Permanent deletions

  sac1600 14:11 12 Jul 2009

Believe when I delete an item it still remains on the hard drive !! I think this is a security risk and would like to know .. is there a free simple to use program I can download to "permanently" clear my deletions ?

  T I M B O 14:21 12 Jul 2009

BCwipe will remove the items. What it does is overwright,s the space where the data is. If you like you can try this software, but i can't remember if it's free or not >> click here

  DieSse 14:24 12 Jul 2009

Believe when I delete an item it still remains on the hard drive !!

Well it does, but the space it occupies is made available for new data to be written onto. So eventually it's partly or wholly overwritten with new stuff.

Yes there are free programs to overwrite deletions with new dat (zeroes/random data/alternate zeroes and ones - or somesuch.)

Spybot S&D contains a facility to do so (look in Advanced mode).

If you put ... permanent file deletion ... into a google search you'll get the choice of several free ones.

  T I M B O 14:33 12 Jul 2009

Oh, Ccleaner also has a wipe facility. You might like to try that also >> click here

  Peter 14:38 12 Jul 2009


When you delete a file, if you watch the on screen message, it goes into the Recycle Bin. Eventually, as DieSse indicates, the disk space it occupies will become available for reuse. If you just want to stop it going into the recycle bin press and hold down the Shift Key and delete the file, The on screen message will then change to show that you are Deleting the file. If your worried about the file being resurrected then defrag the drive and quite likely it will be obliterated.

If your still worried about the deleted file have a search for a file overwriting programme.


  Taff™ 14:42 12 Jul 2009

Timbo - I`d forgotten that! Anybody ever used it? (Under Advanced Options)

  T I M B O 15:14 12 Jul 2009

Yes i have used this wipe facility within Ccleaner & seems to work quite well.

Yes you are correct, if you delete any item by just deleting and sending it to the bin, or not to the bin it is still on that hard drive, the only way to remove it is to overwright the space that the file used on the hard drive, bcwipe will do that, Ccleaner will wipe all free avaliable space on the hard drive.

  accordion 06:40 14 Jul 2009

Files that are sent to the Recycle Bin are NOT made available as space to be written over. They stay there until you empty the Bin. (Unless it becomes full.)

It should be a regular practice to empty the Recycle Bin.

If you want to bypass the Recycle Bin, hold down Shift when you delete an item. That becomes a permanent deletion immediately.

As for deleted files still being on your hard drive, that is true until the space is over-written with new data. However, for the average home user, worrying about any security issues related to deleted files is just paranoia. It would take a determined hacker to find and recover those files, then they would only have a copy of your letter to the council and a few emails to look at. Not much to gain really.

The only time to worry about thorough deletion of file would be if you were selling the machine on. Even then, in most cases, all you need to do is delete all personal data and programs.


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