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Old 04-12-2006, 05:10 AM   #1
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Sharing encrypted files on a dual-boot system

I'm about to get a laptop, which will be dual-booting Windows XP & Linux, and have a FAT partition for sharing files easily between the two.

Naturally, I want to make sure nobody can get access to some files should they get hold of my laptop, so I'm planning on having an encrypted filesystem to store them in.

The thing is, I'd like to be able to access them from Windows as well as Linux. Are there any file encryption methods that both Linux and Windows can understand?
Old 04-12-2006, 09:52 PM   #2
Simon Bridge
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TruCrypt - the FOSS version of PGPDisk I think.
Old 04-12-2006, 09:54 PM   #3
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As far as I know, encryption at any level lower than the file level will be out, unless Microsoft suddenly introduces NetBSD cgd(4) support as a Windows patch. Of course, just because I haven't heard of any FAT encryption projects doesn't mean there aren't any. However, GnuPG runs on many flavours of Windows, as well as Linux/BSD/UNIX; it's probably a pretty good bet, as long as you don't mind manually having to encrypt/decrypt each file.
Old 04-12-2006, 10:06 PM   #4
Simon Bridge
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Hello... they seem to have vanished!
Should have been (I left off the "e")

How about GPG ... works in windows too:

And pgp for linux:
Old 04-13-2006, 03:13 AM   #5
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Hmm.. truecrypt looks interesting. I'll read up the documentation, thanks!

GPG would work, but I don't think I could face encrypting manually on a file-by-file basis.

Much obliged!
Old 11-23-2007, 06:31 AM   #6
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Probably a bit late in the day for this, but rather than having a shared truecrypt-encrypted fat partition/ volume you can use Ext3 on both Linux and Windows; this will support large files features etc, just like NTFS, which fat does not.

There are several free Ext2 drivers for Windows (which will allow you complete access to an ext3 partition), you will have to create the truecrypt partition/ volume under Linux as file format 'none' and then mount and format as ext3. Once mounted on a Windows system with an Ext2 driver all files will become accessible.

I've written a howto for an encrypted dual boot system (using free software) that includes a detailed description of this process:


The creation of the partition is a fair way down the page, sorry for that.


P.S. Yes I know; this is a blatant plug.

Last edited by win32sux; 11-23-2007 at 06:50 AM.
Old 11-23-2007, 06:50 AM   #7
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shappyhopper, please do NOT resurrect dead threads. Also, we don't allow "blatant plugs" here. Please use this link if you wish to advertise your site on LQ. That said, you are more than welcome to put a link to your site in your signature if you wish. I'm closing this thread so that it may rest in peace. If any of the posters need for it to be re-opened just drop me an email.

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