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View Full Version : getting ready to sell a used laptop, what do I need to do to clear it?


$P-Ritch$
11-08-2010, 9:30 PM
Hey all,

I have a 2 yr old sony laptop that doesn't get too much use anymore. I would like to send it to a better home, but want to make sure it is completely free of any of my personal information.

Pretty much I would like to know how to restore it back to its day 1 factory settings, like I was never on it.

I consider myself somewhat computer literate, but I am in no means a "whiz" of any sort.

Oh yeah, the OS is Vista home premium

Thanks for any assistance you guys can offer, Jon.

bigmike82
11-08-2010, 9:37 PM
Download this:

http://www.killdisk.com/downloadfree.htm

Burn the iso to a CD, then boot your computer from it.

Run one pass, and you're good. For added paranoia, run again.

Ricky-Ray
11-08-2010, 10:35 PM
This is what I use at work for getting rid of old drives.

http://www.dban.org/

Burn to a CD and run boot of CD. Once it's wiped run the restore CD that came with the laptop so everything get's installed back to the day you got it out of the box and your set.

armygunsmith
11-08-2010, 10:36 PM
Download this:

http://www.killdisk.com/downloadfree.htm

Burn the iso to a CD, then boot your computer from it.

Run one pass, and you're good. For added paranoia, run again.

This is my tool of choice as well.

ldivinag
11-09-2010, 3:30 AM
do you stil have the original paperwork or CDs?

look for a way to wipe out the HD while restoring to factory software defaults.

might as well do the "nice" thing and setup everything like it came day 1, while you wipe out all of your info...

do this procedure 2-3 times.

sevensix2x51
11-09-2010, 9:03 AM
A lot of laptops have the restore files on a separate partition of the hdd, rather than on cds. Be careful with any software that wipes an entire physical drive, unless you know for sure the cab files are on a cd.

If you have a restore partition, you can usually just rapid-fire the f8 key when you boot it, which boots you into the recovery tools menu. There should be an option to format the primary partition and reinstall windows... ymmv.

MA2
11-09-2010, 9:47 PM
Before any of the steps above...
(Oh, back-up your data :))

Use windows encryption to encrypt all data that you do not want anyone to see.
On the very important important files, change the file extension to txt, open it, select all, delete everything in it, then save it.

Then as stated above, wipe data, and re-install.

maurice05
11-14-2010, 12:33 AM
What's the specs on the laptop and egRess going to be your asking price, um in need for a computer both of mines have died and I'm doing everything from my cell for the time being

gunn
11-14-2010, 7:32 AM
Before any of the steps above...
(Oh, back-up your data :))

Use windows encryption to encrypt all data that you do not want anyone to see.
On the very important important files, change the file extension to txt, open it, select all, delete everything in it, then save it.

Then as stated above, wipe data, and re-install.

If you are going to wipe the data as the other guys above have suggested, there is no reason to go through the hoops this guy has suggested. These are ghetto ways to wipe the data and will be by no means exact (as compared to the bit wipers in the previous posts).

-g

Oh, and if you are well and truly paranoid, you may just consider selling the computer w/o the HDD. Example: if the computer is so old that you are practically selling it for parts, then it's just one less part in the pkg (as opposed to an "integral part" you are selling to someone who wants a "turnkey PC").