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Setting Up Bitlocker after Vista Installation

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Setting Up Bitlocker after Vista Installation

Post by adj1993 on Sat Apr 23, 2011 9:22 am

Bitlocker, the new security scheme in Microsoft Windows Vista and
Windows 7, helps encrypt the entire system drive. This security feature
requires an extra hard disk partition of about 1.5 GB of free space for
the installation of unencrypted boot data, to enable booting from the
encrypted system drive. If you overlooked this and installed Vista
without creating this additionalpartition, you can follow this article
to get Bitlocker installed. I assume that you have some experience with
Windows installation. If not, it is recommended to have a technically
knowledgeable person near you.

As I said, you need two hard disk
partitions to enable Bitlocker. Bitlocker stores the Windows Boot
Manager (the equivalent of boot.ini, the most important boot file, in
XP) in a smaller (1.5 GB at the minimum) activepartition. The main
partition (C:\ drive) is encrypted, and the active partition keeps the
decrypted system boot information to enable booting to the system drive.

BitLocker is available only in the Enterprise and Ultimate editions of
Windows Vista and Windows 7. Users of other versions of Windows can use a
3rd party encryption program to satisfy the need for full drive

Activating the Active Partition

The first step
you need to do is repartitioning your hard drive. Follow these steps
for that. You should backup all your important information inhard disk
before you attempt the steps mentioned (also they are a bit technical,
so the presence of a technically savvy person is much appreciable). Use
Windows Backup tool for backing up all the data to anotherhard disk or a
DVD-ROM. Follow these steps to create the active partition.

1. Free up at least 1.5 GB on your C:\ drive (by deleting unwanted content and programs, you can use Disk Cleanup for this).
Open the Computer Management Console (rightclick Computer from start
menu and click Manage), in it go to the Disk Management option.
Contract the C:\ drive by selecting Shrink Volume from its contextual
menu (rightclick). Create 1.5 GB of additional space through this.
4. Now, create a new volume in the free space by rightclicking on it and choosing New Simple Volume.
5. Format the new drive created in NTFS.
6. Mark this new partition as active from its rightclick menu.
7. Once these are done, the PC will not start normally to Windows. You have to repair the system with your Windows Vista DVD.
8. Restart the computer, insert the Vista DVD, and boot into the Vista Installation screen.
9. The installer will prompt you to repair the system. When the prompt is displayed, click Repair your computer.
If the installer doesn’t automatically detect the problem, go to the
next step. When you are presented with System Recovery Options, choose
Startup Repair. The Startup Repair tool will install the Boot Manager on
the activepartition; now you can remove the DVD and restart the
computer normally.

You have successfully installed the active
partition for Bitlocker. Follow the following steps to enable Bitlocker
in this partition now.

Appointing the Sentry

1. Go to Start menu, and in start search box, type “gpedit.msc” to open the Group Policy Editor.
Go to Administrative Templates->Windows Components->Bitlocker
Drive Encryption, Doubleclick Control Panel Setup: Enable advanced
startup options.
3. Now enable the Bitlocker by clicking in the radio
button Enabled. Also, check Allow Bitlocker without a compatible TPM
4. Once done, you may restart the computer to enable the Bitlocker, though usually it is enabled instantaneously.

installation of Bitlocker is done. You need a USB key to store the
password before encryption. This USB key has to be kept safe, and would
be required in cases of any modification of the encrypted data on the

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