BitLocker Drive Encryption is a full-drive encryption feature in Windows Vista, Microsoft's latest operating system. With BitLocker, your Windows PC or laptop cannot start up without an encryption key, helping to keep your computer safe if stolen. There are some hardware requirements necessary to use this function, including two partitions on your hard drive. However, contrary to popular belief, BitLocker can be used on a computer with or without a TPM.
"I think that being able to implement hardware level encryption against a laptop's hard drive is something that was long overdue," says Brien Posey, Microsoft MVP and SearchWindowsSecurity.com site expert. "BitLocker can only be used to encrypt a single drive, and in some cases that will be insufficient, for example, if a computer has two hard drives. I do expect this limitation to eventually go away though as the technology matures over the next few years. My only concern with BitLocker, though, is that I have heard some horror stories regarding data recovery on encrypted drives."
Learn how to use Vista's BitLocker and read up on questions about BitLocker Drive Encryption with these helpful and informational tips, written by Microsoft security industry experts.
Questions about using BitLocker Drive Encyrption: BitLocker Drive Encryption, the security feature most touted in Windows Vista, is sparking controversy. Some of the furor is predicated on misinformation about what BitLocker really is or how it is to be used, or how it might be possible to perform an end-run around it. Continue with Questions about BitLocker.
LISTEN to this podcast on questions about BitLocker Drive Encryption now!
How to use BitLocker without TPM in Vista: BitLocker, a function available in Microsoft's Vista Enterprise and Ultimate versions, lets you encrypt on a system drive, something that wasn't possible in previous versions of Windows without a third-party product. Typically, in order to use BitLocker, you need a system with Trusted Platform Module (TPM) hardware, version 1.2 or better -- something that a number of PC manufacturers are now starting to supply, albeit at additional cost. Continue with BitLocker without TPM.
BitLocker means end-to-end encryption for Vista: Could BitLocker be the answer to your encryption prayers? Serdar Yegulalp explains how you can encrypt your Windows Vista system using BitLocker in one of four ways. Continue with BitLocker encryption.
More Vista security information!
Read Windows Vista security feature reviews, including reviews on UAC, the Security Center, Windows Defender and Encrypting File System.
This was first published in June 2007