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Wiping an old computer

What to do before giving away an old computer.

Another data scandal in the UK once again shows why it's important to clean up your computer before giving it to someone else.

There's a number of steps to making sure your old computer isn't going to tell tales on you and it's worth doing them with every system that leaves your home or office.

Back up your old data

Make sure anything important has been copied before deleting the old comptuer. Once wiped, it will be impossible to recover that data.

Create a new user profile

Next create a new Administrator profile.Once you've done this, restart the computer and log back on as the new Administrator user.

Uninstall software

Follow our instructions on our IT Queries website on uninstalling programs. When asked if you want to delete any data, choose "yes".

Delete the other profiles

Once in the new profile, go to C:\Documents and Settings (Windows XP) or C:\Users (Windows Vista) and delete all the other profiles.

Clean up your computer

We have a comprehensive clean up routine you should follow next. This will get rid of anything unnecessary.

Empty your recycle bin

Right click and choose empty. This will move everything you've deleted out of the bin. Keep in mind this does not fully delete the data.

Permantely delete your data

Finally you need to download and run a shredder program. We've posted the instructions on doing this previously.

If this is too hard. We offer a data wiping service. You will find most good computer techs can do this for you.



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