boot out of your USB. Additionally, change your storage configuration to AHCI as an alternative of Intel Optane reminiscence in case accessible. GParted received’t be capable to acknowledge your drives if the storage configuration isn’t set to AHCI. 

Once you boot into your USB drive, you should have the choice to launch GParted with varied settings. We advocate you go for the primary possibility and choose ‘Launch GParted with default settings’. 

You will now be prompted to pick a keymap. This web page turns out to be useful in case your keyboard is incorrectly acknowledged by Gnome. If your keyboard appears to be responsive then choose ‘Don’t contact keymap’ to proceed with the method. 

Now go forward and choose your language by getting into its corresponding quantity. Enter ’33’ in case you want to choose US English. 

You will now be requested in case you want to load GParted with compelled video drivers or the default settings. Force video driver possibility turns out to be useful in case GParted is unable to acknowledge your show or if you’re having decision issues in your system. We advocate you choose the primary possibility. Enter ‘0’ to pick the choice. 

GParted will now be booted and you may be taken to its non permanent desktop. The partition supervisor ought to routinely launch in your system now. Click on the drop-down menu within the high left and choose the specified disk that you just want to format. 

You will now get an inventory of present volumes on the chosen disk. Click and choose the specified quantity that you just want to format. 

Now click on on ‘Partition’ on the high and hover over ‘Format to’. 

Select your required drive format however it’s endorsed that you just format your drive in NTFS for all fashionable methods. 

Once you choose the specified disk format, GParted will cue the present operation in its job record. Click on the checkmark within the toolbar on the job to execute cued duties.

Click on ‘Apply’ to substantiate your selection. 

 

GParted will now carry out the required operations and the chosen quantity ought to be routinely formatted on the finish of this course of. Close the GParted utility and click on on the Power icon on the desktop. Click and choose ‘Restart’ after which click on on ‘Ok’. 

Boot into the BIOS in your system and revert the adjustments you made earlier. This consists of enabling safe boot, altering your storage configuration back to its default settings, and altering your boot device order. 

Once you may have reverted the adjustments, unplug your USB and exit the BIOS whereas saving the adjustments you made. 

You will now be booted into Windows usually and the chosen quantity ought to now be formatted and wiped in your system. 

Method #7 From Recovery

If you’re in Windows Recovery Environment and unable besides into Windows, then you should utilize the information under to format a drive in your system. Please take into account that it’s not really useful to format your boot drive using the information under out of your recovery setting as this might trigger points along with your boot drive and make it unrecognizable. You will then need to utterly format the drive and set it up once more and set up a brand new model of Windows on it. Hence, use the information under solely to format secondary drives from the Recovery setting or guarantee that you’ve got a Windows 11 set up media useful to reinstall the OS that you’ll take away out of your boot drive. 

Once you’re on the Windows Recovery or troubleshooting display, click on and choose ‘Advanced Options’. 

Click on ‘Troubleshoot’. 

Select ‘Advanced Options’ once more. 

Now click on on ‘Command Prompt’ to launch the command immediate.

Type within the following command to launch the diskpart utility. 

diskpart

Now execute the next command. 

record quantity

Find the amount you want to format and use the command under to pick it. Replace X with the devoted variety of the amount you chose.  

choose quantity x

Now use the next command to format the chosen quantity with NTFS as its format. Replace NAME with the identify you want to give your newly formatted quantity.  

format fs=ntfs fast label=NAME

Let diskpart do its factor and the amount ought to be formatted inside just a few seconds. Once formatted, sort within the following command to exit CMD. 

exit

Now restart your PC and the chosen quantity ought to be formatted in your system. 

Method #8: Using the Windows Setup

You may also format a drive-by straight using the Windows setup as effectively. Depending in your necessities, you possibly can then exit the setup or proceed putting in Windows on the freshly formatted drive. 

Launch the Windows setup from the set up media when prompted on the time of boot. Once the setup is launched, choose your language and click on on ‘Next’. 

Click on ‘Install Windows’. 

Windows Setup will now detect the drives put in in your system. Click and choose the drive you want to format and click on on ‘Format drive’ on the backside. 

Confirm your selection and Windows will now proceed to format the chosen drive. 

And that’s it! Once the drive is formatted, you possibly can proceed formatting different drives in your system using the setup or proceed with the Windows set up relying in your necessities. 

