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Windows 7: BitLocker: Booting with USB key

06 May 2011   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
BitLocker: Booting with USB key

I am new to bitlocker and am trying to encrypt C drive. I have already enabled USB authentication since my mainboard (P67A-UD3-B3) does not support TPM. My problem is this: in the BIOS, you obviously don't want to set the USB drive as the first boot device, correct? But if so, how can windows recognize the USB before it is even booted? I tried setting the USB as first drive in boot (USB HDD), but then windows fails to boot, which is not surprising. And when it is not set as the first device, W7 boots and I get the bitlocker error message because the USB and the encryption key were not detected.

I also read something about legacy USB support. I am not sure how to check this feature, but my guess would be that today all mainboards have that feature.

Any help would be appreciated.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
07 May 2011   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Could anyone please expain why am I getting "BitLocker could not be enabled" after the restart because my USB key was not detected? I have no TPM and have enabled alternate authentication. I have also tried USB slots directly in the mainboard. I am still getting this error and am unable to encrypt my C drive. My search results haven't turned up anything, as if no one knows what's going on! Very strange.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 May 2011   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

I am surprised that no one was able to offer a solution!

Anyway, I figured this out and here is a solution for future Googlers:

Basically, you do not have to change anything in BIOS. If Bitlocker gives an error, you should try a different USB port. I read somewhere that you should use a USB port on the mainboard itself; however, that solution isn't complete. Sometimes not all of the ports even on the MB will work. I tried that before and it didn't work. This time I tried yet another port and it worked. I think that you must make sure that the USB port you're trying is not for USB3 or isn't colored red (for RAID configurations).

In short, use a regular USB 2.0 port in the back of the mainboard that is colored black. And if that doesn't work, move on to another port and try that. Apparently MS has some robustness issues to fix...

PS: As a last resort, also try to use a different USB Flash Drive brand/model.
My System SpecsSystem Spec


 BitLocker: Booting with USB key

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