Monday, September 11, 2023

Ventura File Encryption Problems

Howard Oakley:

Until Ventura 13.2.1, encrypted sparse bundles seem to have worked as advertised. Although Disk Utility has never offered an easy way to change their passwords, that could be accomplished interactively using hdiutil in Terminal.


When asked to compress an item in Apple Encrypted Archive format, the app prompts the user for what it claims is a password. Instead what it’s actually doing is informing the user of their randomly generated key required to decrypt that archive.


As of Ventura 13.5.2, and probably in the first release of Sonoma, two of those five robust options for encrypting files and folders aren’t sufficiently functional for normal use. The bug in changing passwords for sparse bundles needs to be fixed, and shortcomings in passwords for Apple Encrypted Archive need to be addressed in Archive Utility.

Disk image passwords can also be changed using DropDMG, and it can change them in bulk, but alas it is also affected by the hdiutil bug in recent versions of Ventura.

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