That's a Vista UAC issue, not something we can work around at the moment, but will be fixed in a long run. The error message returned should be clear enough to not require a user to come to the forum to check it up.NickJG said:Using Windows Vista: Eraser 6 is generally a really good too and it's free so I appreciate that. But things like the following are very annoying:
1) Finding that deleting unused disk space won't work unless you right-click and run as administrator.
This is really only one problem and it is being researched on. There is an experimental fix already made, but test results are still inconclusive.NickJG said:2) Finding that after attempting to delete unused disk space this had not happened as all disk space had been used up.
3) Having deleted all the files created by eraser that were taking up the disk space, the same thing happens each time I run eraser so it never completes, even though I have plenty of free disk space.
Until recently, it's baffled me too. I guess the point I'm making is that Eraser starts off implementing features theoretically to achieve a given goal. When real-world conditions are no longer clean-room conditions, we fix them. Eraser 6 hasn't been around long enough for all the real-world conditions to be pre-empted. Each maintenance release fixes some, in the hopes that Eraser becomes a lot more stable.NickJG said:4) Having to search the forums each time to find a solution to each problem such as 1) and 2). Then I read this is a common problem dealt with in FAQs. If so it should be prominent in the documentation. Nowhere in the documentation is there a simple step by step guide to erasing unused disk space that can be followed and actually works. I am still stuck with problem 3) so I can't delete unused disk space and have eraser successfully complete the task. Why isn't all the unnecessary data deleted as eraser runs, rather than stored until the program has (or hasn't) completed? I am far from being an IT expert but these kind of issues baffle me.
Unfortunately for the law enforcement agencies (or, more usually, for anyone who wants to invade our privacy), Eraser is not that broken. 6.0.7. fixed the problems that stopped it working on Windows 7 x64, for example. At Joel's most recent posts accept, some things are not working as they should, and some Eraser 5 features (or equivalent) have yet to be implemented, but the program is now usable.snowdrift said:I have thought a few times over the past year, what a coup it would be for law enforcement (on whatever local, national, or global level) to infiltrate Eraser and destroy it. My thought is probably crazy, but trashing a free program that was best in breed would certainly be an effort of mine if I were in Interpol, for example.
It's running with <16MB on my computer now. Which indicator are you using to judge memory? In any case, the 40MB of RAM used will be trimmed when demand requires it by the OS.jimiguitarman5 said:- A huge process of about 40MB has to run in the background all the time
This is dealt with in 6.2. However, if you consider what you've wrote later in your post, that 3 passes are for the paranoid, you could set the default erasure method to be 3 passes and use that all the time and never deal with the erasure method ever. It's a "default" for a reason. If you so deal with Top Secret information and you feel 35 passes are the minimum, you can also set that as a default. Defaults should be chosen by the user and adhered to for the majority of use cases (hence "Defaults")jimiguitarman5 said:- It's not possible to choose the erase method on-the-fly. In version 5, after choosing 'Erase' from the context menu, it was possible to choose the erase method and make adjustments such as 'Cluster Tip Area' etc. or if I want to see a report at the end or not.
So what are you saying, if you consider the previous point and the one you have made later in the post about 3 passes being for the paranoid?jimiguitarman5 said:- The submenu on the recycle bin is basically useless. First I thought 'Oh, nice - this is now in a submenu', because I expected that there I can find the various erase methods. But no, it's just one unnecessary step to get to 'erase'.
Which ones, may I ask?jimiguitarman5 said:- Several options that have been there in version 5 preferences are gone.
Unless you're running Eraser in a Virtual Machine with emulated hardware, and I've seen those before, even really old or lousy integrated graphics processors deal with the screen without issue. Maybe the About dialog is a little extravagant (give the designer some leeway there), but the rest of the application shouldn't be an issue.jimiguitarman5 said:- The main window is clumsy and sluggish. Version 5 was neat and fast.
In 6.2 I've decided to do what Explorer does. Ask the user for a confirmation, and also allow the user to change the erasure options, like in v5.jimiguitarman5 said:1. Offer two entries in the context menu integration:
- 'Erase' (erase the file with the settings that have been set in the main preferences)
- 'Erase...' offer the option to change the erase settings just for this time
Please see my point on defaults.jimiguitarman5 said:2. Similarly offer two entries for the recycle bin. Additionally, erase methods could be put in a submenu for direct access. Which erase methods are displayed in that submenu, should be adjustable in the preferences.
If you said this 5 years ago, I would agree; I was one such critic myself. Since then the .NET framework has improved by leaps and bounds. RAM requirements for pure .NET apps are low, if not lower than, native applications (the native application would require at least the C and C++ runtime to be loaded, which is analogous to the .NET framework libraries in size and complexity)jimiguitarman5 said:3. Discard .NET framework basis. It's a CPU and RAM hog.
