Eraser 'failed to erase unused space'?

plumpjack

New Member
Hello,

Can anyone help please? So far I’ve only used Eraser to delete files manually. However I just had it over-write the unusued space on my 160 Gb hard drive (at DoD7 setting). It began with a 'cluster tips' reading in the bottom left corner then changed to 'overwriting'. This went on TEN HOURS. Then all activity ceased, just stopped, for no apparent reason. The progress bar was still only around half-full so it may have had hours still to go, which rather contradicts what other users are saying about the time it should take. Something to do with 'protected file' status seems to be the problem, but I'm not technically or computer savvy in any way so I just don't know. I am running XP Pro with SP3. The log reads:

23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSPoliciesx86_policy.8.0.Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_x-ww_caeee1508.0.50727.762.policy (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSPoliciesx86_policy.8.0.Microsoft.VC80.MFC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_x-ww_0f75c32e8.0.50727.762.cat (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSPoliciesx86_policy.8.0.Microsoft.VC80.MFC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_x-ww_0f75c32e8.0.50727.762.policy (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSPoliciesx86_policy.8.0.Microsoft.VC80.OpenMP_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_x-ww_7d81c9f98.0.50727.762.cat (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSPoliciesx86_policy.8.0.Microsoft.VC80.OpenMP_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_x-ww_7d81c9f98.0.50727.762.policy (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Tools.VisualCPlusPlus.Runtime-Libraries_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.0.0_x-ww_ff9986d7atl.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Tools.VisualCPlusPlus.Runtime-Libraries_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.0.0_x-ww_ff9986d7mfc42.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Tools.VisualCPlusPlus.Runtime-Libraries_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.0.0_x-ww_ff9986d7mfc42u.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Tools.VisualCPlusPlus.Runtime-Libraries_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.0.0_x-ww_ff9986d7msvcp60.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Tools.VisualCPlusPlus.Runtime-Libraries_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.9792.0_x-ww_08a6620aatl.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Tools.VisualCPlusPlus.Runtime-Libraries_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.9792.0_x-ww_08a6620amfc42.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Tools.VisualCPlusPlus.Runtime-Libraries_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.9792.0_x-ww_08a6620amfc42u.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Tools.VisualCPlusPlus.Runtime-Libraries_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.9792.0_x-ww_08a6620amsvcp60.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.ATL_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_cbb27474ATL80.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.CRT_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.42_x-ww_0de06acdmsvcm80.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.CRT_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.42_x-ww_0de06acdmsvcp80.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.CRT_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.42_x-ww_0de06acdmsvcr80.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.CRT_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_6b128700msvcm80.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.CRT_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_6b128700msvcp80.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.CRT_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_6b128700msvcr80.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_91481303mfc80CHS.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_91481303mfc80CHT.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_91481303mfc80DEU.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_91481303mfc80ENU.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_91481303mfc80ESP.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_91481303mfc80FRA.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_91481303mfc80ITA.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_91481303mfc80JPN.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFCLOC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_91481303mfc80KOR.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_3bf8fa05mfc80.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_3bf8fa05mfc80u.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_3bf8fa05mfcm80.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.MFC_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_3bf8fa05mfcm80u.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC80.OpenMP_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_8.0.50727.762_x-ww_6c18549avcomp.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC90.CRT_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_9.0.21022.8_x-ww_d08d0375msvcm90.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC90.CRT_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_9.0.21022.8_x-ww_d08d0375msvcp90.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.VC90.CRT_1fc8b3b9a1e18e3b_9.0.21022.8_x-ww_d08d0375msvcr90.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.Common-Controls_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.0.0_x-ww_1382d70acomctl32.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.Common-Controls_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.2600.2180_x-ww_a84f1ff9comctl32.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.Common-Controls_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.2600.5512_x-ww_35d4ce83comctl32.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.CPlusPlusRuntime_6595b64144ccf1df_7.0.0.0_x-ww_2726e76amsvcirt.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.CPlusPlusRuntime_6595b64144ccf1df_7.0.0.0_x-ww_2726e76amsvcrt.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.CPlusPlusRuntime_6595b64144ccf1df_7.0.2600.2180_x-ww_b2505ed9msvcirt.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.CPlusPlusRuntime_6595b64144ccf1df_7.0.2600.2180_x-ww_b2505ed9msvcrt.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.CPlusPlusRuntime_6595b64144ccf1df_7.0.2600.5512_x-ww_3fd60d63msvcirt.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.CPlusPlusRuntime_6595b64144ccf1df_7.0.2600.5512_x-ww_3fd60d63msvcrt.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.GdiPlus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.0.0_x-ww_8d353f13GdiPlus.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.GdiPlus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.2600.2180_x-ww_522f9f82GdiPlus.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.GdiPlus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.2600.3352_x-ww_81af8e88GdiPlus.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.GdiPlus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.0.2600.5512_x-ww_dfb54e0cGdiPlus.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.Networking.Dxmrtp_6595b64144ccf1df_5.2.2.3_x-ww_468466a7dxmrtp.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.Networking.RtcDll_6595b64144ccf1df_5.2.2.3_x-ww_d6bd8b95rtcdll.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_Microsoft.Windows.Networking.RtcRes_6595b64144ccf1df_5.2.2.3_en_16a24bc0rtcres.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_System.EnterpriseServices_b03f5f7f11d50a3a_2.0.0.0_x-ww_7d5f3790System.EnterpriseServices.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:22:17 AM: Failed to erase unused space on C:WINDOWSWinSxSx86_System.EnterpriseServices_b03f5f7f11d50a3a_2.0.0.0_x-ww_7d5f3790System.EnterpriseServices.Wrapper.dll (Protected File).
23/12/2008 11:33:42 AM: Removed a task (C:).

