Shadow copies

About the Shadow Copies

Shadow Copy is a useful innovation of the Windows Vista/7 operating system to help the users protect their data in case they have not backed up their files or in case of accidental deletions. This feature automatically creates point-in-time copies of files as you work, allowing you to restore previous versions of the files/folders you have accidentally deleted or modified.

To restore a previous version of a certain file, right click the file and select “Restore previous versions”. This allows you to go back in time, see all previous versions of that file and restore the version you need in the original directory or any other location from the computer. This also works for an entire folder. When restoring an entire previous version of a folder, users can browse the folder hierarchy as it was in a previous point in time.

For more information about the Windows Vista/7 Shadow Copy feature, please refer to

Privacy issues regarding Shadow Copies

By default, Windows Vista/7 stores previous versions (also called shadow copies) of all your files, for backup purposes. For your private files, you may not want this to happen, because someone could discover these previous versions. If you are concerned about your privacy, use east-tec Eraser when you want to get rid of your private files.

Now, what’s happening if the Shadow Copy feature was enabled on the disk drive where you erase files from? The result is that previous copies of those files may still be available on your disk and anyone may retrieve them easily.

Erasing shadow copies in east-tec Eraser

When erasing files with east-tec Eraser, just before starting the erasure process, you will be informed if the files you are going to erase have previous versions stored in Shadow Copies. If yes, you will have to confirm if you want to erase the entire Volume Shadow Copies that contain that file. It is recommended that you select to erase the shadow copies.


– Because erasing shadow copies of individual files is not possible in Vista/7, the entire Volume Shadow Copies that contain them must be erased. This may erase copies of other files you don’t want to erase, but the original files are left intact.

Private files you create from now on, may have previous versions on your computer. For more information, please see the Advanced Settings section from each module -> Shadow Copies page.