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How to create an encrypted partition?

I have a little Netbook on which I want to install Ubuntu 10.10 (32-Bit) on. However, since it is a portable PC I want to completely encrypt the file system (in case of theft).

Currently it runs Windows 7 Starter and I use TrueCrypt which installs a custom boot loader that asks for the password. I remember from the past that Linux can do that as well by putting /boot on it's own, unencrypted partition.

Since it's been ages since I last worked with file system encryption (I remember setting up LVM and a custom patched grub to ask for the password) I wonder how that would work nowadays and if there is a step-by-step how-to for it?

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marked as duplicate by Marco Ceppi Jun 21 '11 at 15:48

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

    
Possible duplicate: askubuntu.com/q/12576/3940 –  Takkat Dec 30 '10 at 9:14
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3 Answers 3

up vote 3 down vote accepted

If you want to fully encrypt your disk during installation. Use the alternate installer disk. Then follow this step by step guide.

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You won't be able to dual-boot into encrypted Windows by following this guide. –  Takkat Dec 30 '10 at 10:45
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If you want a fully encrypted system (/boot excluded) you will have to install using the "alternate" installer.

http://www.ubuntu.com/download/desktop/alternative-downloads

During the partition stage you will get the option of choosing something along the lines of "LVM + Encryption". If I have understood your question right, that option will give you the install you want.

(The use of LVM is to allow different "partitions" within one Encrypted block.)

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When installing Ubuntu 10.10 you are asked if you want to encrypt your file system by default.

alt text

IMO it is sufficient to encrypt '/home' and '/swap' and leave '/' non-encrypted for better perfomance especially on a netbook CPU. However you need to take care not to deliberately store private data outside /home. See also Encrypted Home.

If you really need to encrypt your whole system with dual-boot to Truecrypt encrypted Windows you need to install Grub to your Linux partition and keep your Truecrypt boot-loader in the MBR. See also Encrypted Filesystems for further reading.

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Thanks, but I want to encrypt / as well, simply because it's a Laptop used for development and I might have sensitive files outside of my homedir. –  Michael Stum Dec 30 '10 at 8:45
    
@Michael Stum: In your question you did say you do want "putting /boot on it's own, unencrypted partition". Take care not to save sensible data outside /home. –  Takkat Dec 30 '10 at 9:10
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