• ⏱️Duration: 3-6 minutes reading
  • 🚩Goal: Review HDD Low Level Format Tool and help beginners to know everything about it.
  • 👩🏼‍💻Who Will Need It: Windows beginners who want to reset their hard disk drives, SSD, and even external disk drives to their factory settings.

This page gives you a complete guide for you to learn everything you should know about low level format tool, follow and check the details here:

#1. What Is Low Level Format Tool

Brief definition, 1-2 minutes
#2. HDD Low Level Format Tool Free Download Official downloading access, 2 minutes 
#3. HDD Low Level Format Tool Review Pros & Cons, how-to guide, 2 minutes 
#4. HDD Low Level Format Tool Alternative HDD low level format alternative download, 2 minutes
#5. When to Use and When to Not Use HDD Low Level Format Tool Suitable usage situations, 2 minutes

Image of Low Level Format Tool Recommend

What Is Low Level Format Tool

To learn what the low level format tool is, you are about first learn what is Low Level format here:

Low-level formatting (i.e., closest to the hardware) marks the surfaces of the disk with markers indicating the start of a recording block (typically today called sector markers) and other information like block CRC to be used later, in normal operations, by the disk controller to read or write data. This is intended to be the permanent foundation of the disk and is often completed at the factory. from Wikipedia

Image of low level format

Definition: In a word, compared to high level formatting (disk formatting), the low level formatting, short for LLF formatting, is a technology that is often used to make data recovery impossible, erase and reset hard disk drives, SSDs, external hard drives, USBs and even SD cards, etc., storage devices in a sector by sector level. Low level format will also mark the cylinder and tracks of a target disk drive as blank.

📖Also Read: High-Level Format vs Low-Level Format 

What's the best Low-level format tool that facilitates hard drive formatting? Continue reading and find answer in the next part.

Best Low Level Format Tool Free Download

- HDDGURU HDD Low Level Format

Image of Low Level Format Tool

The most famous and renowned low level format tool is HDD Low Level Format Tool, provided by HDDGURU.COM, which receives positive feedback from personal/home users as well as commercial/professional users. This software is now available for both home and personal users to free download on their PC.

(HDDGURU) HDD Low Level Format Tool Free Download and Edition Selection Tips

And here are the official accesses that you can get this tool and some tips for you to decide which edition is more suitable for you:

⬇️Download from GURU: HDD Low Level Format Tool Download on GURA
⬇️Download from CNET: HDD Low Level Format Tool Download on CNET
⬇️Download from SOFTPORTAL: HDDLow Evel Format Download on SOFTPORTAL

Price & Who to Use

Note that GURUA no longer makes HDD Low Level Format tool free for all levels of users to erase and reset their disk drives. It serves different editions with different price tags as shown here:

  • For personal or home users: $0, Free
  • For personal or home users: $3.30 with better speed
  • For commercial or professional users: $27.00
  • Refund Policy: 30-day money back

Note that HDD Low Level Format Tool has its pros and cons, and you can continue with the next part to learn the details. For a better alternative to replace HDD Low Level Format Tool, take the free partition manager software - EaseUS Partition Master for a try. For more details, refer to HDD Low Level Format Tool Alternative below.

Free Download 

Windows 11/10/8/7100% Secure

HDD Low Level Format Tool Review, Pros & Cons | With How-To Guide

So is the GURU HDD Low Level Format Tool a perfect tool for low-level formatting disk drives? Will it cause any damage while resetting a disk drive to its factory mode? Check the provided review information about this software, and learn how using this tool to fulfill your demands to reset a disk drive:

Features of HDD Low Level Format Tool Tech Specs
  • Low Level Format HDDs, SSDs, MMC, USB, external disks, and SD cards, etc., devices
  • Perform quick wipe - remove partitions and MBR data only
  • Get S.M.A.R.T data of disk
  • Supported OS: Windows 8/7/Vista/XP, Windows Server 2023 - 2008 R2
  • Supported Interface: SATA, IDE, SCSI, SAS, USB, FIREWIRE
  • Last Update: 08.01.2023
  • Latest Edition: v4.40

Tutorial: How to Low Level Format Hard Drive with HDD Low-Level Format Tool

  • 👩🏼‍💻Who to Use: If your OS is lower than Windows 10, and you are unfamiliar with HDD low level format tool 
  • 💽Support Disk Drive Brands: Seagate, Samsung, Western Digital, Toshiba, Maxtor, etc.

HDD Low-Level Format Tool is an outstanding disk formatter for low-level hard disk drive formatting and low level format USB. Even a computer novice could make full use of it. Simply follow the guide to Low-level format a USB drive, pen drive, SD card, external hard drive, and more.

