Hopefully, you should be able to import your existing passwords during setup, as adding new credentials must be done manually. As mentioned earlier, Premium subscribers can also use Bitwarden’s own authenticator app instead of a third-party one. While the app claims that form-filling is supported on Safari, I was unable to get that feature to work.
KeePass is definitely not for the average user. The password generator gives you a ridiculous degree of control, with nine option toggles for different types of characters to include, the ability to exclude any specific characters you like, control over the length with no apparent upper limit and the ability to bring in custom password-generation algorithms. If you are running Windows Vista, 7, 8, 8.1 or 10, then this will be smooth sailing. Windows: Ctrl + Shift + L macOS: Cmd + Shift + L Linux: Ctrl + Shift + L Safari: Cmd + \ or Cmd + 8 or Cmd + Shift + P. Finally, you will want to install one of the unofficial mobile apps. Bitwarden has the best free tier of any password manager.
The categories and logins are all in list views; there are no grid or website-logo displays as with some of the nicer password-manager mobile apps. It took almost no time for me to install these and get logged in. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it actually adds some functionality to the core KeePass experience. – Not many bells and whistles – Not all features are intuitive to use. Your first step is a visit to the KeePass downloads page . The free and open-source KeePass isn’t for everyone, but if you’re willing to put in some effort, it’s one of the most powerful password managers out there. Note that data uploads are possible only in the web app, not via desktop or mobile.
Bitwarden would be easy to use with only the browser extension and web app, as the desktop app doesn’t add any functionality and is only slightly sleeker. Bitwarden has a few standard keyboard shortcuts: KeePass: Costs and what’s covered. By Emily Long 22 April 2021.
The default screen is your vault home, organized by item types and folders. There’s also a "portable" Windows version you can install on a USB flash drive. There is no password recovery if you forget your master password, so the hint may be helpful. + Totally unlimited free version + Consistent design across platforms + Inexpensive premium pricing + Open-source and very secure. Next, download the relevant desktop and mobile apps as well as browser extensions. MacOS and Linux are officially supported, but installing KeePass requires installing the supplemental platforms Mono and XQuartz and a bit more tinkering right off the bat.
Tapping an account brings up a bit more information, and from there you can edit the entry with all the options found in the full app. He specializes in covering phones and, of course, wearable tech, but has also written about tablets, VR, laptops, and smart home devices, to name but a few. I simply had to indicate that I wanted to access an existing database.
Free-tier members can set up a two-factor authentication login process using email verification or an authenticator app like Authy or Google Authenticator. If you opt for the key file, you will install the file on a USB drive and will need to plug in the drive when accessing KeePass. Most users want a password manager that does most of the work of managing passwords, and solutions like LastPass or Keeper would be much better fits. If Bitwarden doesn’t officially support the service you currently use, you can create and upload a CSV file. Mobile apps are available for both iOS (10.0 or later) and Android (5.0 and up).
KeePassWinHello, as you might guess, adds support for Windows Hello biometric logins to unlock your KeePass database. There is also KeeOtp or Tray TOTP which add support for two-factor authentication via time-based one-time passwords (TOTP). Read on for the rest of our Bitwarden review. Your information is only unencrypted, and only locally on your device, once you’ve logged into your vault with your master key.
KeePass’ lead developer, Dominik Reichl, has a donation link on the official KeePass website to help support continued development, but that won’t unlock additional functionality – you’ve already got access to everything. Keepass2Android is one of the most popular Android options available and follows Google’s Material Design template. If you want KeePass to sync your passwords across your various devices, you’ll need to determine which cloud service or personal server you are going to use.
KeePass is the only password manager I’ve tested that is completely free to use. It’s a basic utility framework with nothing in it. KeePass 2.x officially supports Windows Vista and later, macOS and Linux. However, the Bitwarden browser extension did not automatically sync, so if you download the extension before you import passwords into your vault, you’ll need to go to Settings > Sync > Sync Vault Now to be able to view your logins.
If the website you’re on has a saved login, the Bitwarden extension icon in your browser toolbar will have a number on it. By default, new entries automatically self-populate with a new password 20 characters in length. I did run the plugin, which is written by Keepass2Android’s developer, to confirm that it worked. Bitwarden undergoes a security audit every two years, but it’s also open-source, so the code is available for anyone to review for flaws.
