How to password-protect folders on Windows
Thread poster: Jan Rausch

Jan Rausch  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:34
Member (2010)
German to English
+ ...
Nov 13, 2018

Hi all,

I know that on Windows 10 you can encrypt folders but you cannot password-protect them without third-party software. I believe there are some software programs out there that do that, so I was wondering whether anyone on here is an expert and can recommend something.

Just to make clear what I am after: I would like a solution that ensures that while someone is logged in to my computer there is a second layer of security requiring them to enter a password to open
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Hi all,

I know that on Windows 10 you can encrypt folders but you cannot password-protect them without third-party software. I believe there are some software programs out there that do that, so I was wondering whether anyone on here is an expert and can recommend something.

Just to make clear what I am after: I would like a solution that ensures that while someone is logged in to my computer there is a second layer of security requiring them to enter a password to open a specific folder. So for instance if I have granted a support service remote access, they would then be able to change settings and so forth but not access the folder in question.

Many thanks in advance,

Jan
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Yaotl Altan
 

DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
options: file/folder/partition/file as partition/disk/machine Nov 13, 2018

Hello Jan--assuming your file system is NTFS and you're talking about local (not network/mapped) folders, there're plenty free and paid tools/drivers like Folder Password Protect, Anvide Seal Folder, WinMend Folder Hidden, LocK-A-FoLdeR, Folder Protector, SecretFolder, DirLock, Folder Guard, Protected Folder, Folder Lock Lite. My Lockbox and very many others.

Of course, it's recommended not to mix several similar tool and one should remember ALL of them (including system secu
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Hello Jan--assuming your file system is NTFS and you're talking about local (not network/mapped) folders, there're plenty free and paid tools/drivers like Folder Password Protect, Anvide Seal Folder, WinMend Folder Hidden, LocK-A-FoLdeR, Folder Protector, SecretFolder, DirLock, Folder Guard, Protected Folder, Folder Lock Lite. My Lockbox and very many others.

Of course, it's recommended not to mix several similar tool and one should remember ALL of them (including system security, EFS/BitLocker, DiskCryptor and late TrueCrypt) are with drawbacks/limits and still hackable. I prefer password-locked zips with crypted names and a RAM-disk to remove possible traces on my host--or a configured virtual machine.

The point is by default the system logs all the user actions, organizing and saving caches and temporary files, which could be traced to certain unprotected items and passwords, let alone a nice keylogger will tell its owners what they may need, so real security measures, local policies, and a strong anti-virus with HIPS is a must too
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Lincoln Hui  Identity Verified
Hong Kong
Local time: 11:34
Member
Chinese to English
+ ...
Google: password protect folder windows 10 Nov 14, 2018

This is the first thing that pops up:
https://www.laptopmag.com/articles/password-protect-folder-windows-10

Or just put the folder in a password-protected ZIP archive and delete the folder.


Daryo
 

Daniel Frisano
Switzerland
Local time: 04:34
English to Italian
+ ...
Alternative Nov 14, 2018

You could set up a special account (call it User2) that has the same privileges as yours, except that it won't be able to access those specific folders. All you have to do it right-click on the folder to open its Properties and deny access by User2.

The only drawbacks are that you need to log out and back in whenever (1) you want User2 to work on your PC or (2) you wish to grant temporary access to those protected folders while User2 is logged in.

I remember doing it y
... See more
You could set up a special account (call it User2) that has the same privileges as yours, except that it won't be able to access those specific folders. All you have to do it right-click on the folder to open its Properties and deny access by User2.

The only drawbacks are that you need to log out and back in whenever (1) you want User2 to work on your PC or (2) you wish to grant temporary access to those protected folders while User2 is logged in.

I remember doing it years ago in Windows 7.
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Rolf Keller
Germany
Local time: 04:34
English to German
There are several solutions but no perfect one Nov 14, 2018

Jan Rausch wrote:

So for instance if I have granted a support service remote access, they would then be able to change settings and so forth but not access the folder in question.

Tech-savvy folks (e. g. supporters) laugh about most simple solutions: As long as the files itself are not modified, they can be read in one way or another. Anyway, such solutions (except the .zip solutions, see below) are based on undocumented Windows functions. They may fail if Microsoft ever comes up to change the undocumented things - in the worst case you might get locked out from your data.

I prefer Windows' on-board equipment (see Daniel's solution) to any third-party tools. But this works only if nobody except you is able to change your "deny access" setting to "allow"; this means that you have - additionally - to set the respective folder's owner appropriately. Nevertheless, anybody who has an Admin account can lever out all your settings - so make sure that there is no Admin except you. OTOH, a supporter might need to have Admin rights, a common dilemma. If you are unfamiliar with Microsoft's access rights philosophy/pitfalls you might run into problems and inadvertently lock out yourself from your data or get no real protection.

Of course you can zip files and folders using a password. This is practicable only for files that are changed seldom, though. And it is impracticable for folders with a huge amount of data.

To sum up, it is difficult to protect data on a Windows PC against tech-savvy folks who possess login rights. Of course you can keep certain data on a separate storage media ...


 

Jan Rausch  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:34
Member (2010)
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Nov 14, 2018

Thanks DZiW, Daniel and Lincoln. I will explore all of these options. Jan

 

Jan Rausch  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:34
Member (2010)
German to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you #2 Nov 14, 2018

And thanks Rolf!

 


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