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Thread: Permently Deleting Files...

  1. #1
    I'm getting a used PC soon it's much faster then the current one I'm using. But my question is how do I completely clear my old PC of everything I have ever downloaded, web sites that I viewed and emails that I sent and received? I mean 100% clean like the day I bought the PC. I hope some of you can help me out...

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  3. Software & Hardware   -   #2
    Use Kill Disk to write over everything on your hard drive. here Do several passes with it and then reinstall your OS. Just make sure you back up anything you want to save.

  4. Software & Hardware   -   #3
    lynx's Avatar .
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Yorkshire, England
    You could try Norton Cleansweep, this should get rid of most stuff (for e-mails I would simply delete them initially).
    Then use Norton Wipe Info to progressively erase areas of your drive.
    Finally, boot from a Win98 or WinME boot disk, and use fdisk to delete the partitions.

    There will still be some areas of disk which could be recovered with forensic tools, but any personal information would be erased and it is extremely unlikely that a normal user would be able to examine the physical disk sectors to see what information was on there.
    Political correctness is based on the principle that it's possible to pick up a turd by the clean end.

  5. Software & Hardware   -   #4
    Darth Sushi's Avatar Sushi Lord
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Eraser is a free program that can do the job. You can even make a Boot&Nuke floppy that automatically erases all HD detected. If you're really paranoid, you can even erase the swap file when you shutdown!

    What is Eraser?
    Eraser is an advanced security tool (for Windows), which allows you to completely remove sensitive data from your hard drive by overwriting it several times with carefully selected patterns. Works with Windows 95, 98, ME, NT, 2000, XP and DOS.
    Eraser is FREE software and its source code is released under GNU General Public License.

    The patterns used for overwriting are based on Peter Gutmann's paper "Secure Deletion of Data from Magnetic and Solid-State Memory" and they are selected to effectively remove magnetic remnants from the hard drive.

    Other methods include the one defined in the National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual of the US Department of Defence and overwriting with pseudorandom data. You can also define your own overwriting methods.

  6. Software & Hardware   -   #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    use the restoration disk provided with your PC

    proud to be american


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