How to Put a Password on a Non Password Protected Toshiba External Hard Drive

by Robert Kingsley
Your secure password guards the key needed to unencrypt your data.

Your secure password guards the key needed to unencrypt your data.

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Toshiba external hard drives provide a convenient way to carry large amounts of data for use anywhere on any computer. Similar to a flash drive, a Toshiba external drive can be plugged in to the USB port of a computer to access and transfer the data it contains. You can store any digital file including images, music, videos, spreadsheets or anything else. Though this is convenient, it can pose a security threat. You can protect your data with encryption and a password to ensure that only you can access your portable drive. This can be done with free or paid applications.

TrueCrypt

Step 1

Download TrueCrypt from its website and save the file to your desktop (see the link in Resources). Double click the downloaded file and follow the onscreen prompts to install the software. Launch the application.

Step 2

Click "Tools" and select "Traveler Disk Setup." Click "Browse" and navigate to your Toshiba external drive. Click "OK." Check "Include TrueCrypt Volume Creation Wizard." Click "Start TrueCrypt" under AutoRun Configuration. Click "Create." This will move the necessary files to run TrueCrypt from the external drive. This makes it usable on any computer, even without installing the software.

Step 3

Click "Create Volume" from the TrueCrypt window. Click "Create an encrypted file container" and click "Next." Click "Standard TrueCrypt volume" and click "Next." Click "Select File." Navigate to your Toshiba drive and type a name for the encrypted volume. Click "Save." Click "Next." Accept the default encryption values and click "Next."

Step 4

Enter the size of your encrypted volume by clicking a unit of measure (KB, MB or GB) and typing the size in the provided box. To encrypt the entire drive, enter the full amount of free space as listed on the page. Click "Next." Type a password for the volume and click "Next." Select "FAT" for the File System and "Default" for Cluster size. Click "Format." This will create your encrypted and password protected volume.

Step 5

Select an available drive letter from the TrueCrypt main page. Click "Select File" and select your new encrypted volume. Click "Mount." Enter your password and click "OK." Click "My Computer" from the Windows start menu and double-click the drive letter you mounted. You can now view, edit and add files to your encrypted volume.

SafeHouse Explorer

Step 1

Download SafeHouse Explorer from its website (see the link in Resources) and save the file to your desktop. Double click the downloaded file and follow the onscreen prompts to install the software. Launch the application.

Step 2

Click "New volume" and click "Next." Click the "Browse" button and select your external Toshiba drive. Click "OK." Type a name for your encrypted volume next to "Filename" and click "Next."

Step 3

Enter a volume size by selecting a unit of measure from the drop-down list and typing the size in the "Volume Size" text box. Click "Next." Enter a password in the two boxes and click "Next." Deselect "Create a desktop shortcut" and click "Finish." The encrypted volume will be created on your Toshiba drive.

Step 4

Click "My Computer" from your Windows start menu and double click your external Toshiba drive. Double click the encrypted volume you created. Enter your password and click "Open." You can now add files, edit files and delete files from your encrypted volume.

Folder Lock

Step 1

Purchase and download Folder Lock from its website (see the link in Resources) and save the file to your desktop. Double click the downloaded file and follow the onscreen prompts to install the software. Launch the application.

Step 2

Click "Create new locker." Type a password for the new locker and click "OK." Retype the password and click "OK."

Step 3

Click "Add files and folders" and select any files you wish to add. Click "Add." Click "Encrypt Now."

Step 4

Click "Portability" and click "Move to USB Drive." Navigate to your Toshiba external drive and click "OK." Click "Yes" when prompted about Portable Security. This will allow you to launch your encrypted drive without installing Folder Lock on each computer you use. You will be prompted to enter a password when you plug in your drive to a computer. Enter it to view or edit your protected files.

About the Author

Robert Kingsley has been writing technical copy and procedural documents since 2007. He has years of experience with networking and hardware troubleshooting to help guide readers through their information technology-related issues. Kingsley received his associate's degree in computer networking systems from ITT Technical Institute in Woburn, Massachusetts.

Photo Credits

  • Hemera Technologies/Photos.com/Getty Images