607 Access to the path .... is denied

Fresh install of XP, SP3, plus all follow on maintenance from Windows Update
Fresh install of Eraser 607
Trying to erase from Documents and Settings a test XP non-administrator user account from an administrator account (right click - Erase)
Eraser does not erase the folders and files, error message:
Access to the path 'C:\Documents and Settings\EveryOneElse\Application Data\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\6,]ogB]7d-{cX' is denied
Reboot XP
Navigate to an Explorer window
Took ownership of the Documents and Settings\EveryOneElse Directory structure by the administrator account
In the left hand frame Left click on C;\Documents and Settings\EveryOneElse\Application Data\Microsoft
In the right had frame Right click on Internet Explorer and then click erase
Error message:
Access to the path 'C:\Documents and Settings\EveryOneElse\Application Data\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\pRpa={]ACd l' is denied
Looking at Explorer window the directory 6,]ogB]7d-{cX is no longer displayed, instead the directory pRpa={]ACd l is displayed
Repeated the steps, each time a different directory is listed as access denied with the prior one no longer displaying


Additional testing shows that after each Erase attemp additional, strangely named, directories appear.


I am able to delete the EveryOneElse directory structure from the Documents and Settings directory via Explorer. This moves the directories to the Recycle Bin. I was able to ERASE them from the Recycle bin.
You have just encountered the tangled and unpredictable nightmare that is Windows permissions. You've also, probably, found the most straightforward solution to your problem. Console yourself with the thought that Vista and Windows 7 have a whole new set of ways of making users' life difficult ... :)

David - thank you for the quick reply.

I agree with your comment about Windows security. I've spend a LOT of time (not for this problem) trying to understand it. I've made some progress but still have a lot to learn.

That being said, I am a bit confused. What does Windows security have to do with the creation of the strange directories? Also, I never saw any of this behavior in version 5 and earlier. The only problem I ran into with earlier versions is that, apparently, Windows did not always release the lock (handle, whatever you want to call it) on certain system files such as NTUSER.DAT when the user logged off. This necessitated a reboot to allow ERASER to work.

Vista - will never load it
Windows 7 - giving it some thought but am fairly satisfied with XP for now.

Thanks again
Sorry, I didn't deal with the 'strangely named directories' point.

This is, I guess from your description, Eraser at work during a free space wipe. This works by filling all the unused space on the drive with randomly named files filled with random data in one or more randomly named folders in the root of the drive. Because of a known bug (or, actually, set of issues), Eraser sometimes either crashes or generates errors when the drive is full and before it can delete these files. The workaround, until the problem is fixed, is to delete the Eraser folders manually. This is explained in the FAQ. The reason you didn't see this problem with Eraser 5 is that you didn't run it under Vista ... :)

The problem with files such as NTUSER.DAT is magnified many times In Vista and Windows 7, which write protected OS files all over the system. Eraser 6 was written in part because of the need to deal with such issues. It still has a way to go, however, before it deals with them as smoothly as its designers would wish.


I have seen the generation of directory names during free space wipes. In the case I documented in this POST the task was to erase a directory structure, not free space. The generated strange directory names appear at various levels within the Documents and Settings \ EveryoneElse user directory structure.

I think I may have misled you a bit - I have never run Eraser under Vista or Windows 7. I have never run Vista or Windows 7 on my computers. I've been thinking about trying Windows 7 but have not done so as yet. The only system I have used is XP (well OK, DOS, NT and W2K in the prehistoric past but I never used Eraser with these systems).

Since my last post I uninstalled V6 (including deleting the registry entries and the settings in the Documents and Settings directory for each user). I then downloaded and installed Ver 5.8.8. 5.8.8 runs with no issues.

Thanks again
I think that, in suggesting comparisons between OSs, I started an unhelpful hare running. Thank you for not following me too far down that path.

Version 5.8.8 runs fine under XP, as it was designed to do. It is not formally supported any longer, which means that there will be no more Version 5 updates, but that's probably not a huge problem for you. However, when circumstances require you to move on to Windows 7, I think that Eraser 6, in whatever version it has then reached, will be the one to go for.

How the directories you describe were created, I do not know; perhaps Joel knows. I've never seen that happen on my XP machine. But then, like most users, I stick with the 'one machine, one user/administrator' way of doing things, as anything else complicates my life quite unnecessarily.


Again thank you for your promp replies.
I agree, 5.8.8 should be just fine on my XP machines.
When I eventually move to Windows 7 I'll try version 6 or its follow ons then.