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  1. #1
    File deleting and security

    Member Since
    Dec 20, 2006
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    Cool File deleting and security
    Ok, I'm brand new to Mac and I'm loving this new world.

    Something I don't know is how to securely delete files. In Windows I had a program to securly wipe freespace. It would write over the free space multiple times so nothing could be recovered. It also had the option to "shred" files, delete them by overwriting multiple times.

    How does all this work with my new Mac. I have a 15in MacBook Pro running Tiger.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    File deleting and security
    MartinS's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 02, 2006
    Location
    Bournville, UK
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    663
    Click on the desktop to make sure your're in Finder, then select Finder/Secure Empty Trash.
    www.martinsketchley.co.uk

    2011 21.5-inch i5 iMac
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  3. #3
    File deleting and security

    Member Since
    Dec 20, 2006
    Posts
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    Thanks for that. What about things that haven't been done that way, i.e. the free space on the hard drive. Is there something in Tiger, or is there some app for Macs that will securely wipe the freespace?

  4. #4
    File deleting and security

    Member Since
    Apr 21, 2005
    Posts
    765
    Quote Originally Posted by yugtun View Post
    Thanks for that. What about things that haven't been done that way, i.e. the free space on the hard drive. Is there something in Tiger, or is there some app for Macs that will securely wipe the freespace?
    I'd be interested in knowing if there is a relatively easy answer to that question. I'll be watching!

  5. #5
    File deleting and security
    surfwax95's Avatar
    Member Since
    Aug 27, 2005
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    Specs:
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    Disk Utility (Applications>Utilities) will do that and it's on every install of Mac OS X.

    Just click the drive you want to work on and click "Erase". Then at the the bottom you'll see "Write 0s to free space". You can do that up to 7 times, I think.
    I try to Command+Shift+/ when I can.
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  6. #6
    File deleting and security

    Member Since
    Apr 21, 2005
    Posts
    765
    Quote Originally Posted by surfwax95 View Post
    Disk Utility (Applications>Utilities) will do that and it's on every install of Mac OS X.

    Just click the drive you want to work on and click "Erase". Then at the the bottom you'll see "Write 0s to free space". You can do that up to 7 times, I think.
    Hey that is really cool. I can't believe how much I'm learning about my Mac and I've been using a Mac for 14 years. I think sometimes we just get stuck doing the same things over and over and never learn the tricks that are available. Thanks again.

    REP.

  7. #7
    File deleting and security
    nukemm's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 15, 2006
    Location
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    2.33Ghz Core2Duo MacBook Pro /// 2.2Ghz Core2Duo MacBook
    Quote Originally Posted by surfwax95 View Post
    Disk Utility (Applications>Utilities) will do that and it's on every install of Mac OS X.

    Just click the drive you want to work on and click "Erase". Then at the the bottom you'll see "Write 0s to free space". You can do that up to 7 times, I think.
    Good tip... great to know when deleting sensitive information, like bank account records, CC bill, etc...

    Don't forget to use the reputation system!
    My Setup

  8. #8
    File deleting and security

    Member Since
    Dec 20, 2006
    Posts
    23
    Delete duplicate

  9. #9
    File deleting and security

    Member Since
    Dec 20, 2006
    Posts
    23
    Thanks for all the help. I went there (applications>disk utility) and after selecting the laptop drive it gives me the tab choice to erase, at the bottom it says "erase free space". It has three choices "write zeros one time" and seven times, and THIRTY FIVE TIMES. With 31 GBs of free space it is estimating 43 minutes for one time. So if you plan on doing it set aside some time.

    Thanks again for the help. :cool:

  10. #10
    File deleting and security
    claudius753's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 11, 2005
    Posts
    264
    Specs:
    15" MacBook Pro 2.8 GHz/4 GB/500 GB
    Yes, it takes time, but if you are very concerned about security it is very valuable. I think the CIA uses a 7 pass system on any HD they dispose of (forget where I read this on a computer security site). The Mac can do a 35 pass erase....

    I usually use the regular empty trash, and then do a 1 pass weekly and a 7 pass monthly, and it should do a 35 pass yearly when that happens (Jan 1), as long as I have my crontab set up correctly.
    Nathan Sweeney

    Don't forget to use the User Reputation System if someone helps you out!
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  11. #11
    File deleting and security
    maz94protege's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 09, 2005
    Location
    Northern VA
    Posts
    514
    Specs:
    MacbookPro 15.4, 2.2ghz i7 (Late 2011), Macbook 1,1 1.83ghz CoreDuo
    Yea i love the option just to search is spotlight or finder just for the application and dragging it right to the trash can...No more Start-Control pannel-add/remove programs junk!!

    Macs are just easier!!!!

    Welcome to the Apple World too my friend!

  12. #12
    File deleting and security
    PowerBookG4's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 08, 2005
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    New Jersey
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    Mac Pro 8x3.0ghz 12gb ram 8800GT , MBP 2.16 2GB Ram 17 inch.
    Quote Originally Posted by surfwax95 View Post
    Disk Utility (Applications>Utilities) will do that and it's on every install of Mac OS X.

    Just click the drive you want to work on and click "Erase". Then at the the bottom you'll see "Write 0s to free space". You can do that up to 7 times, I think.
    Its even more impressive then 7 times! 35 times!
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  13. #13
    File deleting and security

    Member Since
    Apr 21, 2005
    Posts
    765
    Hey I just tried to erase free space and after waiting for an hour I got a message that said "your startup disk is almost full -- you need to delete some files"...I don't understand this.

    My HD is capacity is 80GB and available shows at 63+ GB. What's up?...I guess I don't understand what I am doing. Can somebody walk me through this?

    My HD shows my Toshiba HD and underneath my hard drive volume...I selected the HD volume. Did I do that wrong?

  14. #14
    MacHeadCase
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by CrossBones View Post
    Hey I just tried to erase free space and after waiting for an hour I got a message that said "your startup disk is almost full -- you need to delete some files"...I don't understand this.

    My HD is capacity is 80GB and available shows at 63+ GB. What's up?...I guess I don't understand what I am doing. Can somebody walk me through this?

    My HD shows my Toshiba HD and underneath my hard drive volume...I selected the HD volume. Did I do that wrong?
    From what I read the "Erase Free Space" command creates a huge file that takes up all the empty disk space. It seems from posts I've read here that the file(s) should be in your trash. Someone from MacOSXHints recommended using OmniDiskSweeper if you can't spot the file(s) in your trash. And run Disk Utility starting from your CD or DVD that came with your Mac and run "Repair Disk".

    I wouldn't use that "Erase Free Space" command at all, unless it was imperative to do so. I've read this happens all the time getting the message your disk is full and it brings hassles.

  15. #15
    MacHeadCase
    Guest
    Just found something that might be useful. A handy freebie for viewing file sizes, files that are hidden or not, is id-design's WhatSize.

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