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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

OS 10.4 - neat trick to pass protect folders

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chrisgrieve's Avatar
Member Since: May 11, 2007
Location: Scotland
Posts: 132
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Mac Specs: iBook 12" G4 (tiger) 24" iMac 2.4Ghz, 1Gb Ram, 320Gb Hard Drive, (leopard)

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hi all,

i found this in a magazine,

Create Your Own Secure File Vault
Let's say you want to password-protect a folder or a bunch of disparate files on your Mac. Maybe it's because you want to save this collection of files on a shared resource like a file server or an external drive, but you don't want anyone, even your system administrator, to open it. The solution: Create an encrypted disk image to protect your valuable information.

A disk image has a .dmg file extension. When you double-click a disk image, it appears on your desktop as if it was an external drive. A mounted disk image behaves like an external drive. You can copy files to and from it. And when you're done, you just drag it to the trash and it unmounts like an external drive, yet leaves the DMG file intact. To create an encrypted disk image, we'll make a new image, give it a password, and save it. Here's how.

Step 1: Open Disk Utility (/Applications/Utilities). Select File > New > Blank Disk Image or just click the new-image icon. Enter a name for your disk image. Since you'll be using this to save sensitive information, we recommend not calling it "My Credit Card Numbers" or "All My Passwords."

In Disk Utility, a new file is a new volume.

Step 2: Choose a location for your disk image. You can save it anywhere on your Mac, or on an external hard drive or network volume. Pick a size that's going to be big enough to hold your files. The easiest route is to choose a preset for recordable media such as CD-R or DVD-R. This way you know it will fit if you want to burn a backup.

Choose a size for your vault that's big enough to hold the files you want to hide from prying eyes.
Step 3: Under format, choose Read/Write so you can add or delete files from the disk image. For Encryption, choose AES-128 (Recommended). Now click Create. You'll be prompted to create a password for your disk image. You can come up with your own, or let the Password Assistant help you by clicking the key icon. Uncheck the "Remember password (add to Keychain)" option.

Also: Don't forget or lose the password to your disk image, or you won't have any way to access its contents.

Click the key icon to call up the Password Assistant, which can generate an unlikely password to protect your file vault.
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