Workshop: Encrypting hard disks with DM-Crypt and LUKS


Article from Issue 72/2006

Encrypting a home directory is easy. Encrypting your whole hard disk – including the root filesystem – takes a little more effort.

Encrypting individual filesystems is no big deal; in fact, some distributions allow you to encrypt directories as part of the installation routine. But encrypting the home directory on your laptop is a job half done. Dishonest finders can still draw conclusions from log and configuration files. If you’re serious about providing security through encryption, you need to protect the whole hard disk against spying – something that no distribution can do out of the box. Things start to become more complex if you need to protect the root filesystem. Neither Suse nor Debian Linux give users a tool to help encrypt the root filesystem during the install (or later). That means you’ll need to roll up your shirt sleeves for some hands-on configuration

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