ID theft attempt trashed my computer

  • prinnybomb
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Just as the subject heading says, my computer has been rendered useless :cry: . Does anybody know of a way to erase the contents of my hard drive manually, as in opening up my computer and not using any software? I'd really rather not shell out cash for a new hard drive but it is looking like I might not have a choice.
  • Don2007
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Why don't you want to use software to wipe the drive? How else do you expect to do it?
  • prinnybomb
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Computer crashes before it even makes it to the desktop. Unless I'm just being an idiot, you can't install any software without first making it that far.
  • casablanca
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Remove the hard drive from your computer, plug it into another and erase it.
  • prinnybomb
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Got it. Will post results.
  • ynyfrik
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Post 3+ Months Ago

You can reinstall the Operating System with the installation discs that came with it, instead of trashing it if the computer works and the hard drive isn't failing.

If you so insist on physically destroying your hard drive you can take the hard drive out and drill through it, but that is a bit extreme and can be dangerous.
  • UPSGuy
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
Computer crashes before it even makes it to the desktop. Unless I'm just being an idiot, you can't install any software without first making it that far.


You don't necessarily need to take the hard drive to a different machine in order to wipe it clean. You need a bootable CD, disk, or USB. For example, if you take a Windows installation disk and pop it in, your computer should say something like "Press any key to boot from CD..." which would allow you to start up to the install process instead of starting up to your current Windows installation. Barring any hardware issues that it doesn't sound like you have, you may have to check your BIOS settings to make sure your computer knows to check the CD Rom before the hard drive in the boot process.

Once you've got the install running, Windows can format your hard drive entirely and give you a brand new install on it. Have a look over here at this LifeHacker article. Unfortunately, since your PC is having issues, you'll need to start on step 4, but it outlines the procedure we're talking about.

If there really is something physically wrong with the hardware and you're unable to complete the new install, then taking the hard drive to a new PC and following the same procedure is an alternative.

If you have any geek friends, now might be the time to ask very nicely for assistance, throw them a little cash and offer to cook dinner for them while they help fix your PC. I know you said you're strapped for cash, but there's little most geeks hate more than being taken advantage of. We don't like to work away from work unless there's something in it for us, too! Substitute a 6-pack of beer or something along those lines until you can reach a compromise. 8)

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