Thanks for any advice.
 

Overwriter

Active Member
Hi plumpjack

It is quite common that Eraser cannot erase some cluster tips on windows protected files. Windows locks these on boot up and I doubt your security is put at much risk because of it.

I suggest you overwrite your free space with a single pseudorandom overwrite, it is much faster and as far as I am aware there has never been anyone able to recover data after a single pseudorandom pass on a modern hard drive. If you are extremely paranoid you could perform 2 passes.

As for Eraser locking up this could be because of a damaged or corrupted hard drive. Does your drive work correctly ?

Could you try CHDSK /F ?
 

plumpjack

New Member
Overwriter said:
Hi plumpjack

It is quite common that Eraser cannot erase some cluster tips on windows protected files. Windows locks these on boot up and I doubt your security is put at much risk because of it.

I suggest you overwrite your free space with a single pseudorandom overwrite, it is much faster and as far as I am aware there has never been anyone able to recover data after a single pseudorandom pass on a modern hard drive. If you are extremely paranoid you could perform 2 passes.

As for Eraser locking up this could be because of a damaged or corrupted hard drive. Does your drive work correctly ?

Could you try CHDSK /F ?
Hello Overwriter,

Many thanks for this. I'll try the single pass you suggest. As for the central issue I can only say that I believe my hard-drive to be in full working order. It's just come back from the engineer's as a matter of fact, this after the whole system locked up and it wouldn't boot. He had it a fortnight but couldn't find the cause. He did say the hard-disk appeared to be OK and concluded that it was likely the wiring within the casing, which he discovered to be shot to pieces when he got the cover off (I had to buy a new tower as a result).

CHDSK reveals little so far as I can see - certainly no immediate problems. However I bought 'Spin-Rite' from the Steve Gibson site just before all this happened (I don't know if you're familiar with http://www.grc.com but Spin-Rite is touted as the jewel in the crown and is supposed to forewarn of impending disk trouble according to the author). I haven't had chance to run it yet because of these various delays, but in view of your question I expect this is the next obvious step isn't it?

plumpjack
 

Overwriter

Active Member
Hi plumpjack :)

Yes I am familiar with Spin-rite, I have a copy myself !! It works well and you should certainly try it on your drive.

If however you want to just quickly try to get a basic free space wipe going until you can check your disk properly you could try the following.

Download these.

Ccleaner

Eraser 5.8.7-beta 3


Uninstall the Eraser version you have now.

Install and run everything on Ccleaner including the registry clean.

Install Eraser 5.8.7-beta 3

Disable as many programs as you can.

Then try a free space wipe.

Any luck ???? :? ........ :lol:
 

plumpjack

New Member
Hello Overwriter,

Here's what I did. I ran SpinRite on Level 2 and got a clean bill of health.

I then followed your instructions re CCleaner and the latest version of Eraser. I forgot to exit running programmes however. To be honest the only one I could have exited was Evidence Eliminator (ironically the very programme I'm looking to replace with Eraser once I'm sure about it). Other running programmes - firewall (ZA Pro) and anti-virus (NOD32) - I couldn't really risk.

