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Author Topic: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?  (Read 11747 times)

jdd

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My laptop hard drive is partitioned into C: and D: drives.  The Windows XP OS and programs are on C drive; data on D drive.

Are there any good programs that will allow me to password protect the D drive, or portions of D, to prevent access?  I do not want to encrypt or hide the D drive.

4wd

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2008, 08:04:28 PM »
You can do it if you're willing to use Compressed Folders, has the advantage of being native to the system thus requiring no extra software.

See KB306531

jdd

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2008, 09:08:36 AM »
I don't want to alter the folders or files in any way, including compression.

f0dder

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2008, 12:06:05 PM »
"Password protecting" a partition never works.

The only thing that really does work, and is very efficient, is encryption. TrueCrypt rocks. It's free and it works like a charm.
- carpe noctem

jdd

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2008, 12:58:27 PM »
Fodder,  thank you for the recommendation.

Based on your experience, would you have any concerns encrypting a hard drive partition that is 40 GB?  In other words, does that mean that you would not hesitate to encrypt D: drive in the application I described?


thanks,
jdd

Armando

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #5 on: August 27, 2008, 11:19:43 PM »
Truecrypt's size limitations for containers/volumes (waaaay beyond your needs...) :
Quote
Q: What is the maximum possible size of a TrueCrypt volume?

A: The maximum possible size of a TrueCrypt volume is 8589934592 GB. However, due to security reasons, the maximum allowed volume size is 1 PB (1,048,576 GB), as the amount of data that is considered secure to be encrypted using a single key depends, among other factors, on the block size of the encryption algorithm. In addition, you need to take into account other limiting factors. For instance, file system constraints, limitations of the hardware connection standard and of the operating system, etc.

I'd be more worried about backup. It's the only reason why I'm not jumping on to the encryption bandwagon. I like backup jobs to be simple (otherwise I tend to procrastinate), and restoring to be bullet proof and simple too. Right now, it seems like a SUPER SLOW and not that simple or convenient process.

BTW : don't want to highjack this thread but... anybody with creative solutions for easy backuping of encrypted volumes and/or OS ? f0dder ? housetier ? :)

f0dder

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #6 on: August 28, 2008, 12:18:50 AM »
Run a backup script/program automatically when you're logged-in and the encrypted partitions/volumes are mounted. Don't do image-based backups but rather do file-based, and backup to a "secure location". Dunno how much bother that really is? :)
- carpe noctem

Armando

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #7 on: August 28, 2008, 12:53:14 AM »
I guess it's not that bad, even if one's backing up to remote encrypted locations/volumes... With a little script.

What really bugs me is the absence of real imaging solution (ie : not sector by sector). One could use a container instead of encrypting a whole partition; I wonder how imaging software work with file-containers instead of encrypted partitions.

jdd

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #8 on: August 29, 2008, 05:55:14 PM »
Getting back to my original question........Is there any way to password protect a partition on my hard drive?  I do not want to back it up or encrypt it or compress it.   :huh:

I JUST DON"T WANT ANYBODY TO HAVE ACCESS TO THE FILES ON MY LAPTOP (except me)!

jgpaiva

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2008, 09:21:40 PM »
jdd: the simple way? Create more users (for the rest of the people that use your computer), then password-protect your user, then put all your files in a folder that is restricted to only your user. I think that all folders inside c:\doc and settings\USER\* are restricted to that user. I'm not sure, though.

Still, I stand by the previous advices, nothing can beat encryption. This method I mentioned can easily be bypassed with a linux live cd (which ignores the owners of the folders).

f0dder

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #10 on: August 30, 2008, 08:31:53 AM »
The user/permission stuff jgpaiva suggests will work for people logged on to the machine. But boot it from a rescue CD, linux live CD, or whatever - and all the files will be accessible. There's no way to "password protect" your files without using encryption that really works.
- carpe noctem

jdd

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #11 on: August 30, 2008, 09:22:10 AM »
Ideally, I would like to password protect then entire D: drive partition, not individual files or folders.

I am the only user with a log on to this laptop.  I travel to different locations to do training and demos, and there are times when other people need to have access to my laptop, sometimes when I am not in the room for brief periods of time up to 30 minutes or so.

I realize that serious hackers could get access to my data.  I am only trying to block casual users and nosy people.
« Last Edit: August 30, 2008, 09:40:37 AM by jdd »

Armando

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #12 on: August 30, 2008, 10:27:26 AM »
I realize that serious hackers could get access to my data.  I am only trying to block casual users and nosy people.

*Anybody* who can download a Linux Live CD (and you could read this too) will be to access your data. Not just the serious hackers.

So if, like me, you're not willing to encrypt everything, just set a login password (as you already did) to prevent your co-workers/colleagues, etc. from rapidly accessing personal stuff while you're away for brief periods of time, and encrypt only the files containing very very sensitive data.

But if you carry your laptop with you to trainings, etc., the best thing is definitely encryption if you want to protect a lot of sensitive info, personal stuff...

f0dder

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #13 on: August 30, 2008, 10:31:18 AM »
Hm, you say that there's times where other people need to access your laptop... well, if you don't want to do encryption, follow jgpaiva's advice and create a limited user account for those other people - and make sure you set permissions on your personal files so only your primary account can access them.

You need to remember logging out from your own account and on to the limited account whenever you leave your laptop, though.
- carpe noctem

Mamba

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #14 on: August 30, 2008, 12:37:51 PM »
Well, it's not password protection but you can "hide" drive D see:
 
http://news.softpedi...-privacy-44023.shtml

The drive will still be accessible merely by typing D:\ in Explorer's address bar, but most folks if they don't see the drive listed in My Computer probably wouldn't think of that. You could also probably go into Drive Management and change the letter to something like "Y" to be a little trickier. Someone might look at the size of drive C and think 'there has to be more...' but then, you're getting beyond the more casual snoop. Obviously, don't have any shortcuts available that connect to anything on the hidden drive and I'm ASSuming this technique hides the drive from file open dialogs.

Security is always a tradeoff between convenience and the cost of getting p0wned. Encryption or at a minimum NTFS permissions are really what you need if the data is worth keeping private. If I had personal/company data I didn't want people to see, I wouldn't keep it on a system that is other folks have that much unsupervised access to. Unless you demo account is locked down, anyone could install a keylogger or other malware that might compromise your entire system, much less the password scheme.

jdd

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #15 on: August 31, 2008, 07:01:39 PM »
I like the idea of creating a limited user account and creating permissions so that personal files can only be read by me.

However, the ‘Make this folder private’ option is grayed out on the folder properties tab.  My understanding is that you can only set permissions for files and folders on the same drive where Windows is installed, which is C: drive in my case.

Is there any way to set permissions for folders on the D: drive partition?

f0dder

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #16 on: August 31, 2008, 07:06:39 PM »
Is there any way to set permissions for folders on the D: drive partition?
As long as the partition is formatted using NTFS, yes - you might have to disable "simple file sharing" in order to see the proper permissions dialog box, though.

Oh, and which windows version do you use? Iirc some of the Home editions don't have GUI for setting permissions.
- carpe noctem

jdd

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Re: Which Software to Password Protect a Partition on a Hard Drive?
« Reply #17 on: August 31, 2008, 07:09:32 PM »
Windows XP Pro, partitions are NTFS