A Practical Guide To Using KeePass To Encrypt Your Passwords

Nowadays, if you are anything like me, you are probably having to come up with a great many different passwords for all the various accounts you use on your computer and across the web. Hopefully, you are making these passwords long and complex so that they are hard to guess but that comes with a drawback – they are devilishly hard to remember!

One solution available to you is KeePass which allows you to store all your usernames and passwords in one single secure and encrypted file. This file is then protected by a single ‘master key’ as well as an optional level of extra protection which can be generated via typing random characters and making random movements with your mouse.

I’ve written about KeePass a few times before and how it can help you with secure password storage and management and today I’m giving you a quick pictorial guide as to how exactly you can use this great program –

getting started with KeePass

After downloading KeePass you will more than likely have to reboot your computer. After this you will then need to load the program up.

  1. From the first screen you see you will click on ‘File’ and select ‘New’.
  2. In the box that pops up, as see in the image above, enter a name for your new encrypted database.
  3. Lastly, click ‘Save’.

creating master key

  1. Next you will need to enter a Master password for the database. Like other passwords, ensure this is long and difficult to guess.
  2. Check the ‘Key file / provider’ box to add an extra layer of protection as seen below.

entropy collection

At this point you’ll be presented with the Entropy Collection window and you have 3 tasks to complete here –

  1. Move you mouse round the box on the left like a crazy fool in order to generate random bits.
  2. Type some gibberish in the box on the right.
  3. Click on ‘OK’.

adding passwords

After clicking ‘OK’ again you can get started with adding your passwords to your secure and encrypted database.

  1. On the two pane window you see, right click on the right hand side.
  2. Choose ‘Add Entry’.
  3. Now you can start adding your passwords, clicking ‘OK’ after each.
  4. If you add several passwords then you can categorise them by using the headings in the left hand side of the window.
And now you are done. Simple huh?
About Lee Munson

Lee's non-technical background allows him to write about internet security in a clear way that is understandable to both IT professionals and people just like you who need simple answers to your security questions.


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