How can I password-protect my USB drive for free?

Sonny January 11, 2011

I am looking for a way to password protect a USB drive. I have read Tina’s guide, I enjoyed it and USB Secure works well, but you only get to lock it 3 times with the free download.

I was wondering if anyone knows of a free alternative. I need it to work on any computer, at least any Windows computer.

Thanks for any suggestions!

  1. Sybozz
    May 2, 2012 at 11:07 am

    @Sonny and other who wanted a free tool to protect USB or other drives. Many of the answers did not mentioned the following things:
    1. The password protect or encrypting tool must be free.
    2. Most of us, here want a Windows software to lock the USB.
    3. The password protected USB should unlock in any Windows PC.
    and more......
    OK. I'll suggest you to use the BitLocker, available/built-in, in Windows 7, to password protect your USB or other drives. When the protected drive will be connected to Windows running PC, like 7/Vists/Xp, a pop up bar will ask you to provide the password.

    More guidance is @


  2. chandan
    March 10, 2012 at 9:15 pm

    Hello I want to protect my USB port of my laptop from being Unauthorised Access to anyone except me. I need a free software , which would asks for a password when any usb device plugged into it. Plz help me by suggesting some softwares links from where can i download it. U can mail me on

  3. Anonymous
    January 12, 2011 at 11:46 am

    Cryptainer LE

    •Install Cryptainer Mobile when the Cryptainer LE installation is complete. Select "Tools" on the menu bar at the top of your screen. Select "Install Cryptainer Mobile" and follow the prompts. The Mobile version comes with the LE download.

    •Close the LE version on your desktop. Select a location and meaningful password for the Mobile version. To protect important files and folders, drag and drop them into the vault, the location of the encrypted files.



    SafeHouse Explorer

  4. Mike
    January 12, 2011 at 1:13 am

    I want to throw in TrueCrypt (
    It allows you to encrypt either the entire USB Stick, one Partition of it, or putting an encrypted file container (similar to an image) on it.

    For more paranoia there is even an option to create a decoy with a different password e.g. a 4GB encrypted file container split into 1GB accessed via "password1" and 3GB which contents are displayed using "password2".

    Personally I prefer TrueCrypt because it's available for Windows, Linux and Mac and therefor doesn't limit the usage. Imagine you encrypt the entire hard disk of your laptop. In case Windows doesn't boot up anymore you can easily use your preferred Linux Live system and backup it's data.

    There is an older guide on MakeUseOf about putting a portable version of TrueCrypt alongside an encrypted container on a USB Stick.

    • Tina
      January 12, 2011 at 1:21 am

      I second TrueCrypt for its comprehensive settings and thoroughness. I also recommend reading Mark's article.

      However, if I remember correctly, to run TrueCrypt Admin rights are required on the computer the USB drive is connected to. That is a drawback if you work on public computers.

      • Mike
        January 12, 2011 at 3:53 am

        Just want to confirm that Tina is right about administrative privileges when using TrueCrypt.

        • Sonny Bass
          January 12, 2011 at 6:45 am

          Thanks for confirming.

    • Sonny Bass
      January 12, 2011 at 2:20 am

      Thanks,I read Mark's article you mentioned.I am installing TrueCrypt on a second USB Stick.This way I can test which one works best for me.

      • Tina
        January 12, 2011 at 6:05 am

        Please do let us know how what you think and how you decide!

        • Sonny Bass
          January 12, 2011 at 6:45 am

          Since I will be using this drive for school I believe Rohos will be the best choice.

    • Teo
      February 3, 2011 at 12:59 pm

      Be carrefull there is a virus with truecrypt. In case you have this virus the use of this soft is very dangerous as it collect all your passwords in a file then send this file to a server. If somebody wants to open your protected disk he just need to ask for your password and open it

  5. Tina
    January 11, 2011 at 10:53 pm


    one option for highly sensitive data is to use encryption, which also requires a password. You should review TrueCrypt or Rohos Mini Drive. Both are described in my manual. Rohos is the alternative that will appeal more to you as you do not need Admin privileges to use it.

    I also found this tool: USB Flash Security
    Apparently, it's translated from Japanese and has some weird translation errors. And it needs to erase all files on your drive before you can install it and password protect your drive. If you can live with these two drawbacks, you might want to give it a shot.

    Then there is WinSesame.It has a free option in which the size of the folder you can protect is limited to under 1MB, i.e. you cannot protect folders with pictures or videos.

    • Sonny Bass
      January 12, 2011 at 12:21 am

      Thanks Tina, I should have reread your guide. I had intended to make a mental note of Rohos, but didn't require encryption. I just got finished installing Rohos and it is working great. The encryption is a bonus. I am marking this resolved,but if anyone has more suggestions feel free to list them.

      This site is great,each question I have posted has received at least one helpful answer very quickly.

      • Tina
        January 12, 2011 at 1:17 am

        Glad I and others have been able to help you and thank you very much for the feedback! :)

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