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EncFS is a program which provides an encrypted virtual filesystem for Linux using the FUSE kernel module ( see http://sourceforge.net/projects/avf to download the latest version of FUSE ). FUSE provides a loadable kernel module which exports a filesystem interface to user-mode. EncFS runs entirely in user-mode and acts as a transparent encrypted filesystem.

Usage

Technology

Backward Compatibility

At the top level of the raw (encrypted) storage for an EncFS filesystem is a configuration file, created automatically by EncFS when a new filesystem is made.

In Encfs versions 0.2 to 0.6, the file was called ".encfs3" - meaning version 3 of the Encfs configuration file format (earlier versions 1 and 2 were prior to the encfs public release). EncFS 1.0.x used ".encfs4", and the Encfs 1.1.x uses yet another format (".encfs5"). The encfsctl program can be used to show information about a filesystem.

Encfs 1.1 can read and write to existing filesystems, but older versions will not be able to mount a filesystem created by a newer version, as the newer versions use algorithms and/or new options which were not previously available.

Utility

In addition to the encfs main program, a utility encfsctl has been provided which can perform some operations on encfs filesystems. Encfsctl can display information about the filesystem for the curious (the encryption algorithm used, key length, block size), and more importantly it can also change the user-supplied password used to encrypt the volume key.

Dependencies

Encfs uses the OpenSSL toolkit (http://www.openssl.org) by default. OpenSSL is not covered by the GPL, and some people are concerned about the licenses being incompatible. Although I believe it should be clear that I intended to allow linking encfs with OpenSSL, I will make it more explicit:

As a special exception to encfs's GPL license, the copyright holders give permission to link the code or portions of this program with the OpenSSL library, and distribute linked combinations including the two. This exception should be construed as narrowly as possible to allow OpenSSL to be used and distributed as part of encfs.