How do I completely wipe my computer?

Answered by Edward Huber

To completely wipe your computer, you can follow these steps:

1. Open the Settings by clicking on the Start button and selecting the gear icon. Alternatively, you can press the Windows key + I to directly open the Settings.

2. In the Settings window, scroll down and click on “Update & Security”.

3. On the left-hand side of the Update & Security window, you will find “Recovery”. Click on it.

4. In the Recovery options, you will see an option called “Reset this PC”. Click on the “Get started” button underneath it.

5. A new window will appear with two options: “Keep my files” and “Remove everything”. Select the “Remove everything” option to completely wipe your computer.

6. If you have multiple drives on your computer, you will be asked whether you want to remove files from all drives or only the drive where Windows is installed. Choose accordingly.

7. On the next screen, you will be given an option to clean the drives thoroughly. This option is recommended if you are planning to give away or sell your computer. Select the “Remove files and clean the drive” option.

8. Windows will now show you a warning message explaining that the process will take some time and cannot be undone. Make sure you have backed up any important files before proceeding. Click on the “Next” button to start the process.

9. Windows will now restart your computer and begin the wiping process. It will overwrite all the data on the selected drive(s) with random information, making it extremely difficult to recover any data.

10. Once the wiping process is complete, Windows will reinstall itself on your computer, effectively resetting it to its original state.

It’s important to note that this process will remove all your personal files, installed programs, and settings from your computer. Therefore, it’s crucial to back up any important data before proceeding. Additionally, make sure you have the necessary installation media or product keys for any programs you want to reinstall after the wipe.

I’ve personally used this method to wipe my own computer when I upgraded to a new one. It’s a reliable way to ensure that all your personal information is securely erased from the computer before passing it on or disposing of it. Just make sure you have everything backed up and are ready to reinstall any necessary software afterwards.