Anyway on pseudorandom and 1 pass it ran for 1h 35mins. The task notification went from 'Cluster Tips' to 'Overwriting' and eventually filled the progress bar to precisely half way (a little better than before). 'Overwriting' then changed to 'removing temporary files'. The progress bar suddenly shot to three-quarters full, whereupon the task notification altered to something to do with 'directories' and back again to 'removing temporary files' for a moment or two (none of this happened before) before coming to a halt.

This SEEMED to perform better but I'm still none the wiser about whether its actually done everything its supposed to. For me the progress bar is the chief means of telling whether or not a programme has run its course. Since this didn't fill the progress bar except when suddenly clearing temporary files and coming to an abrupt halt I can't say with any confidence whether it worked.

The log is virtually the same as last time. You say ignoring Windows files is normal and nothing to worry about so I shan't include it.

I really appreciate your help in all this Overwriter. Sorry to be such a nuisance! :oops:
 

Overwriter

Active Member
Hi plumpjack

Anyway on pseudorandom and 1 pass it ran for 1h 35mins. The task notification went from 'Cluster Tips' to 'Overwriting' and eventually filled the progress bar to precisely half way (a little better than before). 'Overwriting' then changed to 'removing temporary files'. The progress bar suddenly shot to three-quarters full, whereupon the task notification altered to something to do with 'directories' and back again to 'removing temporary files' for a moment or two (none of this happened before) before coming to a halt.
From what you have written it sounds as if Eraser has done everything and finished. :D

It all sounds about right to me, well done ! :wink:
 

plumpjack

New Member
Overwriter said:
Hi plumpjack

From what you have written it sounds as if Eraser has done everything and finished. :D

It all sounds about right to me, well done ! :wink:
Hello Overwriter,

I'm relieved to hear it. Thanks once again for guiding me through this.

A last couple of things:

1) Can you suggest a good file recovery programme (preferably free but I'll pay for a reputable software) just to test things properly?

2) Are you familiar with Evidence Eliminator and, if so, how does Eraser compare? EE is the most comprehensive programme I know of. Is Eraser a good substitute for EE in your opinion?

Thanks again
Jack
 

Overwriter

Active Member
Hi Jack

Can you suggest a good file recovery programme (preferably free but I'll pay for a reputable software) just to test things properly?
I cannot recommend any commercial software as Eraser is free and so are these forums. However there are a lot of good free file recovery programs available. Recuva, Restoration, undelete, Panda Recovery are all pretty good. You could also get hold of a free hex editor to actually see the free space yourself.

Are you familiar with Evidence Eliminator and, if so, how does Eraser compare? EE is the most comprehensive programme I know of. Is Eraser a good substitute for EE in your opinion?
What I write about EE here is my personal opinion and not that of Heidi computers.

Evidence Eliminator has a shocking reputation. They have one of the worst reputations for hard and miss-selling of any security software I have heard of. There was even a whole website dedicated to dispelling the rumours that Robin Hood software were churning out !

Worst of all is their licensing technique ! They say that if you use a pirated version of their software EE will appear to be doing what it is supposed to do but it actually won’t overwrite anything. This is all well and good if they want to protect their product, fair enough. However what they don’t say is what happens if there is a mistake by EE and it thinks you have a pirated copy when you actually don’t !!!! You will think EE is working and it might not be !!!

I have also seen a few reviews over the years that lead me to believe that EE isn’t all that good anyway. I would avoid it.


Here are some links for you.

http://ee-sucks.tripod.com/

http://www.pc-help.org/opinion/eeemail.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evidence_Eliminator

http://radsoft.net/software/reviews/ee/



You can achieve a very secure result with MRU Blaster, Ccleaner and Eraser. All are free, but you could donate if you like.

It is better to protect your system from the start by using Truecrypt to encrypt your entire disk.
 

plumpjack

New Member
Overwriter said:
I cannot recommend any commercial software as Eraser is free and so are these forums. However there are a lot of good free file recovery programs available. Recuva, Restoration, undelete, Panda Recovery are all pretty good. You could also get hold of a free hex editor to actually see the free space yourself.
Thank you. But what is a hex editor please? As I said I'm not very bright with regard to computers!


What I write about EE here is my personal opinion and not that of Heidi computers.

Evidence Eliminator has a shocking reputation. They have one of the worst reputations for hard and miss-selling of any security software I have heard of. There was even a whole website dedicated to dispelling the rumours that Robin Hood software were churning out !

