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syd kahn
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Java is supposed to be portable, I have a thumb drive that is very portable. Why can't i find any example code out there that someone has toyed with building any apps that sit on the thumb drive and run on any machine with an installed JVM...

I have this insane desire to build a simple crypto client that uses BouncyCastle to protect content on the thumb drive from prying eyes.

A Simple GUI that prompts for a file and then stores it on the drive encrypted... Seems that it would be something that would be desireable to do...

Seems rather trivial - can't believe that no one has though/done it....
 
Chad Clites
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Probably nobody has considered doing it because it seems counter-intuitive (at least to me). If I have data that is sensitive enough to be encrypted, then there is no way I would want to carry it around on something small enough that could easily be lost. And what function would it fulfill? Data can be securely transferred over a network in a myriad of different ways without the risk of losing the media on which it is written.

Not that I am saying that you have a bad idea... I'm just sharing my view on it.

EDIT: And you seem to be mixing concepts of portable.. Java is portable, meaning that it can run on any OS capable of running the JVM. You are using portable in the context of 'one can carry it around'.
[ November 29, 2005: Message edited by: C Clites ]
 
Jesper de Jong
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Originally posted by syd kahn:
Java is supposed to be portable, I have a thumb drive that is very portable.


But the word "portable" means two entirely different things in this sentence.

As fas as I know, you can buy USB drives that have security stuff built-in, not only in software but even in hardware. You can also buy portable harddisks with encryption. I don't have one of these, but I guess you can only access the data on them after entering a password.
 
Ray Stojonic
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Without researching it, I'm going to guess that what gets put on the drive is considered data (as opposed to executable code).

For this to work, I suspect the drive would have to interface with a 'server' app on the host computer via some client software in the key's ROM (much like they do now...). Which means installing something on the host computer for the drive to even work, much less use its 'encryption' routines.

So...maybe a new USB key driver spec that would specify encryption abilities in addition to the existing abilities? Unfortunately, Java isn't a good choice for writing drivers.

A quick search on google (encrypted thumb drive) reveals that there are people out there thinking about encrypting their thumb drives, and several examples can be found. What they lack, in terms of your idea, is portability. They all seem to rely on OS specific host apps to encrypt the data before putting it on the drive.

On that note, a (portable) Java app could be written that would en/de-crypt data and store it on a usb key.
 
syd kahn
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Precisely because it is portable � and I have been known to lose things in airports and such � I would not want the finder to see whatever I have on there.

A Java GUI � simple straightforward and small � would sit on the drive � along with some jvm�s just in case the customer doesn�t have one installed. This is a backup functionality � I would use a more robust application on my normal systems � but when I get a new laptop � or my laptop dies at a presentation � I would have all this to fall back on�

I suspect that making it a PGP symmetrical style encrypted would be more than adequate for the simple stuff that one would trust on a thumb ( a future projection of sales and strategies presentation for instance) � and encrypt each file singly � instead of trying to build something that looks like a drive�

Lots of people want encryption on a thumb drive � and are not willing to pay big $�s to get it. Look for the traveler mode of some of the encryption products� and with simple thumbs going for 10$ lately -


I�m gona get a command line thing going first then try to build a Swing gui applet � shouldn�t be all that hard � I was just hoping to not re-invent the wheel� looks like this one has escaped the obvious � keep you�all informed� TTFN
 
Jesper de Jong
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Syd, here's an example of an USB drive with built-in security:
Lexar JumpDrive Secure Flash Drive, 1GB (for $99)
 
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