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AxCrypt is a free, open source file encryption program for Windows®. It is one of the oldest file encryption software, developed since 2001.
You can use it to encrypt, decrypt, compress, store individual files, etc. However, it also offers certain unique features such as automatic re-encryption after modification, double-click to edit any application, no prior user configuration required before use, command line interface for advanced users that perform different scripting and programming tasks, etc.
Note: We decided to list this free encryption program despite certain controversial practices in the past which included 3rd party software bundles. The latest versions were clean and considering the long-time development and the effort of the developers we have listed AxCrypt.
Important: AxCrypt does not require an Internet connection to work although some features might not function properly if your device is not connected to the Internet. Although AxCrypt requires an email address (this is a common critic), you can provide a fake one or use a service such as Mailinator ( this is a free, web-based service that creates email addresses when new messages are received, that require no registration). As we understood from a forum post on the official site, the email requirement might be removed in the upcoming versions.
Trademark Note 1: Microsoft®, Windows® and other product names are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.
Are you looking for a free software program that encrypts individual files? AxCrypt just might be the answer. This no-cost, small size download works on all recent Windows operating systems.
Though AxCrypt does not encrypt drives, it works quite well for encrypting multiple files. You can encrypt files one-by-one or place files in a zip file and encrypt the entire zip in a streamlined and consolidated manner. All you have to do is right click the file you would like to encrypt, select your preferred encryption option and watch AxCrypt work its magic.
To open the file, simply double-click it like you normally would and enter the password when prompted. If you would like to find all of the files that AxCrypt has encrypted on your computer, perform a search for “.axx.” This is the extension for the files AxCrypt encrypts.
The program relies on public key cryptography for completely secure file sharing. It also provides secure file deletion secure online storage for passwords.
The program's PKI exchange of secure files is straight to the point. Just click the “sharing” icon located on the toolbar. Type in or click the intended contact's e-mail address.
Proceed to send the file to your desired contact. However, it must be noted that a recipient who has not installed AxCrypt will be forced to install the software to open the shared file. The e-mail explains this to the recipient.
Thankfully, AxCrypt does not cost any money, so it will merely take the recipient a few minutes to download the software. The transmission also provides the recipient with an embedded confirmation code of six digits.
The User Experience
AxCrypt is a relatively easy program to use. As long as you are confident in the local security of your computer, you should have no reservations when it comes to relying on AxCrypt for encrypting files. You can edit the files you previously encrypted with ease.
Each operation moves along at a fluid and rapid pace. If you are interested in accessing advanced PKI features, you'll find them conveniently placed under the menu labeled as “Key Management.” This is the section where users can import public keys that are shared with them and export public keys to share with others. It is possible to export and import full accounts.
In the end, computer novices, tech experts and those who fall somewhere in between, will all find AxCrypt to be straightforward and user-friendly in every regard. This program is even designed to store the user's password within its memory. This feature proves quite helpful as long as you don't let your computer out of your sight.
Though AxCrypt doesn't have an abundance of unique features, you can add such niceties with the Advanced Encryption Package. I should mention that many users aren't looking for such fancy bells and whistles and only desire to use the program's basic functionality.
What matters most is that AxCrypt is free, permits single click encryption, doesn't have a steep learning curve and requires absolutely no configuration. This open source program is worth a download.