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Easy way to password protect recorded CD's/DVD's/files?

by mike62 / July 7, 2005 3:15 AM PDT

Is it possible and if so is there an easy way to password protect a CD or DVD in which I save digital pictures or video to?

Also, files too. If I have a family computer and want to set up a sensitive folder lets say is there an easy way to keep anyone other than myself from opening it? Thanks for any help.

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by John.Wilkinson / July 7, 2005 3:54 AM PDT

In Windows XP you can right-click the folder and select 'properties." Go under the "sharing" tab and click "make this folder private." That will ensure tht the files inside can only be accessed by you. (Note that by default in XP, all files in the My Documents folder are restricted to access by computer administrators.) However you didn't mention what OS you have, so this may or may not help.

On CDs/DVDs, you have a couple of options. First, using Windows, you could place all of your files in a compressed folder, then password protect it. If you want to hide the file names (not just prevent the opening of the files), you'll have to place the compressed folder inside another compressed folder with a password.

Another option is to purchase an encryption utility, which will encrypt all of the files you transfer to the CD/DVD. Some will require you to encrypt each individual file prior to transfer, but depending on your CD/DVD burner and software (you didn't mention what you use), some software will let you just drag the file to the CD/DVD and automatically encrypt it with the rest.

The best method of protection, however, is to place the CDs in either a hidden location or a small safe...protecting them both from prying eyes and theft/damage.

Hope this helps,

P.S. Note: If you're asking for technical help, please be sure to include all your system info, including operating system, model number, and any other specifics related to the problem.

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by mike62 / July 7, 2005 4:02 AM PDT
In reply to: Well...

I am using XP Home as my OS. I understand you can set up user accounts in XP but I have not done so and any family member has equal access I guess I would have to set up accounts in order for the default you mentioned to work?

If it is not to much trouble how do you place files in compressed folders to password protect and once done so how do you access them? Sorry for the dumb question.

I have not purchased a DVD burner yet trying to figure out which one is best mainly want to back up digital pics and maybe some VHS movie conversions. If I use an encryption tool how does that work once I want to view the contents?

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by jackintucson / July 7, 2005 4:49 AM PDT
In reply to: Now....

WinZip v9. It gives you plenty of options and is based on the tried and true PKZIP utilities.

and life goes on...


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by John.Wilkinson / July 7, 2005 5:49 AM PDT
In reply to: Now....

To use either the ''my documents'' foler or ''private folder'' options, you'll need seperate user accounts. For the ''my documents'' method, only computer administartors will be able to acess the files. (Although anyone with administartive privleges, including your wife, would have full access.) For complete security, use the ''private folder'' option I mentioned before, which allows only your user name one else...even other administartors. You can also make the ''my documents'' folder private if you want...adding one more layer of protection.

To set up user accounts, go start->control panel->user accounts. from there it will guide you through creating or changing a user account, adding passwords, etc. While there, you may want to disable the ''guest'' account as it is often exploited by both guests and hackers. Also, if there is a user called ''ASP.NET,'' don't worry about was created because you have Microsoft's .NET software installed, which is required for some of their services.
There is no such thing as a dumb question!
For a guide to creating and using password-protected compressed folders, check out Microsoft's guide.

A few other things:
* With large chunks of data, this can become quite a long process.
* In addition, you have to remove the password, then add it again, each time you place a new file in the compressed folder. (The password only works on files already in the folder at the time of protection.)
* Anyone can still see the file names (and a picture preview, if available). To prevent this, you must place the compressed folder inside another compressed folder.
* You can access the files inside by just opening the folder and entering the password when prompted. However, to edit the file, you must un-password-protect the folder, remove the file, modify the file, place the file back in the folder, then re-password-protect the folder.
* By default dragging a file/folder into the compressed folder will only create a copy there (leaving the oringial still unsecured). To prevent this, hold down the ''shift'' key while dragging the files into the folder.
Each encryption program works slightly differently. However, here are some general ''guidelines:''
* You can encrypt individual files or create an entire ''database,'' which is like a folder.
* The database cannot be accessed at all...even the file names are protected.
* Some programs will let you make the database hidden, so only someone who knows where it is can find/open it. Otherwise it will remain ''invisable.''
* You can just drag and drop files into it, like the compressed folder. (Again, hold down the shift key to prevent copies from being made.)
* Enter your password to open it, then close the database to secure it again.
* You can usually edit the files in the database without removing them from the database.
* Some programs will only let you dopen the database on a computer that has the program, while others are ''self-contained'' can open them on any computer.
* Encryption software will prevent you from playing your VHS conversions on a DVD player...they will only be able to be accessed from a computer. However, you could always hook your computer up to your TV (using the TV as a monitor) and play them that way.

