Question on securely wiping EXT3 and some questions on linux and privacy in general

Felipe Figueiredo philsf79 at
Thu Mar 27 16:45:46 UTC 2008

On Tue 25 Mar 2008 13:04:58 Naja Melan wrote:
> hi,
> I accidently saved some files in /media/truecrypt1 when it wasn't mounted
> yet.... so basically like in so many cases one could be in need of secure
> wipe...
> As in many cases, the filenames are more sensitive than the data. And no, im
> not trying to hide my porn from my mom, in which case *rm* would have
> satisfied nicely...
> I have been reading around and it seems shred is the more advanced tool
> compared with the alternative dd... Apart from that just some tools that
> offer to wipe free space and swap...
> *As we all know, EXT3 is a journalling file system, which stores at default
> level meta data about hard disk access... Im quite certain that shred and dd
> don't wipe that, and what about some master file table...?
> *Does anyone know if there are tools to get secure delete of a file on EXT3
> that takes care of everypart of data including metadata, file names etc...

The problem is about the journal - so disable it for the wipe. 

Mount manually the device as ext2, wipe the files, and then remount as ext3. 
If you already deleted the files, you should probably backup and wipe the 
whole partition, and then restore from the backup - wiping the device as a 
whole is secure (and recommended, AFAIK).


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