LiveCD Drive Image of Truecrypt FDE

Discussion in 'privacy technology' started by J_L, Aug 23, 2012.

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  1. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

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    Recently, I've decided to fully encrypt my new laptop due to current world trends of disrespecting privacy and support of AES-NI (did similar things with ICS phone and Ubuntu netbook). The biggest problem of this is how to back up the system.

    I know that disk imaging while Windows is running will not work due to restoring unencrypted data over encrypted. Also, I know disk cloning from a LiveCD will work, because it's simply a copy of the encrypted drive. However, will restoring the (compressed) disk image with Wondershare LiveBoot (or another LiveCD) of the encrypted drive work? I'm asking for disk space saving reasons.

    Also, will restoring a drive image from Windows (with a reboot like Paragon) work for unencrypted ones? I think it should, as long as that happens after the Truecrypt pre-boot authentication. Answering this question is optional, since drive images should work when Windows doesn't boot.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2012
  2. PaulyDefran

    PaulyDefran Registered Member

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    You can backup in Windows if you want. I use Easeus ToDo Backup free. Then I store the compressed image in a TC container just big enough to hold it. Or you could do sector by sector, but you're trying to save space, so...

    If you need to restore because of a problem, blow out the disk, do a fixmbr to get rid of the TC boot loader (I think you'll need to do this, but maybe not), re-image, and re-install TC.

    PD
     
  3. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

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    That is the kind of complexity I'd like to avoid. You forgot to mention shredding the unecrypted compressed image after copying it (moving to another partition/drive only deletes it normally, making that recoverable).

    Anyhow, has anyone tried restoring something like a compressed disk image made offline? Maybe I'll try both that and cloning after clearing more disk space.
     
  4. LockBox

    LockBox Registered Member

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    Hard Drives are coming down again (finally) after the Thailand floods.

    Example: Newegg had a 3TB external drive for $129 last week.

    Tons of these deals are coming back. That might relieve your worries about saving space.
     
  5. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

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    Money's tight due to university, so I'd like to avoid that unless absolutely necessary.
     
  6. PaulyDefran

    PaulyDefran Registered Member

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    Easeus encrypts the image with AES. It's an option, but who wouldn't use it. TC is just added insurance. I have BCWipe, so all my cuts/deletes/moves automatically get wiped.

    PD
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2012
  7. dantz

    dantz Registered Member

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    @OP: I hope you realize that encrypted data is basically incompressible. If you boot to a live CD and image the entire drive while it is unmounted, the image file will be the same size as the drive. The image file would be much smaller if you imaged it from within Windows (thus allowing data compression etc. to occur) and saved it as an encrypted image file, as described by PaulyDefran.

    Even better, repartition your drive such that the system partition is no larger than necessary, then image only that partition using either method. (Make sure your image includes the MBR/partition table etc., otherwise it might not be useful for disaster recovery).

    Your data partitions can be encrypted separately, and they can be backed up using standard backup software, preferably to an external encrypted partition or drive.
     
  8. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

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    I see, so basically I should go for cloning in terms of speed and simplicity.

    Hmm, repartitioning my 128 GB SSD, even though I have a 750 GB hard drive... I wonder how that should be done, especially since I plan to install games on it. Yes, my data is encrypted and stored on the HDD (moved personal folders and used TC System Favourites).

    Going to try dismantling my 2 TB RAID0 system (~half full of stuff) and finding a good enclosure for that.

    P.S. It's not that I really need space, it's just that I try to save as much space as possible for future usage.
     
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