Download of the Week: TrueCrypt

By on November 27, 2009, 2:11 PM
Ever concerned you'll lose the thumb drive where you back up all your important and personal stuff? Or worried someone accidentally finds that embarrassing files collection on your computer? Um, yeah, me neither. The point is we've all got some data that deserves a little extra privacy and protection. While the Enterprise and Ultimate editions of Windows 7 come with BitLocker for securing documents on your system or as they travel with you, those looking for a cost-effective solution can use TrueCrypt to protect sensitive files from prying eyes.

TrueCrypt is a powerful, flexible and highly-effective program that uses "volumes" to contain encrypted data. These volumes are mounted as a system drive to read, change or add encrypted content to them on the fly -- you can encrypt files, folders, external drives or even the entire partition on which Windows itself is installed, requiring pre-boot authorization in order for the operating system to run.

It supports a variety of encryption algorithms, including AES-256, Blowfish (448-bit key), CAST5, Serpent, Triple DES, and Twofish. The latest version adds support for multiple processors, which provides a boost in the encryption/decryption speed equal to the number of processor cores in use, and "backup headers" which provide last-chance recovery for encrypted drives and files that get damaged.

Though its interface may not be very intuitive, the tips in the extensive help manual and volume-creation wizard provide good guidance. TrueCrypt is an open-source, cross-platform (Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux) project and completely free to use, but the author accepts and encourages donations towards further development.

User Comments: 49

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Nirkon said:

Looks pretty good, but I think its too much for me, whatever I need password protected

I just usually use Winrar to do it... but its not like sensitive work data or something like that.

Chazz said:

I've been using this for about a year. This program is very reliable and does it's job with little hassle.

jazboy said:

Does it work in Window 7 too ?

jazboy said:

found the answer... with new release it will work on window 7 too.

Kibaruk Kibaruk, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Good to know, don't have windows 7 ultimate so bitlocker is not an option for me, there are always eye-sensitive documents lying all over the computer, or external drives which are not that secure either.

Will check this out.

ColdPreacher said:

Ya i have been using True Crypt for 2 years now. I have a lot of sensitive data that need encryption. WinRar can password protect ur zips or rar's but i trust True Crypt with all its features. You can even install a travel crypt on your usb's as well which will carry true crypt on the usb its self with no installation needed on the pc.

kaonis92 said:

This a useful app, I'm already using it for some time.

FoReWoRd said:

usually gives errors but new verison helps

Deso said:

Woot !

I actually use this for my storage drives! It works great ;]

I use the Twofish encryption ^_^

I only got a pentinum 4 which manages to encrypt/decrypt 30mb/s with Twofish which also is the speed my storage drivers operates at so it's all good

I wish my cpu was fast enough to do it faster to I bench around 10 mb/s on the two-way encryptions

PUTALE said:

very nice tool. I will have to check it out. thansk for the info.

harby said:

TruCrypt is awesome. It might take some time for new users to figure it out completely but imho its invaluable and essential for securing your portable media.

Hyperian said:

I thought of getting something like this but i never have anything that i really need to encrypt

Puiu Puiu said:

It's a really useful tool. I was actually looking for something like this because i have win7 pro which doesn't have BitLocker. It's too good to be free. All i need to do now is wiki the best algorithm to use to encrypt my stuff.

PCIGamer said:

fantastic app, well worth the download if you want to protect your stuff

Fada said:

windows should have encryption features built into it, good encryption features, i remember when i was a kid on mac os 9 encrypting all my porno files so my mother would not find em, all through the OS

TorturedChaos, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

i like the looks of it, but seems a bit much for the few things I want to p/w. I have always just made a passworded .rar file with winrar :P.

yorro said:

I am kind of iffy about these data encryption softwares, because there is a possibility that data can be damaged.

Serag said:

fantastic app..been using it for a while now..

@yorro I haven't had such problem using far

AtK SpAdE AtK SpAdE, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I use it on my thumbdrive, really great product.

Boogityboo04 Boogityboo04 said:

@yorro How do you mean? I haven't ever had the data corrupted in any way, and it seems like the chance would be the same as any other data on your drive.

Phantasm66 Phantasm66 said:

I've been using this for some time now and its the best software in the world! Now you can take your laptop or USB drive about and know that if its stolen no one will get their hands on those saucy pictures you've been hiding...

ken777 said:

I tried the previous version (5.x) on my laptop and the disk performance slowed down dramatically. The laptop was dual core and never had high CPU utilization. Never figured out what was wrong. I'm using bitlocker with Windows 7 now and it's been working pretty smoothly.

Richy2k9 said:

hello ...

i tried it it & liked it. have also the portable version on my pendrive.

it's a neat utility for securing data, i don't have very sensitive one to hide yet it's always good to know that some kind of Safe exists & it's free.


