Difference between Secure empty trash and empty trash?

Discussion in 'OS X' started by Techsavyfreak, Feb 23, 2008.

  1. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2008
    #1
    What is the difference between these two, and why does secure empty trash take sooo much longer to empty than normal empty trash?
     
  2. macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #2
    Because it's secure. I think it does either a one-pass or seven-pass overwrite of where the data you deleted was stored for protection.
     
  3. Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    #3
    The data sectors being erased are over-written with zeros to ensure the data is truly gone (as opposed to a normal empty trash where the data is only marked to be overwritten, and could be recovered).
     
  4. macrumors 6502

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    #4
    From what I understand, Secure Empty Trash will write random 1s and 0s over where the data was previously physically placed on the drive so the data is unrecoverable.
     
  5. Guest

    #5
    Empty Trash just tells the OS that these files can be written over at a later date. They aren't actually deleted (read overwritten) until the OS needs to put something there.

    Secure Empty Trash actually deletes the file right there by overwriting it with 0's, I believe. And in Disk Utility you can overwrite it 1, 7, or 35 times I believe for security purposes.

    This might just be a very simple way of looking at it. Someone please feel free to correct me if I am mistaken.
     
  6. thread starter macrumors member

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    #6
    Are the trash files added in time machine? if they are, if you secure empty trash, would that erase them from time machine?
     
  7. macrumors 6502

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    #7
    Interesting question. I've pondered this myself.

    Do some searching on the Apple Discussion forums and see what you can find.
     
  8. Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    #8
    No, deleting files from your system will not delete them from Time Machine. I don't believe Secure Empty Trash makes a difference in this case.
     
  9. thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 5, 2008
    #9
    So, would that mean that all those files are still taking up space on my hard drive?
     
  10. macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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    #10
    You're absolutely right. Disk Utility can even wipe an entire drive 1, 7, or 35 times if you have sensitive data (corporate files, government papers, etc.) on it and need a replacement.
     
  11. macrumors 65816

    teleromeo

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    #11
    there is still data on your hard drive but there is no longer a reference in the file that catalogues your hard drive.
     
  12. Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    #12
    Technically the data is still there, but it is still available space (i.e. it is free to be overwritten).

    It's no different with Secure Empty trash, but instead of the original data it's random data.
     
  13. thread starter macrumors member

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    Feb 5, 2008
    #13
    Ok, thanks. I'm just curious though, how could you recover those files that you emptied from the trash?(not secure empty)
     
  14. Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    #14
    You would have to download a third party app (usually for a fee), or hire a professional data recovery agency.
     

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