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What is the difference between FileVault 2 and Disk Utility Encryption?

Also, what is the better/safer option encrypt disk when reformatting then install mac OS or install mac OS without encryption and setup encryption with FileVault 2?

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Both, do the same thing, that is to encrypt your hard drive. However, the difference is in the approach and can be disastrous if you’re not careful with it.

Point 1:

When you use the Disc Utility to create an HD with Mac OS Extended (journaled, encrypted) - it will “Format” the drive (any data that you have on it will be lost, forever), it will then ask you set up a password. Once you’ve provided the info, and click Ok. It will format the hard drive within minutes (depending on the disk size of course). This is faster, but a destructive process.

When you use FileVault - it encrypts the hard drive while maintaining the data within it. This is a slow and reversible (i.e. You can turn FileVault ON/OFF as you choose) process, often takes a few hours. But, if you need to preserve the data on the HD, then this is the way to go.

Point 2:

FileVault can be enabled in System Preferences > Security & Privacy > FileVault to encrypt the existing data on the internal HDD on a Mac.

Disk Utility > Erase can be used to format an existing or new partition and encrypt the volume as Mac OS Extended (Journaled, Encrypted).

Conclusion:

If you’re concerned about the privacy of your files and user data, and your computer contains information that shouldn’t be seen without authorized access, you should absolutely use FileVault disk encryption.

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  • Thank you. If you don't mind me asking, where online can I find more information like this? My goal is to have my mac book pro setup with a web development environment but have it hardened so my privacy is secure but without causing networking or hardware issues during development. Nov 21 '19 at 17:29
  • There are lots of documents on the Apple page. But, I strongly recommend to have File Vault and it is with version 2 now. As in the company also, I have been using this for a long period. So you will be good if you have FV enabled.
    – Udhy
    Nov 21 '19 at 17:31

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