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#1 2013-03-29 03:26:58

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

First post in this forum,greetings everybody.

Permission to introduce myself.
I am the founder and current maintainer of a project called "zuluCrypt" hosted at: http://mhogomchungu.github.io/zuluCrypt/

The package exists in the repository(i hope thats the right terminology here) located at: https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/zulucrypt/

The git version is at:
https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/zulucrypt-git/

The basic idea of the project is simple,provide a simple to use GUI and CLI solution for management of LUKS,PLAIN as well as TRUECRYPT encrypted volumes.

The private questions and comments i have got the most from users of this distribution is the perceived redundancy of zuluCrypt and zuluMount and i though i should introduce the project and explain the difference.

There is redudancy when it comes and opening and closing of encrypted volumes but each tool has its unique features.

zuluCrypt manages encrypted volumes only,its primary purpose is to support all features of cryptsetup that make sense in a desktop system.It can create and open LUKS,PLAIN and TRUECRYPT volumes as well as save and restore LUKS header backups and add or delete keys from LUKS based volumes.

zuluMount is simpler in its ambitions and all it does is open and mount encrypted as well as unencrypted volumes and hence can be seeing as a possible alternative to udisks or udevil among other tools that deals with mounting of block devices.

would also like to thank "salan54" for maintaining the package in this distribution and for his continuous testing,bug reports and feature recommendations.The LVM support for example is all due to him.

Last edited by mhogomchungu (2015-12-02 16:44:04)

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#2 2013-03-29 13:38:04

Strike0
Member
From: Germany
Registered: 2011-09-05
Posts: 1,277

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

Greetings!
Thanks for introducing your tools, I was unaware of them - the GUI looks great. Very handy & useful when one jiggles a lot of mappers I am sure.

Last edited by Strike0 (2013-03-29 13:39:16)

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#3 2013-03-29 23:49:31

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

Strike0 wrote:

Greetings!
Thanks for introducing your tools, I was unaware of them - the GUI looks great. Very handy & useful when one jiggles a lot of mappers I am sure.

greetings to you too.
zuluMount-gui is meant to be used as a general purpose,GUI based,file manager independent mounting tool that can also handle encrypted volumes.It also has an option to automount plugged in external mass storage devices.

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#4 2013-03-30 13:55:23

Salan54
Member
Registered: 2011-09-06
Posts: 23

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

This tool is great !

Most often, I use light DE (Openbox, fluxbox) and I lacked the possibility to automount volumes and display a file manager as soon as I plug a USB stick or an external HD (As it is the case with Gnome or KDE).
I add this line to my  "~/.config/openbox/autostart.sh" :

zuluMount-gui -e -m mimeo &

and that does the trick ! (-e to have the gui launched minimized in the tray, -m to use mimeo instead of xdg as my file-opener)

I also use zuluCrypt-gui or zuluCrypt-cli to open encrypted containers or files : it works with PLAIN, LUKS or Truecrypt encrypted devices, files, containers... you name it. No need to be root. It is mounted in /run/media/private/yourname/... and accessible read/write without any hassle !

Well, I like it and that's why I packaged the zulu tools in AUR ;-)

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#5 2013-06-03 12:58:53

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

just though i should update this post to speak of the new version.

Just released version 4.6.4 and this version adds support for creation of normal as well as hidden truecrypt volumes.

This project may be a good alternative if you:
1. are managing both LUKS and TRUECRYPT volumes and want a single tool to handle both.
2. are managing TRUECRYPT volumes but are not a fan of truecrypt's problematic license[1]
3. want a desktop environment/file manager independent solution for management of encrypted as well as unencrypted volumes that may reside in files,partitions,lvm volumes as well as mdraid devices.
4. just want to mount your usb stick or image file without dealing with udisks,polkit,consolekit among other tools.

Neat tricks added in this version:
1. volumes in files(encrypted and unencrypted) can be opened by just drag and drop them in the GUI components.

For the functionality to be enabled,a user must first install tcplay[0] before installing/updating zuluCrypt

[0]https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/tcplay/
[1]https://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Forbidde … #TrueCrypt

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#6 2013-09-03 20:17:39

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

just though i should update this post to mention a new version is out.

changelog:
- add support for opening truecrypt system volumes
- add internationalization support
- zuluMount-gui is now aware of volumes that are mounted or unmounted outside of it. This gives zuluMount-gui an ability to automount newly attached devices.
- encrypted volumes that reside in files can be opened simply by drag and drop them in zuluCrypt-gui or zuluMount-gui windows

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#7 2013-09-08 13:48:58

Anoniem
Member
Registered: 2013-07-17
Posts: 43

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

Nice, good tool!

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#8 2013-11-24 20:34:26

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

@Anoniem,
thanks

just though i should update this post to inform of a new release.

Most noteworthy addition the addition of lxqt wallet for secure storage of volumes keys.
This allows a user to manage volumes keys in libsecret or in an internal storage system powered by libgcrypt in a GUI window within zulucrypt.

zuluMount also has more features to give more information about encrypted as well as unecrypted volumes.

