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Can You Ever Really Erase a Computer File?


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#16
admin

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Really the only way to be sure a file is gone, is to destroy the drive. Because of tunneling scanning microscopes being more widely available, and techniques for using them improving. Even degaussing isn't guaranteed to work: http://www.cs.auckla...secure_del.html
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#17
Michael

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What is the best way to delete data of a DVD. I Have a few Norton Ghoast backups on DVDs and this is a risk if put in the trash, don't think that any one would find it but if they do I am in troble.
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#18
Dragon

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snap the disks in halfs or quarters, then throw them in the trash, or if your allowed too, granted this is if you live in the country setting or the town you live in allows it, burn them. that is the only way to make sure that the info is unusable on that type of media.

Edit: another thing you could do is take a propane torch and put the heat on it long enough to melt the plastic. once it's soft enough, take a pair of pliers and bend the disk in half with the data side facing in, then apply more heat and fuse the two halfs together.

The only people that would be able to use the information from disks mutilated like that would be teh crime labs, so if you are worried about covering up illegal information, this won't work to save you.

Edited by Efwis, 13 August 2005 - 08:36 PM.

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#19
dsenette

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if you stick any optical media in a microwave it completely screws the data...the microwaves will arc off of the alluminum in the cd
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#20
ScHwErV

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I dont recommend the microwave approach. With older microwaves, it can cause a fire.

For hard drives, I have a pretty good way of destroying the data. Ive done this with all my old drives.

First I shoot the hard drive a minimum of 5 times with a large caliber rifle (Target practice (.300 Ultra Mag should do)). Then I soak the drive in salt water for about a week. After all this is said and done, I take the drive to a private lake and drop it in the deepest part of the lake (if the 15' of water doesnt lose it, the 10' of muck will).

ScHwErV :tazz:
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#21
computerwiz12890

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Lol, you guys got some heavy-duty ways to ensure data deletion. For other people, like me, that aren't too paranoid and just want a simple method, check out Eraser 5.7 which can be downloaded at www.snapfiles.com Do a search for it. Read the instructions, which recommend doing 32 overwrites of random data. They say it's very effective, but professionals may have tools that can still recover data.

You can find many wonderful free programs at Snapfiles, and it is very well organized. You can find many different data wiper programs there. Or you can blow a hole in everything, like ScHwErV suggests. :tazz: You definately won't have to worry about it after that. :)
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#22
cleverboy12

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can i ask how u take the hard drive out of the system and why do u need to burn it after ?

please answer
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#23
computerwiz12890

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1. Unplug the computer from its power supply.

2. Open the computer up

3. Find the hard drive and unscrew it from where it's attached.

4. Unplug the power cable and the data cable.

There you go. Depending on the manufacturer, the hard drive may be in a metal rack that you can pull out or unscrew out.

As for burning it, it's just one method of making sure all data is destroyed and unrecoverable. That way thieves can't steal sensitive data.

Edited by computerwiz12890, 19 August 2005 - 03:19 PM.

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#24
cleverboy12

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Wait, Wouldnt you have to have a technition to do that because your then at a very high risk of loosing the computer !
:tazz:
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#25
Michael

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I would not think twice about it, but if you don't know what you are doing there is a posability of doing something like removing the wrong thing....
Not likely thought it is kind of ovious what to do when the computer is open.
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#26
cleverboy12

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what kinds of things do people want to get rid of . I dont understand why the do not just get another hard disk as well as the one that they are using and seriously i would not recomend for any1 to open their computer themselves ! :tazz:
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#27
EMCguy

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You're right, every time you open up a computer, there is a risk you will do some damage. But that is true also of surfing the net, or adding programs, or even adding new peripherals.

I once added a new printer to a computer, and it wrecked my word processing program. I spent more than forty hours reinstalling my word processor several times (22 3.5 inch floppy diskettes) before I finally gave up on it and bought another computer. (it was probably a case of DLL mismatch more common in the mid 90's)

In any case, if you are doing anything important on a computer, you really should have two similar computers so when one breaks (hardware/software) you have another one to carry on with. When you get to that point, then opening up your computer isn't that risky. Its even fun.

As far as people worrrying about their hard drive data: People will have their banking records on their computer, emails, pictures etc, and they worry that rotten people will use that information to harm them. It has happened before and made the news, but then again most of the time the news focuses on the rare and unusual.

my 02 cents worth :tazz:

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#28
EMCguy

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1. Unplug the computer from its power supply.

2. Open the computer up

3. Find the hard drive and unscrew it from where it's attached.

4. Unplug the power cable and the data cable.

There you go.  Depending on the manufacturer, the hard drive may be in a metal rack that you can pull out or unscrew out.

As for burning it, it's just one method of making sure all data is destroyed and unrecoverable.  That way thieves can't steal sensitive data.

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And dont forget ESD precautions while you have it open. :tazz:

EMCguy
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#29
warriorscot

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Opening up your computer is not a big thing mines is ope at least once a week for one reaon or another. It would take the unluckiest and smost stupid person on the planet to break there computer, JUST by opening the case. Even removing a hard drive is near idiot proof and can be done with the most basic of knowledge. You sound like a computer repairman, lol.
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#30
fleamailman

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The trouble with this thread is that if one explains the way to exvade detection of stuff on the harddrive, which is one way of looking at this thread's original meaning, then one be furthering a crime. I bite the urge to explain; however, if one is just saying that the drive might have personal stuff which one does not want others to reproach one on, then similar types of files with similar types of information quickly blurs the original information but maybe I am saying too much now.
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