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Windows Vista: BitLocker Drive Encryption

BitLocker Drive Encryption is a data protection feature Microsoft included by default into the Enterprise and Ultimate editions of Windows Vista and into the upcoming Windows Server 2008, formerly codenamed Longhorn, scheduled for availability on February 28, 2008.

Essentially, BitLocker will encrypt all the data on a machine running Vista Ultimate Enterprise, Ultimate or Windows Server 2008, safeguarding it from unauthorized users. Ideally, BitLocker will deliver data integrity and protection in conjunction with a Trusted Platform Module, but a TPM is not mandatory for the feature to function. Still, in a corporate environment, a Trusted Platform Module 1.2 chip bundled with BitLocker will support system integrity checking, designed to ensure that the computer was not tampered with.

Microsoft is offering resources addressing the issue of implementing the technology in a corporate scenario. “The Windows BitLocker Design and Deployment guides describe the various aspects of planning for deploying Windows BitLocker Drive Encryption for Windows Vista Enterprise and Windows Vista Ultimate computers in an enterprise environment,” the Redmond company revealed.

Windows BitLocker design and deployment guidelines offer two different perspectives over the data encryption technology built into Vista Ultimate and Enterprise. The “Windows BitLocker Drive Encryption Design Guide provides a systematic approach when planning for BitLocker deployment and highlights the main decision points. The Windows BitLocker Drive Encryption Deployment Guide provides detailed instructions on how to prepare Windows Vista images for BitLocker and how to deploy BitLocker in an enterprise environment,” Microsoft informed.

BitLocker is an integer part of Microsoft’s commitment to delivering an enhanced security architecture with Windows Vista. The technology protects the data, the installed applications, and even the code of the operating system by encrypting the Vista file and system. In scenarios where a computer is stolen, or improperly decommissioned or recycled, BitLocker will ensure that unauthorized access to the stored data is not possible. This in addition to protecting the data against software attack tools and when transferring the computer’s hard disk to another machine.

Microsoft, Windows Vista, BitLocker, Drive Encryption


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