They are there. Just not where you are used to looking. It is in the Select Data to Erase dialog.jimiguitarman5 said:4. Bring back the preference settings of version 5 (cluster tips, etc.).
There should be a topic on the design and architecture decisions somewhere in the forum, otherwise I would be writing on it soon. In summary, this was done because the disk subsystem was always seen as the bottleneck in any erase and the process allowed scheduling of the tasks so they do not stress the disks. In addition, it also allowed a very powerful scheduling system. Above that, it also allows us to deal with UAC problems better. Lastly, it was done so because most erasure tasks should be done in the background. The user would press delete and let Explorer delete files and proceed with his other work. Why should Eraser be different? Hence, the standalone process approach was picked.jimiguitarman5 said:5. Discard the necessity to have a process running in the background even though Eraser is not in usage at the moment.
It is still there, as the FL16KB method.jimiguitarman5 said:6. Bring back erase method 'only first and last 2kbyte'. It's very handy for fast erase of less important files.
You can always set it as the default erasure method. In addition, v6's FL16KB allows you to pick which erasure method to use for the 16-32KBs being erased.jimiguitarman5 said:7. Discard all erase methods higher than 3-pass (anything higher than 1-pass doesn't make sense; but let's keep 3-pass for the paranoid people). Read this: http://www.anti-forensics.com/disk-wiping-one-pass-is-enough
As for me, I think 1-pass and 'only first and last 2kByte' are enough.
Perhaps to you from the viewpoint of a user. To me as a developer of Eraser, v5 is a worse mess than you're describing v6 to be.jimiguitarman5 said:Basically, it would have been a much better idea to keep Eraser as it was in version 5 and from there make improvments. Version 6 is such a big mess
Allow me to disagree.jimiguitarman5 said:I can't believe it has been ruined so disgracefully. Have been using it for years and then suddenly it switched from being neat and handy to being messy and clumsy. And the worst idea was the switch to .NET.
Maybe a better choice would be that circumstances allowing, you join the development team and maintain the v5 branch. That would benefit the people who think like you do.jimiguitarman5 said:This should be cancelled immediately.
The Eraser running process is not a resource hog when it is idle, so it's not the worst offender of its kind by any means. User feedback has been taken note of and there is an accepted ticket in Trac to have Eraser do, in effect, what you want. Part of the context that Eraser 6 is a quite rapidly evolving application.imnotrich said:1. Why is Eraser always running but does not appear in the services.msc list? I'd like the option to set Eraser to "manual." I am running Vista with 2gb of RAM and another 2gb of ready boost, still...this laptop does not have the horsepower/resources to run programs that I am not using. Need the option to either turn Eraser off or at least set it to manual.
It's not Eraser that is doing this, but Windows. And things are by no means as clear-cut as you seem to suggest. The boundary between a helpful application and malware can be nothing more than a fuzzy matter of opinion. I have lost count of the number of times applications I value have been wrongly identified by a security program as malware.imnotrich said:I read in the forums people concerned about Eraser contacting the internet behind the scenes. Although it may be completely benign this is consistent with spyware behavior. Turn it off. Like I said, even if benign - it's something that can be exploited later on.
This is actually quite a complex issue, because Eraser has to work within the rather tight limits of what the OS allows. The resources available to the Eraser Team are very limited and we should perhaps not be surprised that the initial release of the program threw up bugs that the developers had not identified. Most of these are now fixed. For the program to work more comfortably with the Windows security model, the planned further development of the architecture needs to take place. Eraser 5 has the same problems, but no development route out of them.imnotrich said:3. Problems with the erase unused space - I haven't seen this personally, but I note in the forums concerns about erasing unused space not working correctly. This would seem to be a major flaw, for if you're not erasing unused space...what space are you erasing? Used space? I'm anal about back ups but if there was ever a problem, I'm not keen on spending hundreds of hours reinstalling windows and restoring stuff. Not my idea of fun on a sunny day.
In the current development builds, options have been added to context menu erasing, mainly in the (very necessary) confirmation dialog. Creating user-configurable options requires development time the team does not have; the top priorities are to make the architectural changes currently planned, to add requested features to the UI, and to fix the (relatively few) remaining bugs.imnotrich said:4. Context menu integration - Reduced functionality does not a happy user make. I understand the Microsoft model and KISS (keep it simply stupid) but suddenly there are fewer options in the context menu. I'd like to suggest for future improvement that the Eraser install forks (basic or advanced users) to allow the user more control over things like context menu, services, and so on.
