Secure Erase hard drives before recycle them to others is important to keep personal data safe, personal data may be bank records, medical records, confidential commerce documents or traces of sensitive operations. Devices with hard drives may be USB flash drives, External Hard Drives, Portable SSDs or internal hard drives with operating system. Windows 10 makes it's easy to erase everything and keep system clean with simple clicks, Windows 7 users may have other solutions on how to erase hard drive securely, DRAN for example, but the most convenient and easy way to secure erase hard drive is to use professional data erase software with simple and clear graphic interface, and without bootable CD.
External Hard Drives are common choices to backup personal files even when cloud storage grows rapidly in recent years. Windows 10 cannot use its default program to erase external hard drives; format or delete cannot make them to clean disks either. Boot from USB and go into setting and use "Remove everything and reinstall Windows" may be a solution to external disks within operating system, but it's a little complicate for novices, I think what they really need is an simple solution.
Macrorit Data Wiper, download and install it, or run the portable edition after downloaded; click the external hard drive, and select overwriting methods ( there're 5 overwriting methods available), and click WIPE now to erase everything on the disk. Easy to use, and secure to erase.
Navigate to: Reset your PC, Fully clean the drive, Remove everything and reinstall Windows. That's how Windows 10 works on how to erase hard drive and keeping only operating system, it's quite helpful when you want to disposal old PC or laptop. FYI, its two steps in this operation: erase hard drive first and reinstall OS, takes really much time;
Alternative to Windows 10 default removing method, Macrorit Data Wiper is able to wipe partitions and wipe free space. So you have a clean system too when wiping free space in C Drive, and wiping other partitions; time spend in Macrorit program is much less than that of Windows 10 method, but wiping do take certain times.
DBAN has a lot of fans in hard drive erase programs, it's good, erase everything by overwriting hard drives with random data in a bootable CD; Macrorit Data Wiper, on the other hand, is able to overwrite disk with random data and DoD 5220.22-M (3 passes), DoD 5220.28-STD (7 passes), without bootable CD!
That's to say, you can even wipe the whole system out even when Windows 7 is running the wiping software! When you type "WIPE" to confirm your operation in Wiper, it's the very last time you see Windows 7. Because this disk is not going to reboot and say hi to you again, unless you reinstall it with Windows 7 installer or Window 7 boot disc.