How To Use Thinkpad Drive Erase Utility?

How can I clear the BIOS on my Lenovo hard drive?

To access the BIOS boot menu, press the F12 key. To go to the App Menu, use the tab key. Choose “ThinkShield Secure Wipe” from the drop-down menu. To wipe the disc, follow the on-screen directions.

What is Lenovo ThinkShield secure wipe, and how does it work?

ThinkShield Secure Wipe is the replacement to the ThinkPad Drive Erase Utility, and it’s designed to wipe the SSD clean.

Although the Drive Erase Utility is still supported and available as an external tool, ThinkShield secure wipe is fully incorporated into the BIOS image and requires no further software.

Secure wipe can be done locally by BIOS from the application menu in the Startup Boot Menu, or remotely from the OS via the WMI interface, which is what this article will discuss.

DISCLAIMER: These examples are meant to show a variety of techniques for deploying the solution, not necessarily a “Best Practice.”

Adjust as necessary to meet the demands of your surroundings. These solutions also don’t give any auditing or reporting.

What is the best way to totally clean a hard drive?

Are you ready to wipe your computer and erase all traces of your personal and financial information? When you say goodbye to your old laptop or desktop, you must take a set of measures to avoid accidentally revealing your papers, images, passwords, financial information, and personal data.

Step 1: Back up your hard-drive data

Back up your data to your new computer, an external hard drive, or a web service before wiping the hard drive or performing a factory reset.

It’s a good idea to back up your data on a frequent basis to keep it safe. Ransomware software can encrypt data on hard discs that have crashed, been lost, or stolen. The best defence is to make sure that all of your data is safely and routinely backed up.

That way, if you misplace an important document, you’ll know where to look for a backup. You can also retrieve copies of your most essential papers, images, and files if your computer is infected with ransomware, which prevents you from accessing the information stored on it.

When it comes to file backup, you have numerous options. You can save your data on USB flash devices or thumb drives. However, keep in mind that these are modest storage devices and may not be able to hold all of the information you require. External hard drives, which have larger storage capacity, may be a preferable choice. You can also move your data to a different laptop or computer.

Another option is “cloud backs.” They’re generally safe and one of the most practical methods for storing data. The following is how it works:

To begin, you must first create a cloud services account and complete the initial setup. Next, instead of keeping your data on your laptop or desktop computer, you can save it in the cloud, which is a network of remote servers.

There is no physical location for the backed-up data when you save your files to the cloud. It is less likely to be stolen or destroyed by natural disasters such as floods or fires. Your files are also encrypted when you save them to cloud services. It’s scrambled so that even if thieves gain access to your information, they won’t be able to interpret it.

Step 2: Don’t just delete files from your computer

You might believe that putting your documents in the trash or recycling bin and then emptying them will permanently delete them. Here’s the issue: This appears to erase the files, but in many cases it simply hides them from view. These secret files may be recovered by most data recovery programmes, including those used by fraudsters and hackers.

This is why: The file name or reference to the deleted file is wiped when you empty the trash or recycle bin. The file is no longer visible on the PC.

This indicates that the file’s space on the laptop or computer is no longer designated for it. The file, however, remains hidden on your computer’s hard disc. It will remain on the hard drive until its place is given up to make room for a new file to be stored there.

The file header can be rebuilt using data recovery software, allowing the computer to see the file again.

Here’s the danger: If your files aren’t totally erased from your hard drive, thieves can access them using data recovery software.

Data recovery software is used by law enforcement agencies to retrieve deleted files from confiscated devices. Identity thieves can utilise the same tools and strategies as cybercriminals.

Step 3: Use a program to wipe your drive

Your hard disc can be permanently erased using special software tools. There’s a slim possibility you’ll be able to retrieve your deleted data if you use these apps. That’s good news: no one else will be able to recover your deleted files using data recovery software.

The majority of data-destruction tools overwrite deleted files with zeros and other illegible data. Data recovery software will be unable to recover the files as a result of this.

DBAN is a free data destruction tool that entirely deletes files from a hard drive. This covers any personal files, operating systems, and apps that have been installed.

