I am currently using BestCrypt Volume Encryption for my data security needs. And it works pretty well for the most part. But...it isnt free, and not 100% open source.
Some years ago I had been using DC (with Windows 7) and I really liked it. But I ultimately had to abandon it due to it not working with most of the backup imaging software I was testing, like:
TeraByte Image for Windows
To this day I have struggled to find an imaging solution that works well with disk encryption and with few downsides. In particular I want:
hot imaging (i.e. imaging while Windows is booted)
ability to restore a backup to an encrypted partition without having to reencrypt after restore
ability to back up only used space while omitting free space
fast and reliable
small backups, with the ability to do full/incremental/differential backups
ability to restore compressed files in their compressed state
ability to backup/restore a partition/volume from either Windows or Linux (i.e. OS-agnostic)
Can back up other filesystem types besides NTFS/*FAT* (like ext4)
ability to truly exclude files/folders from the image (from what I have read this is not technically possible due to sectors not necessarily corresponding to files/folders.....but surely a file/folder must live in a given sector(s). Some imaging programs have workarounds that allow this, but they can be unreliable and hacky at best
But getting back to DC, backing up worked fine but restore almost always failed (I mean that the DC volume is mounted and the restore is in progress). And I believe I have recently discovered the cause:
When encrypting a volume, DC creates a file in the root called $dcsys$. This file can be read just fine, but DC's driver prevents all attempts to modify it....which affects the ability of imaging softwares to restore this file, you just get a cryptic error or a generic access denied message. All other files/folders on the volume seem to restore fine. So to prevent this behavior you must exclude it from a backup. However, this seems to run contrary to how imaging softwares work.
I know I can also do a file/folder based backup as opposed to imaging, but this seems not a good idea (not advised by many) with the C drive in particular.
So I'm looking for input from users who currently still use DC with Windows (and which Windows version along with partition table type used). As well as what imaging/backup solutions you use (as well as mentioning whether you restore in an encrypted state, or whether the volume is mounted in DC during a restore, or do you just format/restore/reencrypt in that order.
I personally like DC and havent gave up on going back to ut, in particular:
wide array of encryption algorithms, including cascaded algorithms (the latter of which BCVE doesnt support)
Fully transparent encryption (as opposed to TrueCrypt/VeraCrypt which only transparently encrypt C drive but not other non-system volumes)
Bootloader portability (it can boot from ISO, network, or from a file, etc), no absolute necessity for it to install boot code in the MBR)
Untested ideas: May be able to encrypt a vhd or an img booted by Grub4Dos and mounted by SVBus), also want to test in a ramdisk scenario
I may later resume a topic I created about general backup/imaging solutions (encrypted or not)
Thanks for any input (feel free to offer input even if you dont use DC but are familiar with encryption)