KeePass Password Safe – The Ultimate Encrypted Password System [Windows, Portable]

keepass 300   KeePass Password Safe – The Ultimate Encrypted Password System [Windows, Portable]Securely store your passwords. Complete with encryption and a decent password generator – not to mention plugins for Chrome and Firefox – KeePass Password Safe just might be the best password management system out there.

If you read our password management guide you will know the importance of having diverse passwords. Sure, using one password for all of your online services is simple…until someone compromises one of your accounts. If all of your passwords are identical your online life is a house of cards.

KeePass Password Safe is a completely offline approach to password management, though you can combine it with cloud services like Dropbox if you want.

Using KeePass

Before you can use KeePass you need to create a database. You’ll be prompted to do so the first time you run the program, and the main thing you need to do is specify a password.

keepass starting   KeePass Password Safe – The Ultimate Encrypted Password System [Windows, Portable]

Take this password seriously – it’s going to be the one thing protecting your various passwords from anyone who gains physical access to your computer. It’s the key that will encrypt your database, so the longer – and the harder to crack – the better.

Once you’ve set up your account you’ll see the main interface of KeePass – essentially, a list of user accounts.

keepass main   KeePass Password Safe – The Ultimate Encrypted Password System [Windows, Portable]

Creating a new entry is simple – just click the new entry button in the toolbar (I, after years of using this, frequently hit the button that creates a new database, but whatever). When you do, you can enter everything you need to know in order to access a particular account:

keepass entry   KeePass Password Safe – The Ultimate Encrypted Password System [Windows, Portable]

Give the account whatever “title” you want – that’s there for your purposes. You’ll obviously want to include the Username and password, but including the URL can also be helpful – especially if you plan to use browser plugins. More on that later.

Your password will be rated for security, and if you’re having trouble thinking up a secure password there’s a generator. Relying on such services is sometimes not recommended – no such software is perfectly random, meaning hackers could potentially exploit a pattern – but the optional entropy option can help.

keepass generate   KeePass Password Safe – The Ultimate Encrypted Password System [Windows, Portable]

If you currently use one password for every online account…stop. While you’re setting up KeePass, it is a good time to lock things down, and the password generator can help you make secure passwords. Adding your accounts, one at a time, while changing your passwords, can take a while – but real security takes work.

KeePass doesn’t just store your passwords – it also makes it easy for you to retrieve them. Right-click any entry and you’ll see the option to copy your username, password or URL immediately:

keepass rightclick   KeePass Password Safe – The Ultimate Encrypted Password System [Windows, Portable]

Learn the keyboard shortcuts indicated here for quick access – you’ll like it.

It’s also worth noting that there’s a search function. If you only use KeePass to store a few passwords this isn’t a big deal, but believe me, when your collection grows to 200 or 1,000 you’ll be thankful this feature is here.

KeePass Plugins

Do you like the idea of offline, encrypted password management, but also want browser integration? KeePass has you covered. A large collection of plugins allows you to automatically fill in forms on Firefox, Chrome and even Internet Explorer – and do a lot more.

keepass plugins   KeePass Password Safe – The Ultimate Encrypted Password System [Windows, Portable]

Check out the KeePass plugins here. There’s a lot to explore here, and it goes well beyond browser integration. Be sure to explore if you want additional functionality.

Download KeePass

Ready to check out KeePass Password Safe for Windows? Head to the download page at KeePass.info. You’ll find both an installer (EXE) and a portable version (ZIP). You can also download a portable version at PortableApps.com, if you want.

Other Operating Systems

Are you not a Windows user? Then you should check out KeePassX, which works on Linux and OS X. There are some incompatibilities, so be sure to check out our KeePassX review to work all of that out.

There are other versions of KeePass, including KeePass Android. Check out the download page at KeePass.info for a complete list.

More Tips

Do you love the idea, but wish you could sync your database to other devices? You can easily use Dropbox to sync your database, and because it’s encrypted you’re protected from vulnerability. Any syncing service will do, too – you’re not limited to Dropbox.

Do you know of any other good KeePass Password Safe tips? Share them below, so everyone can benefit. I’m looking forward to reading your ideas.

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24 Comments -

1 votes

bszen27

I had nothing but issues with KeePass in Firefox. The program would constantly ask me to save passwords that already were in the database and often had annoying bugs in Windows 7 x64. I wanted to like it due to KeePass’s nice design and features, but eventually it drove me so nuts that I took advantage of a random giveaway and moved to Sticky Password. It is so much better!

