I think there is a solution to this.
I tested out Curtain E-Locker and it pretty much solves all the issues pointed in your post.
Basically it can manage login and rights even if its offline.
The way they implemented this does not create any overhead on performance.
Any idea how much that costs?
I have a major dislike for companies that do not reveal their pricing - because that is the first question that needs answering when it comes to getting purchasing authorised.
Their "request a quote" link is error 404...
I use an encrypted container in which all important data is stored. If required, it will be mounted as a hard drive in order to work with the data. In case I lose my laptop, nobody except me has access to the data in this container. I am using TrueCrypt 7.1a. It's open source and, according to today's standards, still safe enough, although it's no longer being developed further.
I wonder, if I create a partition for my work data, and put my vault view there, then I should be able to use the included with windows professional bitlocker on that partition?
I had a reply from my VAR (solidsolutions) about using bitlocker on a drive where the vault view is placed:
Further to your enquiry regarding BitLocker. I’m afraid that the official answer from SOLIDWORKS is as follows.
“SOLIDWORKS Quality Assurance (QA) does not test Bitlocker Drive Encryption for SOLIDWORKS PDM. Therefore, SOLIDWORKS PDM does not officially support Bitlocker Drive Encryption.”
This does not mean that it will not work, however it does mean that if you did implement this and subsequently have a problem, then we would not be able to get any support from SOLIDWORKS to resolve the matter.
For the original question there is an Enhancement Request SPR (963675) to “Add some data protection mechanism while accessing files in offline mode” and I have voted for this on your behalf making a suggestion that one workflow could be to ask the user to enter their password when going offline, then storing this and using it to authenticate client side only whilst working offline.
I have the contact :
Coworkshop Solutions Limited
Unit 2, 9/F Asia Trade Centre,
79 Lei Muk Road, Kwai Chung, Hong Kong
HK Mobile: +852 6077 2623
China Mobile: +86 14714409030
Tel: +852 2776 6161
Fax: +852 2776 6183
Support Hotline: +852 8199 0642
When you work off line, with the computer disconnected from the vault server, you can still read all your files, save copies of them, and build new assemblies out of them - depending on how you have set up your caching.
I have chosen to have a complete vault copy in my cache (on my laptop), so I have all my design data when I am offline. The minimum would entail just the files accessed in the last session in the local cache.
While you get prompted to log on to access the offline files, you can just exit that and still access the files.
So you might vote for this:
Enhancement Request SPR (963675) to “Add some data protection mechanism while accessing files in offline mode”
Furthermore, you can read all the files in the cache, using dos for example (easily found but i wont publish where here) So anyone could mount your hard disc and read them.
I have found I can place the vault view on a disc partition that has bitlocker activated. Everything on that partition is encrypted. To read it they need the chosen bitlocker password, and perhaps also the windows user password.(or a bitlocker "oh sh1t" key that it gives you when you set it up).
The vault seems to work without too much of a performance hit opening and closing files and saving them (my testing is not yet extensive).
This only affects the locally stored data I am travelling with, so it is not a risk to our live data on the server back at base - unless by some screw up an encrypted file could get from my laptop and over write the one on the server...
Anyway its working so far. Bitlocker is included in windows 10 professional so there is no added costs.
I don't take any responsibility either