VeraCrypt 1.23 with improved Windows upgrades
Idrix, the company behind the encryption software VeraCrypt released VeraCrypt 1.23 for all supported operating systems.
VeraCrypt does not support automatic updates; users and administrators need to download the new version from the official website or through third-party services if available.
Windows users may download a portable version or a version that is installed. The setup version will upgrade any installed copy of VeraCrypt on the system. Please note that it is required to restart the system as the boot driver is updated in the process.
VeraCrypt 1.23 comes more than five months after the release of VeraCrypt 1.22.
VeraCrypt 1.23 comes with operating system specific changes for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. The Windows version of VeraCrypt received quite a few important changes and new features.
Probably the biggest feature addition of VeraCrypt 1.23 is that VeraCrypt users don't need to decrypt the system partition anymore to upgrade to a new version of Windows 10.
Starting with VeraCrypt 1.23, VeraCrypt is compatible with the upgrading process so that upgrading should be less time-consuming and more straightforward for systems with a VeryCrypt encrypted system partition.
Decryption of the system partition is a time-consuming process. The decryption process depends largely on the size and speed of the drive. While having to decrypt the partition was bad enough, it was necessary to encrypt the partition again once the upgrade completed.
The next Windows 10 feature update, called the October 2018 Update, will be released at the end of this month or the beginning of the coming month and it will be the first major version that would have required the decryption of the VeraCrypt encrypted system partition.
Another, equally important change is support for default EFI SecureBoot configurations for regular versions of Windows and LTSB versions (Long Term Servicing Branch).
Idrix added a new option to the performance and driver settings: "Allow Windows Disk Defragmenter to defragment non system partition/drive" allows the built-in disk defragmentation tool to work with VeraCrypt encrypted disks.
Windows users benefit from several other changes: protection against some forms of tampering thanks to internal verification checks and Secure Desktop improvements.
The list of changes of the Mac and Linux versions of VeraCrypt is much shorter:
- Support for pasting password values on Mac OS X.
- New Checkbox to force the use of the embedded backup header during mount (Linux and Mac).
- If the backing up of the header fails, try to back up the embedded header instead automatically (Linux and Mac).
- New benchmark UI for Hash and PKCS-5 PRF algorithms (Linux and Mac).
- Hidden volume protection limitation lifted for disks with sector sizes larger than 512 bytes (Linux)
Closing Words and verdict
VeraCrypt 1.23 is an important update for Windows users and admins who use VeraCrypt to encrypt the system partition of devices. Operating system upgrades were quite the hassle previously but that changes with the release of the new version.
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