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10-17-2020

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Power On Password and Encryption on Intel T14s

2020-10-17, 23:11 PM

My university has issued me a new ThinkPad T14s (Intel model/500G SSD) and, partly due to the IT challenges of the pandemic, given me pretty much free reign over how I administer it, provided that I stick to some basic parameters, one of which is that I use full-disk encryption. My preferred OS is Manjaro, which makes FDE rather difficult. However, my understanding is that the drive for this model is a self-encrypting disk (Opal), which could obviate the need for me to enable FDE independently in Manjaro. I had a couple questions on this point, which I was hoping folks here could help me with.

 

First, my understanding is that FDE is enabled by default on my T14s and that changing the BIOS password is sufficient to enable the security I need. If that's incorrect, please disabuse me of this notion.

 

Second, I'm trying to enable the Power On password setting in BIOS, but so far have not been prompted for a password at boot. It does now request a password when, for example, I want to open the BIOS settings. But there's otherwise no password prompt when I switch on the computer. The documentation I've found thus far on how to enable the "Power On" password prompt doesn't appear to quite describe the BIOS interface I'm seeing on this machine. I've included images here of the BIOS Security setting screens and I hope someone can help me to figure out how to enable this feature.

 

Thanks in advance for any guidance you can provide. It's greatly appreciated. I'm excited for my first ThinkPad!

 

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Re:Power On Password and Encryption on Intel T14s

2020-10-18, 0:16 AM

In order to protect an OPAL drive, you need a hard drive password, not a BIOS password.  You may also want a power-on PW.  (I set all 3.)

 

On the first password screen, rather than expanding the last entry, scroll down.  All 3 passwords can be the same, requiring only a single prompt.


Rich


I do not respond to requests for private, one-on-one help. Your questions should be posted in the appropriate forum where they may help others as well.

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2 Posts

10-17-2020

US

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Re:Power On Password and Encryption on Intel T14s

2020-10-18, 0:28 AM
Thank you! First off, I appreciate the clarification on the distinction between password types. Also, not realizing the settings menu had a scroll bar definitely is definitely a top-ten facepalm moment in all the time I've been working with computers. Thanks for being so gracious about a really stupid oversight on my part. All help forums deserve a class act such as yourself.
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