We all have a few personal files and folders on our PCs that we don’t want other users get access to. Hide files and folders feature present in Windows 7 operating system is very helpful feature when you want to quickly hide a file or folder.
The problem with the feature is that it can only hide a file or folder and it can’t protect files/folder with a password. It’s really sad that even the newest version of Windows doesn’t let you password protect single files and folders. While BitLocker is available in higher editions of Windows 7 and Windows 8 to encrypt an entire drive, it’s not useful to hide one or two folders.
If you want to protect your confidential data from others with a password, you need to use a third party tool such as Free Hide Folder.
With Free Hide Folder one can lock one or more folders with a password. The tool sports a very basic user interface, but works fine on Windows 7. On the first run, you need to set a master password to start adding your confidential folders to list.
Hit the Add button located in the toolbar to browse to the folder that you want to password protect. Note that just by adding a folder to the list you can’t hide it. Once added, select the folder in the list and then click Hide button. Likewise, select the folder and then click Unhide button to release the folder.
Use the Backup option to export your password protected folders list. You can restore the data any time if something goes wrong. Secure Folder is another free tool to lock folders with password in Windows.
If you are a using a free folder protector on Vista and Windows 7 let us know in comments.