Keeping Win 7 on a laptop I want to give away

Jun 16, 2017
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I bought an old HP Presario running Win 7 last year from a local used-computer shop. Now I want to either sell it or give it away on Freecycle. Naturally, I need to wipe all personal data beforehand. The laptop came with Win 7 installed but no discs or anything to use to reinstall it. How can I wipe my data without losing Win 7?



^ The World's First ^
May 10, 2010
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Unfortunately as soon as you start using Windows 7 it starts to become customized to you: things like your login name & registry settings. So me personally, I would never give away a computer without completely reformatting the drive & reinstalling which you can't do without disks (or a recovery partition that allows you to restore to factory defaults)

You can of course delete your data: music/videos/etc & uninstall any paid programs/apps but you also need to make sure once you delete it that you clear the recycle bin. And even then some people: data recovery experts/FBI forensics teams that can probably recover your info from erased sectors. So there are actually programs to write & rewrite 0's & 1's several times to the hard drive freespace to make it nearly impossible to recover.

But if it isn't to family I would never include the hard drive at all.

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