How Can I Delete Files From My Hard Drive Forever?

Did you know that even when you «delete» files from your computer, they might stay on your hard drive? Many times, lost files may be restored with little effort since most computer operating systems just destroy connections to the data so that they no longer appear to you, but the real data remains on the disc. Restoring the links allows you to access the destroyed data.

This type of deletion is OK in most cases—where security is not an issue—but you wouldn’t want someone to recover your bank accounts or medical information.

Using an Eraser Step by Step

A variety of tools are available to ensure that a file is actually deleted. Eraser is a free and simple solution that will erase your private data with random patterns until the data is unrecoverable. It is compatible with practically every version of Windows and provides a variety of data overwriting options, including those authorised by the Department of Defence.

Eraser works well with Windows once installed. Follow these procedures whenever you wish to safely wipe data.

1. Locate the files or folders you wish to safely delete.
2. Right-click on the files and/or folders to bring up an Eraser option.
3. In the Eraser menu, highlight and click Erase.

Eraser will automatically generate and execute the secure wipe task. When the process is completed and the files are completely wiped, you will be alerted in a popup window.

You may configure Eraser to safely delete recycle bin items as well as schedule and automate secure deletion actions.

SDelete in Detail

Users who do not want graphical interfaces can download SDelete, a command-line application from Microsoft. This is how you utilise it.

1. Navigate to Start > Run…, input cmd, and then hit OK or Enter (Return). (Windows Vista and Windows 7 users may just press the Start button and type cmd into the Windows Search box.)

2. Navigate to the location where you downloaded SDelete. If it’s in C:cmdtools, for example, type cd C:cmdtools and hit Enter.

3. Now, enter sdelete path to file or directory>, where path to file or directory> is a regular Windows path. To remove C:mysecuredata.txt, write sdelete c:mysecuredata.txt and then Enter.

4. After they’ve been erased, you’ll receive confirmation that your files or folders have been permanently destroyed, and you’re through!

Now that you have the proper tools, you may be certain that your data has been successfully erased from your hard disc and will not be retrieved by anybody (even you).


Secure Deletion of Data from Magnetic and Solid-State Memory
Why Cryptography Is Harder Than It Looks
Creating cyber security policies
Guidelines for Media Sanitization
Cyber Security


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