Cleaning up residual data on hard drives


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WinSesame 12

Protect files or folders by strong encryption on any media.

Sending encrypted files that can be used without the software.

Concealment of encrypted data.

Signature and certification of all types of files.


Cleaning up residual data on hard drives

Cleaning up residual data on the hard drive:

This option enables the disk cleaning function and the numeric field next to configure the number of cleaning passes:

When you perform the encryption of a file or a folder, the program creates a new file representing the encrypted document then erases the unencrypted file (s) from the disk. Unfortunately, simply deleting a file from a hard drive removes its entry in the disk allocation table so that if you look at the contents of the disk, the file no longer appears although all the data is still present on the sectors of the drive until they have been used by another file. These data can be recovered by using specialized software or by reading the disk sector by sector. The disk cleaning function will replace all the bytes of the unencrypted files with an alternating mask value (FF and 00) before deleting the files which will amount to leaving instead of the files spaces equivalent to a disk space formatted. The numeric field associated with this checkbox allows to choose the number of passes and for each pass the values​​FF and 00 will be inverted so as to carry out maximum magnetic modifications on the surface of the disc; because there are techniques still making it possible to recover data by scanning the surface of formatted disks on the edges of tracks due to the difference in the positioning of the heads on the disk according to the direction of movement of these and small mechanical defects . In practice, it is not necessary to select more than 2 passes for reasons of execution time. Studies have been done on this subject and it appears that from 2 masking passes it is extremely difficult to recover anything on a hard drive. The means to be implemented become very heavy and are therefore reserved for research in very special fields. CAUTION: Disk cleanup is not guaranteed if you lock folders or files on another computer over the network. This function is useless if all the documents you are using are on an SSD drive.

Cleaning up residual data in memory:

If you are using virtual memory on your computer (default configuration) Windows maintains a copy of the contents of memory in a large file located by default at the root of your system disk. Another copy of your memory is available on disk if you have enabled hibernation on your system. In the event of recovery of a hard drive on a switched off PC, it therefore becomes possible to recover data that has been used in memory. This function will therefore proceed in the same way as for masking the hard drive sectors but with all the memory space used by the program to encrypt the data. In practice, use the same number of passes as for cleaning the disk. If you are using WinSesame only to protect data against the theft of portable hard disks (USB sticks) but do not fear for the disks located on your PC, there is no need to activate this function. This feature is unnecessary if your operating system is installed on an SSD drive.