Eraser has always been a Windows-only program. The reasons for choosing .NET are explained in Joel's post, referred to above. Good decision or bad, it cannot now be undone. In any case, it's not a decision I'd want to second-guess; in my experience, prejudices for or against a particular piece of technology are far more enduring than the circumstances in which those prejudices originate.imnotrich said:5. Eraser written with... .net? What does this do to linux compatibility? Previous versions of Eraser ran happily on Linux within a WINE environment and in fact was my data destruction first choice even on my Linux machines. I haven't taken the time to experiment with version 6 in Linux but just off the top of my head I'd say .net was a poor choice. Will there even be a MAC version?
They did. That is what Trac was and is about. The trouble is, as Joel, will confirm, it is almost impossible to get people to respond to ideas. They want to respond to actual software. Which means that you have to write and distribute the software in order to get the response.imnotrich said:The developers should have worked with the Eraser community to find out what features/functionality were important and which not so much, rather than making those decisions in a vacuum.
It's also part of the drive towards distributing development. Eraser is short on manpower. If features can be developed by people outside the core development team and maintained by them, all the better as we can concentrate on the core features. Remember that at a point in time Eraser was targeted to have the ability to clean histories, MRU lists etc (that feature is still targeted) and those will require updates from outside the core program.imnotrich said:2. Plugins, why? Eraser is not a browser. Why does it need plugins? It should be sufficient to include a handful of different algorithms on initial download. If technology changes in the meantime and some new data destruction algorithm is devised simply update the software!
Eraser 6 was in development for two years. For those two years community support was, to say the least, lacking. Few people came forward to proactively test and feedback on the program during development. Eraser is open-source -- but it's only worthwhile being so if community feedback came along consistently and constructively. It's not too late to provide your constructive viewpoints -- rants and attacks do not help -- please do come forward with useful ideas and we would try to accommodate them, unless it runs against our design philosophies (mostly already outlined in the FAQ thread)DavidHB said:They did. That is what Trac was and is about. The trouble is, as Joel, will confirm, it is almost impossible to get people to respond to ideas. They want to respond to actual software. Which means that you have to write and distribute the software in order to get the response.imnotrich said:The developers should have worked with the Eraser community to find out what features/functionality were important and which not so much, rather than making those decisions in a vacuum.
Hello imnotrich, I guess I should clarify my post.Joel said:Eraser is open-source -- but it's only worthwhile being so if community feedback came along consistently and constructively. It's not too late to provide your constructive viewpoints -- rants and attacks do not help -- please do come forward with useful ideas and we would try to accommodate them, unless it runs against our design philosophies (mostly already outlined in the FAQ thread)
Well, we aren't exactly pointing fingers; we're just explaining what's going on. Eraser 5 didn't depend on the PKI infrastructure of Windows, Eraser 6 does for the safety of our users. Technically, the internet connection is to verify that certificates used to sign the program have not been revoked by the certification authority, as is possible when a developer who went through proper channels for identity verification etc turns out to be a malware author. It's a safety mechanism to ensure that code that runs is always trusted. Perhaps it may be bothering you, but in my opinion it's a rather important feature to have. In the event that the internet connection isn't available, the check is just skipped.imnotrich said:And I'm not sure why pointing fingers at Windows for a problem Eraser is having makes sense, especially if - as you point out - Eraser has always been a Windows program. It's supposed to work WITH windows, not conflict with windows.
I was trying to qualify my statement, lest it be used as a blanket statement against us in future. Our design philosophies are relatively general and quite flexible. The intent of the qualification was to ensure that outrageous requests (such as those meant for one person alone, with little benefit to the rest) do not get implemented as a high priority task and the person suggesting holding us at ransom. My apologies once again for the misunderstanding.imnotrich said:Finally, I do hope you spend more time on user input. When you say "please do come forward with useful ideas and we would try to accommodate them, unless it runs against our design philosophies" you might just as well have said "we know what is best for our users, so we alone will make the decisions."
The confirmation box with user-selectable overwrite passes which may differ from case-to-case has been done away with. At least allow an option for those users who prefer to have it. This also served as a warning in case a user made a mistake when clicking on Eraser right-click option; currently there is none!
This will be dealt with in 6.2. However, the design of 6.0 is still sound as "defaults" are there for a reason. If the information that one deals with warrants 35-pass erasures all the time, you should be setting that as a default. If you think that you just want to get rid of file headers, use the First/Last 16KB erasure method. The idea is pick one default that works for all the files you deal with. Defaults should be chosen by the you (you have the ability to!) and adhered to for the majority of use cases (hence "Defaults")