Quickstart

Are you ready to secure your cloud storage? This guide helps you to get started with Boxcryptor and your cloud storage service.

Install Boxcryptor

Boxcryptor v3

Required macOS Version:

  • Requires macOS 12.0 or later. Please note that we do not officially support beta versions of macOS. New versions of macOS, however, will be supported by Boxcryptor as soon as they have been officially released by Apple, sometimes even a bit in advance.

File Synchronization:

  • Boxcryptor v3 includes the full functionality for fast, smooth and secure synchronization of your files and folders. It is all you need installed on your Mac to work with encrypted files in Dropbox, OneDrive, Google Drive or any other supported cloud provider. You can remove your cloud provider’s client from your Mac.

Security:

  • Boxcryptor v3 is a native “File Provider” app which works “out-of-the-box" on modern macOS operating systems. Additionally, the app is fully utilizing the macOS sandboxing security mechanism.

Encryption of locally stored files:

  • Files stored locally on your Mac are not encrypted by Boxcryptor anymore due to technical limitations by Apple’s File Provider platform. File Provider apps must store files in cleartext on the local filesystem so that their content can get picked up by macOS and presented to the user. This affects file contents and file names.
  • Here’s the encryption state by location:
    • In the cloud: Files are always protected by Boxcryptor’s encryption
    • On your Mac with FileVault: Files are protected by FileVault’s encryption
    • On your Mac without FileVault: Files are not protected (not recommended)
  • We strongly recommend the use of local full-disk encryption for every Mac – regardless if you are using a previous version of Boxcryptor for macOS or the new Boxcryptor for macOS Beta or even if you don’t use Boxcryptor at all. Full-disk encryption is an integral part of local device security and can easily be achieved by turning on FileVault on any Mac.

By using FileVault, files available in the new Boxcryptor for macOS Beta are still protected by FileVault’s encryption on the local disk despite appearing as cleartext when your Mac is in use. Learn more about FileVault here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204837

Spotlight:

  • A major advantage of the File Provider-API is that Spotlight works out-of-the-box without requiring special handling by Boxcryptor. This means that Spotlight indexes files and folders in Boxcryptor locations automatically and by default. Spotlight support is not an optional advanced setting anymore, but a first-class default experience for every user.

Boxcryptor v2 (Legacy)

Required macOS Version:

  • Requires macOS 10.15 or later.

File Synchronization:

  • Boxcryptor requires the sync client of your cloud provider to be Installed on your system. Most clouds are detected automatically by Boxcryptor, and added as a location to the Boxcryptor drive. If your cloud is not detected automatically, you can add it manually as a custom location.

Security:

  • Because of Apple’s strategy to disallow third party kernel extensions in macOS in order to further secure and close down the Mac operating system, they started to deprecate third party kernel extensions a few years ago and successively made it more difficult to use them. While a kernel extension could be loaded “on-the-fly" in the past, macOS 10.15 Catalina started to require a system reboot during the loading process. Macs with Apple Silicon processors additionally require the modification of the Mac’s Security Policy in Recovery Mode to allow third party kernel extension loading.

System Extension Required Boxcryptor v2 contains a system extension which is required to provide the Boxcryptor drive. As system extensions are blocked in macOS 10.13 and newer by default, you must allow loading system software from developer "Benjamin Fleischer" on first start. Benjamin is the maintainer of the open source system extension used by Boxcryptor.

Encryption of locally stored files:

  • Boxcryptor v2 encrypts all locally stored files.

Spotlight:

  • Not supported anymore.

To install Boxcryptor, download the desired version from our Website.

On first start, Boxcryptor will ask you to finish the installation by entering the credentials of your macOS account with admin privileges. These are not your Boxcryptor credentials.

Create a Boxcryptor Account

We strive to make managing encrypted files as simple as possible. Just set up your Boxcryptor account and we handle all the difficult operations that come with encryption for you.

  1. Start Boxcryptor.
  2. Click on create account.
  3. Follow the wizard to finish the account creation.

Create a password that you can remember, or store the password in a secure place, for example a password manager. Boxcryptor is a zero knowledge encryption software, therefore we cannot restore your password.

If you lose your password, your data will be lost irrevocably.

Due to restrictions from Apple, it is not possible to create a Boxcryptor account within the macOS app. Before using Boxcryptor for macOS, you must first create your account on our web interface.

Discover Boxcryptor

Once you have installed Boxcryptor and signed in with your account, you can add your cloud provider and start browsing your files.

From now on, you can use Boxcryptor to work with your files in the cloud. The app connects with your cloud provider and takes care of uploading and downloading files, as well as decryption.

2-1   Help On-the-fly Simple

Small icons mark the files, and show you whether a file or folder is encrypted Help macOS Overlay Encrypted or not.

You can open the Boxcryptor App by clicking on the Boxcryptor logo in your menu bar. To browse your cloud provider locations, either click the requested location here or open the Finder and go to the Location section in the sidebar.

2-1   Help Bc Icon Mac

Your First Encrypted Folder

All files and folders that you add in Boxcryptor will be encrypted automatically. If you are new to Boxcryptor and do not have any files in your cloud yet, this is how you get started.

  1. Open the Boxcryptor Location of your cloud provider.
  2. Click on Help macOS Button MoreNew Folder.
  3. Add files to the folder and all files will be encrypted automatically, inheriting all permission and encryption properties.

Help macOS Folder Encrypted

How to Encrypt Existing Files

If you already have files and folders in your cloud, Boxcryptor can encrypt these existing files as well.

  1. Go to your Boxcryptor Location.
  2. ctrl-click on a file or folder → Help macOS App Icon Create Encrypted Copy.
  3. Select the appropriate permissions and confirm the operation.

Boxcryptor will then create an encrypted copy of sour selection and automatically upload it to your cloud-provider.

2-1   Help Finder Mac