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[[!meta title="Your data won't be saved unless explicitly asked"]]
As stated in the [[/about]] page, Tails is designed to leave no trace on the computer that you are 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 does not change anything on the operating system actually installed on your hard disk: as a live system, Tails does not need to use your hard disk during the whole session. Be your hard disk absent or damaged, it would not prevent your computer to start Tails. Consequently, removing the DVD or USB stick containing Tails is enough to retrieve your usual operating system.
Use the [[Persistent Storage]] to save anything that you want to keep after you shut down Tails.
Accessing internal hard disks
<p>Accessing internal disks of the computer has security implications:
<li>You can leave traces of your activities in Tails on the hard disks.</li>
<li>If Tails is compromised, a malware could install itself on your usual operating system.</li>
<li>If an application in Tails is compromised, it could access private data on your disks and use it to de-anonymize you.</li>
To access internal hard disks:
When starting Tails, [[set up an administration password|doc/first_steps/welcome_screen/administration_password/]].
Open the [[*Files* browser|doc/first_steps/desktop#files]].
Click on the hard disk of your choice in the left pane.
<p>If your usual operating system is in
hibernation, accessing it might corrupt your file system. Only access your disk
if your system was shut down properly.</p>
<p>If you have a GNU/Linux system on your disks, you can only access
files owned by the first user (<code>uid=1000</code>) on that system.</p>
<p>In all cases, you might encounter permissions problems. To bypass
permission limitations, you can run the <span class="application">Files</span> browser
with administration rights.</p>