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Windows 7: Recycle Bin

10 Sep 2010   #1
whittling

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 
Recycle Bin

The way I understand it, with certain utilities, it is possible to recover "stuff" that has been deleted through the recycle bin. So this means, in my mind, that the "stuff" was not completely removed and is therefor still using space. How do I go about completely freeing the space that was once occupied by the "stuff"?


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10 Sep 2010   #2
zigzag3143

Win 8 Release candidate 8400
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whittling View Post
The way I understand it, with certain utilities, it is possible to recover "stuff" that has been deleted through the recycle bin. So this means, in my mind, that the "stuff" was not completely removed and is therefor still using space. How do I go about completely freeing the space that was once occupied by the "stuff"?
Here is how it works

Stuff goes into recycling, when emptied the entry in the master boot record is removed, when something is written to disk it can be written into that sector as it appears empty.

You will always have stuff on the HD that is there but not listed. It doesnt matter if you were somehow able to clear it you would gain no more free space.

Ken
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10 Sep 2010   #3
whittling

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

I had to read that very slow to understand it. So let me see if I understand this properly.

I can NOT, permanently remove "something" in the sense that that space is now like it was before that "something" was originally there. I CAN however, remove "something" and use that space again for something else?
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10 Sep 2010   #4
Jacee
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate 32bit SP1
 
 

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10 Sep 2010   #5
whittling

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Jacee View Post
That method does not work for my OS. Also, I am not trying to restore removed files. I am trying to figure out how to clear up the space used by recycled, ghosts, if you will in an attempt to optimize my HDD/s.
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10 Sep 2010   #6
Victek

Windows 7 x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whittling View Post
The way I understand it, with certain utilities, it is possible to recover "stuff" that has been deleted through the recycle bin. So this means, in my mind, that the "stuff" was not completely removed and is therefor still using space. How do I go about completely freeing the space that was once occupied by the "stuff"?
Perhaps what you want is a utility that securely deletes files? What that means is after deleting a file the space it occupied on the hard drive is overwritten to make the file un-retrievable. Have a look at this:

How to securely delete files in Windows with Eraser (Win7 x64 included)
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10 Sep 2010   #7
marsmimar

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whittling View Post
That method does not work for my OS. Also, I am not trying to restore removed files. I am trying to figure out how to clear up the space used by recycled, ghosts, if you will in an attempt to optimize my HDD/s.
Maybe this will help. Suppose you have a bookcase with several shelves. Shelf 1 is labeled "mysteries", shelf 2 "westerns", shelf 3 "sci-fi", etc. If you take all of the books off of shelf 1 and put them in your trash can, you've freed up the space. But the shelf is still labeled "mysteries" and maybe even has a piece of paper listing all the mystery books that were once on the shelf. But the space has been freed and is available for other books. Even though it is still labeled "mysteries" and has that piece of paper listing the titles, you can start filling up the shelf with other books. There's nothing more to clean.

Now suppose your hard drive has a section labeled "work projects" and you have a bunch of files and folders contained in that section relating to your work. If you remove all those files and folders by deleting "work projects", you have freed up that space. Even though the space might still be labeled "work projects" and even though there might be a list of what files and folders were in that space, there's nothing more to clean. The hard drive space is empty and eventually, as you add other files, folders, programs, word documents, photos, videos, etc they will fill up that empty space that used to be called "work projects".

If you use a secure deletion tool all it does is fill up the space with random zeros and ones. The space still has something in it (0s and 1s) but it is available for other data to occupy the freed up space. Whether the space contains the former data or 0s and 1s, they don't count against your available hard drive space.
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10 Sep 2010   #8
whittling

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by marsmimar View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whittling View Post
That method does not work for my OS. Also, I am not trying to restore removed files. I am trying to figure out how to clear up the space used by recycled, ghosts, if you will in an attempt to optimize my HDD/s.
Maybe this will help. Suppose you have a bookcase with several shelves. Shelf 1 is labeled "mysteries", shelf 2 "westerns", shelf 3 "sci-fi", etc. If you take all of the books off of shelf 1 and put them in your trash can, you've freed up the space. But the shelf is still labeled "mysteries" and maybe even has a piece of paper listing all the mystery books that were once on the shelf. But the space has been freed and is available for other books. Even though it is still labeled "mysteries" and has that piece of paper listing the titles, you can start filling up the shelf with other books. There's nothing more to clean.

Now suppose your hard drive has a section labeled "work projects" and you have a bunch of files and folders contained in that section relating to your work. If you remove all those files and folders by deleting "work projects", you have freed up that space. Even though the space might still be labeled "work projects" and even though there might be a list of what files and folders were in that space, there's nothing more to clean. The hard drive space is empty and eventually, as you add other files, folders, programs, word documents, photos, videos, etc they will fill up that empty space that used to be called "work projects".

If you use a secure deletion tool all it does is fill up the space with random zeros and ones. The space still has something in it (0s and 1s) but it is available for other data to occupy the freed up space. Whether the space contains the former data or 0s and 1s, they don't count against your available hard drive space.
A helpful analogy, but I don't see how with this space be cleaned, how then can you retrieve what you deleted. Again, this is not what I want to do, you are answering in the direction I am going like zigzag. So, if the label is still on there, is that how I am able to retrieve the file? I have never recovered a deleted file before, do you get the whole thing back or only partial? If you get all of it, how is it possible you can have the space available once you delete it and still have it retrievable?
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10 Sep 2010   #9
Lomai

Win7 HP (x64)/Win7 Ultimate (x64)
 
 

Hi

Assuming that you have not written new content to the deleted drive sectors, and chances are that this may have been overwritten already dependent on the time period during which you had deleted the data you are after, have a look at the following thread:

Recovering deleted files

This thread may also provide some further clarification -

I need recover deleted files (with shift-del)

Hope this answers your query in some way

Regards
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10 Sep 2010   #10
Victek

Windows 7 x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whittling View Post
A helpful analogy, but I don't see how with this space be cleaned, how then can you retrieve what you deleted. Again, this is not what I want to do, you are answering in the direction I am going like zigzag. So, if the label is still on there, is that how I am able to retrieve the file? I have never recovered a deleted file before, do you get the whole thing back or only partial? If you get all of it, how is it possible you can have the space available once you delete it and still have it retrievable?
When you delete a file it can only be recovered if the space it occupies is not overwritten by new data. Since the space is marked "available" after deletion it can be overwritten at any time. For that reason there's no way to know if it can be recovered. It's only "possible" because the file is not immediately overwritten when deleted.
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 Recycle Bin




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