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Summary :

how do I wipe my hard drive clean and reinstall Windows

How do I wipe my hard drive clean and reinstall Windows? This question is often asked by a large number of people. Do you want to reinstall Windows 10 without any data loss? This post of MiniTool will provide you with a step-by-step guide and some useful tips.

Quick Navigation :

Before You Do

A lot of users are troubled by many common issues such as system crash, virus attack, blue screen, black screen, faulty hard drive, a slow Windows computer, etc. Under these situations, you may need to reinstall Windows 10.

How do I wipe my hard drive clean and reinstall Windows effectively? To help you wipe and reinstall Windows 10 smoothly, please make the following preparations:

  • Prepare a Windows 10 installation CD/DVD disc or USB drive. Click here to download the Windows 10 media creation tool. And then use the tool to create Windows 10 installation USB flash drive or CD/DVD disc.
  • Back up all important files on your hard drive. There is no doubt that a clean Windows reinstallation will delete all the data on your hard drive. To avoid any data loss, make sure that you have a backup in advance.
  • Remove all unnecessary peripheral devices. Here you’d better remove all peripheral devices including earphones, card reader, printers, and removable hard drive. This is because connecting these devices may lead to some errors.

Have you made all the preparations? If it is, you can follow the step-by-step guide below to erase hard drive and reinstall Windows.

How Do I Wipe My Hard Drive Clean and Reinstall Windows

How do I wipe and reinstall Windows 10? As mentioned above, there are different situations that may need you to reinstall Windows 10. Here you can refer to the following 2 cases to reinstall Windows 10. If your computer just works very slowly but still bootable, you can refer to case 1. If your Windows system fails to boot due to system crash, blue screen and damaged hard drive, please refer to case 2.

Now, let’s see how to reinstall Windows 10.

Case 1: Your Windows Can Boot Normally

If your Windows 10 computer still can boot smoothly, please follow the steps below to reset your Windows PC. For that:

Step 1. Press the Win + I keys to open the Settings app, and then scroll down to the bottom of the window and click on the Update & Security option.

click on the Update and Security option

Step 2. In the pop-up window, navigate to the Recovery section at the left pane and click on the Get started button under the Reset this PC option at the right side of the window.

click on Get started

Step 3. Then you will see the 2 options whether Keep my files or Remove everything. Here you can choose one based on your needs.

Note: The first option will remove apps and settings, but keeps your personal files. The second option will remove all of your personal files, apps, and settings and speed more time to complete.

keep may files or remove everything

Step 4. Now, follow the on-screen prompts to complete this resetting PC operation.

Case 2. Your Windows Fails to Boot

If your Windows computer fails to start or you want to erase hard drive and reinstall Windows 10, you can follow this full guide. To do so, follow the steps below carefully.

Part 1. Create a Windows 10 Installation USB Drive

Step 1. Run the Windows 10 media creation tool that you downloaded from Microsoft, and then accept the software license terms.

Step 2. Select the Create installation media (USB flash drive, DVD, or ISO file) for another PC option and click on Next.

create a USB installation media

Step 3. Then you need to select the Language, Windows Edition, and Architecture versions based on your own choice. Alternatively, you can use the recommended options for this PC. Click on Next to go on.

Step 4. In the pop-up window, choose the USB flash drive to create a Windows 10 installation media. Or you can choose the ISO file to burn it to a CD/DVD media later by yourself. And then click on Next.

Note: Bear in mind that all the data on the USB flash drive will be formatted, so please back up important files in advance. Besides, you need to prepare a USB flash drive with at least 8GB capacity.

choose which media to use

Step 5. Then select your USB flash drive from the list of removable drives and click on Next to continue.

select the USB drive from the listed removable drives

Step 6. Now, this tool will start downloading Windows 10 and all its available updates to your USB flash drive. Then you need to wait for some time. Once this process succeeds, you will receive a message saying Your USB flash drive is ready. Click on Finish to exit the window.

Your USB flash drive is ready

Now, a Windows installation USB flash drive has been created and you can use it to boot your Windows PC.

Part 2. Reinstall Windows 10 on Your PC

Let’s see how to reinstall system 10 with this Windows 10 bootable USB flash drive. Here’s a step-by-step guide.

Step 1. Plug the bootable USB drive into your Windows PC and then boot your computer from this drive.

Tip: If your PC can’t boot from the USB drive, you need to enter the BIOS and set the USB drive as the first boot sequence by using the arrow keys.

Step 2. Once your computer boots from the USB drive successfully, you will enter the Windows Setup screen. Here you need to confirm the Language, Time and currency format, and Keyboard or input method to install. After that, click on Next.

confirm the language to install

Step 3. Click on the Install now button and enter the license key.

