How to password protect laptop and documents?

Discussion in 'Windows OS and Software' started by Drew1, Nov 11, 2015.

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  1. Drew1

    Drew1 Notebook Deity

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    When i open my laptop, i have no password at all. However i know many people do have password for their laptop for startup. First off even if they do, isn't it easy to bypass the password thing? Is there a program where it makes it hard for someone to turn on your laptop without knowing the password?


    I also have a lot of documents in my laptop that are pretty important. Of course each one is accessible by just clicking on it. Does anyone have advice on how to password protect certain documents/videos/pictures etc? I of course don't need to password protect every single document/video/picture. Though i wouldn't mind to know how to do this.
     
  2. KLF

    KLF NBR Super Modernator Super Moderator

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    Just windows password doesn't protect much, since there is ways around it. Altough it will stop someone just passing by and accessing your data.

    I have usb drive in my keychain with a portable OS. I'm usually able to access all files protected with passwords in regular windows computers.

    Secure boot (windows 8 and up) would prevent another user easily booting portable os but it would still be possible to remove drive and access data on another computer.

    Drive encryption such as bitlocker solves those problems.
     
  3. 6730b

    6730b Notebook Evangelist

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    Everything important on a dedicated partiton with bitlocker. That's how I do it (+ hd password from bios as a basic measure). Windows passwords is just to keep family away, not thugs and thieves :O)

    Be sure to keep some backups. Any problems with such a setup and things are irrevocably gone (the price of safety!).
     
  4. Drew1

    Drew1 Notebook Deity

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    i have windows 7.

    Yes the windows password doesn't seem to do much. however i wouldn't want someone to turn on my laptop and well they have access to everything there if you know what i mean.

    are programs like bitlocker simple to use?

    Can you explain the keeping backups? Is that complicated to do? I assume i would need something like external hard drive for that?
     
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  5. 3Fees

    3Fees Notebook Deity

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    Use a program that does file encryption, XP pro did this allowed individual file encryption, on my other laptop I have McAfee-Intel-total security and this does individual file encryption, if drive encryption fails you have nice drive paperweight or locked drive which is useless.

    7-Zip fits the bill here, your all welcome, 7-Zip will compress the file and give you the option to password protect this compressed file.

    Cheers
    3Fees :)

    +n
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2015
  6. Hidef1080

    Hidef1080 Notebook Enthusiast

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    Look into using your BIOS password.
    When you use it you cannot boot your computer until you enter the correct password.
    I've done this with Vista and 7.

    I should add use this plus other security methods. And remember that if someone really wants in, they will find a way.
     
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2015
  7. 6730b

    6730b Notebook Evangelist

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    It's part of windows (pro) so nothing to install and nothing to think about in daily use, access \ save files like on any normal hd \ partition. Just enter the pw at start of session.

    Easy to test and get acquainted, make a 10 gb partition or whatever size, or use a usb stick, or an external drive, then "turn bitlocker on" from control panel or windows explorer (right click on drive).

    If it's just a few files which are not used often, encrypting individual files is an option as adressed by 3Fees. Am using http://www.axantum.com/AxCrypt/Default.html for this (careful with download source, some include pup).

    Whatever solution is chosen: always the possibility of problems with either the hd or the owner's head, so backup, backup + backup!
     
  8. KLF

    KLF NBR Super Modernator Super Moderator

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    Without bios boot password itself, one option would be disabling all the other boot options except hard drive. Then password protect bios access so one cannot simply change boot devices back.

    That works until someone takes a screwdriver and removes the hard drive. Then drive is fully accessible with suitable tools with another computer. To prevent that, encryption is needed.
     
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  9. 6730b

    6730b Notebook Evangelist

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    Yes, with hd password set using bios, the password then resides on the hd itself, and one would need to crack\guess\know the password whatever (similar) pc the hd gets connected to. But with a solid password (not 123 :O) it's good security imo, example hp's DriveLock which (to my knowledge) has never been cracked in 20 years or so of use, no tools or tricks have ever succeeded (afaik).
    But anyone really wanting to get to the disk content could extract the platters, or maybe change the hd electronic board? so encryption is way more secure in the end.
     
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