Bitwarden does have a learning curve for those who are new to password managers, and some of its features are clunkier than its competitors. There are a few ways to use the automatic formfilling feature. Support for a number of cloud-syncing services, including Dropbox, Google Drive and Microsoft’s OneDrive, are available via plugins.
The Bitwarden server can be anything from a leased cloud instance to a Raspberry Pi sitting on a shelf in your living room. I chose KeeAnywhere, which was both the most recently updated and most comprehensive of the available sync plugins. The official plugins page breaks things up into 11 categories, which should give you some idea of what can be done with KeePass: I/O & Synchronization, Backup, Utilities, Integration & Transfer, Cryptography & Key Providers, Import, Export, Import & Export, Automation & Scripting, Resources and For Developers.
Once you’ve logged in with your master password and any enabled two-step method, you can unlock your vault using a PIN or a biometric method. Bitwarden mobile apps. However, if you visit the downloads page for KeePass you Latest Software will see more than 30 additional versions of KeePass that extend support to Android, iOS, Blackberry, Chrome OS, PocketPC, J2ME and browser-based solutions.
In fact, some features, such as emergency access and vault health reports, are available only in your web vault (under Tools > Reports). Perhaps the easiest option is a keyboard shortcut that auto-fills your most recently used login without actually opening the extension or dropdown menus. I found it easier to open the extension immediately than to right-click (CTRL + click on Mac) and navigate through several menus to select the correct login, although that’s also an option if you prefer.
The Windows and Mac versions can be downloaded directly from the Bitwarden website or via the Windows and Mac app stores. KeePass is functionally solid, but you definitely get what you pay for with the user interface and experience. Bitwarden is our top free choice among the best password managers . Another option available is to use an AES-KDF or Argon2 key derivation to transform your master key and make it more difficult to crack. + Completely free & open-source + Extensive plugin support + Gives you full control of your data.
The HaveIBeenPwned plugin checks your saved usernames and passwords against the well-known HaveIBeenPwned database of credentials compromised in data breaches. There are no official mobile apps for KeePass, but I’ll discuss two unofficial ports for Android and iOS. If you upgrade to a Premium account, $10 per year gets you all of the above features, plus file sharing via Bitwarden Send, the Bitwarden Authenticator app for verifying your identity on accounts that use 2FA or time-based one-time passwords (TOTPs) and an emergency access feature that lets you grant vault access to another user in case of, well, an emergency. However, Bitwarden isn’t the most intuitive platform to use. Once you have your account set up, you’ll be logged into your web vault to start importing and organizing your passwords.
Bitwarden password manager review. Its free version is arguably the best budget option available now that LastPass has restricted data syncing on its free plan. That includes finding an online storage solution, such as Dropbox or Google Drive, to host your password database if you want to sync your KeePass vault between your devices using the internet. As you’ll see in our KeePass review, if you want a solution that you can just sign into and basically never have to worry about, then KeePass isn’t for you. The tradeoffs are that KeePass lacks the polished user interface of other password managers, and that you’ll need to be comfortable tinkering with plugins and extensions to get the most out of KeePass.
All Bitwarden users get several 2FA options for accessing their vaults. To import data from LastPass, 1Password, Firefox, Chrome or another one of many supported file formats, select Tools > Import Data and fill out the dropdown fields. Against. Just hit the Download Now link on the Installer for Windows, and you’ll have a choice between the 1.x and 2.x development streams.
All available cards and identities should be visible to select. Keepass2Android’s main screen presents a very basic list of your login groups. If you opt to download the desktop app as well, you’ll find a left-justified menu bar where you can select your specific login types to view all the usernames and passwords in that category. There are quite a few KeePass-compatible options in the App Store, including some paid ones and an interesting option called Keepassium that was just entering beta during my testing, so it’s worth looking them all over. It’s also open-source software, meaning anyone can volunteer to help develop it.
As KeePass makes you responsible for your own database, this flexible security is perhaps even more comforting for those who host their own databases online and sync to multiple devices. For this review, I tested Bitwarden on a 2020 MacBook Air running macOS 10.15 Catalina and an iPhone XR. The free and open-source KeePass isn’t for everyone, but if you’re willing to put in some effort, it’s one of the most powerful password managers out there. You can also view and edit the item or copy login information directly from the extension.