Step 4. Tick the checkbox for I accept the license terms and click on Next.

accept the license terms

Step 5. Then you will see 2 options: Upgrade Install and Custom Install. Here we take the latter for example.

Step 6. Select a drive to install Windows 10 and click on Next.

Step 7. Now, Windows 10 will be installed automatically. You need to wait for some time. 

How do I wipe my hard drive clean and reinstall Windows? I believe that you will reinstall Windows 10 smoothly according to the above full guide. However, the above method will sacrifice all the data on your hard drive.

So, how to reinstall Windows 10 without any data loss? Please keep reading.

An alternative to Wipe Hard Drive Clean and Reinstall Windows 10

To help you reinstall Windows 10 without data loss, it’s highly recommended that you use MiniTool Partition Wizard. It is a powerful partition management tool that can not only be used to erase hard drive and reinstall Windows but does many things such as convert FAT to NTFS without data loss, rebuild MBR, resize partition, change cluster size, and so forth.

The following part will introduce you to how to erase hard drive and reinstall Windows 10 using MiniTool Partition Wizard respectively.

Wipe Hard Drive

In this part, we will show you how to wipe a hard drive using MiniTool Partition Wizard. The Wipe Disk feature can help you erase the unwanted data permanently. It is very simple to operate with just a few clicks.

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Step 1. Install this data erasing software on your computer and run it to enter its main interface.

Step 2. Select the hard drive that you want to wipe and click on the Wipe Disk feature from the left pane.

Step 3. Select a wipe method from the list and click on OK to go on.

Tip: The higher the wiping level you select, the more time the wiping process will take.

Step 4. Click on Apply to execute this change.

the process of wiping a hard drive

Once the wiping process completes, you will find that all the data on the hard drive has been erased permanently. In addition, this tool can help you reinstall Windows 10 without losing data. 

Migrate Windows 10 to a New Drive

If you want to reinstall Windows 10 without any data loss, MiniTool Partition Wizard is what you are looking for. This powerful software can help you migrate Windows 10 OS to a new drive easily. Here’s how to reinstall Windows 10 on a new drive.

Tip: Since the free edition does not support this function, you need to install the MiniTool Partition Wizard Pro or more advanced edition for the migration. Click here to know more about edition comparison.

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Step 1. Connect the drive that’s used to save the Windows to your computer.

Step 2. Launch this software to get the main interface and click on the Migrate OS to SSD/HD Wizard feature from the left pane.

Step 3. In the pop-up window, select the Option B to copy the system required partitions only and click on Next to go on.

copy the system required partitions only

Step 4. Select the hard drive connected to your computer and click on Next. Then you will see a warning message saying all the data on the target disk will be destroyed. Click on Yes to confirm this operation.

Note: Please back up all important data on the hard drive in advance.

select a target disk to migrate OS

Step 5. Select a copy option based on your needs and click on Next to continue.

Tip: If you want to migrate OS to a disk larger than 2TB, you can select the Use GUID Partition Table for the target disk option.

choose a copy method

Step 6. Click on the Finish button in the next window.

Step 7. Click on Apply to execute the pending operations.

click Apply to execute the pending operations

Once all the above steps are finished, you can connect the target drive to your Windows PC and set your computer to boot from the drive.

Recently, my Windows computer works very slowly. I want to perform a clean reinstallation to speed up my computer. How do I wipe my hard drive clean and reinstall Windows? This PC provides a step-by-step guide that helped me reinstall Windows 10 smoothly.Click to tweet

Wrapping Up

How do I wipe and reinstall Windows 10? This post walks you through detailed steps based on 2 different cases. In addition, you can utilize MiniTool Partition Wizard to erase hard drive and reinstall Windows 10 with ease.

If you have any questions about this software, you can send us an e-mail via [email protected]. We also appreciate any opinions about this topic in the comment area.

How Do I Wipe My Hard Drive Clean and Reinstall Windows FAQ

Does emptying recycle bin permanently delete files?
In theory, you empty the Recycle Bin and the files will be deleted from the hard drive permanently. However, only if you haven’t save new data on the hard drive to overwrite, it is very possible that the deleted files can be recovered by a professional data recovery software.
Does a factory reset delete everything on the computer?
The answer depends on which option you select to reset this PC. When performing a factory reset, you will have 2 options. If you select the Keep my files option, it will remove the apps and settings but keep your personal files.
Should I wipe my hard drive before recycling?
Yes, it is. To avoid any privacy leakage, it’s highly recommended that you use a professional eraser to wipe hard drive before recycling. This operation will erase the date on your PC permanently.
How to unlock a computer without a password?

Here you need to prepare a password reset disk and follow the steps below to unlock computer without a password.

  1. Insert the password reset disk to your computer.
  2. Start your computer and click on the Reset Password link on the lock screen.
  3. Click on the Next button to change or remove the password.
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