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Thread: Best Encryption Software?

  1. #1
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    Best Encryption Software?

    I'm looking for a great encryption tool WITH a GUI and that can encrypt my entire hard drive, including /boot (so I have to input a password before Ubuntu even starts to load). TrueCrypt does this, but only in Windows. What is the strongest encryption software like this for Linux?

  2. #2
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    Re: Best Encryption Software?

    You can do that using the alternate install CD. The only thing is it won't encrypt /boot since that needs to be accessible by Grub to boot. However, everything else is encrypted and you get prompted for a password when you boot up.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Best Encryption Software?

    Doesn't that just encrypt the /home directory? And does the CD install the encryption software so I can manage it from within Ubuntu after I log in, but without the CD?

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    Re: Best Encryption Software?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrantStoner View Post
    Doesn't that just encrypt the /home directory?
    That is one of the options. There is another to set up full disk encryption.

    And does the CD install the encryption software so I can manage it from within Ubuntu after I log in, but without the CD?
    Yes.
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    Re: Best Encryption Software?

    Awesome, thanks this sounds like exactly what I'm looking for, minus the /boot issue. This includes the swap space partitions too correct?

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    Re: Best Encryption Software?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrantStoner View Post
    Awesome, thanks this sounds like exactly what I'm looking for, minus the /boot issue. This includes the swap space partitions too correct?
    Yes.
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  7. #7
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    Re: Best Encryption Software?

    With this CD will I have re-install Ubuntu as well? And by any chance, do you know if it uses on-the-fly-encryption?

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    Re: Best Encryption Software?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrantStoner View Post
    Awesome, thanks this sounds like exactly what I'm looking for, minus the /boot issue. This includes the swap space partitions too correct?
    With software encryption there is really no possible way to encrypt the /boot directory. You would need a drive with built-in hardware encryption (or something that uses a TPM) for that.

    One thing you can do is put /boot on a flash drive and remove it from the machine whenever finished with it. This would be equivalent to having /boot encrypted (although I see little value in having /boot encrypted at all. Nothing of import is ever stored there. As long as /, swap and /home are encrypted you're golden).


    Quote Originally Posted by GrantStoner View Post
    With this CD will I have re-install Ubuntu as well?
    Yes.

    And by any chance, do you know if it uses on-the-fly-encryption?
    On-the-fly encryption is only useful for instances where only certain directories are encrypted (as is often the case with Truecrypt containers). What LUKS does is encrypt the entire drive (minus /boot). Since the entire drive is encrypted, there is no need for "on-the-fly." Remember, in either case, encryption is only useful when the drive is not in use or when the "on-the-fly" container is not unlocked.
    Last edited by rookcifer; June 11th, 2010 at 01:39 AM.

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    Re: Best Encryption Software?

    Alright thanks then, it looks like that is the route I'm going to take then.

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    Re: Best Encryption Software?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrantStoner View Post
    With this CD will I have re-install Ubuntu as well?
    Yes you will have to reinstall.

    Quote Originally Posted by rookcifer View Post
    With software encryption there is really no possible way to encrypt the /boot directory. You would need a drive with built-in hardware encryption (or something that uses a TPM) for that.
    There was some patches to Grub2 to give it support for booting a LUKS encrypted system that included /boot in the encrypted area. So it is possible.

    Quote Originally Posted by GrantStoner View Post
    And by any chance, do you know if it uses on-the-fly-encryption?
    Quote Originally Posted by rookcifer View Post
    On-the-fly encryption is only useful for instances where only certain directories are encrypted (as is often the case with Truecrypt containers). What LUKS does is encrypt the entire drive (minus /boot). Since the entire drive is encrypted, there is no need for "on-the-fly." Remember, in either case, encryption is only useful when the drive is not in use or when the "on-the-fly" container is not unlocked.
    No, LUKS is a form of on-the-fly encryption.

    is a method used by some encryption programs, for example, disk encryption software. "On-the-fly" refers to the fact that the files are accessible immediately after the key is provided, and the entire volume is typically mounted as if it were a physical drive, making the files just as accessible as any unencrypted ones.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/On-the-fly_encryption

    Basically anything that presents the data to the end user transparently is on-the-fly. This would include things like TrueCrypt, Ecryptfs, and Encfs in addition to LUKS. GPG would be an example of the opposite of on-the-fly encryption.
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