I thought about encrypting my hard disks, or at least part of them that contain personal data, for at least one year always pondering if I should make that step as I feared that I'd lose some or all data if something went wrong during the process. I never did it because I thought it would be a lot of work involved. I had to find a good program, one that would offer good encryption algorithms, is free and easy to use.
I wanted the program to provide me with functionality to encrypt a partition, offer real-time encryption and support for hidden partitions. Today, I finally decided to give this a try. I bought an external hard drive, installed the program true crypt and used true crypt to encrypt the full external hard drive.
It took about five hours to format and encrypt the drive which is connected to my PC via USB 2.0. I then moved files and programs to the encrypted drive which I wanted to protect, and the drive itself showed up like any other drive on the system when mounted. One great feature is that I can run programs from the encrypted hard drive just like I can on unencrypted drives. You can run Bittorrent, Emule, web browsers, ftp clients and any other kind of software from the drive directly. As of now, I did not encounter errors or major slow downs while doing so.
Another great feature is that True Crypt has the option to place a hidden partition inside the encrypted drive. If someone forces you to reveal the content of the drive the hidden partition remains untouched. And no one is able to find out that easily that there is a hidden area inside the revealed area.
True Crypt comes with a step by step guide. Its really easy to setup and run. A highly frequented forum helps if you encounter problems that are not explained in the user guide.
Let me know if you try it out and write about your experience using the software.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.