Sync Hacks: How to Manage Your Passwords with BitTorrent Sync & 1password

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Sync Hacks is a column dedicated to exploring new applications for Resilio Sync (aka BitTorrent Sync), as built by users like you. Resilio Sync is a free, unlimited, secure file-syncing app. If you’ve got an epic Sync idea, use-case or how-to, shoot us an email at team[at]resilio.com.

In this week’s Sync Hacks, we have Arnoud Vermeer’s (@funzoneq) tutorial on how to use BitTorrent Sync & 1password to manage your passwords on all platforms, without handing over your sensitive information to a third party. Read his original blog post excerpted below.

Introduction

I use 1password for managing all my passwords. I need to be able to access these passwords on all platforms (Mac/phone/tablet/PC). And I need to be able to keep these passwords in sync across these devices. The 1password app natively supports Dropbox, so I have been using that for a year or so.

But the thought of having my sensitive information on a third party service like Dropbox bothered me. 1password stores my passwords in an encrypted format, but I don’t want it to be available to “third parties” at all.

Why BitTorrent Sync

So I set out to find an alternative. Preferably one that doesn’t include a cloud storage provider.

My first consideration was to run my ownCloud somewhere, but I already run a bunch of infrastructure, and I really don’t want to manage more.

The thing is: my 1password file only changes ones a day or so. So running a service full time, to only manage once a day sync, is a bit excessive.

My next option, was to hack something using rsync and push out a change to my devices once every so often. But I travel a lot, and my mobile phones / tablets don’t have a static IP and/or are behind NAT/Firewall. All these things can be overcome, but it would become a pretty hacky project.

Then I came across BitTorrent Sync. It uses the Bittorrent protocol to sync my files, without requiring central storage or a cloud provider. And it has support for all the platforms I require. It works great. Here’s how to get started

Steps

1. Install Bittorrent Sync on your computer and your phone (Android or iOS). I created a folder to sync called “BTSync” and copied my 1Password.agilekeychain in there.


2. Now, couple your devices. Open BitTorrent Sync.

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3. Ctrl + Click (right click) the folder you want to sync -&gt

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4. Connect Mobile Device -> Full access
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5. On your device, choose add folder, scan the QR code and you are set! Just wait a little while for your keychain to propagate. When that is done, it is time to point the 1password app where to go.

6. Open the 1Password app on Android -> Press the … in the right bottom corner -> More -> Update Sync Settings ->
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7. SD Card -> Select the directory that you “BTSync” -> Select the 1Password.agilekeychain ->
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8. Set Data File Location. And you are good to go! Cloudless, synced 1password keychains!

Arnoud Vermeer (@funzoneq) is a hacker with an interest in privacy and security.

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