Last edited by mhogomchungu (2013-11-24 22:24:01)

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#9 2014-01-17 15:22:42

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

Just though i should update this post to inform that the update of libgcrypt broke zuluCrypt and the solution is to rebuild zuluCrypt against updated library.

thanks for using zuluCrypt

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#10 2014-02-02 18:50:03

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

greetings,

Just though i should update this post to inform of new version of zuluCrypt.

version 4.6.8 brings the following features.

1. support for multi device btrfs.
2. together with tcplay 2.0.0,zuluCrypt will now be able to save truecrypt header to an external file and restore it from the external file.
3. zuluMount will now be able to open a PLAIN volume at a user specified offset.This ability will allow a rudimentary support for having a hidden volume like functionality with cryptsetup.
4. a new CLI tool named "zuluSafe-cli" is added.This is a simple CLI tool to store securely one or more files in a single encrypted container.

Last edited by mhogomchungu (2014-02-02 18:50:26)

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#11 2014-09-11 22:22:49

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

quick comment to inform of new update to version 4.7,3

This version adds the most frequently requested feature - adding the ability to change
crypto properties of a volume about to be created.

Additional feature is the ability to change a TrueCrypt volume key.

New version can be downloaded from: https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/zulucrypt/

Screenshots of the GUI window that adds the functionality are below:

http://i61.tinypic.com/n1xf9s.jpg

http://i62.tinypic.com/fu46cm.jpg

List of supported crypto options can be seen from this link: https://github.com/mhogomchungu/zuluCry … e.cpp#L230

The first conditional statement is for plain dm-crypt volumes.
The second conditional statement is for LUKS volumes.
The last conditional statement is for TrueCrypt volumes.

Last edited by mhogomchungu (2014-09-11 22:26:04)

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#12 2014-09-11 22:55:30

ninian
Member
From: United Kingdom
Registered: 2008-02-24
Posts: 694
Website

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

mhogomchungu wrote:

quick comment to inform of new update to version 4.7,3

Thank you for all your work!
smile

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#13 2014-09-23 07:26:25

chickenPie4tea
Member
Registered: 2012-08-21
Posts: 287

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

would this work with a volume I encrypted with Encfs.
or would I have to un-encrypt it with Encfs and then copy the files to a volume created with your tool?
I was using Cryptkeeper to mount the volume and then a script just using encfs commands.


You can like linux without becoming a fanatic!

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#14 2014-09-23 15:00:32

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

chickenPie4tea wrote:

would this work with a volume I encrypted with Encfs.
or would I have to un-encrypt it with Encfs and then copy the files to a volume created with your tool?
I was using Cryptkeeper to mount the volume and then a script just using encfs commands.

No,it will not work with encfs volumes.

encfs volumes does what is called file system encryption where as zuluCrypt does block device encryption.

If you want to start protecting your files using zuluCrypt,you will have to create block device encrypted container
and then transfer your files over.

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#15 2014-09-29 05:40:42

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

Video reviews are more informative than text description and screenshots and
below are two links to video reviews that shows zuluCrypt in action.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tb39XAsnixo

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l7uvVyhU0JI

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#16 2015-03-01 09:57:25

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

Just though i should update this post to inform of a new zuluCrypt release.

changelog for version 4.7.5:

-- add abilities in zuluMount-gui to hide useless entries like windows recovery partitions from view.
These entries can be set to show/hide through tray icon context menu.

-- add ability to mount and unmount encfs volumes in zuluMount-gui.A folder with encrypted files can be unlocked by dragging it and then dropping it on zuluMount-gui main window.

-- add ablity to create TrueCrypt volumes using a passphrase together with one or more keyfiles.Previous versions allowed creation of volumes using either a passphrase or a single keyfile.

-- add support for opening of VeraCrypt[1] volumes(cryptsetup >= 1.7.0 required).

[1] https://veracrypt.codeplex.com/

the new version can be obtained from: https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/zulucrypt

Last edited by mhogomchungu (2015-03-01 09:59:31)

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#17 2015-03-01 10:08:31

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

chickenPie4tea wrote:

would this work with a volume I encrypted with Encfs.
or would I have to un-encrypt it with Encfs and then copy the files to a volume created with your tool?
I was using Cryptkeeper to mount the volume and then a script just using encfs commands.

zuluMount-gui can now be used as a GUI front end to encfs.

Just drop an encfs folder on zuluMount-gui and a password prompt to unlock the volume will be generated.

The easier way to unlock your encfs volume is to set it up as a favorite volume so that you can just right click on zuluMount-gui icon->favorites->your encfs volume.

Volumes on favorite list are added in zuluCrypt-gui->options->favorites.

I can give more detail instructions if you cant figure out how to add a volume into the favorite list and unlock the volume when accessed from the list.

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#18 2015-03-01 13:46:35

clfarron4
Member
From: London, UK
Registered: 2013-06-28
Posts: 2,162
Website

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

I might actually give this a try, as it looks pretty darn good from the screenshots.


