Any reasons to not want to turn on FileVault?

kat.hayes

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 10, 2011
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About to setup a new Mac, are there any reasons to not have File Vault turned on? As long as I do not obviously forget my password, what are the downsides, to using it? Does it slow performance at all during boot, usage, backup, etc.?

Thanks in advance.
 

kohlson

macrumors 68020
Apr 23, 2010
2,265
661
I've had it in place for a couple of years, on 1 work and 2 home computers. Completely transparent as far as I can tell.
 
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Partron22

macrumors 68030
Apr 13, 2011
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747
Yes
Too many corrupted floppies and HD's in the 80's and 90's.
I want my recovery problems for dinged drives to be as simple as possible.
That said, I think the last drive to die on me was 6 years ago.
 

posguy99

macrumors 65816
Nov 3, 2004
1,121
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Too many corrupted floppies and HD's in the 80's and 90's.
I want my recovery problems for dinged drives to be as simple as possible.
That said, I think the last drive to die on me was 6 years ago.
But you keep backups, of course. So why wouldn't you enable FileVault?
 

Partron22

macrumors 68030
Apr 13, 2011
2,558
747
Yes
But you keep backups, of course. So why wouldn't you enable FileVault?
If the NSA goes after me, I'm dead even with FileVault. They'd at least pin me for running that stoplight on my bike back on Flag Day 1968.
Otherwise, I'm in a pretty low threat environment, and have noticed over the years that Apple tends to screw up occasionally (see APFS and Time Machine threads). I want no part of that. I do keep lots of non-encrypted backups. I even check boot from the backups when they contain a System copy.
 
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MoerBoer

macrumors regular
Jan 27, 2018
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Unless you are running an Mac Pro 5.1 planning on upgrading to Mojave, turn it on.

If your machine gets stolen, without the FileVault password, the data is useless to the thief.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
19,084
6,532
I will not use Filevault or any other type of encryption on ANY of my drives (with one exception, mentioned later).

I -WANT- my data to be "easy to get at".

I've seen too many posts from others, who have encrypted their drives and then... something goes wrong... and then... they can no longer "get through to" their data any more.

Not worth the risk, in my opinion.

If you have some files that you absolutely want to keep confidential, then create a small .dmg file that is password-protected and keep them there. It can be easily accessed from the desktop. This leaves the non-confidential stuff (i.e., the rest of the drive) "in the clear", without the potential problems of encryption.

I mentioned above that I -DID- encrypt one drive.
It's a modestly-sized USB flashdrive that I keep in my car, which serves as my "off-site" backup for my main files.
In this case, if the car were to be stolen or broken into, and the flashdrive stolen, the data on it can't be read. But... it's "only a backup", and if anything goes wrong with it, I can just re-create it on a new flashdrive.

But my regular Macs... in the house... no encryption.
Works for me.
 

Phil A.

Moderator
Staff member
Apr 2, 2006
5,518
2,329
Shropshire, UK
I would use it anyway but I have no choice as all my computers contain my business / customer data so I'm pretty much obliged by data protection laws to use Filevault on my Macs and BitLocker on my Windows machines.

I've never had a single issue with it on any of my Macs
 

fivenotrump

macrumors 6502
Apr 15, 2009
355
122
Central England
I will not use Filevault or any other type of encryption on ANY of my drives (with one exception, mentioned later).

I -WANT- my data to be "easy to get at".

I've seen too many posts from others, who have encrypted their drives and then... something goes wrong... and then... they can no longer "get through to" their data any more.

Not worth the risk, in my opinion.

If you have some files that you absolutely want to keep confidential, then create a small .dmg file that is password-protected and keep them there. It can be easily accessed from the desktop. This leaves the non-confidential stuff (i.e., the rest of the drive) "in the clear", without the potential problems of encryption.

I mentioned above that I -DID- encrypt one drive.
It's a modestly-sized USB flashdrive that I keep in my car, which serves as my "off-site" backup for my main files.
In this case, if the car were to be stolen or broken into, and the flashdrive stolen, the data on it can't be read. But... it's "only a backup", and if anything goes wrong with it, I can just re-create it on a new flashdrive.

But my regular Macs... in the house... no encryption.
Works for me.
Well, that’s your call, misguided though it may be.
 

chabig

macrumors 604
Sep 6, 2002
6,590
3,734
I will not use Filevault or any other type of encryption on ANY of my drives (with one exception, mentioned later).

I -WANT- my data to be "easy to get at".

I've seen too many posts from others, who have encrypted their drives and then... something goes wrong... and then... they can no longer "get through to" their data any more.

Not worth the risk, in my opinion.

If you have some files that you absolutely want to keep confidential, then create a small .dmg file that is password-protected and keep them there. It can be easily accessed from the desktop. This leaves the non-confidential stuff (i.e., the rest of the drive) "in the clear", without the potential problems of encryption.

I mentioned above that I -DID- encrypt one drive.
It's a modestly-sized USB flashdrive that I keep in my car, which serves as my "off-site" backup for my main files.
In this case, if the car were to be stolen or broken into, and the flashdrive stolen, the data on it can't be read. But... it's "only a backup", and if anything goes wrong with it, I can just re-create it on a new flashdrive.

But my regular Macs... in the house... no encryption.
Works for me.
Your logic seems disconnected—unwilling to use encrypted disks but willing to use encrypted disk images.
 
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