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Manpage of BCWIPE


Section: (1)
Updated: Fri Dec 11 2007
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bcwipe - securely erase data from magnetic and solid-state memory
(c) 2002-2007 Jetico, Inc. 



bcwipe [-VvsbBdrifhSF] [-m mode] [ -n sec ] FILE...



bcwipe Repeatedly overwrites special patterns to the files to be destroyed. In normal mode, 35 passes are used (of which 8 are random). Patterns used were recommended in article by Peter Gutmann

entitled "Secure Deletion of Data from Magnetic and Solid-State Memory". In quick mode, U.S. DoD(Department of Defence) 5220.22-M standard are used with 7 pass wiping. In custom mode U.S. DoD 5220.22-M standard are used with user defined number of passes.



-h (help)
Display help and exit.

-V (version)
Display version and exit.

-f (force)
Force wipe files with no write permissions. Also suppress interactive mode.

-r (recurse into subdirectories)
Remove with wiping the contents of directories recursively.

-i (interactive)
Prompt whether to wipe each file.

-I (disable interactive)
Never prompt whether to wipe each file.

-v (verbose)
Explain what is being done.

-b (block device)
Wipe contents of block devices

U.S. DoD 5220.22-M seven pass extended character rotation wiping with last pass verification.

35-pass Peter Gutmann's wiping.

One pass zero wiping.

One pass test mode. First 4 bytes of every 512 bytes block will contain block number.

-m <mode> (custom wipe)
U.S. DoD 5220.22-M n pass extended character rotation wiping with last pass verification.

-n <delay>
Wait delay seconds between wiping passes. Modern enterprise level storage systems (NAS, disk arrays etc.) employ powerful caches. To avoid undesirable caching effects BCWipe allows user to insert adjustable delay between wiping passes. Please note that when wiping with delay between passes disk space is freed after the last pass.

-w (wiping only)
BCWipe version 1.7 (and later) verifies last pass wiping result according to U.S. DoD 5200.28 standard for all wiping modes above. Use the option to disable the last pass verification.

-d (do not delete)
Do not delete file(s) after wiping.

-S (wipe file slack)
Wipe files slack. File slack is the disk space from the end of a file till the end of the last cluster used by that file. Cluster is minimal portion of disk space used by file system.

-F (wipe free space)
Wipe free space on specified filesystem.

-s (system random)
Use system random. Default is SHA-1 (Secure Hash Algorithm). System random faster but less secure then SHA-1.

Use 64Kb random pattern for random passes instead of full random. Much faster (especially on slow CPU) but less secure! (not recommended)



bcwipe -rvf ~/sources # forced wipe of ~/sources directory recursively with Peter Gutmann's scheme

bcwipe -bvmd /dev/hda # wipe entire /dev/hda disk with 7-pass DoD standard

bcwipe -bvm3 /dev/fd0 # wipe /dev/fd0 floppy with truncated 3-pass scheme (faster, but less secure)

bcwipe -r * # recursive wipe of current directory with Peter Gutmann's scheme



Original version: Jetico, Inc. <>







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Time: 17:30:22 GMT, October 23, 2013

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