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Finding and deleteing files.

So i need to find already deleted files and then completely delete them. how do i do this?

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A "deleted" file is, as you know,...

In reply to: Finding and deleteing files.

...not really deleted; it's just flagged so that the space it occupies can be reused. Until the file is overwritten, the data can be recovered using any of a number of available programs.

What you want to do is use a program that wipes, or renders unrecoverable, all the data contained on a disk drive's free space, defined as all space where nothing is written plus all space occupied by deleted files.

There are many programs that wipe free space; Google "disk wiping software" and you'll see what I mean. A good free program that does this is Eraser, available at

Two notes:

1. Any of these programs take a substantial amount of time to run, especially if you want to wipe the drive to Department of Defense standards or better.

2. Read the instructions completely before you begin; that way, you won't inadvertently erase your entire hard drive...;-)

Hope this helps,


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What do you mean with ...

In reply to: Finding and deleteing files.

"completely delete"? Delete from the recycle bin, or more than that?


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You might try...

In reply to: Finding and deleteing files.

Been using it quite a while with no problems.

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Thanks for the recommendation...

In reply to: You might try...

I downloaded Eraser and looks interesting but is a strange operating program. It gave no desktop icon nor is there one in the lower tray. Seems odd but I suppose that is the way it works.

Having a little problem figuring the procedures out but see it does some useful things. If only I can figure out some scheduling settings.



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File Deletion

In reply to: Thanks for the recommendation...

Complete file deletion is only accomplished with a deep, low level hard drive reformat using either a DoD standard 7 pass wipe, or a Putnam 35 pass wipe, either way on drives larger than 80gb, that's a long time to wait, I know it took 2 hours to do a full DoD Wipe on my 40gb laptop drive last night. BCWipe is a preferred tool of choice as well as D-Ban.

HOWEVER, for those less paranoid but still thorough cleaners, here's another way of doing it.

Once you've completed your "housecleaning" process and everything you have found has been deleted, right click the start button, click on explore all users. In the windows explorer window that opens up, in the upper left, click on tools, folder options. In the Folder Option Window, click the view tab and scroll down in the list, Under hidden Files and folders, select show hidden files and folders AND UNCHECK Hide protected operating system files, click ok. Now in the windows explorer pane, expand the C drive and you'll see a several folders, one of which is c:\recycler, select all items in this location and press and hold the shift key and hit delete, click OK to confirm file deletion. (Shift key is more of an "Incinerate" function, files removed using this method are not sent to the recycle bin for recovery.)

What you have just cleared is a record of ALL items deleted from your machine during that session. Now unless someone wants to yank your hard drive and run some pretty top end forensic software/hardware against your computer, yes, you're realitivly safe. Rehide this system folder by following the previous steps in reverse.

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Every one of those files noted in the recycler can ...

In reply to: File Deletion

still be located with a simple sector editor - no need to "yank your hard drive and run some pretty top end forensic software/hardware against your computer". Most "undeleters" can also locate the files as all that has really happened is that they have been marked in the FAT or MFT by the OS as available for writing data to the sectors

DoD wipes are NOT "low level formats", they are simply repeated overwrites of an already formatted drive and this process will defeat most data recovery methods other than those that can be done in a lab making use of residual magnetism also known as magnetic memory where the bits remain in shadowed alignment -- very costly and time consuming and in all practicality only worthwhile for governments. A single overwrite is adequate for most to cause casual data recovery tools to fail but the more the merrier.

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In reply to: Thanks for the recommendation...

The issue with no icon in the tray was resolved when the machine was rebooted. I have now cleaned the space of unused deleted items. Only made one pass which must be the default setting.

So far... so good but still learning. I need to learn how to make a schedule for automatic cleaning on a set frequency. Still working on that!


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this is what i do

In reply to: Finding and deleteing files.

what I do is click on search and type in the name, or i go to search and click on "all files and folders" and click on were you want to look in, I look in "local hard drive (C:)" and then hit search without putting any name in. This works for me.

I hope this helps.

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