How to utterly format a drive on Windows 11 or 10

Completely formatting a drive is a bit of completely different from the standard format strategies listed above. While the above-listed strategies will delete all of your information from the drive, the present partitions will stay. Additionally, if it’s the boot drive that we’re speaking about then additionally, you will have recovery and EFI partitions on the drive. While this shouldn’t be a problem in your system, they’ll trigger issues when switching methods because the boot order or the recovery media might be acknowledged incorrectly by the brand new system.

In such circumstances, you possibly can wipe all partitions from a drive and utterly format it. You can then create new partitions and volumes on the drive relying on the necessity of the brand new system that you’re switching to. Follow one of many guides under to utterly format a drive and take away all partitions and volumes. 

Method #1: From a third-party utility

If you want to utterly format your drive using a third-party utility then we advocate using the Gnome Partition Manager. This is an open-source and utterly free utility hosted on Sourceforge. You may even compile the binaries by yourself in case the privacy is a priority. Follow the information under to get you began. The Gnome Partition Manager is accessible in ISO format which lets you mount it to a detachable media and use it individually as effectively, in case you wish to utterly format your boot drive. Use Rufus to create a USB set up media using the Gnome Partition Manager ISO. 

Required

  • Gnome Partition Manager | Gnome Partition Manager
  • AHCI Storage mode enabled in BIOS
  • Secure boot disabled in BIOS
  • Boot device order modified (if wanted besides from USB in your system)

Guide

Make the required BIOS adjustments in your system and plug within the GParted USB into your system. Once plugged in, reboot your device and boot from the USB by urgent a key if prompted. 

You will now be on the GParted Splash Screen the place you may be requested to pick the related model of GParted that you just want to use. We advocate you choose the primary one which is GParted Live with default settings.

Once booted, you may be prompted to vary your keymap if wanted. If your keyboard appears to be working as meant, choose ‘Don’t contact keymap’ or use one of many different choices to get keyboard working inside Gnome. 

Select your most well-liked language by getting into its related quantity. Use quantity 33 for US English. 

Now in case you want to manually set up or configure your video output then enter 1 on the following display. Else if the decision and video response instances appear to be superb for now then enter ‘0’. 

GParted will now boot with the dictated settings. Once launched, you may be taken to the non permanent desktop the place the GParted utility will probably be launched routinely. Click on the drop-down menu within the high proper nook and choose the specified disk that you just want to utterly format. 

Now choose a quantity on the chosen disk and click on on ‘Partition’ on the high. Select ‘Format to’ after which choose ‘NTFS’. 

Repeat the steps above for all of the partitions on the disk. Once every partition is cued for formatting, click on on the checkmark in your toolbar to execute these duties. 

Confirm your selection by clicking on ‘Apply’. 

All the chosen partitions will now be formatted. We can now delete these partitions. Click and choose every partition one after the other after which click on on the X in your toolbar. This will cue every partition for deletion. 

Click on the checkmark once more to delete all the chosen partitions. 

Confirm your selection by clicking on ‘Apply’. 

Once all partitions are deleted from the disk, click on and choose the unallocated quantity on the disk after which click on on ‘New’ on the high. If you may have an present major partition on the disk then choose that partition and click on on the ‘Resize’ icon as an alternative. 

 

Select all the measurement of your disk and enter a reputation on your disk beside the label textual content subject. If resizing an present partition, use the slider on the high to tug it to the utmost measurement. 

Click on ‘Ok’ or ‘Resize/Move’ relying in your selection. 

And that’s it! Your complete drive ought to now be formatted and a single partition equal to all the measurement of your drive ought to now be created which is able to assist you to use the drive, nonetheless, you want. You can now exit GParted by clicking on the facility icon on the desktop. Once rebooting, boot into your BIOS and revert the adjustments you made earlier. Once reverted, unplug the USB and boot into Windows usually.  

Method #2: From CMD

Diskpart is a massively versatile utility that can be utilized to utterly format a drive as effectively. Once utterly formatted by way of diskpart, you’ll need to set your disk as GPT or MBR relying in your platform wants for the drive to be acknowledged correctly. 

Launch CMD using one of many guides above relying on the present state of your system. Once CMD is launched, enter the command under to launch diskpart. 

diskpart

Now enter the next command and discover the disk you want to utterly format. 

record disk

Note down the involved disk’s quantity and use the command under to pick it. Replace N with the disk quantity you famous down earlier. 

choose disk N

Now enter the command under to wash your disk.

clear

We will now must create a partition on the chosen disk in order that it’s usable. Enter the command under to get began.

create partition major

Use the command under to format the newly created quantity now. 

format fs=ntfs

Enter the next command to assign a letter to the drive. Replace X with the letter of your selection. 

assign letter=X

And that’s it! The chosen drive ought to now be utterly formatted. Any recovery or EFI partitions on the drive also needs to now be deleted.  

