August 9th, 2003, 01:23 AM
Cleaning my hard drive
Does anyone know how I can clean up my hard drive to completely erase any emails received? I've heard that even if I delete them, they can still be retrieved from my hard drive. Thanks for your help.
August 9th, 2003, 01:33 AM
you can use a progam called Sure Delete v5.1 you can get it here
August 9th, 2003, 01:38 AM
Eraser is also a very userful tool, and seems very complete in its final release. It's what I've used for as long as I can remember.
August 9th, 2003, 03:31 AM
Umm.. depending on how these e-mails are stored on your computer, there is a bunch of different ways to get rid of them.. if you save them to your HD, then use a program like Eraser to get rid of them (they can stil be recovered but I'll cover that in the next paragraph). If you use an HTML based e-mail, such as Hotmail or Yahoo, then you should clean out your cache (Temporary Internet Files, etc.) and delete them from your account (they can still be recovered if necessary)....
Recovering deleted files works on the basis of who wants them back and how well they're written over...
Who: It depends who wants to get these files back... if you have a stupid boyfriend trying to see traces of e-mails then he *might* see a stored HTML file somewhere or something like that.. nothing big... but if an FBI agent wants to see what you've been getting.. then he has several ways to go about his business.. he can contact your ISP/e-mail provider and most likely they will gladly provide copies of your e-mails (even if they are deleted), he can use his computer skills to recover them manually (looking through endless amounts of binary [1's and 0's])... and/or he can use an electron microscope to examine your HD (costs a pretty penny but if its necessary, they'll do it...)...
Written Over: After you delete data, it is important to overwrite them with data so that finding traces of those files in binary is very difficult... programs like Eraser used predefined patterns of 1's and 0's to overwrite the spot on your HD where that specific file is (the one you want deleted)... the more that spot is written over, the harder it will be to find traces of that file/recover that file....
So, if I haven't lost you by now... I hope that helps..