I hated SmartWare until I recognized its power. Now I won’t buy a drive that can’t run it (or its equivalent)!
I need a secure drive to hold my personal, business, and financial data. And so do YOU! Here’s why: My son had his notebook stolen, then found that his on-line backup wouldn’t restore! He lost his accounts receivables because he didn’t take his dad’s Yoda-like suggestion that "There IS no Backup! Only Restore there is! (meaning that if you don’t have some kind of regular “firedrill”, you do not have a backup you can rely on. Also, all his business and personal information is now in the hands of a thief!
My solution is a Passport drive WITH SmartWare. I actually prefer the old version that didn’t ask for a password; It looked like a blank drive, so a thief would more likely format it than try to get to the data. But either way:
SmartWare encrypts the entire drive, so I don’t have to allocate space for secure files. To back up, I copy the entire drive to a second Passport, which I then begin to use. I KNOW the backup works, because I use it all the time. If I need to recover, I simply plug into the previous drive, and I am running, FAST! If I am smart, I have backed up my new files onto that old drive so I can recover them in the event of a recovery swap.
SmartWare is very fast, so there is no appreciable penalty in encrypting EVERYTHING.
Many programs can be completely installed on the drive, and run from their encrypted form. I can plug the drive into another computer and have immediate access to both data and the programs I need to use. Even with the decrypting needed, programs seem to run nearly as fast as they do from an unencrypted drive.
Unlike Microsoft’s very powerful Encrypted File System (EFS) that I used to use, my password is all I need to use my data. EFS will not let a different account–even your own on the same computer–access data unless you follow a complex recovery disc procedure to enable access. If you have to reload WIndows, your new account, with the same login, will no longer be able to access your data unless you have previously created a special disc as a key. Also, there is no “backdoor” access by a special Administrator to your files. All excellent security features for a multiuser business system, but cumbersome and dangerous for an individual.
OK, that’s what I like about SmartWare. My question is about Mount/Dismount, Connect/Disconnect, or Remove Safely. Whatever you call it. Please see my next post.