As Low level format a USB drive or hard disk drive will erase the whole disk surface, so ensure that you create backups of essential content before moving to the next part. Otherwise, you can't recover data from the hard drive even using professional data recovery software

Step 1. Plug your HDD or USB drive into the computer and launch the low-level format tool.

Step 2. Select the desired drive and click Continue. Confirm the option by clicking Yes.

Step 3. Select "Low-Level Format" in Tab and click "FORMAT THIS DEVICE" to start the low-level formatting process.

low level format hard drive with the best low level format tool

Hint: The duration formatting procedure is based on how much data you have stored on the target disk. So wait patiently, and don't disturb the formatting process. Let the program finish formatting your disk naturally.

If you think this tutorial is helpful, you can click the buttons below and share this guide on how to use HDD Low-Level Format Tool to low-level format a hard drive:


Pros & Cons in HDD Low Level Format Tool - Benefits and Drawbacks:



  • ✔️Support most Windows OSes
  • ✔️Support all types of storage devices
  • ✔️Free to low level format disk drives
  • ✔️Clear partition table, MBR, and every byte of data


  • ❌Free edition is set with speed limitation (180 GB per hour or 50 MB/s)
  • ❌S.M.A.R.T data is complex to interpret
  • ❌Free edition can only detect and low level format the OS disk drive
  • ❌Doesn't compatible with Windows 11/10 or newer Windows Server OSes
  • ❌May cause possible damages to disk drives when low level formatted too many times

HDD Low Level Format Tool Reviews and Suggestions:

✒️Editors' Review Reviewed by Softonic: HDD Low Level Format Tool is very powerful and will certainly wipe drives but may not be suitable for newer models.
✍️EaseUS Editors' Thought For old-school lovers and old operating systems, HDD Low Level Format Tool is indeed a perfect utility to low level format a disk.  For newer system owners, searching for a better alternative tool for help is wiser.

HDD Low Level Format Tool Alternative Recommend - Better & Faster

  • 👩🏼‍💻Who to Use: Windows beginners and professionals using Windows 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP/Vista, etc.
  • 💽Support Disk Drive Brands: Seagate, Samsung, Western Digital, Toshiba, Maxtor, PNY, SanDisk, etc.

EaseUS Partition Master Free Edition, as a renowned free partition manager, can also work as a better HDD Low-level Format Tool alternative to help you partition and format disk drives on the low level simply.

Free Download 

Windows 11/10/8/7100% Secure

The actual procedure of low-level formatting is to write 0 to the selected target disk so as to erase data, remove existing volumes, and reset the file system format of the disk as not initialized. EaseUS Partition Master, with its Wipe Disk feature, makes the hard drive Low-level formatting process easier and faster. 

Is EaseUS Partition Master Better Than HDD Low Level Format Tool? Yes, and Why

So what makes EaseUS Partition Master Free a perfect alternative or even better than HDD Low Level Format Tool? Check the comparison table, and you'll get the desired answer here:

Comparison EaseUS Partition Master HDD Low Level Format Tool
High Level Formatting

Low Level Format Disk

Low Level Format Single Volume

Partition Hard Drive After Low Level Formatting

Disk Low Level Format Speed
  • SATA HDD: 100MB/S
  • SATA3 SSD:500MB/S
  • PCI-E3.0 NVMe SSD: 2500MB/S
  • PCI-E4.0 NVMe SSD: 5000MB/S
  • 180 GB/h
  • 50 MB/s


According to this table, it's clear that EaseUS Partition Master surpasses HDD Low Level Format Tool in multiple aspects, such as supported formatting features and low level formatting speed, etc.

Moreover, EaseUS Partition Master provides you with an easier, more efficient, and more comprehensive low level formatting solution. Format a step-by-step guide, you may refer to this page to learn how to use EaseUS Low Level Format Tool:

related articles

How to Low Level Format Hard Drive Windows 10

This page tells people on how to low level format their disk drives in Windows 10/11 or older systems with reliable Low Level formatting utility - EaseUS Partition Master successsfully in only a few simple clicks.

Images of low level format hard drive

Features You May Also Like in EaseUS Partition Master:

Aside from low level formatting disk drives, EaseUS Partition Master also provides bonus features for Windows users to manage and optimize their disk drive performance, such as:

  • Clone the whole disk or a certain partition without any data loss
  • Merge partition to solve the low disk space issue
  • Wipe your disk completely to save all confidential and sensitive data
  • Create either FAT or NTFS partition according to the physical hard disk capacity
  • Convert FAT32 to NTFS on Windows 11, 10, 8, 7 without formatting
  • Move or resize the hard disk as a professional disk management tool

