PGP Whole Disk Encryption
Strengths: Strong feature set. Support for 64-bit operating systems
Weaknesses: None that we found
Verdict: Industry leader with solid value for the money. Our Best Buy
PGP Whole Disk Encryption 9.9 is a client software application that provides whole disk encryption as part of PGP's suite of encryption products. It secures the entire hard drive and is available on a wide variety of platforms, including 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows 2003, XP, Vista and Mac OS X. It can be installed as a standalone but is most often managed by the PGP Universal Gateway, which manages the keys and other enterprise aspects of the platform.
For our testing purposes, we did not test the PGP Universal Gateway. We installed the client software on both Windows Vista and Windows XP SP2 machines. Installation is one of the easiest around. Configuration of pass phrases, key management and setup of other features is easily accomplished through the interface. Although we did not test on a 64-bit operating system, we were pleased to see the ability to make use of this technology.
From a performance perspective, Whole Disk Encryption performs very well. Encryption of an entire hard disk is similar to most products in terms of overall time to encrypt. Management of the functionality is both easy and advanced at the same time. Experienced users will appreciate the granular options while more casual users won't have any trouble customising their use of the product. Support for a wide array of devices for strong pre-boot authentication (USB) is impressive as well.
PGP definitely demonstrates why it is industry leader. Logging and auditing for enterprise users who have compliance mandates is also a nice feature.
Documentation is top notch. PDF files contain adequate information for every aspect of administration. The PGP website is also world-class, with several support options for its users.
The product is priced at £95 per seat, which includes first year support. Basic support is 8/5 and includes phone, email and web-based options. Gold, premium and platinum support tiers are available. We feel that PGP's pricing comes in around the average tier of pricing for the functionality. Coupled with feature sets and support, Whole Disk Encryption is our Best Buy.