It’s a good idea to clean your smartphone with an application like this. The majority of goods provide evidence of erasure. Some even tell you what happened to the drive and the data on it. When wiping a work laptop or PC, this is useful.

Step 4: Physically wipe your hard drive

It’s time to take extra precautions to ensure that your hard disc is completely cleaned. What’s an example? You can wipe the drive physically. Simply remove your hard drive and place it near a rare earth magnet. Is there another option? Using a screwdriver, physically dismantle your drive.

A rare earth magnet, like the neodymium magnet, can be used to deform the metal plates in your computer’s hard disk. This renders the hard drive useless. One word of caution: the magnets are quite powerful and can cause physical harm if misused.

Is there a better way? Dismantle the parts of your hard disc with a screwdriver to render it worthless.

Step 5: Do a fresh installation of the operating system

Another option for entirely rewriting over your computer’s hard disc is to perform a clean installation of the computer’s original operating system. This is especially crucial if you’re gifting the device to a friend or family member because you’ll have wiped all of your personal and financial information but will be handing along a functioning computer with an operating system.

Is it possible to wipe a drive from the BIOS?

Many people want to know how to format a hard drive from the BIOS. You can’t, to put it succinctly.

You can make a bootable CD, DVD, or USB flash drive and use a free third-party formatting utility to format a disc if you can’t do it from within Windows.

Darik’s Boot and Nuke (DBAN), which is free for personal use, is one solution. This tool will completely wipe and format your hard drive, however it does not support secure SSD erasure.

DBAN is only supposed to be able to make a bootable CD/DVD-R, but there is a workaround in the form of a separate third-party programme if you don’t have any blank discs or a burner.

Universal USB Installer will convert the DBAN ISO image you obtained to a bootable USB quickly and effortlessly. Simply insert a blank USB flash drive into your computer, run the Universal USB Installer setup tool, and follow the on-screen instructions.

You’ll be prompted to navigate down the list and select the Linux distribution you want to instal on USB (in this case, the latest version of DBAN), as well as its location on your computer and the letter of the USB drive you wish to use.

You’ll need to adjust some BIOS settings to boot from this USB drive instead of your standard boot device (in most cases, the hard drive). If you’re not sure how to get into the BIOS, check out our tutorial on how to get into the BIOS.

Change the primary boot device to the USB drive in the BIOS (it doesn’t have to be plugged in to make this change). Insert your bootable USB and restart your computer when you’ve saved your settings and exited the BIOS.

Your computer should start up the DBAN software, which will walk you through the process of wiping your hard drive, with options for different levels of data cleaning.

It will regard the USB drive as another drive, so remove it after you’ve booted into DBAN to avoid accidentally erasing it as well.

How do I reinstall Windows 10 on my Lenovo ThinkPad?

To go to the next step, click Update & Security, then Recovery. Under the Advanced Startup section, select Restart Now to bring up a menu with many alternatives. From the menu, choose Troubleshoot, and then Reset this PC.

What is the procedure for factory resetting my laptop?

  • Select Settings > Update & Security > Recovery from the drop-down menu. A title that says “Reset this PC” should appear. To begin, click the Get Started button.
  • Keep My Files or Remove Everything are the options. The former restores your basic settings and eliminates uninstalled apps like browsers, but your data remains intact. The latter will, as the name implies, delete your files. In either scenario, make sure you have a backup of your files in case something goes wrong.

Brief Introduction to Formatting

The entire disc formatting procedure consists of three parts: low-level formatting, partitioning, and high-level formatting, as we mentioned in What Is Disk Formatting. High-level formatting is the type of formatting used by computer users. And partitions are used for this formatting.

However, in practical operations, high-level formatting is divided into two modes: rapid format and full format (it is also called general format).

The distinctions between fast format and format are frequently misunderstood by computer users. Computer users may make the most of their discs if they have a thorough understanding of them.

How to Perform Quick/Full Format in Windows

To begin, consider formatting in Windows Explorer and Disk Management. Quick format is checked by default when a computer user formats a partition. If quick format is unchecked, full format mode is selected automatically.

Right-click a local disc under This PC in File Explorer. Then select Format from the drop-down menu.

