Installing Eraser


New Member
I've downloaded Eraser 5.7 because it appears to be recommended for Windows 9x/Me. (I have an old laptop running Win95). The setup stops stating that I haven't got the required Windows version. The readme file suggests that if I am using Windows 95 or NT and have not installed Internet Explorer 4.01 or later, I must download an update at:
However, I am unable to find a download facility for this here. I believe I need, in particular, a later version of comctl32.dll.
I would be grateful for help on this problem.
Gerry Bates
I think this is what you need.
Many thanks for that Joel. I installed this with no problem and restarted the machine.

Unfortunately, when I tried to install Eraser again, I still got the error message "This program requires Windows version 4.0.1111 or later".

'System' tells me I am running Windows 95 4.00.950a


That sounds like you'll need Windows 95 OSR2, I don't know if that's available as an update (internet sources don't seem to suggest that) 5.7 was released a very long time ago (before I was a developer here) and I'm not too clear what the requirements to run it are.

If you only want to get rid of the drive, and the operating system isn't an issue, you could try DBAN instead.
Thanks again for your help, Joel.

The laptop in question is being donated to a charity and the donor is anxious that, since it originally belonged to a governmental authority, there should be no trace of any data from that time.

Updating, or even reinstalling an operating system after fully erasing the drive, would be difficult as it has no CD drive.

I've deleted all data, emptied the recycle bin, defragmented the drive then filled the empty space by copying non-crucial files until only a few kB were free. I judged that all previous data would then have been overwritten.

What do you think?


Most of the unused space should be unrecoverable, except:

  • The drive is likely to be old and not using Perpendicular recording, thus using advanced microscopes (as discussed in the Gutmann paper) may allow the possibility of getting back some data (but expensive and laborious)
  • The Directory entries may still contain old filenames in the folder; the file name may be sensitive
  • Of course, the last few kb would still be recoverable.

I guess, it's really your call now...

I really am grateful for your attention to this problem. I think, from what you say, that I've covered the ground sufficiently.