Hardware Reviews


Wednesday, 27 April 2011

Secure Deletion of deleted items

Had to help out a client this week who had borrowed a laptop and needed to make sure that his sensitive files where not recoverable, you know by those very handy undelete tools such as Recuva or NTFS Undelete. Well after much research I found out that ccleaner had the functionality built-in, but I was not over the moon about its performance so I kept looking until I found SDelete v1.51 , a free Microsoft Technet System Internals utility by Mark Russinovich.

But before you do anything remember to do a Windows Disk Cleanup and remove your Restore Points, and use ccleaner to remove all the temp files and cookies.

This simple command line utility, all 47kb of it, was probably the 3rd utility from this suite of powerful tools that I have successfully used before. SDelete (Secure Delete) implements the Department of Defence clearing and sanitising standard DOD 5220.22-M, to give you confidence that once it is deleted it is gone forever.

Using SDelete:

Usage: sdelete [-p passes] [-s] [-q]
sdelete [-p passes] [-z|-c] [drive letter]
-cZero free space (good for virtual disk optimization).
-p passesSpecifies number of overwrite passes.
-sRecurse subdirectories.
-qDon't print errors (quiet).
-zCleanse free space.

After some more research I decided to use to use the following script: sdelete -p 3 -z c:
(This is done from a DOS Command Prompt)
Remember to reference the path or just copy it to your Windows System32 folder.

This option does 3 passes of cleansing the free space on your hard drive. Give it a try and let me know if you have any improvements in hard drive performance.


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