How to Make a Bootable USB Wipe Hard Drive?

How can you make a bootable USB wipe hard drive on Windows PC? In this post, we’ll show you how to easily wipe your disks without hurting them.


By Lucas / Updated on October 9, 2023

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Why make a bootable USB wipe hard drive?

Before discarding or selling a new desktop computer or laptop, it is required to erase the internal hard drive. Almost everyone is aware that formatting hard drives is a simple task that can be accomplished using Windows' built-in Disk Management tool. However, formatting a hard drive might be difficult if your operating system does not boot correctly or your disc fails to function regularly.

This is why you need to make a bootable USB wipe hard drive. A bootable USB drive built by a bootable USB hard drive wipe utility like a third-party program or a Windows installation disc. You can boot your PC without accessing the Windows system after creating a bootable USB.

How to erase hard drive bootable USB

To erase a hard drive with a bootable USB, you’ll need to make one if you don’t have any Windows installation media. Now, you can follow our steps to create a bootable USB, and wipe the hard drive.

Part 1. Create bootable Windows installation USB media via CMD

• The USB drive should be at least 4GB of storage (for a 32-bit operating system) or at least 8GB (for a 64-bit system).
• Back up files you have stored on the USB drive because the drive will be formatted during this process and all files on it will be erased.

Step 1. Download Media Creation Tool from the Microsoft website and run it as an administrator.

Step 2. Select ”Accept” in the license terms screen.


Step 3. Select “Create installation media for another PC”, and then select Next.

Create installation media

Step 4. Choose the language, edition, and architecture (64-bit or 32-bit) for Windows 10.

Select language

Step 5. Choose ”USB flash drive” and click “Next”.

Choose USB

Step 6. Choose your prepared USB drive from the list, then ”Next”.

Select drive

Now you can boot from this USB and go to Part2 to wipe the hard drive.

Part 2. Format hard drive from bootable USB

Step 1. After you boot from USB, click “Repair Your Computer” --> “Command Prompt.”

Step 2. In the CMD window, please type the following commands one by one and press “Enter” after each:

• diskpart
• list disk
• select disk x (x is the number of the target disk)
• clean
• create partition primary
• select partition 1
• format fs=ntfs quick (if you plan to create UEFI bootable USB using Diskpart, type “format fs=fat32 quick” instead to format it into FAT32 file system)

USB wipe

Then your hard drive is formatted.

Best hard drive wipe utility for Windows PC

However, formatting or deleting won’t completely erase the data on the disk. Both can’t resist the data retrieval of any recovery software. If you wish to wipe the hard drive for selling, you must wipe your data thoroughly, not just delete or format.

We suggest you choose a reliable data wiper that is capable of making a USB bootable and easing data completely and permanently. AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard is such a tool. It’s a disk and partition management tool for Windows 11/10/8/8.1/7/XP PC.

This free disk wipe program uses a zero-filling wiping approach that fills sections of your internal hard drive with zeros to totally and securely remove the data. It also has an easy-to-use interface that simplifies all operations. In only a few clicks, you can delete a bootable drive.

Download FreewareWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download
Tip: Prepare an external disk like USB drive of at least 13GB and insert it into your PC. If the target disk is not a system disk, you can skip the wiping steps (start from step 4).

Step 1. Install and open AOMEI Partition Assistant, on the main console, choose "Tools">"Make Bootable Media".  

Make a bootable media

Step 2. Choose "USB Boot Device", select the disk you prepared, and click "Proceed" and it will note to you that the drive will be formatted, click "Yes" to continue.

Formatting warning

Step 3. Insert the bootable drive to your computer, and enter BIOS to boot the computer from it.

Step 4. Then you will see the main console of the AOMEI Partition Assistant, and right-click on the internal hard drive, or the drive you want to wipe. And choose "Wipe Hard Drive".

Wipe hard drive

Step 5. Choose "Fill sectors with Zero (Safe, Quick)", and click "OK".

Tip: If you’re going to sell the disk or give it to another user, we sincerely suggest you upgrade to the Professional Edition to unlock the other 3 wiping methods with higher Safety: Fill sectors with random data, DoD 5220. 22-M, and Gutmann.

Select wiping method

Step 6. Then the program will ask message that your computer won't start the next time if you wipe the internal hard drive. Click "Yes" to confirm. If it’s a data disk, you won’t see this message.


Step 7. Click "Apply" in the main interface to execute the wiping operation.


Then your hard drive will be completely erased.

Further knowledge: Secure erase your SSD

If your computer is using an SSD, it uses a different way to store data. In the same way, wiping it can have a negative impact on its lifespan. AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional has a mechanism for erasing an SSD without harming it.

Simply make a bootable disc and attach the SSD to a functional Windows 7 machine via SATA connector. And then, click on the SSD, select "Wipe"> "SSD Secure Erase," and follow the guides to complete the remaining steps.

SSD secure erase

Final lines

Using a boot disk to wipe hard drive might not be a nice option if you’ll sell the target disk. But you do can make a bootable USB wipe hard drive for reuse. If you need a safer wipe, AOMEI Partition Assistant is a better choice.

The Professional edition includes the ability to assign free space, migrate the operating system to an SSD, relocate installed programs, convert main partitions to logical partitions, recover data, and more. AOMEI Partition Assistant Server includes all of the sophisticated features found in Windows Server 2022/2019/2016/2012(R2)/2008(R2)/2003 Professional version. You can have a try if you have a server computer.

Lucas · Staff Editor
I prefer peaceful and quiet life during vacation,but sometimes I watch football match if my favorite club performs brilliantly in that season. And I love reading, painting and calligraphy, thus I send my friends festival handwriting cards every year.