Review: Access secure passwords with KeePass Password Safe Professional Portable

Access your stored passwords database from any compatible PC with this portable freeware.

KeePass Password Safe Professional Portable stores secure (i.e., long) passwords and cryptographic keys in a secure database and recalls them with a single master password or key-disk (such as a USB drive). With KeePass, you no longer need to memorize long alphanumeric passwords, or, worse, keep using the same unsecure, easy-to-remember passwords. KeePass Portable is just like the installed version, only it runs from a thumb drive or similar device without installation. It's a great way to back up your KeePass Pro installation since you can open and view your password database on any compatible PC (Windows 98 to 8). KeePass Portable v2.23's updates include a password quality algorithm for evaluating password strength and an improved System Tray menu.

KeePass Portable's plain but efficient user interface is in keeping with its mission to make something complicated as easy as possible. If you have an existing KeePass database, you can just open it in KeePass Portable, but if not, step one is to create a new database, which you can do from the File menu or toolbar. The Create Composite Master Key wizard evaluates your new password for strength and lets you enter a key file or provider plug-in, if needed. KeePass can also use Windows User Account Data, but read the notification carefully if you choose this option! If you're not sure about this (or any) step, clicking "Help" will open the browser-based KeePass Help Center.

After some setup choices (click Tools/Options to change them) our database opened with sample entries displayed. A sidebar categorized passwords under General, Network, Internet, Windows, Homebanking, and E-mail. Each category can hold as many passwords as you need. You simply select the password from a list and click to Edit it or double-click to open a menu including an Auto-Type option that enters the password wherever the cursor is resting. KeePass Password Safe Professional Portable works well on its own or in tandem with the installed version.

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