Encrypt whole notebook

Posted on 2014-03-30
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2016-11-23

I´m going to purchase a Dell windows based notebook and I´d like to encrypt whole machine. Right now, I use macbook pro with filevault...I need something like this for a dell notebook

Any idea?

Question by:heze54
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LVL 15

Accepted Solution

cwstad2 earned 1000 total points
ID: 39964733
yes truecrypt. free and simply the best. does it on the fly and has many features

LVL 14

Expert Comment

by:Andy M
ID: 39965153
Depends on the OS that you are running. As mentioned above Truecrypt is great but as far as I'm aware it doesn't work correctly with Windows 8. (I understand it's due to be updated at some point for this)

If it's running Windows 8 (Pro or Ultimate) try using the built in Bitlocker - this seems to work pretty well too.
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LVL 15

Assisted Solution

by:Giovanni Heward
Giovanni Heward earned 1000 total points
ID: 39965273
Purported TrueCrypt/Win8 incompatibilities have more to do with UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) and Secure Boot.

Windows 8 introduces a new requirement for PC manufacturers (OEMs) that may require modifications to your OS deployment infrastructure.  That requirement ensures that all Windows 8 systems are shipped with their BIOS in UEFI Mode and Secure Boot enabled.
Ref: http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter/enterprise-client/w/wiki/4151.uefi-and-secure-boot.aspx

When the PC starts, the firmware checks the signature of each piece of boot software, including firmware drivers (Option ROMs) and the operating system.
Secure Boot Overview

TrueCrypt Future Plans
The following features are planned to be implemented in future versions:
    Full support for Windows 8
    Ability to encrypt Windows system partitions/drives on UEFI-based computers (GPT)

Secure Boot Sequence


After the PC is turned on, the signature databases are each checked against the platform key.


If the firmware is not trusted, the UEFI firmware must initiate OEM-specific recovery to restore trusted firmware.


If there is a problem with Windows Boot Manager, the firmware will attempt to boot a backup copy of Windows Boot Manager. If this also fails, the firmware must initiate OEM-specific remediation.


After Windows Boot Manager has started running, if there is a problem with the drivers or NTOS kernel, Windows Recovery Environment (Windows RE) is loaded so that these drivers or the kernel image can be recovered.


Windows loads antimalware software.


Windows loads other kernel drivers and initializes the user mode processes.
TrueCrypt and Secure Boot interfere with one another beginning with Step 3.

You can use Windows 8+ with existing versions of TrueCrypt, you'll just need to disable UEFI and Secure Boot.

The ideal solution from an authentication stand-point would be to incorporate true one time password generation, with replay attack immunity, with TrueCrypt to thwart keyloggers.

Using MITRE Copernicus (or similiar) to verify the integrity of BIOS firmware could be used as an extra precaution in the meantime.
LVL 56

Expert Comment

ID: 39965297
Buy one with win8 pro and make sure the notebook has a Tpm chip. Then, bitlocker is an option. Since it supports the TPM chip, you can use a relatively short PIN and nevertheless be secure.

Author Comment

ID: 39971408

The OS is a win 7 pro 64 bits
LVL 56

Expert Comment

ID: 39971504
So you don't have the notebook yet but you are sure you will install and use 7 pro on it? (Because Dell will sell new hardware with win8.1/8.1 pro).

Author Comment

ID: 39971538
Purchased a win 7 pro license
LVL 56

Expert Comment

ID: 39971545
Ok, you obviously want to use 7. 7 pro does not feature bitlocker.
Then use truecrypt (while disabling secure boot in the UEFI Bios as mentioned) or some other encryption that is free like disk cryptor, a truecrypt spin-off.

Author Closing Comment

ID: 39981125
A++.Thanks a lot

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