Peter is correct. Even an amateur like myself can download and run an
application like WinHex.exe. With this, I can read any sector on the hard
disk, whether it has been deleted or not - whether it is or ever was in any
file or not. Even most re-formats leave much readable data behind. If it
has been overwritten - not just deleted - my chances are much less.
There are applications to examine even overwritten data, but they are not
generally available to us amateurs. So a "shredder" application should
suffice for most purposes. Just be sure that it overwrites ALL THE DISK,
not just current or deleted files. Some of the juiciest tidbits might be in
the "slack space" at the end of a long file that has been only partially
overwritten by a shorter file.
Physical destruction of the disk platter(s) is the only sure way. A
whole-disk shredder will suffice for most purposes.
R. C. White, CPA
San Marcos, TX
Microsoft Windows MVP
Windows Live Mail 2009 (14.0.8089.0726) in Win7 Ultimate x64
"Gene L." <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote in message
> "Peter Foldes" <email@example.com> wrote in message
>> It can always be recovered by Professionals that deal with file
>> recovery. There is nothing that will remove any access to it be it File
>> Shredder or any 3rd party software that claims so. The only possible way
>> is to take out the Hard Drive and destroy it. Governments and Law
>> enforcement always have access to recover a information on a hard drive
>> even if you think it was wiped or overwritten
>>> How can I be certain that a few files that I want permanently deleted
>>> cannot be recovered by someone at a later date. I am using Windows Vista
>>> Home Premium and I recently did a full hard disc recovery, reinstalling
>>> all the applications of Microsoft Office. However, I read somewhere
>>> yesterday that some files may still be recoverable by knowledgeable
>>> searchers. I had some files that I never want to see again and I do not
>>> want anyone else to see them either. How can I do a reliable, permanent
>>> delete? Thanks for any help you can give me.
>>> Gene L.
> Thank you very much for the reply. I guess that a future recovery would
> not imperil the security of the United States or anything of that
> importance - just some personal data and information I would like to have
> obliterated permanently. I appreciate your willingness to help.