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Thread: Filevault. How good?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    493

    Default Filevault. How good?

    Moving swiftly on from UncleM and his magic...

    Filevault. How good is it? I've never really used it for encryption purposes, relying on my own ability to keep sensitive data on an SD card which I take with me if I go out.

    Also, there used to be issues with SuperDuper/Filevault, but I understand that my latest version of both SDuper and Mac OS have eliminated them.

    Any thoughts on Filevault and how effective it is? We've never been burgled in 32 years here, but there's always a first time!


    A.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    493

    Default

    Can't see a way of editing the above post, which is why I'm posting again.

    I applied Filevault to my Home Folder, restarted, reentered my machine master password, and went straight back into the Home Folder. All was still readable by me, but more of a worry, I could pull off a file and stick it on an external disc, where it still seems easily readable.

    I was expecting to encounter something I couldn't read!

    What am doing/thinking wrong?

    A

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Grangeville, ID USA
    Posts
    9,119

    Default

    I have never tried FileVault. Seems superfluous in a world swimming in data. I wouldn't even know where to start to protect 'my own stuff', or even how to define what is mine, let alone which, if any,(or all?) of it should be protected.
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    493

    Default

    That's certainly been my take, too, Ricks.

    According to the Mac Help page, it's supposed to operate only on your 'Home Folder', so I bunged all my docs and pics in there before I pressed the FileVault button.

    But as I said above, I can still see everything in that folder, without entering an extra password (which I was expecting to have to do), and even copy files off it!

    Maybe I'll go back to older-fashioned methods.


    A.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    on the landline, Mr. Smith
    Posts
    7,784

    Default

    So the way FileVault 2 works is......

    It encrypts the whole shootin' match (the entire drive) when you log out, and decrypts when you log in. So it is invisible to you. Your security lives and dies by your password. Not logged in = encrypted.

    Very useful if a machine is stolen, etc. Protects from someone starting in TDM, pulling the drive out, etc.

    Only works if you turn off auto-login. Your machine should also log out at sleep, and after a short period too. What if someone stole a sleeping laptop in a bag? Open it, wake from sleep, hello data, no password.

    More info. Check the comments for more tips and clarity.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    493

    Default

    Thanks Mac.

    I'm running 10.6.8 on my iMac Intel III at present - so I need to upgrade to 10.7 to get FileVault 2?

    Which looks straightforward/cheap enough. Will that be that, i.e. will I then have the full benefits of FileVault 2?

    Tks.


    Allen.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    39

    Default

    Yes, you are right. You need to move to either 10.7 or 10.8 to avail complete features of filevault 2.

    UncleMac put a very nice point that it will protect your private data in case your machine is stolen. Also it decrypts your data automatically when you log in.

    But, how will I check whether its really working or not. I think first I have to connect my drive with another machine.

    Third party encrypting tools show the current encrypted files and make it password protected.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    493

    Default

    Thanks for the confirmation, subastein.

    I downloaded the 10.8.2 from Apple, no problem.

    Trouble started then!

    a) Half my Mail boxes disappeared - I keep archived boxes, which disappeared on the transfer from 10.6 to 10.8. I seem to have pulled most of them back from my back-ups.

    b) My Logitech mouse/keyboard combo stopped working. Apparently this is a Known Fault, and after a couple of hours I've managed to get the keyboard functioning, although the mouse is still sick. (Doesn't like double-clicking.)

    I haven't got round to the security aspects yet.

    So, as usual, be warned before you do a 'simple' update.

    These are the sort of things that you would hope Apple themselves would be on top of, no?

    Allen.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Boise
    Posts
    988

    Default

    My deepest sympathies for your loss. I know your pain, I too just upgraded and have been left with some really bitter feelings. We know Steve Jobs would be down there making sure the guys who made these errors would pay dearly, until they corrected the mistakes.

    Actually it seems that with every upgrade of system there are glitches. It's what keeps the programers employed, they plan it, I'm just sure of it. My glitches were with my bookkeeping software. It turned out to be just a privileges thing and seems resolved. But at the time it was a major problem, how can you do your bookkeeping for your business with out your program working

    Keep the faith, you could be doing this with windows 8, had God not been kind to us.

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