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XP Encryption Key Recovery?

Posted on 2004-08-26
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Last Modified: 2011-10-03
I have a client's hard drive that is going sour.  It will not boot to Windows XP anymore, but I am able to get some files off it via floppy bootup.  Unfortunately, there are encrypted files on this drive and the keys were not backed up.  Since I can not get Windows to load and do the 'normal' key backup in IE - is there any other way I can rescue these keys?  Anyone know where they are stored?
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Question by:siteup
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durkinr earned 500 total points
ID: 11905470
Add the drive as a slave in a WinXP Pro machine, and log on as the Local Administrator. The Admin account is usually the Recovery Agent for encrypted files.

Check out these instructions for how to recover the files:

http://www.tweakxp.com/tweak1590.aspx

Always remind people, that when they encrypt files on their hard drive, they really should backup their encryption certificate to a floppy or some other removeable media, and keep it in a safe place. It is very hard to recover a file if this is missing. Here is an important list of best practices for people to follow, including simple instructions for backing-up your certificates:

http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=223316



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by:siteup
ID: 11906510
Log onto Local Administrator for the machine I'm running Windows XP as the master on?  How is that going to allow me to ac cess the keys on the slave drive, which will not then have the OS loaded?
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by:durkinr
ID: 11906833
Its your only shot at recovering the files. Read the first article.
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