Spotty performance mars this security app

Advertised as a virtual flash drive, novice users should opt instead for a more intuitive program.

Though advertised as a virtual flash drive, this is another in a long line of encrypted hard-drive folder managers. Virtual Flash Drive's main interface is secondary to the application's drive creation window. That's where the action occurs.

Operating the app caused a bit of confusion for some testers. Some complained that after install, the app wouldn't load. Clicking the Start menu icon merely loaded a browser window. Others found that the app loaded correctly the first time, but crashed with an error on the second run. Most problems were solved by following the program's instructions to reboot after installation.

When Virtual Flash Drive works, the key was filling out simple text boxes and pull-downs on the install dialog. Users can easily set a volume size, location, password, and password reminder. The app quickly installs and formats the encrypted folder. When the program is logged on through the tray icon, users treat the encrypted folder as any other drive. Log off and the folder is unreadable.

Changing folder size, password, and location is easily accomplished through unlabeled function buttons on Virtual Flash Drive's plain log-on interface. Though the app sports a short 15-day demo, most experienced users will be able to quickly determine if this encrypted folder app fills their needs. Novice users might be put off by the errors, and should opt for a more intuitive encryption program.

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