Worst of all is their licensing technique ! They say that if you use a pirated version of their software EE will appear to be doing what it is supposed to do but it actually won’t overwrite anything. This is all well and good if they want to protect their product, fair enough. However what they don’t say is what happens if there is a mistake by EE and it thinks you have a pirated copy when you actually don’t !!!! You will think EE is working and it might not be !!!

I have also seen a few reviews over the years that lead me to believe that EE isn’t all that good anyway. I would avoid it.


Here are some links for you.

http://ee-sucks.tripod.com/

http://www.pc-help.org/opinion/eeemail.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evidence_Eliminator

http://radsoft.net/software/reviews/ee/



You can achieve a very secure result with MRU Blaster, Ccleaner and Eraser. All are free, but you could donate if you like.

It is better to protect your system from the start by using Truecrypt to encrypt your entire disk.
I'll try 'MRU Blaster'. I've never heard of it before. CCleaner to dump everything onto the hard-drive and Eraser to overwrite it eh? Makes sense. So to the advise on TrueCrypt. That's Acronis I think. I have 'DriveCleanser', their disk-wiping software. (Note - I'm wrong. I'm thinking of 'True Image' from Acronis)

Re Evidence Eliminator - fair enough. I asked for a personal opinion. You gave one. I bought EE five years ago. I've run it ever since. It was fine at first. But it hasn't worked as it should in more than two years in my opinion - and that includes on fresh OS installations.

I don't understand it. It's a licensed product, not a crack, yet it never empties the IE cache properly, nor the recycle bin even on the right-click shell extension. It appears to go through the motions. When I check the relevant directory, however, files are still there. It's this that has made me think about alternatives like Eraser.

Also one has to consider the propaganda element. Who to believe? I could counter your links with this for instance: http://www.guard-privacy-and-online-sec ... nator.html. Furthermore EE claim rivals like CyberScrub and WindowWasher are FBI fronts - an easy accusation to make I know, but surely federal agencies would have every reason to destroy EE's reputation if it's as good as the makers say.

I approached Malwarebytes about this. Their software highlights EE as 'rogue'. Yet the complaint page they directed me to revealed nothing more questionable than off-colour usenet marketing - nothing to do with the programme's technical accuracy or capacity to meet the makers' claims.

Couldn't at least some hostility be commercial rivalry in disguise? Radsoft maintain extensive files on EE but aside from claiming it bloats the Windows OS its chief criticisms are again directed at the company's marketing and the alleged spamming of affiliates. And of course Radsoft market (at a pricey $129.00) their own Extreme Power Tool as being everything EE should be and is not.

Radsoft are rather pious and preachey. They criticize Windows yet sell software to MS customers they sneeringly call '(L)users'. I understand their self-proclaimed 'legendary customer service' isn't all it might be either.

But self-interest isn't the only reason rivals might like to see it off. The inverted snobbery and anti-commerce ethos intrinsic to free software ideology is a powerful motive.

When one of EE's detractors said 'Even the police want to ban it' I began to wonder. I mean of course the police want to ban it.....

I'll get rid of EE. It isn't reliable. I'll never know if I was conned. All I do know is that we spend so much time and money ramping up Windows security I'm beginning to think Linux or Unix might be a better alternative after all! :)

You played a blinder on this one Overwriter. Many thanks.
 

Overwriter

Active Member
Hi :)

This list is probably all you will need.


Eraser V6 (When released).

Ccleaner

MRU Blaster

Truecrypt

Spybot


Eraser

Eraser will probably be the best tool you can get to wipe the free space or files on a windows computer. At the moment all Eraser does is wipe user selected files or free space, Eraser does not remove user tracks nor does it go hunting for histories, user tracks, cookies or any other type of “evidence”.

Eraser is a lean and manual program. It does exactly what it is supposed to do and nothing else, it is certainly not bloatware ! However in the future V6 will accept plugins from contributors that will add the sort of functionality you like in EE.

Comparing EE with Eraser isn’t really possible. EE claims to perform a different job to Eraser. Eraser erases what you tell it to and it erases it properly. EE claims to find all “evidence” that could be used against you and erase it. The only comparison that could be made between the two is the quality of the overwriting patterns. Well, lets put it this way, Eraser will have a lot of peer review soon and it is open source. If you only learn one thing from my posts here it should be that security software, encryption or erase type programs should always be open source and subject to peer review.

To put it simply Eraser allows any skilled programmers to view and criticise the code used to write Eraser. Believe me if there is an error in Eraser that would mean it wouldn’t perform what it claims to do someone will shout about it !

