Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10  

    Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10

    Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10

    How to Find and List All Your EFS Encrypted Files in Windows 10
    Published by Category: Security System
    06 Aug 2020
    Designer Media Ltd


    How to Find and List All Your EFS Encrypted Files in Windows 10


    The Encrypting File System (EFS) is the built-in encryption tool in Windows used to encrypt files and folders on NTFS drives to protect them from unwanted access. EFS enables transparent encryption and decryption of files for your user account by using advanced, standard cryptographic algorithms. Any individual or app that doesn't possess the appropriate file encryption key cannot open any encrypted files and folders. Encryption is the strongest protection that Windows provides to help you keep your individual files and folders secure.

    When you encrypt a file or folder with EFS in Windows 10, its icon will have a lock overlay at the top right corner to indicate that it's an EFS encrypted file or folder.

    Sometimes you may lose track of all your encrypted files and need to create a list of them to find them all again.

    This tutorial will show you how to create a list of all EFS encrypted files that belong to the current user on all NTFS local drives in Windows 10.


    Contents

    • Option One: To Find All Your Encrypted Files on Local Drives and Output List in Command Prompt
    • Option Two: To Find All Your Encrypted Files on Local Drives and Output List to Text File






    OPTION ONE

    To Find All Your Encrypted Files on Local Drives and Output List in Command Prompt


    1 Open a command prompt.

    2 Copy and paste the cipher /u /n /h command into the command prompt, and press Enter. (see screenshot below)

    3 Windows will now search all NTFS local drives for all encrypted files that belong to the current user, and will output a list of them in the command prompt.

    Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10-list_all_efs_encrypted_files.jpg






    OPTION TWO

    To Find All Your Encrypted Files on Local Drives and Output List to Text File


    1 Open a command prompt.

    2 Copy and paste the command below into the command prompt, and press Enter. (see screenshot below)

    cipher /u /n /h > %UserProfile%\Desktop\MyEncryptedFiles.txt

    Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10-list_all_efs_encrypted_files_to_txt_file-1.jpg

    3 Windows will now search all NTFS local drives for all encrypted files that belong to the current user, and will output a list of them to the MyEncryptedFiles.txt file created on your desktop.

    It will be finished searching when you see the prompt again.

    Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10-list_all_efs_encrypted_files_to_txt_file-2.jpg


    That's it,
    Shawn



  1. ikjadoon's Avatar
    Posts : 55
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
       #1

    Is this method exhaustive? That is, is there any chance it might miss any files?

    I ask because I've gotten this notification on each boot for the past week:

    Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10-2020-08-07_19-47-02.png
    Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10-2020-08-07_19-47-17.png

    That was surprising as I've not manually encrypted any files. I ran the command both ways, and no encrypted files were found. No external hard drives plugged in, either.

    Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10-2020-08-07_19-40-14.png

    Is there another way to determine what's using the Encrypting File System?
      My Computers

  2. Brink's Avatar
    Posts : 57,092
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro for Workstations build 21382
    Thread Starter
       #2

    Hello @ikjadoon,

    I've seen others with the same issue and never encrypted anything with EFS. I'm thinking it may have been from some 3rd party program that may have encrypted some of its files.

    Backing up the certificate and key will stop the notification.
      My Computers

  3. ikjadoon's Avatar
    Posts : 55
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
       #3

    Brink said:
    Hello @ikjadoon,

    I've seen others with the same issue and never encrypted anything with EFS. I'm thinking it may have been from some 3rd party program that may have encrypted some of its files.


    Backing up the certificate and key will stop the notification.
    Hello, @Brink!

    Thank you for the excellent advice. I was just starting the back up (using option two here) and that exposed the issue! One certificate was for NVIDIA GameStream server (I have a GT 710 in this system), which looked weird.

    I'd installed GeForce Experience for some time, but never used it for anything but a quick link to download & install drivers. Not a big loss, then, to uninstall it.

    I uninstalled GeForce Experience, the certificate disappeared, and as of ~30 minutes after another reboot, I've not had the notification again.

    Find All Encrypted Files in Windows 10-2020-08-08_19-25-07.png
      My Computers

  4. Brink's Avatar
    Posts : 57,092
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro for Workstations build 21382
    Thread Starter
       #4

    ikjadoon said:
    Hello, @Brink!

    Thank you for the excellent advice. I was just starting the back up (using option two here) and that exposed the issue! One certificate was for NVIDIA GameStream server (I have a GT 710 in this system), which looked weird.

    I'd installed GeForce Experience for some time, but never used it for anything but a quick link to download & install drivers. Not a big loss, then, to uninstall it.

    I uninstalled GeForce Experience, the certificate disappeared, and as of ~30 minutes after another reboot, I've not had the notification again.
    Great news.
      My Computers

  5. ikjadoon's Avatar
    Posts : 55
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
       #5

    Brink said:
    Great news.
    Absolutely. Thank you again. �� It's still working great a week later.
      My Computers

  6. Brink's Avatar
    Posts : 57,092
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro for Workstations build 21382
    Thread Starter
       #6

    ikjadoon said:
    Absolutely. Thank you again. �� It's still working great a week later.
      My Computers


 

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