1 votes

Doc

I’ve been using KeePass 1.24 Portable (not the new 2.x version) for quite some time, although I didn’t like the Firefox plugin. I prefer to just copy & paste usernames (when needed) and passwords into my browser (I’m old-fashioned that way).

1 votes

ReadandShare

I tried KeePass and didn’t like it — although things may have improved (or maybe I didn’t even use it correctly?)….

1. Web passwords — LastPass can sign in automatically.

2. Desktop apps passwords – Roboform can sign in automatically.

But we are probably talking mostly personal preferences here. I use a long and strong master password on LastPass and feel pretty safe about it. Others may or may not agree…

0 votes

Mat Locke

That’s funny, because I had one of the same issues with Lastpass. I didn’t know you could use LastPass for 3rd party app autosign in.

I use Keepass and auto sign into a number of apps and websites. I’ll have to dig deeper now.

0 votes

Doc

LastPass – after their data breach, I won’t trust them again.
RoboForm – overly complicated (a pass file for every login? Wasteful of disk space) and $$$$.

1 votes

Michael F Carpino

I’ve used KeePass previously but I have converted to Dashline and it works great!!! Simple to use and integrates very well with Chrome.

0 votes

suneo nobi

I use KeePass + Dashlane……..

0 votes

r2r4

no doubts, theres no better app for keepin your passwords than Laspass,

5 votes

Doc

I’m sure the guy that hacked LastPass’ website would agree with you.

0 votes

Justin Pot

LastPass is great, but if you want your data to be secure encrypting it locally makes sense. It’s about priorities – and everyone has a different one.

1 votes

havalabdulkarim

I am using Password Safe 3.30. It’s Open Source. Easy to use. Almost have the same features.
http://www.filehippo.com/download_password_safe/

0 votes

Justin Pot

KeePass is also Open Source, by the way. I’ll be sure to check out Password Safe!

1 votes

Nevzat A

My 2 favorites are Keepass and Lastpass. They are simply the best!

2 votes

Mat Locke

I’ve used Keepass for years and love it. I recently tried LastPass and tried to move over to it, but lastpass doesn’t work with 3rd party apps like Keepass does with the autotype feature. I still really like them both but will stay with Keepass.

You can also use dual factor authentication, which is highly advised especially if you are putting your database in the cloud via dropbox.

2 votes

Manuel Guillermo L

I’ve been using KeePass for several years with no problems. It replaced my previous technique of using an excel document encrypted with Truecrypt. I haven’t used it with any plugins, because I find the normal interface to be enough for me.

0 votes

Justin Pot

Yeah, I just use KeePass as-is, no plugins. But I figured I’d point them out

0 votes

Chris Marcoe

It’s never a bad idea to use this.

0 votes

Rudi Pittman

Lastpass if you want to use it on android requires you to have a PAY account….for no apparent reason other than greed…..so if you want password management on desktop and phone keepass seems the way to go…the problem I have is I currently use lastpass for form filling on desktop and I’m not sure the two are going to co-exist nicely in browser.

0 votes

Justin Pot

I feel bad for services like LastPass. Not only are they offering a free piece of software, they’re paying to run web servers for it…and when they ask a user to pay for something, it’s called greed. This is why we can’t have nice things. :)

0 votes

Rudi Pittman

Justin Pot…kinda like “On the Pot” and in both cases….talking alot of crap. People will always choose a free alternative given the choice. Keepass is open source and free. If a company wants to profit in the modern world it has to provide a unique product or service and in this case lastpass doesn’t. Funny, when I want nice things I buy them..maybe you need a better job?

0 votes

Justin Pot

Keepass is free, and the article I wrote above obviously points to the fact that I love it. It’s what I use, personally.

But Keepass does not offer cloud syncing, meaning you have to set that up yourself, meaning they don’t need to provide cloud space. Lastpass does – they aim to provide a service that syncs easily – and many feel it’s worth paying for. You’re not among them, fine. But don’t just say there’s no reason for this outside greed – there are reasons.

Oh, and hilarious wordplay with my name. Seriously. Pretty clever. Not sarcastic. Seriously.

0 votes

Eric

I’ve used KeePass for years to generate strong passwords and store them. I have never found the need for a browser plugin because of the built-in “Auto-type” support: http://keepass.info/help/base/autotype.html. I also use PassDrop on iOS and KeePassDroid on Android.

0 votes

David Moreira

I’ve always thought that KeePass was kind of hard to work with. So I’ve always used LastPass.

0 votes

Justin Pot

Choice is great! I’m glad you found something that works for you.