What is the write zeros method?
Write zeros to a hard drive, also known as zero fill, which is a safe way to clear hard drive completely by overwriting data with zeros in Windows 10, 8, 7. As you know or may not know, Simply formatting and deleting hard drive can’t really erase data, and those deleted files can be easily recovered by data recovery software.
Once your hard drive is written with zeros, the data on the drive cannot be retrieved by most recovery software. This method will wipe data on your hard drive and prevent soft-based data recovery methods from retrieving data.
Why write zeros to Seagate hard drive?
We can write zeros to a Seagate hard drive to wipe the data on it. Usually there are 3 reasons why people want to perform such operation:
● Reusing Seagate hard drive: If your Seagate hard drive gets infected by virus, you can clear the data and files on it without destroying the boot sector.
● Erasing confidential files: If you want to give your hard drive to others or throw away, in order to protect your privacy, you’d better write zeros to Seagate hard drive to clear the data completely.
● Getting more space: If you need more space on your Seagate hard drive, and it makes no difference to delete some unnecessary files. You can zero fill Seagate to get space.
Next, we are going to provide 2 methods of wipe hard drive with zero-filling method in Windows.
How to wipe Seagate hard drive by writing zeros in Windows 10/8/7?
Writing zeros to hard drive will clear your hard drive completely, if there are some important data and files on your hard drive, you need to back up your hard drive first.
Method 1. Write zeros to Seagate hard drive with Command Prompt
Firstly, you can zero fill hard drive with Command Prompt.
1. Type “CMD” in the search box, click “Command Prompt”
2. Type “format X: /fs:NTFS /p:1”(X is the drive letter of your Seagate hard drive, NTFS is the file system) and press Enter.
1. This format command means it will format the X drive with the NTFS file system and it will write zeros to every sector of the drive once. You could change the drive letter, file system and times of writing according to your need.
2. If you don’t know the file system of your Seagate hard drive. You can double-click computer > right-click your Seagate hard drive > select Properties > file system will be showed on the General tab.
3. Type “y” and press Enter to confirm. And wait for the process to finish, it may take a long time.
4. You can type a name for the drive as volume label, or don’t and then press Enter.
5. Wait for the “Creating file system structures” to show.
6. When the prompt returns, you can repeat the above steps for other partitions on the drive.
7. Type “exit” and press Enter to exit Command Prompt.
Method 2. Write zeros to Seagate hard drive via AOMEI Partition Assistant
As you can see, Command Prompt method is time-consuming and complicated. Besides, you may be not good at running such complicated commands. Fortunately, there is a zero fill Seagate utility-AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard. It provides an easier way to write zeros to hard drive windows 10/8/7.
Step 1. Download and open AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard, right-click the Seagate hard drive and click “Wipe Hard Drive”.
Step 2. In this window, choose “Fill sectors with Zero (Safe, Quick)” wiping method.
Step 3. Then you’ll return to the main interface, here you can preview the result of this operation. And click “Apply”.
Step 4. In the pop-up window, click “Proceed” to execute operation.
✍ Tip: You can upgrade to Professional Edition to adopt one of the rest three methods.
● Fill sectors with random data (Safe, Quick): This method will fill your hard drive with random data. It makes harder for recovery software to lift meaningful information. It is safer than writing zeros.
● DoD 5220.22-M (Very Safe, Slow): This is a software-based data sanitization to wipe a hard drive. This method will write a random character with 3 passes. It can prevent all software-based recovery tools and most hardware-based tools from recovering data and files. But it takes a little longer time.
● Gutmann (35 passes, Very Safe, Very Slow): It is also a software-based method to overwrite hard drive. It performs 35 passes. The Gutmann uses a random character for the first and last 4 passes, and the pass 5 through pass 31 will be overwritten by a complex pattern. The method can prevent all software-based recovery tools and most hardware-based recovery tools. It is very safe but takes more time.
This is about how to write zeros to Seagate hard drive. Same steps can be applied to clearing a USB stick, or memory card, and other external hard drives. Compared to the method 1, AOMEI Partition Assistant can save much time and efforts. The Professional Edition can provide other more amazing features, such as SSD secure erase wizard, and converting hard drive between MBR and GPT without deleting partitions/losing data.