I use a portable USB drive (Seagate FreeAgent Go Flex) to keep all my personal stuff, and though the HDD company does offer a password scheme to control access to it, that would work only on windows, as one could easily mount it in Linux and bypass it.

I'm looking for a solution that would encrypt the entire drive, making it impossible to read/write anything without knowing the password. Does anyone know of any security tools (open-source would be the best !!) that would enforce this regardless of the OS being used to mount the HDD ? If not, what alternatives would you suggest to safeguard the data ?

  • I recommend VeraCrypt, the successor to TrueCrypt. Apr 14, 2016 at 5:18
  • Note that in most cases, it is possible to overwrite the entire disk even if it is encrypted - the only exception is an ATA password on the actual drive controller. Which you might not be able to do over USB. Apr 14, 2016 at 6:47

1 Answer 1


Edit TrueCrypt is now defunct. So this answer requires work...

TrueCrypt is what you're looking for.

Other (paid) solutions include PGP Desktop, and Jetico BestCrypt.

  • 1
    Don't forget that for Truecrypt to work you need to have admin rights at the system you will use the disk.
    – George
    Oct 6, 2011 at 10:44
  • Truecrypt is great. It's free, opensource, and works on Linux, Windows and Mac OS X Oct 6, 2011 at 11:48
  • 1
    Truecrypt meets every one of your requirements. Don't forget to DONATE! :)
    – MToecker
    Oct 6, 2011 at 13:43

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