How To Securely and Permanently Delete a File


There are lots of method to delete any file but here i m writing  about WipeFile which is a free utility that provides heavy duty deletion for any type of file, with random data written over it in multiple passes (using NATO-grade standards, if you wish), meaning no commercial data recovery tool will be able to retrieve it. This is useful for when you want to securely dispose of confidential or personal data.

Related Download:WipeFile

Step-by-Step Instructions

1. WipeFile is a portable application, meaning no installation is necessary in order to run it and take advantage of its secure deletion functionality. Access the related download link for this article and grab the WipeFile ZIP archive, then extract the contents to a safe location on your hard drive.

2. Access the folder containing the extracted contents of the ZIP archive and run the file WipeFile.exe to begin. WipeFile is extremely lightweight and its minimalist interface appears immediately.

3. If you want to delete an entire folder using WipeFile, click the Add Directory button on the toolbar and locate the folder to be deleted, then click OK. The folder appears in the main panel, which is the queue for items that will be deleted when you click the Wipe button. To add files to the queue, click Add Files and locate a folder containing files for deletion. Click the file and choose OK to add it to the queue. Alternatively, hold the CTRL key and click multiple files to add them all to the deletion queue.

4. Once all the files and folders you wish to delete have been added to the WipeFile queue, it is recommended to review them before proceeding. Remember that any items deleted with WipeFile cannot be recovered later!

5. Select the deletion Method using the dropdown list. Many believe that a greater number of “passes” – writing new data over the old – increases the chances of it ever being retrievable. However, the more passes you make, the longer the deletion process takes. Therefore, WipeFile provides a number of different deletion methods for you to select from, including the standard method (2 passes), the NATO standard method (7 passes), right up to the Peter Gutman method (35 passes).

6. When you are ready to delete, click the Wipe button on the toolbar (a black cross icon) or the Wipe button at the bottom of the interface. Depending on the amount of data being wiped, and the deletion method you selected, the time required to complete this process will vary. Your system specifications will also be a factor (faster machines will complete the deletion more quickly). WipeFile displays two progress bars – one for the current file deletion status, and one for the total job status.

7. When the total job status bar fills up completely, the files you selected have been completely erased beyond recovery.

Tips & Advice

  • If you are upgrading your computer and disposing of the old one, either by throwing it away or selling it, it is recommended to use a tool like WipeFile to securely remove any confidential data on there.
  • Instead of deleting files piecemeal, when you are absolutely sure you no longer need the computer or data on it, add the C:\User folder to the deletion queue in WipeFile. Make sure you have backed up everything you need to a separate drive beforehand. Removable USB disks are a great method of transferring your personal data to a new computer.


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