Possible limitation of Truecrypt?

Discussion in 'privacy technology' started by spider_darth, Dec 14, 2008.

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  1. spider_darth

    spider_darth Registered Member

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    Let's say my system can't boot into Windows. And since I'm using a Thinkpad, I'm able to access Thinkvantage Rescue & Recovery to recover any files I require before reformatting.

    However, I can't access any of my data as they are all stored in a Truecrypt encrypted partition which can't be mounted in Rescue & Recovery.

    In such a situation, how can I mount the Truecrypt volume? Can it be mounted in Linux live CD?
     
  2. dantz

    dantz Registered Member

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    Re: Possible limitatn of Truecrypt?

    You can boot to a BartPE or similar, run TC in traveler mode and access your encrypted partition. (This assumes that your encrypted partition didn't also get damaged by whatever messed up your OS. For example, if your boot sector got reamed then you might not have an accessible partition either, although it could probably be recovered with special tools). You can also remove your hard drive and slave it to another system with TC installed. You can also store your data in container files, which are less likely to be damaged in a general disaster and are usually easier to recover (especially if they are contiguous) when the s*** hits the fan.

    Best of all, you can simply access your backups. As we all know, stuff happens, often unexpectedly, so you should always have backups. If you use encryption then backups are doubly important, since encrypted data can be notoriously difficult to recover. And while you're at, it make sure you back up your TrueCrypt volume headers. Countless users have lost countless terabytes of data because they didn't follow this simple advice.
     
  3. spider_darth

    spider_darth Registered Member

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    Re: Possible limitatn of Truecrypt?

    Does Ubuntu or OpenSuse Live CD work?

    Could you also elaborate more on how to backup Truecrypt volume headers? and why are they important?
     
  4. KookyMan

    KookyMan Registered Member

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    Last thing I knew, Linux can not open system volumes in TrueCrypt, so no, a Linux LiveCD won't work.

    Headers are important because they contain the encryption key used by TrueCrypt to actually decrypt the data. Backing them up is done in one manner automatically as all containers starting with v6 have two copies of the headers in them, and one manner manually as you can select to backup the headers. It is under the Volume Tools button.
     
  5. spider_darth

    spider_darth Registered Member

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    So, the purpose of backing up headers is to ensure that I'm able to decrypt the volume even if I forget the password?

    But wouldn't that mean that others who get hold of my backed up header would be able to decrypt my data as well?
     
  6. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Not without the password...
    Mrk
     
  7. Enigm

    Enigm Registered Member

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    It's all covered in the TrueCrypt manual
     
  8. dantz

    dantz Registered Member

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    No, it's more of a backup. If your header gets damaged (and this does occasionally happen, for various reasons) and you don't have a header backup then you will be permanently locked out of your volume.
     
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