Onewill said:

Well, this eliminates the need for me to upgrade to Windows 7 Ultimate. :) I have friends that like to snoop, and I'd rather they not get into my material.

kimboy said:

I use this software in my PC at school, I have a PC that we share as roommates. This software helps me protect my stuff from the other guys. It's really cool and simple to use. Try it if you have not.

TechDisciple said:

I love using this handy encryption app. works fantastic on keeping sensitive data well protected *coughs like bank stuff.

guyfred26 said:

This is a nice software if you dont want your children accessing your unwanted files. This will help in security of your files especially if you are sharing one PC.

Phantasm66 Phantasm66 said:

You can get it to encrypt your c: drive with whole disk encryption, so you get a password request before it boots the OS. Then you can do away with Windows login altogether.

I also keep my data on a second partition, don't encrypt that use an encrypted file that fills the partition instead, then when you want to backup your data just unmount the file and then you only have one large file to backup.

ajickes said:

I've tried it and it works really great! Best of all, it's free. Try it out!

CannondaleRider said:

I've used TrueCrypt for a while now and can recommend its use without reservation. It just works....almost sounds like a Mac commercial, but true. It works, easily, simply, and is very cross-platform tolerant, which makes it nice not having to worry about what type of OS you're going to have to face when traveling---you can always access your data, esp. on USB drives.

Just don't lose your key.

FrankTank said:

I was actually looking for something similar to this on my old computer. I usually used the hide feature in folder options. It will be nice to create a folder with sensitive information (Uuuhhhmm naked chicks..just kidding) and now it's protected from prying eyes (wife).

I'm in the process of downloading.

lupinnktp said:

it's worth a try, really. quite a joy to use, and it gives you peace of mind

manintech said:

I really like the software that techspot recommends, I hope there are more

klepto12 klepto12, TechSpot Paladin, said:

very nice product that lives up to its reputation. I like that the new version is compatible with windows 7

danteoz said:

I've been using it for customer documents and financial stuff for a while now. Great free application for encryption

AnonymousSurfer AnonymousSurfer said:

After looking at the responses, I think I might advise people to use on their Tax Files. A nice program to help fight back against keyloggers is Keepass

levar said:

Very nifty app, I use the portable version on my usb drive

Zenphic said:

I've been using this on Windows XP for years without any problem. A great software.

rgdot said:

One of best software, should be on every top list. It does a job so well.. Been using it and like how the container looks like an innocent file

GoranGol GoranGol said:

I like this program. I use it to store passwords and other private stuff on my laptop (in case if it gets stolen).

Razerblade said:

This is a brilliant piece of software. It is very useful if you want to encrypt anything personal. I highly recommend this product.

LightHeart said:

I have been using TrueCrypt for a number of years and it works quite well. I highly recommend that you keep this in your pc tools.

TrueCrypt 6.3a (Nov 23, 2009) is on, the link in the article takes you to a TechSpot link that features TrueCrypt 6.1a from Dec 2008. May want to update the TechSpot download link.

RealXboxMaster said:

A VERY handy app. I have been using TruCrypt for little over a year. I installed it on my 2GB flash drive that does not have the security built in. Works like a charm. will like it.

LNCPapa LNCPapa said:

I use this software to encrypt all the data for my wife's company. It's a mental health therapy shop and they have to follow some pretty strict data security restrictions. One really nice thing about it is that I encrypt all of the employee thumb drives with it and if they ever lose it and someone finds it then it looks like just a blank thumb drive when they plug it it. The first thing it asks to do is be formatted.

Kibaruk Kibaruk, TechSpot Paladin, said:

After playing with this for a couple of days, it really is a nice encryption tool, starting for it being free, then allowing the storage to be crypted and not the files itself, so you can encrypt multiple files with a single drag and drop to a single code, and a lot of nice functions like portable TC on external disks to use it even on computers you don't own.

A very powerful aplication, thumbs up!

swilllx2p said:

This seems really nice, i'm likely going to put it on my flash drive and use it for stuff I dont want my boss to see muahaha.

On a side note, noticed a lot of people saying they just use winrar to password protect. That's fine and everything for files your not to concerned about, but Winrar's password protection isn't very secure at all last i knew. Most people with decent computer knowledge can break compared to this program which offers protection that little to no one can break at the moment.

IvanAwfulitch IvanAwfulitch said:

While I'm sure this is a neat application, I don't really have a use for it...yet perhaps. I don't have anything on my computer that I need to hide. Maybe when I need to start doing taxes and banking or anything that involves identity related information, I might use this. But for now, it would just take up space on my PC.

Heretic said:

looks like a pretty neat program. Think I might give it a shot.

Se7enVII said:

TrueCrypt has always been a favorite of mine. It's open source, easy to use, and has tons of options/encryption schemes. The best feature of all (in my opinion) is being able to set multiple passwords (dummy passwords/dummy data) and having plausible deniability due to the way TrueCrypt works.

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