[Windows] Permanently erase your past computer activity with PrivaZer

PrivaZerI am the only person that uses my computer, but that does not mean that I don’t worry about security. If you are like me, there may be times that you want to permanently erase your history or past activities from your computer. That is what PrivaZer is here to do. Regardless if the information is on your computer or on a USB device, PrivaZer can prevent others from ever retrieving it.

WHAT IS IT AND WHAT DOES IT DO

Main Functionality

PrivaZer is a free program that allows you to erase all unwanted information from your past activity on your computer. Not only that, but it can even erase information from devices other than your internal hard drive, like USB sticks and external hard drives. This will prevent others from ever being able to get their hands on information that you don’t want them to get. It can also help keep your computer running secure.

The following is the type of information PrivaZer erases:

2013-01-07_084450

Pros

  • Erase past activity from your computer, including videos you’ve watched, sites you have visited, things you have streamed, and much more
  • Securely erases data using a variety of secure erasing algorithms (ranging from 1 pass to 35-pass Gutmann), so it keeps data from ever being recovered
  • Comes with other standard disk cleaning programs, like a disk defragmenter
  • Supports Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, Opera, and Safari

Cons

  • Most of the additional features it comes with (like the defragmenter) are not great and really not needed

Discussion

PrivaZer ScreenshotPrivaZer is a program that can do a lot, but you are more than likely only going to use this program for one thing. That is to remove unwanted information from your computer. Of course, it won’t just delete this information, but erase it so it can’t be recovered.

One thing that I like about this program is its ability to, not only delete information from your computer, but from external sources as well. So if you have information on a USB device or an external hard drive that you don’t want people to recover, you can use this program to delete it. After all, there is no reason for people to ever have to know what you have watched, done or searched for on the internet if you don’t want them to.

It is also worth pointing out that the program can help free up a lot of room on your computer. Of course, the amount of room that it can clear up is going to be released to a lot of different things. For example, how large you have your browser’s cache set to.

Now, the program does come with some other features that you can use. Most of these are other disc cleaning programs and a disc defragmenter. It is nice that they included these things, but most of them are simply not needed. Not only do they not work all that great, but you more than likely already have a program that can do this for you. So why do you need another program that can?

CONCLUSION AND DOWNLOAD LINK

If you are looking to get rid of information you don’t want people to see, like your browsing history, then go ahead and give PrivaZer a try. Otherwise, I think this program is not worth your time. Not only that, I feel there are better privacy erasers out there — such as CCleaner. In the end, I feel PrivaZer comes up just short of being a good program; not bad but not that great either.

Price: Free

Version reviewed: 1.6

Supported OS: Windows XP / Vista / 7 / 8

Download size: 4.45MB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 0/46

Is it portable? No

PrivaZer homepage

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14 comments

  1. Oxygun

    Within days of installing this I had to re-image my system; apparently I deleted something that shouldn’t have been deleted and, to make matters worse, it deleted the files needed to repair the system. It was my own fault, of course, but I’m no novice — an idiot perhaps, but not a noob — so I’d be careful of this were I you.

    Never have had a problem with CC

  2. Ashraf
    Mr. Boss

    @Shawn: The forums is also an excellent place to post such tutorials. In fact, I encourage dotTechies to post to the forums, simply because you won’t run into any ‘standards’ issues — you can post how you like on the forums, in your own way.

  3. haakon

    I know all the warnings must be taken seriously.
    As always, to have a full backup may be a safeguard IF things go wrong.
    As prices of external storage drops every day is it fully possible to have a full backup copy of the OS partition.

  4. Godel

    I suggest making a full image backup before using Privazer for the first time. You do make backups, don’t you?

    It’s a great program but a little scary in its thoroughness. Also be aware that it can take a long time to scan and run, especially the first time you use it. A full run will take multiple minutes, not seconds as would Ccleaner.

    Now a question. Are any of the secure deletion programs supposed to work on an SSD, considering that you have the SSD’s firmware between the OS and the drive, doing wear leveling and moving stuff around without your computer’s knowledge (and short of a full disk erasure)?

  5. Ed

    Warning! Privazer is NOT for the computer novice, some of the settings in Privazer can do irreversible damage to your system, meaning in order to correct the changes you will have to do a reinstall of the OS. Use this program with CAUTION.

  6. Shawn

    @Strahd
    I’ll send it to Ashraf first to make sure it complies with dottech’s standards.

    After that Ashraf can do whatever with it. Privazer not complicated it’s just that it’s so packed with odds and ends that the inside clockworks of the programs without knowing what some of the things it does makes you think twice using the program but for most of the options it’s the same as if you opened up a program cleared it’s history and went to the next one.

  7. Strahd

    @Shawn

    Will you bee postin that tutroial here or will you be sending that directly to ashraf?

    I am curious about this software, after what you posted, I would rather wait to see your tutorial before using it.

  8. Shawn

    @Ashraf and the others…

    One major difference is that the GUI of Privazer will give you more of a detailed overview of what is beeing offered to clean. Each section you can review what the system wants to clean.

    The downfall of the program unfortunately is that your not able to pick and choose what you want to remove from inside a chosen category.

    For first time use I would recommend using the
    Restore Point and making a Save of the Registry just to see the categories…

    The program (Privazer) should you let it will remove all leftover files of Windows Patches from the windows folder.

    What I like about CCleaner is the option of adding your own paths of cleanup but elsewise i’m quite content with the results of privazer. (Nothing is stoping you to take some of the entries that the program locates and create them in your own ccleaner)

    As with my warning should you install the full version and not the portable if you right click on anything you will get the option to “_Shred without a trace with Privazer” and once the file is gone it’s gone.

    On the newer version you can also select multiple drives to wash the free space.

    Should anyone have a question on how to use a certain part of the program give me a shout i’ll do my best to help out. Only real section that is semi-dangerous depending on your configurations is the “System” one.. As for the rest most of the options are standard MRU cleanups…

    P.S: I’ll try to make a complete tutorial this week so that you kow what are the green zones and red zones to doublecheck in this software.

  9. stefan

    OK Please ignore my first post. I think I just found the reason behind CCleaner’s “blindness” regarding locating the files in recycling bin (“erase only files older than 24 hours” option was active in settings). Sorry about that, thought I had it unchecked… must be that the last program update I did activated this option again…

  10. stefan

    It would be also much appreciated if someone could tell me from his/her own experience if Toolwiz Care’s cleaning module is as thorough a tool as CCleaner’s one? I am trying to find the best tool for erasing unwanted files from my hard drive including any traces associated with it which a simple emptying of recycle bin won’t do. Any recommendations other than PrivaZer? Thanks a million.

  11. stefan

    Does anyone have any idea why the CCleaner (up to date free version) cannot see files in the recycle bin? I tried to run it’s Cleaner tool to clean up the bin, but the “Analyze” tool does not see the actual files in there? It’s as annoying as the fact that there is no sign of CCleaner context menu within the recycle bin window too. Did any one experienced similar problem? Thanks.

  12. Shawn

    WARNING!!!

    I Have this program and you have to be careful as it will by default remove all un-connected usb drivers from the system… ie: good luck on some systems to be able to connect a external hard drive after that…

    For the other features it works well and cleans up alot I usualy do a defrag then let it clean up the empty space so that should I get a crash I’m able to restore the files in a much easier manner.

    Overall the program does what it says it does… just make sure that you know what your doing as this program does not forgive on a wipe.