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Quick Crypt 1.0

Encrypt individual files with AES 256-bit protection for free

by Nick Peers

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License: Freeware
Operating Systems: Windows 7 (32 bit), Windows 7 (64 bit), Windows 8
Requirements:

.NET Framework 4.5 required; 2GB RAM, dual-core processor recommended

Languages: English
Software Cost: Free
Date Updated: 19 May 2014
Watchlist: Add download to my watchlist
Downloads To Date: 942
Developer: Valkova Technology
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Quick Crypt 1.0
Quick Crypt is designed to encrypt and decrypt individual files with the minimum of fuss.

The best way to protect sensitive files from prying eyes is – of course – to encrypt them. But you don’t necessarily want to store files in an encrypted container or even encrypt an entire drive, as is the case with TrueCrypt and its ilk.

As its name suggests, Quick Crypt offers a fast and easy way to encrypt – and later decrypt – individual files on the fly. It’s portable so can be taken with you (and your files), but you will need the .NET Framework 4.5 installed on any computer you run the app from.

It’s simple to use on an ad-hoc basis. Fire up the program, then click the button next to Target File to select the file you wish to encrypt, or simply drag it into the dialog box from an Explorer window. Enter a suitable password, add a hint if you think you’ll need it (accepting this reduces the security of your file), then tick "Erase Target File" to delete the original if you wish before clicking Encrypt File to create an encrypted copy with a .qcf file extension.

Decryption is done from within the same program – you’ll find the password hint button to the right of the browse button. You can also use the program to generate a secure password via the clipboard – this will need to be recorded somewhere safe – and Quick Crypt also supports encrypting files using a separate key file for additional security too.

The tool also comes with a secure erase tool for deleting sensitive files more thoroughly than Windows’ own tool. Other options include being able to set the encrypted file to expire after a set period, plus you can tie the file to your main PC by generating a unique System ID, which makes it impossible to open the file on another computer, even if the password is cracked. You can also add a shortcut to the SendTo folder for quickly encrypting selected files too. These settings can also be stored in profiles for easier retrieval.

Verdict:

If you want a simple file-based encryption tool that doesn’t involve entire drives or encrypted containers, Quick Crypt is well worth investigating.

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Spotlight: Free Full Software

Spektrel Art 1.0.0

Free Full Commercial Software

Spektrel Art is a stand-alone program and Photoshop plugin which transforms digital photos into "magical art that glimmers and gleams with intersecting lines of tapered light".

What does that mean? Essentially it applies a configurable mix of effects, enhancing edges, smoothing backgrounds and emphasizing colours. Take a look at the thumbnail for one example, and the official product page has more.

Spektral Art works much like any similar tool. Open an image, click one of the thumbnails to apply a particular preset, or click a few buttons and drag some sliders to fine-tune the results.

There's surprising scope for variation, too. For example, just switching from the "Light" to "Dark" theme can transform a bright and friendly image into something dark and sinister, at least in some cases (results vary depending on the source image).

Please note, the demo version doesn't allow images to be saved.

SPECIAL OFFER: as we write, the developer is offering Spektral Art for free. The offer expires August 29th. Please note that you must provide your name, address and phone number to receive your free license.

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