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Use an SSD boot drive and keep Users on an encrypted data drive
Authored by: Supp0rtLinux on Oct 10, '12 09:05:17AM

So let me see if I understand the intent here… your desire is to have your OS separate from your user data (similar to how Linux and most UNIX's have a separate /home partition) and you wanted the user data encrypted for security, but you didn't want to encrypt the OS drive as you thought it would slow it down? And, I'm assuming that the 120GB SSD wasn't sufficient enough space for your OS *and* user data combined?

The reason I ask is that I have the same MBP and specs you have, but I also have a 512Gb Crucial M4 SSD. My user data is about 300Gb or so with the bulk being music and movies. However, I went from a 500Gb, 7200rpm drive with no encryption to the 512Gb SSD with full disk encryption and its still hugely faster (sub 7 second boot time and instant resume from sleep). I guess my point is that while this article is great if you have a need to move data around and separate your user data from the OS… if you simply were trying to get rid of a slow HD, you might have been better off to just buy a larger SSD and use full disk encryption. It definitely would've been less work and less risk of doing something wrong, but likely would've yielded the same performance results, albeit at a slightly higher cost.

Also, bear in mind that your encryption options aren't exactly foolproof now. Consider this: you boot from the SSD, but you can't access your user data drive until you give it the decryption key. In other words, its impossible for you to log in unless the user data drive is already mounted. But this means you stored the access to the drive in your keychain. Problem is, since your booting from your SSD *without* encryption on it and having it auto mount the user data drive, all your encrypted data is still technically available to anyone that can boot your SSD with the other drive present. You should probably consider adding full disk encryption to the SSD as well if you want an semblance of actual security via the encryption.



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Use an SSD boot drive and keep Users on an encrypted data drive
Authored by: poenn on Oct 10, '12 02:13:39PM

Exactly what I was thinking! :-)



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Use an SSD boot drive and keep Users on an encrypted data drive
Authored by: biggles on Oct 10, '12 08:29:24PM

Good point - intending to do that. Also firmware password.



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Use an SSD boot drive and keep Users on an encrypted data drive
Authored by: biggles on Oct 11, '12 08:47:25AM

I have now encrypted the boot SSD drive - took only 26 mins for 120 GB - whereas a 500GB regular HD can take 8 hrs or more. Also enabled firmware password and boot time just a couple of seconds longer.



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