CultofMac reader, Ashwin, asks, “I wanted to know if there is way to use an USB stick as a password for my Mac. One of my friends has it for his Windows (machine). So, is there a way to do it for a Mac?”
The concept here is fairly simple: you install a program on your Mac, and then use it to take any USB stick you have and turn it into a secure password device for your Mac.
There are plenty of reasons to want to encrypt the data on a hard drive. Before OS X Mountain Lion, Apple provided tools to do this with the startup drive, via FileVault. Starting right now, however, with OS X 10.8, you can encrypt almost any external drive you like, including flash drives (also known as thumb drives in my neck of the woods). Here’s how.
Apple’s line of MacBook Airs never shipped with an optical drive and now the Mac Mini has joined the party. The new Mac Mini, released this week, no longer includes one of these drives either. If you want an optical drive to use with these Macs you have to purchase an external USB SuperDrive. Now the arrival of the new MacBook Air and Mac Mini herald the death of the USB thumb drive.
You might be surprised to find out that neither these systems ship with a set of DVDs or a USB thumb drive that you can use to restore, repair or reinstall Mac OS X.
LaCie’s latest, the MosKeyTo thumb drive — get it? Har. — is a product that manages to pull off the nearly miraculous: it’s not only just 20mm long, or about the same size as the nanoreceiver of some wireless mice, but it’s actually garnered our interest enough to break our oath and yet again hit the keyboard to write something about the most boring species of gadget on earth: the USB storage dongle.
It’s not the specs, which are standard. It’s not the price: 4GB for $17.99, or 8GB for $27.99. It’s not even the drive’s tininess. No, we’re writing about it to call attention to the official product image above, featuring a giant mosquito wildly fornicating with its namesake on the lid of a MacBook Pro.
Congrats on catching our attention, LaCie! Time to give someone in your art department a raise.