Un-Encrypting FileVault without Logging in?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Insolence, Dec 30, 2010.

  1. Insolence macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Location:
    EU
    #1
    So at the beginning of the week I started getting the Message "Your Hard Drive is full." This seemed weird seeing as its a 500 GB Hard Drive and I haven't even used up 250 GBs of it. Regardless I got one of those Apps that tells you what is taking up the most Hard Drive space. Obviously, at the very top, was the Bands file, taking up almost 100 Gigs.

    So I said ok, Remove. I stopped it a few seconds after I'd started it (decided to find out what it was first) but the damage had been done, I couldn't login anymore. I found out it was FileVault Encryptions so I went /big self faccepalm over it, since I couldn't log in anymore. Today I finally managed to boot up from Root (failing CD Drive....), now the thing is, I'd like to somehow Un-Encrypt FileVault on my Account so I can at least get my Files and everything back. Is there any way to do this without logging in? Or some way to repair the FileVault Encryption even with some of the Band Files missing?

    Any help I can get would be awesome.
     
  2. Dalton63841 macrumors 65816

    Dalton63841

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2010
    Location:
    SEMO, USA
    #2
    To my knowledge you must be able to log into your account with either your user password or the Master password you set up when you enabled filevault in order to access it.
     
  3. Insolence thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Location:
    EU
    #3
    I see.

    Is there no way to rebuild it either? I tried logging from Safe Mode into Root and repairing the .sparebundle.dmg but it didn't work.
     
  4. iVoid macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2007
    #4
    Unless you have a backup, you're pretty much out of luck. The bands folder would contain the chunks of your encrypted home directory. And most likely the encryption keys or the directory information would be in the first bands, which probably were the first to be deleted.

    About the only chance would be to use a undelete utility to see if you can undelete the deleted band files. But that's a long shot, especially if you're written to the disk since they were erased.
     
  5. Dalton63841 macrumors 65816

    Dalton63841

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2010
    Location:
    SEMO, USA
    #5
    People losing their stuff to filevault actually comes up relatively often on he. It is bulletproof to a fault. You can't log in, you don't get it.
     
  6. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    May 29, 2007
    #6
    Deleting bands data means you deleted FileVault (user directory) data. Not only have you lost data, but you have also corrupted the FileVault itself. Your only option is to restore your user directory from a backup.

    Personally, I don't use FileVault for my user directory. For things that are very sensitive I create individual encrypted sparsebundle images that I can mount on demand. Knox (from the same people as 1Password) is a good utility for managing those.

    I wish Apple would just add whole disk encryption to the OS. That would avoid a lot of this FileVault nonsense.
     
  7. Insolence thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    Location:
    EU
    #7
    Trying my luck with Data Rescue 3, hopefully I'll get some positive results.

    Still, some sort of FileVault Tag or something on the Bands Folder itsself would be a security improvement, take 1 look see the Metal House icon and connect it to FileVault or something so you don't go deleting it thinking its just random crap that's taking up 1/5th of your Hard Drive....

    Complete Encryption would be awesome. Heard its coming with Lion so hopefully the FV issues will finally end in a few months, sucks even more now that they broke PGP too.

    On the bright side, if I can't get my Account back at least I only lost a bunch of downloads and pictures (mostly) :D

    Thanks for all the replies at least! And Happy New Year for those whose Time Zones are ahead of mine.
     
  8. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #8
    Actually all to often, so much so unless you need your entire folder encrypted I usually recommend encrypted disk images. I see to many problems with file vault
     
  9. iVoid macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2007
    #9
    You realize that Filevault is just another encrypted disk image, don't you? The things that can go wrong with filevault can go wrong with encrypted disk images.

    The only difference is you might loose less data if not all of it is in a Filevault user directory.
     
  10. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #10
    Yes but one encompassing your entire home folder. Apple forums are rife with people listing about problems with filevault

    With an encrypted disk image (dmg ) you only encrypt what you need. With FV there's a lit of problems with undoing it, corruption and risk of losing all your data
     

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