Encrypt External Hard Drive Mac Os Xcompubrown

Encrypt external drive mac
  1. Encrypt External Drive Macos
  2. Encrypt External Hard Drive Mac Os
  3. Encrypt External Drive Mac

Hello All, I have an SP Silicon Power external hard drive that I encrypted using my MacBook 12' OS HighSierra (right click - encrypt drive) So I started using it with a lock/password every time I plug the drive to the MacBook.

How far would you like to go to safeguard your Mac from unauthorised access? If the answer to that question is, as far as it takes, you’d probably be interested in knowing about FileVault – a highly advanced encryption mechanism that allows you to apply an extra layer of security to your Mac HDD as well as Mac-based external USBs. Stay with us as we cover the salient features of File Vault and describe the process that you can use to protect your internal and external hard drives with this utility.

How to Encrypt Mac HDD and External USB in Mac OS X El Capitan using FileVault

What is FileVault?

Let’s start with a brief introduction. FileVault is a full-disk encryption scheme that uses XTS-AES 128 encryption to help prevent unauthorized access to your Mac. First introduced in 2003, the scheme encrypts and decrypts Mac volumes on-the-fly. When the Mac is shut down, FileVault encrypts it and locks it with a password. To access the system, the user must key in the password to unlock and decrypt it.

To use FileVault safely, you must always remember your password correctly. You can choose to backup your password on Apple server. The backup is protected by three security questions. To access the backed up password, you’ll have to answer the security questions.

The current version of FileVault is known as FileVault 2, and it is an improved version of the original or “Legacy FileVault.” FileVault 2 cannot be used with every Mac and all drive configurations. It can only be enabled on a single drive containing OS X and Recovery partitions.

In addition to encrypting Mac hard disk drive, FileVault 2 also helps you encrypt removable drives. This allows you to protect your Time Machine backup drives. Additional advantages of the scheme include the ability to instantly wipe all encryption keys and all data from your Mac, thus making all information completely inaccessible. It is thus quite a handy utility to protect your Mac and the crucial data on it.

Normal hard drive, click on 'Use Encryption' when connected with Time Machine. (configuration I had until now). Seems way too slow; also, every time I connect it I have to wait for ages until the drive is decrypted and I can actually use whatever is on disk. Format the drive and use Mac OS Journaled Extended, Encrypted. FileVault 2 cannot be used with every Mac and all drive configurations. It can only be enabled on a single drive containing OS X and Recovery partitions. In addition to encrypting Mac hard disk drive, FileVault 2 also helps you encrypt removable drives. This allows you to protect your Time Machine backup drives. What I’d love to see is giving FileVault the ability to encrypt external drives. I had to start up my computer(s) from each of their external drives to encrypt them with FileVault. And those external drives are s-l-o-w compared to the internal drive (even SSDs on a USB 3 bus). Encrypting about 260GB of data on 500GB drives took about 52 hours!

Though it’s probably the most efficient way of making sure your data is always safe, FileVault 2 has its drawbacks, degraded performance being a major one. Applying encryption and decryption on-the-fly takes its toll on the processor and systems with older Core CPUs experience significant performance lag.

An aspect that you should take care of while using FileVault 2 is that it is transparent to anyone once the system is logged in. This means that once you’ve unlocked and decrypted the Mac with your password if anyone gains access to the machine all your data could very well be stolen. Hence, you must ensure that you don’t leave your Mac unattended if it is unlocked. To fully lock the encrypted drive, the best way is a full shutdown of the Mac.

How to Enable FileVault on Mac HDD

You can enable FileVault encryption on your Mac hard disk drive with the following steps:

Step #1. Log in to OS X El Capitan with an administrator account.

Step #2. Go to Apple menu (top left corner) → System Preference.

Step #3. Click on Security & Privacy.

Step #4. Select the FileVault tab and click on the padlock (bottom left corner of the pop-up.)

Step #5. Enter the administrator name and password when prompted.

Step #6. Click on the “Turn On FileVault” button.

If more than one user has the account on your Mac, each user will need to key in their password to unlock the disk. The Mac will display a message for this when you activate FileVault. Click the “Enable User” button and enter the user’s password. All user accounts added after enabling FileVault are automatically enabled.

Note: By default, FileVault uses your account password to encrypt the drive. In case you forget it, a recovery key is generated to allow you to still unlock the drive. However, this key is displayed only once, so if and when it happens, make a note of the key and store it safely.

Once FileVault is successfully enabled, your Mac will reboot and will prompt you to login with your account credentials. You’ll need to provide your password each time you wish to login once FileVault is enabled. When logged in, the encryption mechanism goes on in the background so you can continue using the Mac without any hurdles.