Another thing to consider is that the Eraser V6 team work on Eraser out of an interest in security, for the good of the internet community and the technical challenge. They are not motivated by money although any donations are gratefully received as there are running costs involved with Eraser. Garrett has to pay for bandwidth etc.



Ccleaner

Ccleaner is more like EE. Ccleaner does go hunting for files to overwrite and clear user histories and registry settings etc. Use this before running Eraser.

MRU Blaster.

This great tool clears up to 30,000 mru’s from your computer. This is soon to be upgraded to version 2 which will be awesome ! Use this before running Eraser.

Spybot

Spybot will clean many nasty things from your computer and also many user tracks or “evidence” as EE likes to call them. Use this before running Eraser.

Truecrypt

Truecrypt encrypts your entire drive so the so called “evidence” never hits your hard drive in plain text. As long as you have a good password no one can view your drive. If this is used correctly you don’t have to worry about user tracks or wiping your free space ever again ! I personally do still use the above in case my password is ever compromised.

There is so much to this subject I don’t really know where to start. I think you should read some security forums for a while and look for anti or counter forensics sites. The above should get you pretty good security unless you are challenged by a 3 letter agency but even then I think you should be pretty much ok !

As I said before all these programs are free, they are written by kind people so that people less financially fortunate than others can enjoy the same, if not better level of computer security as people more fiscally well off.

If you use and like any of the above programs please consider donating at least something to their cause.
 

plumpjack

New Member
I've installed MRU Blaster. It certainly allows you to keep on top of things. Not too sure about Spybot. I ran it for some time two or three years back but got rid after it started missing a lot of stuff. Also I've been reading documents over at RadSoft, mostly on the XP system, which from the point of view of privacy appears to represent a new low in MS attitude to its customers. Ideally I'd like to go with Unix, but my printer and sound card have compatibility problems even with the 'friendlier' systems at PC-BSD and Desktop BSD. I've got my eye on a Mini Mac at the minute. At least that way I can use my keyboard, mouse and monitor. We'll see. Thanks again Overwriter. Hope you and yours are having a nice Christmas.
 

Overwriter

Active Member
Thanks again Overwriter. Hope you and yours are having a nice Christmas.
You’re welcome, happy Christmas to you to ! :)
 

Joel

Active Member
mm the plugins feature to be exposed in v6.1 will allow the MRUs and other stuff to be removed as part of an erasure task. But that'll only start development after 6 is stable.

Joel
 

plumpjack

New Member
Thanks for the clarification Joel. Actually the intersting thing to my mind about this entire over-writing debate is the sheer absence of consensus. Peter Gutmann complains his 35-pass 'rule' is chanted like a religious mantra. At RadSoft they say all the DoD rules and others are out of date and were conceived as remedies to erasing data on magnetic tape, not hard drives - a different problem altogether. Manufacturers say nothing short of physical destruction will do, while users in the industry say even a single-pass over-write is sufficient to discourage anyone with no access to expensive, top-of-the-line forensic weaponry.

I say we go back to pen and paper....;)
 

Joel

Active Member
How about old bones used by the ancient Chinese anyone? Thataway you just dump it in acid and there she goes. lol.

Joel
 

Overwriter

Active Member
plumpjack said:
Thanks for the clarification Joel. Actually the intersting thing to my mind about this entire over-writing debate is the sheer absence of consensus. Peter Gutmann complains his 35-pass 'rule' is chanted like a religious mantra. At RadSoft they say all the DoD rules and others are out of date and were conceived as remedies to erasing data on magnetic tape, not hard drives - a different problem altogether. Manufacturers say nothing short of physical destruction will do, while users in the industry say even a single-pass over-write is sufficient to discourage anyone with no access to expensive, top-of-the-line forensic weaponry.

I say we go back to pen and paper....;)

Erasing voodoo !! :lol:

I have campaigned about this for quite some time now. A single pseudorandom pass will be very secure on everything with the possible exception of very, very old hard drives. If you are extremely paranoid then you could make 2 passes.

USB flash drives need a total free space wipe due to the wear levelling “feature” but even then this only requires a single pass.

Eraser used to install itself with the Gutmann method as default, it now has a single pass pseudorandom as default and we haven’t heard of any examples of anyone being able to recover anything from this pass.

This last week I have been asking, begging and on occasion pleading for forensic experts to help Eraser. I am putting together a small team of forensic professionals and enthusiastic amateurs to test Eraser once and for all.

With Joels coding, Chris’s beta testing and the forensic teams testing, Eraser will be the best erasing tool on the net !
 
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