Question about wiping a hard drive clean

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by cycfan, Jun 13, 2011.

  1. cycfan

    cycfan Member

    Nov 8, 2006
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    So I had viruses on my computer that the antivirus could not remove. Took the computer to a shop and they wiped the hard drive clean and reloaded windows etc. and charged me $80. Is this something I could do myself since I have the original setup disc that came with the computer? I seem to remember something about "F disc" or something to wipe off the hard drive.

    GO CYCLONES!!!
     
  2. alarson

    alarson Well-Known Member

    Mar 15, 2006
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    Yes, most people could do this themselves. Oftentimes when you boot up from the original setup disc, part of the reinstall will be wiping the hard drive clean.
     
  3. edr247

    edr247 Well-Known Member

    Aug 4, 2010
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    Yes. You paid $80 for something you could have done yourself (really, you paid for the labor, because that's all that's really involved).

    1) Backup essential files (should do this often anyway). This would be any work files, photos, etc.

    2) Pop the Windows OS disc into the drive and restart. It should go to a setup menu.

    3) Reinstall Windows, using the format option. This would wipe the drive (more or less) and reinstall Windows.

    4) Go through and reinstall vital software, reinstall and update drivers, etc.
     
  4. hawkeyeh8r

    hawkeyeh8r Well-Known Member

    Jun 10, 2010
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    if you dont know what youre doing the 80 dollars was well spent. when i first redid mine i got help from someone that works on computers. without that help i would have been lost and probably would have screwed up my computer and had to pay that money anyway to get it reinstalled. i did mine on a dell so i dont know if they are harder to reinstall then another company so that may have made a difference
     
  5. edr247

    edr247 Well-Known Member

    Aug 4, 2010
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    Reinstalling your OS shouldn't matter on what company you bought your computer from, really. However, reinstalling all the other stuff could be more of a pain.
     
  6. Cy4Patriots

    Cy4Patriots Well-Known Member

    Jan 10, 2011
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    The question is, did he need to reinstall windows to begin with?

    1. Boot in to safe mode
    2. Download Malwarebytes on a USB Flash Drive
    3. Download Microsoft Standalone sweeper
    4. Download MSE
    5. Run all Scans
    6. Boot in to Windows.

    This would have fixed it.
     
  7. 3TrueFans

    3TrueFans Well-Known Member

    Sep 10, 2009
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    Possibly, Malwarebytes is good but it is far from a catch-all, some are very tricky to remove and take some time even if you know what you're doing. Regardless, yes, this is something you could do yourself and $80 is highway robbery.
     
  8. Cy4Patriots

    Cy4Patriots Well-Known Member

    Jan 10, 2011
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    I think Best Buy charges like 150-200$ for something like this. Nuts.
     
  9. serverguy

    serverguy Member

    Apr 11, 2006
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    You also have to factor in how valuable your time is. Depending on how long it would have taken you to figure it out it could have been money well spent.
     
  10. hawkeyeh8r

    hawkeyeh8r Well-Known Member

    Jun 10, 2010
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    unless the virus was in the OS. i had one like that and i couldnt open any programs, even in safe mode. i had to take it into a computer place to get it done since it made it almost impossible to do anything to fix it
     
  11. Cy4Patriots

    Cy4Patriots Well-Known Member

    Jan 10, 2011
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    Well before you rush to take it in read about the Microsoft tool

     
  12. cytheguy

    cytheguy Well-Known Member

    May 23, 2006
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    As someone who's not computer savvy, how do you backup files? Save them to a disk? Other?
     
  13. whirlybirds

    whirlybirds Well-Known Member

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    External Hard Drive. They're worth if you download music or are a hardcore gamer.
     
  14. hawkeyeh8r

    hawkeyeh8r Well-Known Member

    Jun 10, 2010
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    ya you can go out and get an external HD. we got a 1TB hd for 70 or 80 bucks last year. just put whatever you want to save (photos, documents, etc..) on there and then you can transfer them back when reinstall your computer
     
  15. IowaStateClones

    IowaStateClones Well-Known Member

    Dec 7, 2009
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    Doing this really doesn't take much of your time at all. Yeah it may take a couple hours to complete but most of that is installation time. This guy pretty much got ripped. If it is your first time doing it google really helps (if you have access to another computer).
     
  16. drednot57

    drednot57 Well-Known Member

    Apr 26, 2010
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    Don't forget about rootkits; incredibly difficult to remove and usually requires a clean re-install of any OS including Linux and Mac OSx. Google rootkit to read about it and find out why it's so hard to remove via software. There is software available to detect rootkits (e.g. rkhunter), but they're like 50%, or so, effective; not exactly confidence building.
     
  17. Cyclones2

    Cyclones2 Member

    May 9, 2011
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    If you can't boot your computer or you want to wipe the hard drive completely and start fresh you can get this program for free DBAN Download | Darik's Boot And Nuke, all you do is burn it to a cd and put it in your pc and it walks you through a couple steps then you sjut let it sit and do its thing, Its called Boot and Nuke. We use it at work to get rid of medical info off of old pc and laptop hard drives.
     
  18. Cy4Patriots

    Cy4Patriots Well-Known Member

    Jan 10, 2011
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    I think Avast! does a good job with Rootkits

    Avast!’s GMER technology gets top score in rootkit detection tests


    I have used this many times. When they say Nuke, they mean nuke. Haha, it does the job really well.
     
  19. Rickybaby

    Rickybaby Active Member

    Apr 15, 2006
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    Right. Have you ever done this? Try downloading 219 MS security updates plus one or more service packs and rebooting about 12 times. This is AFTER you install windows the first time. And hunt down all the drivers you need. And install them one at a time and reboot in between.

    $80 is NOT getting ripped and is actually a pretty fair deal. Many places would charge you a lot more than that. What is your time worth? Do you have 5 hours to blow babysitting your old computer while it downloads/reboots? In case you don't know it already, sometimes with an old computer its actually more efficient to just buy a new one. Why blow $200 reloading an old piece of **** when you can get a brand new one for $400 that is 3x faster.
     
  20. jdoggivjc

    jdoggivjc Well-Known Member

    Sep 27, 2006
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    #20 jdoggivjc, Jun 14, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2011
    I tend to keep all those "important" files (photos, music, etc.) on the external hard drive and network it so that all of my computers have access to the external in the first place. I really do need to get a new one soon because it's now 7 years old and is only 120 GB. Not that its capacity nor its performance is in question, it's more of an age thing - I don't know how long these external drives are supposed to last, and if it were to die tomorrow I'm out a LOT of files.

    Sounds like a project for when I buy my new laptop - at the same time I'm likely installing Win7 and more RAM on my tower, which means I'll need to move all my files off my tower onto an external, which is probably the time I should buy the new external.
     

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