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KeePass(X) is a tool to store and manage passwords. It is freely available for

How KeePassX works

  • KeePassX create/open/edit/save password-databases in a single file.
  • A password-database is basically an encrypted file, where you can store your various usernames/passwords/URLs and also attachments like pictures or other important / private documents.
  • A password-database can only be opened if you know the Master-Password. The Master Password is the key to all your stored passwords.
  • If you forgot your Master-Password, you cannot access your stored passwords anymore.
  • Encryption -- either the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) or the Twofish algorithm are used for encryption of the database in 256 bit sized increments
  • All features: http://www.keepassx.org/features/

Using KeePassX on the Thinlinc terminals

  • Start KeePassX:
    • Ubuntu / Thinlinc: Applications > Accessoires > KeePassX

    • command line: keepassx
  • You can use the same password database on different computers if they have KeePassX installed.
  • When opening KeePassX with a database, you will be asked for the master password of the file.
  • When a password database is open, KeePassX "locks itself" after a certain amount of time. After that you have to unlock the file again with your master password.
  • You can hide/view usernames and passwords by clicking on "View" --> "Hide Usernames" and "View" --> "Hide Passwords"

  • You can right-click on an entry and choose "Copy Username to Clipboard" or "Copy Password to Clipboard". You can then paste the password. After a few seconds, the password is no longer stored in the Clipboard.

Creating a Password Database

  • Click on "File" --> "New Database..."

  • you will be prompted to set a master key. Input your master password (the master password for all your other stored passwords). Then click "OK"
  • repeat your master password. click "OK".
  • chose a group. (Standard choices are Internet of eMail. You can also create your own groups).
  • click on "Entries" --> "Add New Entry..."

  • Input the information you need
    • Title: a short description of the entry
    • Username: your username
    • URL: on what homepage do you need the password
    • Password: your password
    • Repeat: repeat your password
    • Comment: a longer description of the entry
  • click on "File" --> "Save Database"

  • chose a location and a name for your password database. click "OK"

Sync Database via cloud

  • Only use a cloud service if you need to sync your passwords over several devices.
  • Decide on your own:
    • Pro 'cloud':
      • the same password on all devices.
      • creates automatically backups.
    • Contra 'cloud':
      • If your cloud access is compromised or the cloud service provider is compromised: the thief owns the treasure.
  • US based cloud provider like Google Drive, Dropbox, Apple iDrive, Microsoft OneDrive:

    • Those services are very attractive to hackers.
    • The NSA has the right to get all data from US companies. After Snowden it's for sure, the NSA is not friendly.
    • Rule of thumb: Don't use US hosted / company based services for confidential data.

  • Local cloud storage provider:
  • How to:
    • On all computers where you want to sync your KeePass database file, install and configure drive.math.uzh.ch

    • Open the KeePass database file on all of your devices directly from switchdrive folder.