Encrypting folders instead of FileVault?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Rockadile, Aug 10, 2015.

  1. Rockadile macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    #1
    Can I just encrypt certain folders instead of the whole drive using FileVault?

    Seems better for older Macs without SSD.
     
  2. mfram macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2010
    Location:
    San Diego, CA USA
    #2
    Not directly. But you can create encrypted disk images in Disk Utility. Double-click the image to type in your password and mount the image. Copy stuff to the Volume as normal. Then use "Eject" to un-mount the image.
     
  3. Rockadile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    #3
    Is disk image like creating a partition or like making a folder?
    If I eject, how will I see it again?
     
  4. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #4
    Neither really. What you are doing is making an encrypted "container" then putting files inside. To open the disk image (container) again you just double click and you will be asked for the password. Once that is entered the container is opened again and you can freely move files in and out.
     
  5. aristobrat macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    #5
    When you download apps for your Mac, they usually come down as disk images (.DMG), so you probably already have some experience with them. They show up on your Mac as files, but like Weaselboy described, when you double-click on them, they "mount" and then show up in Finder. When you eject them, they disappear from Finder, but the DMG file is still on your drive, wherever you stored it.
     
  6. Rockadile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    #6
    Okay this helped.

    I was reading around and it seemed Filevault 1 was similar to this? Just encrypting a certain portion and not the whole drive but it leaked content on the RAM or something (way over my head).
    Is an encrypted disk image still a solid option versus FV2?
     
  7. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #7
    Yeah... FV1 was very similar. It encrypted only the user folder using this method.

    What you read about accessing the PW from RAM involved Direct Memory Access (DMA) to access data stored in RAM. That was patched/blocked in Lion 10.7.2 and is no longer an issue.

    An encrypted disk image is a safe option and just as safe as FV2. That said, if you are on a newer machine (like i5 chip and up), the speed hit for using FV2 is very small, and there really is no reason not to just turn on FV2 and encrypt the entire drive.

    Is there some reason you only want to encrypt one folder rather than FV2 to whole drive?
     
  8. Rockadile thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    #8
    I have i7 but model year 2011.

    Also have traditional spinning HD, I feel it would take a long time to encrypt and slow things down if I use FV.
     
  9. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #9
    It will take some time to encrypt, but you can even sleep the machine while it is underway if you don't have time to wait.

    I would be very surprised if you could even tell the speed difference on that machine with encryption on.

    Look at the tests here, particularly the one at the bottom on a hard drive.
     

Share This Page