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[[!meta title="Your data won't be saved unless explicitly asked"]]
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As stated in the [[about]] page, Tails is designed to leave no trace on the
computer you're using unless you ask it explicitly. It is important
to understand some of the consequences of that.

Starting a computer on a media containing Tails doesn't change anything on the
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operating system actually installed on your hard disk: as a live system, Tails
doesn't need to use your hard disk during the whole session. Be your hard disk absent
or damaged, it wouldn't prevent your computer to start Tails. Consequently,
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removing the DVD or USB stick containing Tails is enough to retrieve your usual
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operating system.

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You should save anything you want to keep for later access into a
separate device (other USB stick, other DVD or any device you would choose),
or use the [[persistence feature|first_steps/persistence]].

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Accessing internal hard disks

<div class="caution">
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<p>Accessing internal disks of the computer includes some risks: you
can leave traces of your activities in Tails on the hard disks; if
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Tails is compromised, this creates risks for your usual operating
system; and if an application is compromised, this can lead to

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To access internal hard disks, you need to select the
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[[administration password|doc/first_steps/startup_options/administration_password/]]
startup option, then open the Nautilus files manager and click on the
desired hard disk on the left panel.
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<div class="caution">
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<p>If your usual operating system is in
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hibernation, accessing it might create problems. Only access your disk
if your system was shut down properly.</p>
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<p>If your usual operating system uses LVM (Logical Volume Manager),
the procedure to access it is a bit more complicated.</p>

<p>In GNU/Linux systems, if your user is not the number 1000, the
procedure to access it is a bit more complicated.</p>
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<p>In all cases, you might encounter permissions problems.</p>