How to sanitize a computer that won’t boot!

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Computer won\’t boot – how do I erase my personal information? Ok, so the old box (Windows XP) was dying, and we made the decision to become a Mac family. Bought the PowerMac, took everything in and the Geek Squad transferred our files over (I could have done this myself and saved the $100, but didn\’t want to run the risk of losing anything). Brought it all home and love love love the Mac. I want to recycle the old Windows machine, but when I hooked everything back up to download some freeware and wipe the hard drives (one original, one I added), it wouldn\’t even boot up. The drive would spin for about 1/2 second, and then the green light on the power button would turn yellow. (Obviously we got the Mac just in time!) I don\’t want to put too much effort into this, but is there an easy way to wipe it clean before dropping it off somewhere? Should I even care? Everything “important” (pictures [some of a personal nature] and music) was on the secondary drive, so I could pull that out and smash it with a hammer. But on the main C drive there\’s probably some of the iTunes library files, some teaching stuff, etc. Boot off of a floppy, cd or usb drive, into dos say or unix, and then run the wiping software If you buy a drive enclosure you can remove the second drive from the XP machine and use it as a backup drive. That way you could also take out the first drive, see if it fires up in the enclosure and wipe it if it does. Drive enclosures are cheap. If the computer won\’t boot from any device then you can pull the drive, put it into a USB drive housing (these are cheap these days) and access the drive through another computer. If it is still working you will now have a USB drive and don\’t even necessarily need to throw it away. If it isn\’t working then no one is going to go the the extraordinary lengths necessary to get the data off. If Geek Squad transferred the files directly from the drive, maybe they didn\’t put all of the cables back correctly? Check everything\’s properly hooked up to the drive and motherboard.

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