Question on reformating + new SSD

pastcatch

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Hey everyone,

Ive done a good amount of googling trying to figure this out and most of the answers seem like kinda BS, so figured id come here and get some unbiased advice.

I have an old system Im gifting to my brother. Its a number of years old and needs a reformat in addition to a few new parts including an SSD.

So to my question.

How do I wipe the HDD without reformatting it?

My goal here is:
1) Wipe the HDD and use as storange
2) Install windows on SSD
3) Dance into the sunset

Am I overcomplicating this?
 

SerialSeaguller

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Nov 11, 2014
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Wiping a hard drive is reformatting and vice versa. They both do the same thing, which is delete all the data on the hard drive including the OS. You could reformat the HDD and install windows on the SSD and use the HDD for storage ,but you wold have to start from scratch with all your previous data deleted. If you wanted to keep your data you could put it on an external hard drive and load it back on to your HDD. Hope this helped! :)
 

pastcatch

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Thanks for the reply!

I am fully backed up at this point so im looking for a fresh start.

Where Im stuck is the reformatting stage - How do I wipe the entire HDD without re-installing windows on that drive? The windows disk prompts for an install before I can wipe and i don't want to re-install there. Does that make sense?
 

SerialSeaguller

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Ok, so I'm slightly confused on what your asking but I'll try my best to answer. The easiest and quickest may in my opinion to wipe a hard drive is to just re-install Windows. Put in the disk, select reinstall, and just let it do it's thing.

I know you don't want to reinstall Windows, but to do so is oddly much more convenient.
Here is a thread of someone asking the same question as you.
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/36918-63-formatting-hard-drive-deleting-windows
Here is somewhat confusing guide
http://smallbusiness.chron.com/wipe-everything-off-hard-drive-except-os-56796.html

tl;dr Just slap the Windows disk in your PC and wipe the whole thing. It's easy, pretty quick, and less intimidating than other formatting options.
 

pastcatch

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You've got the gist of it. Its bizarre that its so difficult to simply wipe a drive without doing a windows re-install.

If I have windows installed on the SSD and the HDD, will there be conflicts there or is all that managed by BIOS and boot orders? Once both installs are done, can i just open the HDD drive and delete all the selected folders for the same effect?

Thanks for all the effort in helping me get through this!
 

SerialSeaguller

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I'm sure if you put the SSD in front of the HDD in the boot order they wouldn't conflict.
This thread explains step by step how to have the setup you want. (boot off SSD/store stuff on HDD)
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/293385-32-boot-drive-setup-instructions
I've also found this guide on how to wipe a hard drive without having Windows reinstalled on it so you won't have to worry about the 2 copies of Windows interacting.
http://www.geeksquad.com/do-it-yourself/2mm/hard-drive-wipe.aspx
Reply with the results and any other questions. I'm happy to help!
 

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