How to Enable FileVault on Mac external USB

Since most USB drives are formatted using the FAT file system, you won’t be able to encrypt it directly. First, you’ll need to reformat the external USB to Mac OS Extended (Journaled) file system. Thereafter, you’ll be able to turn on encryption on it. Once encrypted, it will be converted to Mac OS Extended (Journaled, Encrypted) file system.

Here are the steps to encrypt external USB with FileVault:

Step #1. Open Finder and select external USB from the list of drives on the left.

Step #2. Right-click and select Encrypt & flashdrivename>

Step #3. Key-in encryption password, verify it and also provide a hint when prompted.

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Note: The encryption process might take a while depending upon the size of the USB. There won’t be a progress indicator so the only way to tell would be the indicator light on the USB. Don’t disconnect until the light keeps flickering.

Encrypt

Once the drive is encrypted, you’ll be prompted to enter the password you set every time you wish to access the drive.

How to Break the Encryption on a USB Drive

This section explains the steps to decrypt an external USB that’s encrypted with FileVault 2.

Encrypt External Drive Macos

Note: Decryption formats the drive so to avoid data loss, clone the encrypted drive before decrypting it.

Step #1. Log in to OS X El Capitan with an administrator account.

Step #2. Go to Utilities → Application → Finder and launch Terminal.

Step #3. Type diskutil cs list and press Return.

Step #5. In the resultant code, copy the alphanumeric sequence adjacent to “Logical Volume Group.”

Step #6. Type diskutil cs delete XXXX____YYYY___ZZZZ___XYZ and press return.

How to Turn Off Encryption on Mac HDD and External Drive

To turn off encryption on the drive, follow the below-mentioned steps:

Step #1. Log in to OS X El Capitan with an administrator account.

Step #2. Go to Apple menu (top left corner) → System Preference → Security & Privacy.

Step #3. Select the FileVault tab and click on the padlock (bottom left corner of the pop-up.)

Step #4. Enter the administrator name and password when prompted.

HardEncrypt External Hard Drive Mac Os Xcompubrown

Encrypt External Hard Drive Mac Os

Step #5. Click on the “Turn Off FileVault” button.

Step #6. Restart your Mac.

To conclude

FileVault 2 is an extremely useful scheme to protect your Mac, but it can prove to be costly performance-wise. Also, there are precautions you should consider when working with it so please use it wisely or else you could end up with crucial data that’s locked up in your Mac hard drive or external USB drive forever.

The founder of iGeeksBlog, Dhvanesh, is an Apple aficionado, who cannot stand even a slight innuendo about Apple products. He dons the cap of editor-in-chief to make sure that articles match the quality standard before they are published.

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Disk Utility User Guide

When you format an internal or external storage device, you can encrypt and protect it with a password. If you encrypt an internal device, you must enter a password to access the device and its information. If you encrypt an external device, you must enter the password when you connect the device to your computer.

If you encrypt an external storage device, you can’t connect it to an AirPort base station for Time Machine backups.

WARNING: To encrypt and protect the device with a password using Disk Utility, you must erase the device first. If the device contains files you want to save, be sure to copy them to another storage device or volume.

  1. If the device contains any files you want to save, copy them to another storage device or volume.

  2. In the Disk Utility app on your Mac, choose View > Show All Devices.

    Download music to your phone. If Disk Utility isn’t open, click the Launchpad icon in the Dock, type Disk Utility in the Search field, then click the Disk Utility icon .

  3. In the sidebar, select the storage device you want to encrypt.

  4. Click the Erase button in the toolbar.

  5. Enter a name for the volume.

  6. Click the Scheme pop-up menu, then choose GUID Partition Map.

  7. Click the Format pop-up menu, then choose an encrypted file system format.

  8. Enter and verify a password, then click Choose.

    To change the password later, select the volume in the sidebar, then choose File > Change Password.

  9. (Optional) If available, click Security Options, use the slider to choose how many times to write over the erased data, then click OK.

    Secure erase options are available only for some types of storage devices. If the Security Options button is not available, you can’t use Disk Utility to perform a secure erase on the storage device.

  10. Click Erase, then click Done.

You can encrypt your data without erasing it by turning on FileVault in the Security & Privacy pane of System Preferences (see Encrypt Mac data with FileVault).

Encrypt External Drive Mac

You can also encrypt a disk and protect it with a password without erasing it. See Encrypt disks or memory cards to protect your Mac information.

See alsoErase and reformat a storage device in Disk Utility on MacPartition a physical disk in Disk Utility on Mac