Claire is fine.
Problems? I have dysgraphia, so clear and concise please.
My public GPG key for package signing
My x86_64 package repository

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#19 2015-03-23 18:57:25

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

an update to this post.

version 1.6.7 of cryptsetup was just released[1].

This version allows support for unlocking of VeraCrypt volumes[2].

The latest released version of zuluCrypt(4.7.5)[3] can unlock VeraCrypt volumes if atleast this version of cryptsetup is used.

The git version of zuluCrypt[4] has an additional ability to create VeraCrypt volumes when atleast this version of cryptsetup is used.


[1] https://code.google.com/p/cryptsetup/so … 0c771458bd

[2] https://veracrypt.codeplex.com/

[3] https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/zulucrypt/

[4] https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/zulucrypt-git/

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#20 2015-06-05 08:15:43

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

quick update to inform of a version 4.7.6 release.

most important feature of this release is the added ability to create VeraCrypt volume.

Latest version of cryptsetup is no longer necessary to get TrueCrypt and VeraCrypt support as these abilities
are now given by an internal copy of tcplay.

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#21 2015-09-01 14:29:03

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

quick update to inform of a version 4.7.7 release.

Important changelogs are:

1. GUI components can now be resized and new dimensions survives restarts.
2. VeraCrypt volumes that use a PIM value can now be created and unlocked.

Currently,creation of veraCrypt volumes with a PIM value can be optained only from CLi and an example of how to create a VeraCrypt volume with a PIM value of 15 and password of "xxx" is:

zuluCrypt-cli -ck -d /dev/sdX -t vcrypt -p xxx -g "/dev/urandom.aes.xts-plain64.256.sha512.15"

From CLI,an example of how to unlock the above volume with zuluCrypt-cli is:

zuluCrypt-cli -o -d /dev/sdX -t vcrypt.15 -p xxx

From CLI,an example of how to unlock the above volume with zuluMount-cli is:


zuluMount-cli -m -d /dev/sdX -t vcrypt.15 -p xxx

The functionality is exposed in the GUI only with zuluMount-gui and the option to enter the PIM value is on a menu that is shown when
the "options" button is clicked on the password prompt.

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#22 2015-12-02 16:51:39

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

quick update to inform of version 4.8.0.

Most interesting new feature that is in this version is the ability to manage encrypted volumes using a combination of a passphrase and keyfile.

The key is generated by a formula: key = hmac_sha256( passphrase,keyfile )

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#23 2016-03-01 11:03:46

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

quick update to inform of version 4.9.0 release.

changelog:
-- add support for unlocking cryfs[1][2][3] encrypted folders in zuluMount.
        [1] https://github.com/cryfs
        [2] https://www.cryfs.org/
        [3] https://www.cryfs.org/comparison

Last edited by mhogomchungu (2016-03-01 11:04:19)

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#24 2016-03-19 12:51:19

firekage
Member
From: Eastern Europe, Poland
Registered: 2013-06-30
Posts: 470

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

Sorry for stupid question...but how to open all favourite volumes without need to open each single one? I added them to list, just like in veracrypt, but i have to open single one.

Also, there is somethig more. Volume added to favourite can't be opened frome here because zulucrypts says : error invalid security key (password for the container/file). The same password works if i open it not from favourite volumes but by Open > veracrypt container in a file.

What is wrong?

The last question: wahy it opens container almost 2 minutes? I own quad core Skylake 6700K from Intel. Veracrypt opens all my containers (around 10-12) much faster, in about 2 minutes all of them are opened, not single one.

Lastly - how to disable auto open mounted container? I don't want dolphin to pop up when zulucrypt opens container.

Last edited by firekage (2016-03-19 12:56:13)

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#25 2016-03-20 05:26:03

mhogomchungu
Member
Registered: 2013-03-29
Posts: 67

Re: introducing zuluCrypt,a GUI solution for block device encryption

1.
It is currently not possible to unlock all volumes in the favorite list with a single operation. Will look into how veracrypt does it and see if i can do the same in zuluCrypt.

2.
The favorite feature does not work with VeraCrypt volumes in zuluCrypt. Use zuluMount-gui for that. Install zuluCrypt from git[1],start zuluMount-gui and your favorite list from zuluCrypt-gui will show up in zuluMount favorite list(they share the favorite list),click the veracrypt entry you want to access and at the dialog box,tick "veracrypt volume",enter the volume password and the volume will unlock.The "veracrypt volume" checkbox will be remembered and hence you only have to tick it once if you only manage veracrypt volume.You can leave it ticked if you are opening a LUKS volume since the option is ignored if the volume is found to be a LUKS volume.

3.
Most of the effort and time that goes into unlocking a veracrypt volume is spent in creating a hash of the user password. If you use the default veracrypt options since they are tried first, the time it will take to unlock the volume will be more or less identical(about two minutes in your case). Unlocking multiple volumes took the same about of time probably because the the conversion process was spread out across your CPU cores in your computer.

4.
Use zuluMount-gui. Click "menu" and then unselect the option to auto open mount point.




[1] https://aur.archlinux.org/packages/zulucrypt-git/

Last edited by mhogomchungu (2016-03-20 05:29:06)

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