Sync 2.3 ships with encrypted folder support

Martin Brinkmann
Jan 22, 2016

Sync 2.3 has been released and with it come new features designed specifically for power users according to BitTorrent Inc.

Sync has been a hot topic here on Ghacks Technology News ever since it was released as an alpha version.

We have monitored the application closely, witnessed the release of the pro version and the controversial feature limitation of the free version that went along with it, but also the release of new features such as on the fly permissions or sync all.

Sync 2.3 ships with a new folder type called Encrypted Folder. When users select the new folder type, they get the option to place an encrypted backup of data at a location which can be ideal for data backup purposes.

For instance, you may use the feature to save a copy of data in encrypted form at a cloud storage provider, while you store read or read-write copies at trusted machines.

sync encrypted folder

Below is a use example.

An example use case for the encrypted folder is using Sync to share cuts of a promotional video with a client. You can create a folder with the edited cuts on two machines A and B using a Read-Write key. This way you can edit on multiple machines and have the data in the folder automatically sync. You can provide an Encrypted key to a 3rd party cloud provider or a NAS device at a different location, so that machine will get an encrypted copy of all the videos.

Encrypted Folders offer a powerful new option to Sync users. While data that is transferred is always encrypted by the service, data was accessible at the destination up until now regardless of trust level.

The new sync enables you to use less-trusted data storage solutions as the data that you save to these locations is automatically encrypted at that location but not at others.

Sync 2.3 ships with other features including the ability to move data to and fro SD cards on Android 5 and higher devices, an option to run Sync as a service on Windows, and selective sync support on all supported Sync for Linux versions,

The latest feature is the only one that is not available in the free version. Sync as a service allows Sync to be run in the background on Windows machines even if the user is not logged in currently

Closing Words

The improvements that BitTorrent Inc shipped with Sync 2.3 make sense and may improve the client a lot depending on how it is being used.

Encrypted Folders, available in the free and paid version of Sync, is without doubt the major new feature of Sync 2.3 but it is not the only one that users may take a liking in.

Now You: Do you use a data synchronization service?

Sync 2.3 ships with encrypted folder support
Article Name
Sync 2.3 ships with encrypted folder support
Sync 2.3 introduces new features such as Encrypted Folder support to the popular file synchronization application.
Ghacks Technology News

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  1. Antonio said on January 26, 2016 at 4:36 pm

    Honestly, I am very disappointed about this software.
    After reading Martin post, I was eager to test the new sync version. So, I downloaded it and installed it. I carried out a test and then… then…
    Then I realized that there is something weird, very weird…
    Suppose that I have an encryped folder and I sync it only on one peer on another device, for instance on my nas. If my pc is stolen, I am not able to recover my files using the peer. At least, I haven’t found any way to do it. In other words, the software allows to run an encrypted backup but without the possibility to do a restore if there is only another peer!!!
    I tried to write about this paradoxical situation in the sync discussion forum, but I was not able to post a thread because the registration process never completed, for the validation email never arrived or the registration page never displayed the security code (!?! try yourself to believe).
    Then I wrote to the twitter sync official profile ( Nobody replied.
    What else has I to think?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on January 26, 2016 at 11:08 pm

      You are right about that, and it is probably best to have a non-encrypted backup somewhere just in case something like this happens.

  2. ImNotBatman said on January 24, 2016 at 8:21 pm

    anyone know of a open source sync program that includes encryption?

    1. webfork said on January 25, 2016 at 9:35 pm

      There are two open source sync programs highlighted by Ghacks:

      * Syncthing – – works similar to BitTorrent Sync but without all the payware issues

      * CryptSync – … I much prefer it over similar tools because it outputs to an open, high compression, and secure format.

  3. S2015 said on January 24, 2016 at 11:26 am

    Extra concerns about data synchronization services:
    * Weak password
    * Forgotten password ‘n other sign-in problems like server-side one.

    Again, never put all of yr (essential) stuff in one basket; make a backup of your personal data; keep such services up-to-date always.

  4. Maximus T. said on January 23, 2016 at 12:12 am

    Running as a Service makes this finally useful in many more scenarios. Closed-source however may keep others away, particularly given BitTorrent’s past actions with uTorrent.

  5. ilev said on January 22, 2016 at 7:47 pm

    Can BitTorrent decrypt the data if presented by a court order ?

    1. kos said on January 23, 2016 at 1:59 am

      BitTorrent has no physical access to your data since your data is directly synchronized between your machines. You also hold all access and decryption keys. Therefore, BitTorrent doesn’t have any way to decrypt the data.

  6. XenoSilvano said on January 22, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    I think I could find this latest feature very useful, it would be convenient to have access to an encrypted folder from any computer that the folder is being synced with, it is also a good form of redundancy that is secure, if there were anything to happen to the device where one of the synced folders is being stored… as mentioned in the article.

    An aspect of the BitTorrent Sync client where I would like to see an improvement is the transfer rate, sometimes it trickles and at other times it floods, (why?!). This is a program with the word “Torrent” in it’s title, I do not want to see kilobyte transfer speeds for gigabyte size files, that is going to take all month(!).

    1. XenoSilvano said on February 8, 2016 at 9:49 am

      The Encrypted Folder feature did not work the way I thought it would.

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