I recommend the excryption utility CryptoForge, which offers a 30-day free trial.
Depending on the bruning software you have, you may have to ''cut'' the database from the CD/DVD and place it on your computer to edit it, then cut-and-paste it back to the CD/DVD. This is because Windows XP does not support the drag-and-drop function, or editing a file on a CD/DVD, natively. Thus, you may need software such as Sonic's DLA, which makes the CD/DVD work like a floppy, and simplifies everything. (Note that if you use DLA, you'll only be able to write to the disk from computers with DLA installed, although almost all drives will still be able to read it.)

Hope this helps,

P.S. If you have any other questions, please feel free to is never too much trouble.

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(NT) (NT) Great answer John...
by jackintucson / July 8, 2005 5:34 AM PDT
In reply to: Methods...
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Thanks John....let me ask you this...
by mike62 / July 11, 2005 4:20 AM PDT
In reply to: Methods...

Great info. John! Let me ask you this I was reading the Microsoft site and did a compressed zipped file on the "C" drive and desktop as it illustrated and it seems to be working fine and I also password protected the contents. A couple of questions:

1. Is the compressed zip on the "C" drive just for choice/illustration and you can put one on the desktop, C drive, or anywhere right? You dont need a base file on the C?

2. Is it possible to password protect the entire folder so that you can "drag and drop" into the compressed zip folder? During my initial experimentation I had to password each individual item I placed into the folder. I would like to just "dump" stuff in there and it automatically receive the password protection for the whole folder does this make sense?


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Windows compressed folders...
by John.Wilkinson / July 11, 2005 7:17 AM PDT

To answer your first question, you can create a compressed folder, and then move it, anywhere you want. (No base file needed on the C drive.) This goes for all of your hard disks, as well as removable media that's properly formatted.

Note: When using Windows XP's burning "software," you must create the compressed folder on your hard drive, then burn it to the CD/DVD media. However, some third-party apps, like DLA, will let you use your CDs/DVDs like floppys, enabling drag-and-drop abilities, thus allowing you to create the compressed folder directly on the media.
Unfortunately, this feature is not supported by Windows' standard compressed folders. You must drag-and-drop all files to the folder, then password-protect it. In order to add more files which will be protected, you must remove the password, add the files, then password-protect the folder again. Third-party vendors (such as Winzip) may support this feature, but I haven't seen it yet. As far as I know, this ability is restricted to files stored in "private folders" (previously noted) on your hard drive (not available on removable media) and encryption utilities (available everywhere, but at a cost).

Hope this helps,

P.S. Congrats on your six-month anniversary here at Cnet!

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On adding files to WinZip passworded archives:
by Paul C / July 11, 2005 10:43 PM PDT

WinZip does this easily. You can drag files to the archive (whereupon you'll have some encrypted files and some not encrypted in the archive), then open it in the WinZip Classic view. Click "Encrypt", and the app will ask you to twice retype the password you previously assigned to the archive. Click OK after that, and the new files will be encrypted. You need not remove the existing password.

Just thought you'd like to know...

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Not bad...
by John.Wilkinson / July 12, 2005 2:38 AM PDT

I stopped using WinZip when I got Windows XP, and rarely use Windows ME anymore, so I didn't know that. Thaks for the heads-up.


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Problem Solved
by broker4000 / August 1, 2009 7:26 AM PDT
In reply to: Well...


Thanks for you information on password protected files. I found it very useful.

<a href="">michael</a>

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Easy way to password protect recorded Cd's/DVDs/files?
by henrydog3bones / July 14, 2005 11:26 PM PDT

I am not sure about Cd's but for all my passwords and banking I use the free version of Cryptainer LE.

