Jump to content
Piriform Community Forums

Secure deletion of all deleted files- Recuva or Ccleaner?

Recommended Posts

Ah, the ambiguities of the English language. I believe that what these two extracts are saying is:


1) Wipe Free Space is something you occasionally use to overwrite any and all files on your chosen disk that have already been deleted. WFS creates one or more large files that fill the entire disk, and then deletes them. Thus nothing that was in free space can be retrieved in its original form.


2) Secure deletion is a process you run against individual live (i.e. not yet deleted) files. CC does this by opening the file, overwriting the contents, closing it, renaming it, and deleting it. (I have simplified the process here!) So CC can only securely delete files that have not already been deleted by any method. Files in the Recycler are securely deleted by CC. If you have emptied the Recycler, or used shift/del to delete the files, you can't run CC Secure Deletion against them. You would have to run either WFS on the entire disk or use Recuva on selected files. You can run a scan in Recuva, select all the files found with the global tick box, and delete the lot if you wish.


The two options are independent, if you have deleted files from the Recycler then WFS will overwrite them. The second option discusses using Recuva to securely overwrite individual files that have already been deleted. which CC can't do.


Any more questions just ask.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Just to follow up on that which has been said. It is the thoughts of the majority of the community here, myself included, the Wipe Free Space in CCleaner only be run at the sale of a hard drive. For your purposes I would suggest the use of Recuva to completly delete files which have previously been deleted.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Running WFS on occasion will not cause any harm. It is seen as causing some wear on your hard drive, but if you only run it now and again it shouldn't be a problem (I have never run WFS on a hd, only on a flash to see what it does).


1st computer: Files with ZZ names are usually produced by running secure delete, not WFS. Did you tick the Wipe MFT box? This option overwrites the file names held in the MFT: whether CC overwrites them with ZZ or some other name I don't know.


Recuva run in normal mode lists filenames from the MFT. WFS without the Wipe MFT option will not touch the MFT so Recuva will show the same result after running WFS as it did before.


The ZZ files have - or should have - been overwritten with zeroes. They do not need any other overwriting. These files can be recovered quite easily, but they will just be zeroes and of no interest to anyone.


WFS does not free any space at all. Secure - and insecure - deletion will. If CC says that it will delete x gb of space, and the filenames change to ZZ, then it looks as if you ran secure delete instead or as well as WFS.


2nd computer: Again, running WFS without Wipe MFT will leave the filenames in the MFT - these are what Recuva is showing. most of the filenames in the MFT will point to free space which WFS has overwritten. Some of the filenames will point to space that has subsequently been used by another file, which is still live, and this might be what you are seeing. Also small files (under 1k) can be held in the MFT entirely, and WFS will not overwrite them (nor will Recuva). Another possibility is that any locked files will not be overwritten by WFS.


One of Recuva's options is not to display zero length files. This will cause the 'x files ignored' message.


Describing CC and Recuva's little quirks lucidly and unambiguously is quite a task. I suggest you use both applications daily for eighteen months or so, you'll soon get the hang of it.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now