Encrypt contents to secure data greyed out on Home editions

by admin on March 3, 2010

Not all editions of Windows OS support Encrypting File System(EFS). In the unsupported editions if you go to properties and advanced you see that the check button “Encrypt contents to secure data” option is not configurable and is greyed out.  Below listed are the Windows editions which does not support native windows EFS feature.

  • Windows XP Home
  • Vista Home Basic
  • Vista Home Premium
  • Windows 7 Starter
  • Windows 7 Home Basic
  • Windows 7 Home Premium

Below is a snapshot on Windows XP Home edition.

Some Questions on File Encryption:

I am running one of the EFS unsupported editions; Does it mean that I can’t encrypt files on my computer?

No, you still can encrypt files. You can use any of the third party encryption tools available in the internet. Go through the reviews and pick up the best one that suits your requirements. 

My Windows supports EFS and encrypt conents to secure data is not disabled. But the details button next to it is greyed out. Why?

The Details button gets activated only when the file is in encrypted state. You can check this yourself. This button shows which users have transparent access to read the file.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous November 1, 2010 at 3:39 pm

Is there any way to add this EFS feature to a Windows 7 home premium OS? Any hack or installing some software?


Techblogger November 3, 2010 at 3:24 am

There is no way to add EFS feature to home editions. You may try if there are any 3rd party software to encrypt files..


Anonymous November 13, 2010 at 4:00 pm

Try TrueCrypt, instead. Works great.


Anonymous June 19, 2011 at 5:58 am

win 98 had pword pro for folders. time to get a mac


john August 28, 2014 at 12:15 pm

everything disabled in win7 starter even choosing screen background.
not buying new hardware or software
just moving to linux


jon January 6, 2015 at 8:57 pm

Isn’t there some way just to hack Windows to enable functionality of Windows Pro on Home Premium? I am willing to use a crack on my computer. I already have a authentic serial number for Win 7 Professional (provided legally for free by my school, but I’m not going to reinstall/reformat win).

jon January 6, 2015 at 8:48 pm

there has got to be some way to hack Windwos to enable that option in the unsupported versions. Probably just an on-and-off switch somewhere.


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