Free Secure Password Managers and Password Savers

Store and organize passwords, fill in forms automatically

Free Secure Password Managers and Password Savers

These free password managers or password safe software lets you organize the (probably) large number of passwords and usernames that you have in a single, convenient location. You can usually sort them in categories, search for a particular user name or website or category, and even have the software fill in your web forms automatically or when you hit a hot-key. The file, or database, where the software stores your passwords is typically encrypted, that is, encoded in such a way so that a cursory examination of the file with a text editor won't reveal your secrets. You can then use a master password to access that database. This lets you to remember a single password instead of multiple. Some of the tools also let you use key files, which you can place on a portable USB flash drive and plug into the computer, before the main database is usable. In addition, some of the utilities can be installed onto a thumb drive and be carried around for use on other computers.

If you prefer commercial software that will synchronize your passwords across all devices (so that you can access websites that require passwords on your mobile phone as well as your laptop/desktop computer), there is also RoboForm, which incidentally also offers a free version (although the free version does not sync, if that's your intention).

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Free Secure Password Managers and Password Organizers

Lain (Windows) New

This open source password manager of Windows has a plain and straightforward user interface where you can store the usernames and passwords for your various internet accounts. The program can be set to automatically lock after a user-specified period of inactiviy, and has a random password generator if you don't want to come up with your own password. This is a .NET program.

KeePassXC (Windows, Linux, Mac OS X)

This password manager, based originally on KeePassX (which has not been updated for a few years as at this writing), which in turn was based on KeePass (see elsewhere on this page), is an open source password manager. Features include web browser integration, password-strength meter, auto-type (where the program automatically types for you things like your username and password), password generator, etc. Unlike KeePass, this program is a native program on all supported operating systems; that is, it does not rely on the .NET Framework or Mono (the open source .NET workalike for non-Windows systems).

KeePass Password Safe (Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, PocketPC, Smartphone, etc)

This is an free, open source password manager that allows you to store all the passwords you need to use in a single database. You only need to remember the master password for the database instead of all the passwords for the various websites, network logins, etc. If you prefer, you can also use key files instead of a master password. The database (ie, file) that stores your passwords is encrypted (using the AES, Rijndael and Twofish algorithms, with SHA-256 as the password hash). If you want additional security, you can also lock the database to your current Windows user account, so that it can only be opened when you are logged into that particular account. The software is portable, and can be placed on a USB stick. (It doesn't have to be installed to run, nor does it create any registry keys or store anything on the system.)

Other features include the ability to import your passwords from a variety of file formats, including CSV, ASCII text, etc; the ability to export to TXT, HTML, XML and CSV files; easy backup and tranferability of the database file (it's a single file that can be easily copied anywhere); support for categories and groups for organising your passwords; support for hotkeys; secure Windows clipboard handling (with timed clipboard clearing); searching and sorting; multi-language support; strong random password generator; etc. It also has a plugin architecture, so that if you want additional features, you can look for an appropriate plugin to do the job. For example, at the time I checked their site, a plugin that lets you synchronize using online storage providers was added (or perhaps it's just a new version of the plugin). Versions are available for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, Blackberry, PalmOS, U3 devices, BartPE Windows bootable CDs, etc. The Windows version requires the NET framework to be installed; the non-Windows ones use Mono (an open source .NET workalike) runtime libraries.

Password Safe: Simple and Secure Password Management (Windows)

This open source/free software lets you generate passwords, store/save, organize and retrieve your passwords. You can sort them by your user ID, a category, a website, or a location. Your passwords can be encrypted in a single database or multiple databases, which you may want if you want to separate, say, your work and home passwords. They can then be acccessed only with a master password.

Password Dragon: Free Easy and Secure Password Manager (Windows, Mac OS X, Linux)

This program is able to run even from a USB thumb (flash) drive. It stores information like your user ID, password and the URL it is associated with. It is also able to generate random passwords, so that you don't have to crack your head to create a new one for every site you use. The files where it saves the passwords are encrypted using the Blowfishj algorithm, and you only have to remember the master password. Other features include the ability to launch a URL from within the program, application inactive timeout (where it locks the program if it is not used for a certain amount of time), support for categories, the ability to copy userids and passwords to the clipboard, a password strength indicator, multi-language support, the ability to export all or selected records to HTML and XML, the ability to import your passwords from existing text files, and so on. Since the program is written in Java, it is able to run on any machine that has a Java Runtime Environment or its clones installed, including Windows, Linux and Mac OS X.

Any Password: Store Passwords, UserIDs (Windows)

This tool stores your user ids, passwords and related information in an encrypted file (encrypted using the IDEA/MD5 algorithms) which you can access only with a master password. It is also able to generate random passwords. You can search for any stored information using an incremental search function. The information is presented in a tree form. The program is free for individuals and not-for-profit charities, otherwise, you will need to get a paid licence (or "license" if you use US English). It has a multilingual interface, and supports a number of languages including Bulgarian, Chinese Simplified, Chinese Traditional, Danish, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Lithuanian, Norwegian, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Slovak, Spanish, Swedish, and Turkish. This is a Windows XP program.

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