How do I Erase the Hard Drive Completely Clean for Free?

By Lindsay Howell

When a hard drive is overrun with antiquated files that are causing the hard drive to slow down, the files need to be erased. To properly erase all files on a hard drive, the hard drive needs formatted. Formatting will thoroughly erase and clean the hard drive. Formatting is free, and no programs are necessary, as a format utility is built into the operating system.

Step 1

Click the "Start" button.

Step 2

Click "Computer." A menu displays all of the hard drives and storage devices.

Step 3

Right-click the hard drive that needs erased. Left-click "Format."

Step 4

Change file systems in the "File system" box. Once finished, click the "Format" button.