How to Format Laptop Windows 10 and 7 – An Ultimate Guide

Written by: Hardik Jethva

Last Updated: December 7, 2022

tips to format a laptop
A silver laptop with screen on.

If you want to sell your old Laptop when you switch to a new system, you have a problem:

“Even if you have deleted all personal documents and images, this does not automatically mean that they cannot be restored.”

The most significant risk when selling a PC is the retention of data that is used to identify you or that can be used to access your Internet accounts.

To prevent this from happening, you have to clear your traces by flattening your PC or laptop. You can also transfer your data into a pen drive. Check out the best pen drive to buy in 2022.

In this article, you will encounter a step-wise guide on how to clear your Laptop/PC completely without leaving any trace behind along with reading about easy ways to boot pendrive.

It will format all residues from the HDD or SSD of your laptop.  Check out our buying guide for best ssd to buy in India. After that, you can easily sell your laptop.

  • To altogether remove data from a computer, merely moving it to the trash is not enough.
  • With special rescue programs, data can be restored even after deletion.
  • Before you sell a PC, you should flatten the hard drives, save your data on a Pen drive and install a new Windows.

1 How to format Windows 10

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Open run command

Step 1:

Press the [Windows] and [R] keys simultaneously so that the “Run” command opens.

Step 2:

Enter “diskmgmt.msc” in Run Window and hit “OK”. Then the disk management opens.

Step 3:

Now you will see the list of all HDD in the disk management menu. On the basis of the name and size, you can find the required hard drive here.

Step 5:

Confirm by clicking the ‘OK’ option; the HDD is formatted. Depending on the HDD’s size, this process may take a few minutes to few hours.

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How to open disk management system

Step 4:

Right-click on the Hard drive that you want to format. Then select the Format option

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Formatting hard drive disk management
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Disk management menu on Windows 10
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Windows 10 format settings

2 How to format External Hard Drive Windows 10

You can also format external hard drives in Windows 10. However, you do this a little differently.

Step 1:

Simultaneously press the [Windows] and [E] keys to open Explorer. Go to the “This PC” area on the left.

Step 2:

Right-click on the hard disk and select the “Format” option in the context menu.

Step 3:

Click on the “Restore device standards” button and make further settings if necessary. If you have no special requirements, you can now format the hard disk using the “Start” button.

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Formatting external hard drive on Wndows 10

3 How to format Windows 7

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Installing windows 7

If you want to format the partition on which Windows 7 is installed, you have to reinstall the operating system completely. Think carefully about this step, because all settings, programs and data will be lost!

Step 1:

Before you start reinstalling Windows 7, you should first back up your most important files. Don’t forget documents, pictures, emails or possibly saves. Save everything on an external hard drive or a USB stick. For security reasons, rerun an anti-virus program so that your new Windows is virus-free right from the start.

Step 2:

Now insert the Windows 7 DVD in your PC drive and restart the computer. Now you have to change the boot order so that your PC boots from the DVD. To do this, press the “Del” or “F2” key in the BIOS during the boot process – the key depends on the BIOS used. In the “Boot Priority” menu that opens, select your drive or DVD and confirm. Make sure that you first save the changes in the BIOS and later reset them to the hard disk.

Step 3:

Now the Windows installation starts. First, the “Install Windows” window opens. Here you select your preferred language, the time and currency format as well as the keyboard layout. Unless otherwise requested, set everything to “English” and click on “Next” and then on “Install now”. After starting the setup, read the license terms, accept them by clicking the small box below the license and confirm with “Next”.

Step 4:

Now select the type of installation. Since you want to reinstall Windows 7 completely, click on “Custom (extended)”. Now select the respective partitions or hard disks and format them first by clicking on “Drive options (extended)” and then on “Format”. Once you have formatted all hard drives, select the hard drive or partition on which you want to install Windows. Then click “Next” again.

Step 5:

What follows is the actual installation and update of Windows 7. This process can take some time. If there are no problems, Windows will restart the computer twice during the installation. After the second restart, Windows will ask you for some input.

Step 6:

First, you need to provide a username and a computer name. Confirm your entries with “Next”. This is followed by entering the user password, which can optionally be set up for your Windows user account. Now define the update settings for Windows 7. For optimal protection of your system, the “recommended settings” should be used.

Step 7:

The date and time settings follow. As soon as these have been made, click “Next” again. Finally, if your computer is already connected to a network, Windows will ask you to confirm the network settings. As soon as you have completed this last step, you have successfully installed Windows.

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Selecting installation type

4 How to format Hard Drive Windows 7

If you want to format a hard drive that only contains data and not the operating system, this is quickly done. Usually, Windows 7 is installed on the hard disk partition “C:”. It cannot be formatted in this way.

Step 1:

Open the “Computer” window (formerly “My Computer”) from the Start menu.

Step 2:

Select the hard drive you want to format from the list of

Step 3:

Right-click on the hard drive and select “Format”.

Step 4:

A new window opens (see screenshot). There you can change the name of the hard disk or the file system. Usually, you can keep all settings.

Step 5:

Click “Start” to have Windows 7 format the hard drive. The process can take a few minutes. All data from this hard disk partition will be deleted.

Tip: As a rule, “quick format” is sufficient, which usually only takes a few seconds. To do this, check the box below “Format options”.

5 How to format Windows 7 without CD

Before performing the reset, you should back up your data. Otherwise, all data will be lost. The following instructions start the reset fastest but do not work on all computers. If this is the case for you, simply follow the instructions in the next paragraph.

Step 1:

First of all, you have to start the PC in recovery mode. Press the [F9] or [F11] key repeatedly during startup.

Step 2:

Which button you use to go into recovery mode is often shown in the first few seconds of the start. Alternatively, try all other F keys.

Step 3:

If Windows starts up usually, switch off the PC and try again.

Step 4:

When you have reached the menu, select the “Restore” item.

Step 5:

If you follow the further instructions, Windows 7 will be reset to the factory settings.

FAQ's about Laptops

How do I delete the Windows 7 hard drive?

First, use Windows Explorer to delete all files on your PC hard drive that you want to remove. To do this, select the files or folders and press the Delete key. Then right-click on the Trash and pick Empty Trash.

Format step by step:

1. Press the key combination [Win – R] and enter explorer.

2. Open Computer (Windows 7) or This PC (Windows 8/10).

3. Right-click the hard drive you want to format.

If you want to erase your hard drive entirely or if it runs too slowly, you can format it. You have to completely reinstall the operating system and boot it from a USB stick or DVD. You cannot format a hard drive directly from the BIOS.

1. Open the Control Panel and click on “System and Security”, then on “Backup and Restore”.

2. There you click on the option “Restore system settings on the computer”.

1. Windows 7: How to reinstall the operating system without a CD. First, download the appropriate ISO file. Then you need the Windows 7 USB / DVD Download Tool.

2. Run the tool and insert a USB stick into the PC with sufficient storage space.

In contrast, NTFS is only supported by Windows operating systems. A vital disadvantage of the FAT file system is the limited file size. The maximum filesize for FAT32 is only 4 GB. This makes the FAT file system practically unusable for image data backups.

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About This Article

Hardik Jethva
Written by: Hardik Jethva author

Hardik Jethva is an experienced author of the BestCheck family. Working from scratch, he has developed an amazing interest in testing and writing about different products in a transparent manner. His writing skills got more audience for BestCheck. Apart from his professional life, Hardik has his eyes on travelling, meditation, eating healthy food, socializing with people, and car rides.

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Updated: December 7, 2022
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