Password protect folders, lock files and folders with passwords

Folder locked

Password-Protect Folders

If you want to protect folders with passwords without encrypting the files, then Folder Guard is the tool you need. The password protection is instantaneous, no matter how many files the folder contains or how large the files are. However, the password protection takes effect only on your computer, where Folder Guard is running: if you move the folder to another computer, it will not be protected, unless that computer has Folder Guard installed and configured, as well. Read more about Folder Guard...

USBCrypt software

Encrypt external USB drives

If you have an external drive that you want to protect with a password, then USBCrypt is the software you need. This software creates an encrypted area on the external drive that you can use to keep your sensitive files. You can use the encrypted drive with other computers, that don't have USBCrypt software installed. If you lose the encrypted drive, your files will be safely protected with the password you've chosen. Read more about USBCrypt...

How to password-protect a folder with Folder Guard

This software is compatible with Windows 11

You can use Folder Guard software to protect folders with passwords.

To lock a folder with a password: run Folder Guard and drag and drop the folder you want to protect to its window, or click the Lock another folder with a password link:

Use Folder Guard to protect folders with passwords

Select the folder to protect, enter the desired password, adjust the password properties, as needed:

Properties for the folder password

You can specify that the password may be used only by the local users, or by the network users, or both. You can choose the password to unlock a full access to the folder, or give the user the read-only access. (You can create several different passwords for the same folder, giving different access types to the users.)

Now apply the changes and try to open the folder you have just protected. Navigate to the protected folder, and you should see an empty window with the Unlock button in the middle:

The Unlock button lets you unlock the password-protected folder

Click the Unlock button, and prompt for the password should appear:

To open a password protected folder you must enter your password first

If you have entered the correct password, the folder should become unprotected and you should be able to work with the files and subfolders it contains without restrictions, as usual. However, if you don't enter the correct password, the folder will remain protected.

(Note that in order to unlock the folder this way, you need to double-click on the folder in the right-hand panel of the Windows Explorer window. If you select the folder in the left-hand panel that shows the folder tree, the password prompt will not be shown and the Access denied message will be shown instead.)

Now, after you have unlocked the folder, try to close the Windows Explorer window, and you should see a prompt to lock the folder back:

You are prompted to lock the folder when closing the Windows Explorer window

Reply Yes, and the folder will be locked back with the password again, and will remain inaccessible until you enter the correct password again.

In addition to the basic password-protection described above, Folder Guard lets you customize the way it works to suit your specific requirements:

Password-protect and hide personal files and folders with Folder Guard Password-protect and hide personal files and folders with Folder Guard for Windows 11,10,8.

User rating: User rating 4.6/5

Purchase or download a free trial.

  • You can direct Folder Guard to add the Lock and Unlock commands to the Windows shortcut menu. You can use them to lock and unlock the password-protected folders by right-clicking on them, instead of (or in addition to) double-clicking on the folders as described above.
  • If you have locked many folders with passwords, you can make them all accessible at once by running Folder Guard and pausing the protection (you will need to enter your Master password, or course!) When you are done working with the protected folders, run Folder Guard and choose to resume the protection, to lock all folders at once with one click.
  • Instead of locking files and folders with passwords, your can completely hide them!

And more! Please feel free to download the fully functional evaluation version and give it a try. If you don't like it, use Windows Control Panel to uninstall it: no strings attached.

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  1. Nice, but what if I have an external HDD and share it with my son;
    He has his files inside the external HDD, also!!!
    How can I secure (Password-Protect Folders) my files when he take the HDD to his pc;; or to his friends pc’s ;;;; Is there any solution to that;;;;

  2. dimos: looks like USBCrypt is just the software for the task. You can use it to create an encrypted area on the external HD that takes only a portion of the whole HD (from example, a half of it). This way, you could put your own files in the encrypted area and they would be protected with your password. Your son could use the remaining unencrypted half of the drive for his files. Please feel free to download USBCrypt and give it a try, to see how it could work for you (the evaluation version is fully functional!). Good luck!

  3. We are currently using FolderGuard with our small network, to lock a few employee folders. Is it possible also to lock an outlook email folder? Any help would be appreciated if possible.

  4. Martin: Outlook stores the emails in a .pst file. If you restrict access to that file, you would restrict access to the Outlook data. You may also want to visit for information on protecting the Outlook data as suggested by Microsoft.

  5. Finally a protection for my annoying little brother that keep messing up with my work (games,essay,etc) thx man :)

  6. Pl advise how to buy this software and the conditions that apply. Will you give auto update and which all windows version this will support.

  7. R Muthukumar: to buy this software, click on the Purchase button. If you have questions, click on Help!

  8. it is very good application to prevent our personal security but m in trial version, can anybody hep me for license key

  9. Dear siddiq kathat: the trial version does not need a license key, it already comes with a built-in license for 30 days of the full use, free of charge.

  10. বিশাল সফটওয়্যার বানিয়েছ আমি সব ঢেকে রাখতে পারছি!!!!!!!!

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