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How to password protect a backup?

This article applies only to Backup4all. If you don't have it yet, you must download it first.

May 23, 2018

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How to password protect a backup?

Passwords are used to protect your backup files from unauthorized access. This article will show you how to password protect a backup.

On this page:

How to set up the password

The Encryption Settings window is shown in the Compression page under the Type section of the Backup Properties window or in the New Backup Wizard. The button is available only for full, incremental, differential and mirror with zip backup types (not available for mirror without zip).

By default the No encryption option is selected. If you want to protect your backup, you can choose the type of the encryption to be used. The Zip(2) compatible encryption offers moderate security but is compatible with all third party zip applications.

The best choice is the AES encryption which is the new standard in ZIP protection, but is recognized only by the latest version of third party zip applications (like Winzip or PKWare). Backup4all supports AES encryption in 3 different key strengths: 128-bit, 192-bit and 256-bit. These numbers reflect the size of the encryption keys used to protect the data - the higher the number the stronger the encryption. All three types provide higher security than the password protection method.

When choosing a password, it is recommended that you use a combination of letters and numbers and at least a 6 character long password.

You should manually enter the password in the New password field and re-enter it in the Confirm new password field to avoid typing errors.

The Old password field is enabled only when the backup job already has a password. You can change the password only if you enter the old one in this field.

This way only the owner of the backup will be allowed to change the password.

The system makes it possible to set different passwords for the same backup job, so the backup may contain zip files with different passwords. Make sure that you remember all passwords that have been used for a backup job, or you will not be able to restore your files.

How to Remove the Password

In the Backup Properties -> Compression page, go to Encrypt the zip file section, select the No Encryption option and enter the password that you used in the Old password field. You cannot remove the password if you don't provide the old one.

If you have the Zip(2) compatible encryption or AES encryption option selected, you can also remove the password by entering the Old password and leave the New password and Confirm new password fields empty.

Using Passwords when Restoring

During the restore process of backups with password protection, the Enter Password dialog will appear. Enter the password and press OK. If you do not know the password for this backup number you can:

  • press Skip backup to go to the next archive - the restore may be incomplete in this case.
  • press Stop restore to stop the whole process - the restore will be incomplete, because only a part of the files were restored.