Free Download 

Windows 11/10/8/7100% Secure

When to Use and When Not to Use HDD Low Level Format Tool

So when should I use a HDD low level format tool, and when shouldn't I use such a tool? Check the following two lists, and you'll get a clear answer about when to use and when not to use the HDD low level format tool or its alternatives:

When to Use HDD Low Level Format Tool
Restore bad tracks such as track 0 bad on hard drives
Refresh old or slow hard disk drive as a new one to its factory mode
The hard disk drive is seriously failing, or the disk structure gets corrupted
Hard disk drive reports error messages, such as Windows was unable to complete the format or the disk is write protected
When to Not Use HDD Low Level Format Tool
①You have stored important content in the target disk
②You only want to clear saved data in the drive quickly
③You don't want to wipe all existing volumes nor destroy disk structure
④Your disk is getting old and contains a certain number of bad sectors or bad tracks as it does damage to the hard drive and accelerates its death

Low-level formatting is recognized as one of the three disk formatting processes, and the others are high-level formatting and creating partitions with formatting. For more information, refer to this link:

Personal Suggestion on Using Low Level Format Tool:

  1. 1️⃣According to Wikipedia, low level formatting can reset the hard disk drives to a factory state, restoring the disk's reading and writing speed at its peak performance. So when your hard disk speed gets slow suddenly, a reliable low level format tool could be a nice try.
  2. 2️⃣Low level formatting is not secure for fragile disk drives or older storage devices, so ensure that you don't set too many times to format the disks.
  3. 3️⃣Always remember to back up your valuable data before low level formatting a target storage device.

Final Verdict

It doesn't finish yet after Low-level formatting on your hard drive if you want to put it to normal use. The hard disk must undergo three processing steps: Low-level format, partition, and high-level format (hereinafter formatting) before the computer can use them to store data. 

EaseUS Partition Master can assist you in accomplishing all these operations in only a few simple clicks. You don't need to switch tools or execute complex tasks.

Free Download 

Windows 11/10/8/7100% Secure

For a step-by-step guide to recreate hard drive partitions after low level formatting, you can follow and try one of the links as a tutorial: 

After low-level format, partition, and high-level format, you can perfectly put your hard drive to use even after experiencing a dead moment. For any problem during the process, you can contact our technical support for help via live chat or email support: [email protected].

Low Level Format Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few questions related to the low-level format on Windows 11/10. If you also have any of these problems, you can troubleshoot them here. 

1. What will happen if you low level format a drive? 

Here is a list of issues that will happen if you committee low level formatting on a disk or drive:

  • Data Loss: erasing all existing content, making data recovery impossible, permanent data loss.
  • Disk Reset: reset the disk drive to its factory settings, erasing and restructuring the disk data structure.
  • Partition Removal: disk partition will be removed, leaving unallocated space left on the drive.
  • File System Rest: file system format will also disappear, leaving you a brand new disk drive with nothing.
  • Fix Bad Sectors: fix and recreates a certain number of bad sectors on a disk, making it work again.

2. What tools can I turn to low level format a disk?

If you have to do low-level disk formatting, there are three typical approaches, including DOS command, inbuilt disk utility of disc or USB drive, and third-party low-level format tool (demonstrated in this article).

For more details, you may refer to this page for help: 4 Tools to Low Level Format Disk in Windows 11

3. How long does it take to low level format a hard drive?

The speed of low level formatting disk drives is highly dependent on the types of your disk interface, which affects the device's reading and writing speed. Also, the times that you set to low level format a target disk could also impact the speed.

In a word, it's incredibly time-consuming to execute such an operation. It is estimated that low-level formatting on a hard drive of 320GB takes about 20 hours or even longer.

4. Does low-level format erase all data?

The low-level format means clearing all sectors, including partition tables, boot sectors, etc. It is a very long but quite effective way to delete private data, boot sector viruses, C-Dilla data, and a few more. Low-level formatting is a lossy operation, which has a certain negative impact on the life of the hard disk.

5. What is the difference between low-level format and standard format?

Formatting is divided into high-level formatting and low-level formatting. The high-level format simply clears data on the hard disk, generates boot information, initializes the FAT table, and marks logical bad sectors. The low-level format divides the hard disk into cylinders and tracks and then divides the tracks into several sectors, and each sector is divided into an identification part ID, a partitioned area, a GAP, and a data area DATA. The low-level format is a job before the high-level format. 

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Updated by Oliver

Oliver is an EaseUS professional writer who dares explore new areas. With a passion for solving tech issues with straightforward guides for common users, Oliver keeps honing his writing craft by developing in-depth solutions for disk and partition management, computer boot-up issues, file transfer, etc.

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Written by Jean

Jean is recognized as one of the most professional writers in EaseUS. She has kept improving her writing skills over the past 10 years and helped millions of her readers solve their tech problems on PC, Mac, and iOS devices.

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