To access Disk Management, press the “Windows + R” keys and then type “diskmgmt.msc.” Then, right-click a partition and choose Format from the drop-down menu.

Users can also use the diskpart command to execute a quick or full format. To open the cmd window, press the “Windows + R” keys and type “cmd.” Then, to open the diskpart window, type “diskpart.” To find the partition to be formatted, type “list disc”, “select disc *”, “list partition”, “select partition *”.

To do a quick format, type “format fs=ntfs quick.” To conduct a full format, type “format fs=ntfs.”

Differences between Quick Format and Full Format

What is the distinction between fast and full format? Is it true that a quick/full format deletes all data? These are issues that concern a lot of people. To solve these issues, users must first understand what happens when they format a partition using rapid format vs. full format.

Quick format will “rebuild” the file system, volume label, and cluster size after “deleting” files from the partition. It is less time consuming than the complete format. It isn’t, however, formatting in the true sense.

Please note that I used the word “delete” rather than “erase.” That is to say, the rapid format does not completely remove the data.

It simply writes “formatted” to the partition and deletes the journal that maintains track of the files and their locations on the hard drive. As a result, the data is still on the hard disc and may be recovered with ease using data recovery software before it is overwritten.

Full format removes all files from the partition, rebuilds the file system, volume label, and cluster size, and scans the partition for logical bad sectors (this is why full format takes longer than quick format). Some individuals are terrified of it since it is the true sensation of formatting.

When compared to quick format in Windows versions prior to Windows XP, full format only had the added bad sector scanning function. That means that even if a full format is performed, data can be easily recovered in certain Windows operating systems.

However, in Windows Vista and later Windows versions, full format is updated to erase original data, write zeros to the entire partition, and then erase zeroes again to prevent data recovery. As a result, a full format deletes all data.

Data recovery software will not be able to recover data that has been totally formatted (in Windows Vista and later Windows versions). Some people, however, believe that data can be recovered using more advanced technologies and residual magnetism on disc.

So, how do you make data unrecoverable so that consumers’ data can be recovered? Many people may be perplexed by this.

What is the best way to remove everything on my SSD?

  • To access Computer Management in Windows 7, right-click Computer and select Manage. Select Disk Management from the Storage menu.

Hold the Windows key and press the ‘X’ key to open an application menu that includes Disk Management, and pick it on Windows 8 and later. Disk Management will provide a list of attached drives.

Diskpart, a Windows command-line programme for managing partitions and drives, may wipe a drive’s contents and reset it to its factory settings. Here’s a complete instruction to wiping your hard drive’s data using Diskpart.

What is the best way to clean my SSD and reinstall Windows?

You have two alternatives for wiping your PC now that you know what sort of drive you have:

  • Wiping a computer is usually as simple as reformatting the hard drive and reinstalling Windows using the Reset function. If you’re simply discarding, donating, or selling your computer, the Reset option makes it harder for others to recover your data, especially if it’s encrypted. This is simple to perform in Windows 8, 8.1, 10, and 11 for both an HDD and an SSD.
  • Using Third-Party Tools to Securely Erase: You have another alternative if Reset doesn’t give you entire confidence that your data can’t be restored, or if you have a PC running Windows 7 or older. There are a few solid third-party tools for safely erasing your disc, which we’ll go over later. Depending on whether you have an HDD or an SSD, these are different.

How to Wipe a Windows 10 and 11 Hard Drive

  • “Remove everything” is the option. (If you’re not planning on getting rid of your PC, you can use “Keep my files” to tidy it up and enhance performance.)
  • You’ll be asked if you want to reinstall Windows using the “Cloud download” or “Local reinstall” method. Choose “Cloud download” if you’re feeling kind and want to give your PC’s next owner a new copy of Windows. This will make use of info from the internet. If you want to recycle your computer, “Local reinstall” will suffice.
  • Click “Change settings” under “Additional settings” and turn “Clean data” on. This takes a little longer, but it’s the safest option.

How to Wipe a Windows 8 and 8.1 Hard Drive

  • In the case of “Click “Get started,” then “Next” to “Remove everything and reinstall Windows.”
  • Choose “Clean the hard drive completely.” This takes a little longer, but it’s the safest option.