How to change between MBR and GPT

MBR and GPT are varieties of disk setups which can be used to put in new OS on a drive. These sorts are important in case you are attempting to change between platforms or use Linux on yoru system. While GPT is a brand new disk setup with varied benefits, MBR continues to be essentially the most appropriate setup format on the market. If you are attempting to change your disk setup from MBR to GPT or vice versa then you should utilize the information under to vary the disk sort. 

Note: When changing, your disk will probably be cleaned and all the info will probably be faraway from it. You might want to create new partitions on the drive as effectively so guarantee that you’ve got backed up your information earlier than continuing with the information under. 

Launch CMD in your system both from the recovery setting or from inside Windows relying on the present state of your system. Once launched enter the command under to launch the diskpart utility. 

diskpart

Now enter the next command to get an inventory of all of the disks in your system. Note down the quantity for the involved record to be able to entry it in a while. 

record disk

Enter the next command and substitute N with the disk quantity you famous down earlier. 

choose disk N

Use the command under to wash the drive. 

clear

Now let’s convert the drive to your required disk sort. Replace TYPE with MBR or GPT relying in your present necessities. 

convert TYPE

Once the disk has been transformed, use the command under to create a major partition. 

create partition major

Now use the command under to assign a letter to the drive. Replace X with the drive letter of your selection. 

assign letter=X

And that’s it! You will now have transformed the chosen drive to GPT or MBR relying in your present necessities. 

How to create new volumes and partitions

Once you may have formatted your drives you can see that it’s not that simple to make use of them inside Windows. Formatted drives want devoted partitions which might then be used as storage areas to retailer your information or set up an OS. Use the information under to create customized partitions for a particular drive in Windows 11. 

Method #1: From CMD

Launch CMD and use the command under to enter diskpart. 

diskpart

Enter the next command to get an inventory of all of the disks put in in your system. Note down the disk variety of the involved disk. 

record disk

Now enter the command under and substitute N with the disk quantity you famous down earlier. 

choose disk N

Use the command under to create a customized partition on the chosen disk drive. If a partition already exists on the drive then substitute ‘primary’ with ‘extended’. Additionally, substitute XXXX with the dimensions of your selection for the partition. The measurement is measured in megabytes the place 1000MB = 1GB.  

create partition major measurement=SIZE

Now enter the next command. Your newly created partition will now present up on this record. Note down its quantity quantity

record quantity

Enter the next command and substitute N with the amount quantity you famous down earlier. 

choose quantity N

Now use the next command to assign a letter to the chosen quantity. Replace X with the letter of your selection.  

assign letter=X

And that’s it! You will now have created a brand new partition on the chosen drive relying in your present wants and necessities. 

Method #2: From Disk Management

You may also create a brand new partition son your system using the Disk Management utility offered inside Windows. Use the information under to get you began. 

Press Windows + R in your keyboard and sort within the following. Press Enter in your keyboard to launch the disk administration utility. 

diskmgmt.msc

Once the disk administration utility is launched, you’re going to get a graphical illustration for all of your drives. Right-click on the unallocated house on the backside of your display and click on on ‘New Simple Volume’.

The quantity creation wizard will now be launched. Click on ‘Next’ to get began.

Select a customized measurement if wanted. By default, Windows will use all the unallocated house to create a brand new easy quantity in your drive. Click on ‘Next’ after you have set the specified measurement.

Choose a drive letter on your new quantity now. Click on ‘Next’ as soon as you’re accomplished. 

You will now be given the choice to format the unallocated house earlier than the amount is created. Choose your disk format by clicking on the drop-down menu and set a reputation for the brand new quantity beside Volume Label. If you don’t want to format the unallocated house, then click on and choose ‘Do not format this volume’. Click on ‘Next as soon as you’re accomplished.

Finally, click on on ‘Finish’ and the brand new quantity will now begin being created. 

And that’s it! A brand new quantity ought to now be created on the chosen drive. 

We hope this information helped you simply format or wipe your drive in Windows 11 relying in your present wants and necessities. If you face any points or have any questions for us, be happy to achieve out to us using the feedback part under. 


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