This program allows you to set up as many virtual disc's as you want with each drive letter having up to 25 MB of space. Because they are virtual drives they do not show up unless the Cryptainer program is open and running. The password can be as long as you like (a passage from a book if you want so it makes it impossible to crack).

I have been using it for a year now with no problems at all. It even restores with drive C if I have to do a ghost back up restore, so there is no need to do a back up of the data stored on the virtual disc's.

You can buy the paid for version if you need a lot more space but 25 MB is a lot of space for text!

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Password protect recorded CD's/DVD's/Files
by firefly / July 15, 2005 1:25 AM PDT

I'm not sure about removable media but I've been using "Zero Footprint Cryp" a free encryption software I found on CNET. This has worked well for me for over a year now. I have the same home situation.
You might want to experiment with it on removable media


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Encrypting CD/DVD
by barmac831 / July 15, 2005 8:58 AM PDT

If you make the CD/DVD yourself (as opposed to a commercially obtained prerecordede CD or DVD), try CryptaFlix (for video files) or CryptaPix (for still images) at

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Two approaches
by sp10_retired / July 15, 2005 11:08 PM PDT

Paranoia is not a bad thing when dealing with financial and personal data that you may have on a PC. I found that using compression software for "active" files on my PC is quite cumbersome. You have to constantly extract the compressed file each time you need to access the data. You also have to remember to re-encrypt the file when you are done accessing the data. I have been using Axcrypt that I found on CNET for over a year now. Works like a charm. It encrypts files (even to the point of encrypting the file name). Passkey can be retained in PC memory. This allows a double click on the file to decrypt the file and open the file in its native application (i.e. Excel, Word, Turbo Tax, etc.). When the application ends the updated file is automatically encrypted again. Very seamless. For my back up files on CD/DVD I also use the encryption capabilities of my compression software (PKZIP) in my case. Hope this helps.

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by altini_s1 / August 8, 2005 11:59 PM PDT
In reply to: Two approaches

It is a simple program that create a password protected folder ...

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Did I remove the Trojan completely? (2 Questions)
by Oceang1rl / July 16, 2005 12:14 AM PDT

I have recently gotten rid of a Trojan worm by using the Avast virus tool remover, but my computer is still running slower, even after also running an adware/spyware removal program. I figured that this probably because of my old system, (Win2000Prof. w/128/1gb).

Now I have a newer PC (Win2000Prof.w/256/20gb)and I would like to know how to transfer all my files, documents, etc. to the new PC without possibly transfering any trojan affected files (if that is possible). Normally I would use a jump drive, CD's and floppy's, but I wasnt sure whether I would also transfer viruses between computers or if this is even possible.


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WinXP Home versus Pro
by clamo88 / July 16, 2005 12:16 AM PDT

Several people have made suggestions about protecting folders and encryption that are not available in XP Home Edition. Go to
to review what is available to you as an XP Home user. You will have to find other programs (beyond WinXP) to do any encryption or securing of folders and files.

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To hide your XP folders.
by Mendieta / July 16, 2005 3:59 PM PDT
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by mihasoft / October 6, 2008 9:31 PM PDT

I am not sure that it is possible to password protect Video DVD..
But it is possible to protect CD/DVD with files. Look at This program can create password protected (encrypted) DVD/CD/USB Sticks with autoplay module..

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Is that compatible across the usual machines?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / October 6, 2008 10:01 PM PDT
In reply to: well

Here we have the collection of Windows 98 to Vista as well as the Apple Mac, and a few Linux machines. Did they make this so it runs across these and for DVD content, the usual DVD player?

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for cd ,dvd password protect
by himanshuneo007 / November 18, 2008 12:14 AM PST

dear someone Is you know something can i protect my cd with password

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The Posts In This Thread Should Help...Did You Read Them?
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / November 18, 2008 2:39 AM PST

...and if so, did you try the suggestions given in those posts? There are some ideas that should help.

Hope this helps.


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Password protect CD and DVD with Folder Lock!
by GeraldineC / December 16, 2008 8:36 PM PST

<a href="" target="_blank">Password Protect CD</a></u> with Folder Lock.

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