Cant Unlock HD With My Life On It...Please help

andrew5494

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 22, 2015
106
32
Toronto / The 6
:(Hello Everyone Im new here. A couple weeks ago I encrypted an external hard drive from the mac desktop by right clicking to encrypt. I put a password and then decided to see what happened when I press that little key symbol beside the password (Im Curious George sometimes)
Screen Shot 2015-01-22 at 11.34.36 AM.png
Not realizing that it changed my entire password, I press encrypt....
My whole life is on this drive. Every picture Ive ever taken, every video Ive ever shot, all gone. I attempt the password multiple times and begin to cry.
I couldn't believe what I just did.
If there is anyone out there who can help me please. I would extremely appreciate it. Please.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors P6
Feb 20, 2009
17,160
5,521
Lesson for the future:

It's not wise to fiddle with encryption unless you know what you're doing and know why you want it.

Is there an Apple store nearby you can go to?

What happens when you enter the old password now?
 

glenthompson

macrumors 68000
Apr 27, 2011
1,929
128
Florida
Since it is an external drive the password might be stored in your keychain. Open the keychain utility and see if you can find the password in there.

As you found out, the key symbol is for generating a strong password.
 

andrew5494

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 22, 2015
106
32
Toronto / The 6
Since it is an external drive the password might be stored in your keychain. Open the keychain utility and see if you can find the password in there.

As you found out, the key symbol is for generating a strong password.
Thank you for your more helpful response unlike the other guy ^ You really think it could be in the keychain even though Ive never inputed it after It was encrypted.
Thanks.
Also how would I recover the keys in the keychain?
It doesn't show the actual password just says <key>
Im going to attempt to recover it with Passware Software.
 

doubledee

macrumors 6502
May 14, 2012
496
0
Arizona
How could clicking on the key icon has broken anything?

From what I know, clicking on that icon opens a tool that helps you create a stronger password.

Unless the OP clicked on the key and then blindly clicked "OK" on everything else, I don't see how that would create the issue.

My suspicion is that the OP simply forgot his/her password or did something like had CAP LOCK on.

As far as I can tell, whatever your password was, you typed it in the same TWICE... ;)

Sincerely,


Debbie
 

andrew5494

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 22, 2015
106
32
Toronto / The 6
How could clicking on the key icon has broken anything?

From what I know, clicking on that icon opens a tool that helps you create a stronger password.

Unless the OP clicked on the key and then blindly clicked "OK" on everything else, I don't see how that would create the issue.

My suspicion is that the OP simply forgot his/her password or did something like had CAP LOCK on.

As far as I can tell, whatever your password was, you typed it in the same TWICE... ;)

Sincerely,


Debbie
I types my password in twice then click the key. I then click memorable and then encrypt.
When it changed my password to 12 characters I didn't realize it as my original password was 10.
Accidents happen.
 

Nermal

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 7, 2002
18,677
1,183
New Zealand
Also how would I recover the keys in the keychain?
It doesn't show the actual password just says <key>
I'm not at my Mac right now, but there's an option somewhere in there to show full passwords (which in turn requires your local admin password - not the drive password).
 

doubledee

macrumors 6502
May 14, 2012
496
0
Arizona
I types my password in twice then click the key. I then click memorable and then encrypt.
When it changed my password to 12 characters I didn't realize it as my original password was 10.
Accidents happen.
Not trying to lecture you here, but...

1.) In the future use and write down the "Recovery Key" as a means to get your data if you forget/fubar your password

2.) Never blindly click "Next" or "OK" without carefully reading

3.) If you saw your data as "My Life" then I would have thought you'd be more careful.

Apple's encryption works *very* well. SO weel, that you are probably screwed unless someone else has some ideas on recovery an encryption password you didn't remember or write down.

Sorry for your loss, but you need to treat such things more seriously in the future.

Best of luck!


Debbie
 

andrew5494

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 22, 2015
106
32
Toronto / The 6
Not trying to lecture you here, but...

1.) In the future use and write down the "Recovery Key" as a means to get your data if you forget/fubar your password

2.) Never blindly click "Next" or "OK" without carefully reading

3.) If you saw your data as "My Life" then I would have thought you'd be more careful.

Apple's encryption works *very* well. SO weel, that you are probably screwed unless someone else has some ideas on recovery an encryption password you didn't remember or write down.

Sorry for your loss, but you need to treat such things more seriously in the future.

Best of luck!


Debbie
Do you think it could be in the keychain?
 

doubledee

macrumors 6502
May 14, 2012
496
0
Arizona
Do you think it could be in the keychain?
If you chose "Full Disk Encryption" then I'd say you are screwed.

If you did some other form of encryption, then there is an outside chance you could recover things.

However, I am not familiar enough with what you did, your environment, or even the topic to really comment. (Wait for some expert to respond.)


