XP Pro folder password protect

I have a machine that has generic logins for an entire department. I need to put a folder on the desktop, but I need to password protect this folder so that not everyone that can log into the machine can view the contents of the folder. Isn't there a simple way to enforce a password on a folder in XP Pro or XP? Ap prompt reply would be awesome! Thanks.

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JohnK813Connect With a Mentor Commented:
The easiest way on XP would be to Zip the folder using XP's built in zip utility.

Right click -> Send To -> Compressed (Zipped) Folder.

Double click on the zip file to open it like a folder, and select File menu -> Add password.  Everyone will be able to see what files are in the folder, but they will need a password to actually open the files.

I don't believe Win2000 has this ability, but perhaps you could download a free zip utility with password protection ability.
isaacr25Author Commented:
    How can I do this in 2000? I just realized that the machine(s) where I need to implement this protection may or may not be XP or 2000. Thanks again.
Why don't you use a secret network drive.

So only those with permissions can map that  network folder....

You only have to allow sharing for a folder on a server, like "hiddenstuff$"

The folder is unvisible for browsing.

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http://www.worldstart.com/tips/tips.php/232 has a guide that shows two ways of using xp to enable passwords.  The only way to do this one a public computer where other people have local access and know the login password is to use zip files like john said.

You could also install software that allows you to password protect the folder and even hide it from average user's view completely.  There is a lot of software for trial/purchase online.

I found these:

http://www.winability.com/folderguard/  $39.95

http://www.everstrike.com/ $24-34

www.snapfiles.com for some freeware (and more trial software)
isaacr25Author Commented:
     What if I create the file on an XP machine and then moved it to a 2000 machine? Would the password still be enforced? Thanks.
For zip files yes.  

If you had folder password/hide software on each machine then the files in each of those folders should still be protected.  

It looks like moving a folder that has sharing setup to make that folder private doesn't keep the private setting after the folder is moved.  
Password Protect lets you secure your documents and prevent people from viewing, printing, or altering them. The program runs on Windows XP, 98, 2000, NT, ME:
I still don't understand, why you are not simply using permission to prohibit access to a folder.


How to set, view, change, or remove file and folder permissions in Windows XP

as reference.

You could create a folder, only your account has access to.

Or you could use this:

How To Encrypt a Folder in Windows XP

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