I just bought an external hard drive and I have some personal files that I would like to put on the drive.? Is there anyway to password protect the entire drive so that I am the only one that can access the drive, even if I move the drive around from a computer to another computer.? I’m looking for a free program as I’ve spent most of my budget on the drive itself.? Thanks.

Password protecting a hard drive is a great way to preserve and maintain privacy on your files.? I strongly suggest more users password protect their folders and files, including their smaller USB drives, to increase security and prevent stolen data.

There are some free options out there to password protect your data and its quite simple to set up.? Lets look at the option I recommend to use and set up the program on your drive.

The freeware program I like to recommend is TrueCrypt.? It’s an open source option with a price tag that cannot be beat ($0).

TrueCrypt runs on all OS levels, including Windows, Mac OS X and Linux so its safe to take on a drive that might be used on multiple operating systems.? I find this the most attractive feature about the program, especially because of our recent project here at What the Tech with the new MacBook Pro I am trying out.? Taking data between Windows and OS X is a huge issue for me and I want a program that can work on both platforms.

File systems still operate in their normal fashion of drag and drop, but the encryption is real time.? For those of you who might be a bit confused on what “real time” encryption entails, it simply means that a file will be encrypted as soon as it is dropped onto the protected drive so there is no delay in protection, and there is no decrease in transfer speed!

I applaud your decision to protect your data, let us know how the drive encryption worked for you!