Debbie
 

andrew5494

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 22, 2015
106
32
Toronto / The 6
These are the replies that get me even more depressed.
Its gotten to the point where I can't fall asleep knowing all of those pictures are on there.
Hope someone can help.
 

Gav2k

macrumors G3
Jul 24, 2009
9,218
1,584
These are the replies that get me even more depressed.
Its gotten to the point where I can't fall asleep knowing all of those pictures are on there.
Hope someone can help.
Launch finder then open applications then utilities. Then open the keychain access app. That holds all your passwords. You need your login password to open the app.
 

glenthompson

macrumors 68000
Apr 27, 2011
1,929
128
Florida
Thank you for your more helpful response unlike the other guy ^ You really think it could be in the keychain even though Ive never inputed it after It was encrypted.
Thanks.
Also how would I recover the keys in the keychain?
It doesn't show the actual password just says <key>
Im going to attempt to recover it with Passware Software.
Run the Keychain Access app in Applications/Utilities.
Select the Passwords category on the left side.
Try to find your volume name in the name column or "encrypted volume password" in the kind column.
Double click on the entry if there.
Select the Show Password checkbox. It will ask for your admin password.
Password will be displayed.

This only works if the volume password was stored in the keychain. If not then you are out of luck.
 

andrew5494

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 22, 2015
106
32
Toronto / The 6
Run the Keychain Access app in Applications/Utilities.
Select the Passwords category on the left side.
Try to find your volume name in the name column or "encrypted volume password" in the kind column.
Double click on the entry if there.
Select the Show Password checkbox. It will ask for your admin password.
Password will be displayed.

This only works if the volume password was stored in the keychain. If not then you are out of luck.
Please don't say im out of luck.
Can someone clearify with me if I have encrypted the drive with my computer, will it automatically store the key in keychain?

----------

There has to be a way to retrieve it? Couldn't you send it to one of those IT people that charge over a thousand for it
Name an IT guy that does it
 

jdogg836

macrumors 6502
Jul 28, 2010
259
174
Oklahoma
There has to be a way to retrieve it? Couldn't you send it to one of those IT people that charge over a thousand for it
No, those types of HDD recovery services are for drives that are physically failing or have other mechanical issues. Encryption is an entirely different beast. Maybe ask the NSA if they have it?
 

glenthompson

macrumors 68000
Apr 27, 2011
1,929
128
Florida
Please don't say im out of luck.
Can someone clearify with me if I have encrypted the drive with my computer, will it automatically store the key in keychain?

----------

My encrypted thumb drive has its password in the keychain. Did you go through the steps I outlined? I suggest doing that before asking more questions.
 

Fishrrman

macrumors P6
Feb 20, 2009
17,160
5,521
OP wrote above:
[[ These are the replies that get me even more depressed.
Its gotten to the point where I can't fall asleep knowing all of those pictures are on there.
Hope someone can help. ]]


You didn't like my reply above, and you're not going to like this one, but I'm going to say it anyway.

This is why one keeps a BACKUP, young man.
When "your life" is on a drive, you DON'T "put all your trust" in that one drive.
Because drives can fail, or other things can go wrong -- as you have found out, much to your woe.

As others have pointed out, there may not be much chance of recovering the old data now. It's "water under the bridge", particularly because THERE WAS NO BACKUP.

In the future, I suggest you download either CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper and use them to create a BOOTABLE cloned backup of your internal drive, which will be immediately accessible with EVERYTHING on it.

I also suggest that you DO NOT fool with encryption in the future.

Go forth, a sadder but wiser man, and learn from this day...
 

andrew5494

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jan 22, 2015
106
32
Toronto / The 6
OP wrote above:
[[ These are the replies that get me even more depressed.
Its gotten to the point where I can't fall asleep knowing all of those pictures are on there.
Hope someone can help. ]]


You didn't like my reply above, and you're not going to like this one, but I'm going to say it anyway.

This is why one keeps a BACKUP, young man.
When "your life" is on a drive, you DON'T "put all your trust" in that one drive.
Because drives can fail, or other things can go wrong -- as you have found out, much to your woe.

As others have pointed out, there may not be much chance of recovering the old data now. It's "water under the bridge", particularly because THERE WAS NO BACKUP.

In the future, I suggest you download either CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper and use them to create a BOOTABLE cloned backup of your internal drive, which will be immediately accessible with EVERYTHING on it.

I also suggest that you DO NOT fool with encryption in the future.

Go forth, a sadder but wiser man, and learn from this day...
IM NOT GIVING UP
I will find a way.
Are you an encryption expert.
No.
 

blueroom

macrumors 603
Feb 15, 2009
6,374
25
Toronto, Canada
Backup solutions are cheap and plentiful, always backup your data. What was your plan if the drive crashed or was lost or stolen?

And as the others said, unless you can recall your password it's as good as gone.