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Wiping out remnants of deleted files… with Windows itself

Update: Bad link fixed

In computers, deleting a file is analogous to tossing a piece of paper into a trash can. Anyone could simply retrieve that piece of paper from the trash can; so could anyone undelete the file.

Cipher.exe, having performed data erasure on volume E (a USB flash drive)

Cipher.exe, having performed data erasure on volume E (a USB flash drive)

Proper data erasure, however, is possible; it is analogous to tossing a piece of paper into a shredder or burning it. Read the rest of this entry

Copying NTFS permissions between folders

Let’s assume you have created a folder called “Programs” in your D: volume and now you want its NTFS permissions to match that of “C:\Program Files”, thus having the same level of security.

Basic NTFS permission of "Program Files" folder in Windows 7

Basic NTFS permission of “Program Files” folder in Windows 7

There are more than one ways:

  1. Via icACLs and Notepad
  2. Via Windows PowerShell
  3. Via XCopy
  4. Via Robocopy

This article only elaborates on the first two. Since the subject of NTFS security is one that requires intermediate knowledge of Windows, I will skip elementary details such as how to run a certain program with elevated privileges. Read the rest of this entry

A ten year old design flaw in Adobe Photoshop

Not long ago, when I was trying to open my Photoshop CS3, a vague error message that I had not seen in ten years stopped me:Could not initialize Photoshop because the file is locked. Use Properties command in Windows Explorer to unlock the file.Photoshop ended afterwards.

Like all badly-written error messages, it did not make any sense. I was not trying to open any file; I was trying to open Photoshop itself. I was sure that none of the Photoshop’s files were changed. (A look on the access date of the files confirmed this.) Moreover, I was sure that even if Photoshop was somehow automatically updated, the file system access permissions were not changed. (AccessEnum tool confirmed this.) So, what was the problem? Read the rest of this entry

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