Any free software to protect my thumb drive?

Discussion in 'other anti-malware software' started by Blue Ring, Aug 8, 2007.

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  1. Blue Ring

    Blue Ring Registered Member

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    I got one of those usb thumb drives that doesn't have a write protect switch, so does anyone know of any free software that can protect a thumb drive from being written to by anything, unless I allow it?

    I was thinking of something like a hips program, but for a thumb drive. Any ideas/recommendations?

    I don't think there are any hips programs currently, that can run off a thumb drive, are there?

    Thanks very much for help.
     
  2. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

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    One way I'd suggest is to encrypt the file contents. TrueCrypt could do the job for the entire drive. A TC encrypted container would not appear as anything usable to a virus or another user. It would all be scrambled. http://www.truecrypt.org/
     
  3. lodore

    lodore Registered Member

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  4. JerryM

    JerryM Registered Member

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    Hi Lodore,
    That looks like a good application. I have a U3 drive that has a trial of Avast U3, but I was not planning to buy it. I just don't use the thumb drives much. However, this drivesentry might just be the answer.

    Thanks,
    Jerry
     
  5. Blue Ring

    Blue Ring Registered Member

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    HAN,

    Thanks for the recommendation. I do have TrueCrypt on my regular pc already so I suppose it would be easy to set up the traveler mode. But I'm not sure what would happen once you open your container on the thumb drive and your plugged into someone else's pc. Couldn't you still get infected with a virus that way?



    Lodore,

    Thanks very much. I was aware of this program, but had no idea I could use it with a thumb drive! Very kewl. It's seems to be just what I was looking for. :thumb:
     
  6. Blue Ring

    Blue Ring Registered Member

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    Just as a side note, I did find this page http://www.worldstart.com/tips/tips.php/1917 which claims you can install Antivir PE to your thumb drive and run it that way, without installing it to your pc. I know that's a good AV, so I thought someone may find the info useful. ;)
     
  7. JerryM

    JerryM Registered Member

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    This is an excellent AV, and if it will run from the thumb drive it is a great bonus.
    I had no idea it would run that way.

    Best,
    Jerry
     
  8. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

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    Hmmm... If you are wanting to prevent writing to the drive even when it is under your direct control, that may be tough to do. Even tougher to keep it safe, yet usable on other PCs.

    TC works as long as the container isn't mounted. But as soon as it becomes a virtual drive, it's open for use.

    Th interest in an antivirus is nice but I'm not aware of any AVs that can run in real-time from a flash drive. Several can run manual scans but that's it to my knowledge.

    I'll have to think about this a bit longer. Not sure I know an answer now... :blink:
     
  9. JerryM

    JerryM Registered Member

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    How does Avast U3 work? Does it only run at start, or in realtime?

    Thanks,
    Jerry
     
  10. farmerlee

    farmerlee Registered Member

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    Drivesentry is a good choice if you are serious about protecting not only your flashdrive but other data as well. You can set it up to alert you when something tries to write to your flashdrive or any other drive you specify. I use it and it seems to work quite well, especially for a freebie!
     
  11. Blue Ring

    Blue Ring Registered Member

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    BTW, to whom it may concern, I tried to install Antivir PE to my thumb drive and I couldn't get it to work very well. I couldn't get it to update and the realtime shield wouldn't work, along with some other problems.

    I'm not claiming to be an expert in this area. Maybe someone else could get it to work. But with a normal install to your thumb drive, I don't think it works right.

    There's always Clamwin if you really need a AV. I guess I'm too cheap to buy a AV for my thumb drive with realtime defense like Avast.
     
  12. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

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    To my knowledge, the only difference for U3 is the GUI menu interface. So still no real-time scanning...
     
  13. JerryM

    JerryM Registered Member

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    Thanks, HAN for the reply.
    Best,
    Jerry
     
  14. farmerlee

    farmerlee Registered Member

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    As i understand it the avast u3 real time scanner only monitors the flashdrive.
     
  15. JerryM

    JerryM Registered Member

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    Thanks, and I think it must be that way. Otherwise it would conflict with the resident AV.

    I notice that it updates at start. I like it, but use the drive so seldom that I won't buy the Avast.
    Regards,
    Jerry
     
  16. vlk

    vlk AV Expert

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    That's right, this is exactly how it works.
    It scans files when they're saved on the U3 drive.

    Cheers
    Vlk
     
  17. JerryM

    JerryM Registered Member

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    Hi vlk,
    Thanks for the confirmation.
    Regards,
    Jerry
     
  18. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Antivir doesn,t work that way, I have tried it in the past.
     
  19. JerryM

    JerryM Registered Member

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    If I used the thumb drive to connect to computers that I did not know I would consider Avast well worth it.
    I only use it to connect to my children's machines, and not often that. Both live many miles apart, and I take the thumb drive to show photos, and have some downloads just in case they need something.

    I make sure their AVs are up to date, and accordingly am not concerned.

    Best,
    Jerry
     
  20. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    I let my thumb drive to collect malware. I hunt them later when I plug it into my own PC. No worries!:D
     
  21. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

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    Interesting! Sorry I had it wrong! :) This is the first I have heard of a scanner that looks at only one drive but still runs real-time.


    Any chance this version portable Avast! will work without U3? (Which is NOT something I want to use...)
     
  22. ThunderZ

    ThunderZ Registered Member

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    I doubt it. But am very curious myself. Am not a fan\user of U3 either. But still would not mind an at least on access\write scanner for my go everywhere 4 gig drive.
     
  23. interact

    interact Registered Member

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  24. Blue Ring

    Blue Ring Registered Member

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    Thanks Interact, That's good news. :) So this is the same as the regular version of Drive Sentry but specifically designed for a thumb drive, right? Cause I did have some problems with the regular Drive Sentry on my thumb drive.

    For one thing, every time I wanted to use it I needed an internet connection, so it wasn't much good for that point alone. Maybe this version work right without a internet connection being necessary. :rolleyes:

    I wonder if this version will be payware once it gets out of beta. Anyone know for sure? Thanks.
     
  25. interact

    interact Registered Member

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    Bluering,

    The Goanywhere version is a cut down version which only monitors activity to the removable drive.

    I've been testing Drivesentry for a week or so and have submitted feedback to their tech people who have been helpful and have given me some insights into the software. Both versions of Drivesentry connect to a central server which holds signatures of many thousands of apps. I know they have over 160,000 virus signatures in the database and 14,000 popular whitelisted apps. There's a stats page in V3 which shows this data and it's growing very quickly.

    Here's some details that I have obtained from them for my feedback.

    - The forced sign-up is only a beta process. It will be dropped in both versions and a user will not be required to enter any details (email etc) to connect to their community server.

    - Both versions will remain free(!) but they have a feature called auto-allow which allows white listed (good) apps to automatically be allowed without seeing a pop-up. After a trial period this will turn off but the software will still operate as normal. I've found that after 5-10 mins of use Drivesentry (desktop) had stored the rules for most of my apps. I found that 85% of software on my disk was whitelisted and had rules automatically created.

    ~interact
     
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