Users simply looking to save an unlimited number of passwords that sync across all their devices and automatically fill in online forms will get that with Bitwarden’s free tier. Click "Get More Plugins" and then download and unzip whatever you wish to install. – Outdated design will be unintuitive to many users – Requires plugins for many standard features – Third-party Android, iOS apps. Bitwarden supports fingerprint and face unlock on Android, both Touch ID and Face ID on iOS, biometrics on Windows 10 via Windows Hello and Touch ID on macOS. Send recipients do not need to use Bitwarden to open the sent links or files.
KeePass: Security. When you first log into your mobile app, you’ll likely see a pop-up notifying you that you have to enable notifications for your vault to sync properly. KeePass lacks native support for common two-factor-authentication options, but there are plug-in options for 2FA via TOTP, another that supports YubiKey and a couple that offer RFID or NFC support. To install a KeePass plugin, just open the Tools menu and select Plugins.
KeePass: Setup. The password generator supports up to 88 characters and has nearly as many options as the core KeePass app. By default, the application creates General, Windows, Network, Internet, eMail and Homebanking. You can also organize or view by folder — use the plus sign to create a new folder — or view your favorites or trash. Check the downloads page or search the iOS and Android app stores for KeePass, and you will find several choices.
The premium and family plans offered by other password managers will also set you back a lot more than $10 (or $40 for families) annually, which may be attractive only if you really need bonus features like a built-in VPN. I tested the "2.x" version of KeePass, which has a rich set of features and can be installed on platforms beyond Windows. Outdated design will be unintuitive to many users Requires plugins for many standard features Third-party Android, iOS apps. Against.
Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux; unofficial Android, iOS and Chrome OS ports Free-version limitations: None; it’s all free 2FA: Via plug-ins Browser plugins: Third-party extensions for Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera, Safari Form filling: Yes Mobile PIN unlock: Depends on app Biometric login: Via plug-ins Killer feature: Infinitely customizable. KeePass also still develops the "1.x" version, which is simpler, Windows-only and uses a different codebase. While KeePass defaults to an AES/Rijndael (256-bit key, FIPS 197) algorithm, you can change it to a ChaCha20 (256-bit key, RFC 7539) algorithm in the database settings.
Plug-ins extend support to secure copy protocol (SCP), the FTP secure extensions SFTP and FTPS, and to well-known online storage providers such as Amazon AWS S3, Box, Dropbox, Google Drive and One Drive. To say that things look sparse when you first launch KeePass is an understatement. Password auto-fill is easy to enable in your phone Settings — but unless you want to type in your master password each time you need to connect to Bitwarden, go to Settings > Unlock with Face ID or Unlock with PIN Code in the app.
Entries are highly customizable – you can create a title, an icon, custom foreground and background colors, tags, URLs to specify which browser should open them and auto-type settings to handle sites with non-standard forms. I imported data from the Chrome browser’s built-in password manager and it worked perfectly. The icons are a bit prettier in Strongbox than in Keepass2Android, but overall Strongbox remains a bare experience.
Sharing texts and files with Bitwarden Send is quick and easy using the browser extension. If you are on Android 8.0 or later, Keepass2Android will support form filling if you install a separate plugin from outside the Play Store, which might be a step too far for many users. KeePass review: Bottom line. That’s something the core KeePass application lacks, and which would greatly expand its utility and ease of use.
Now return to the Plugins menu, click Open Folder and drag-and-drop the extracted folder into the Plugins folder for KeePass. To get started, you’ll need to create an account on Bitwarden’s website using your email address and name. Some plugins, such as KeeForm, ChromeIPass or PassIFox, enable form-filling of your usernames and passwords — a must-have feature for paid password managers that is missing from the core KeePass experience.
Users on Bitwarden’s Free plan get unlimited password and secure-note storage across as many devices as they want. You have to open a new entry as you log into an account, and then copy and paste the username and password into the entry form. Once enabled, this feature works smoothly.
Plus, at just $10 per year, Bitwarden’s premium tier is well worth paying for to get extras like security audits and advanced 2FA. You can also use Bitwarden Send in the app just as on the desktop: Create links to text or content on your device, which you can copy or share using any share options on your phone. Extension features like autofill and password generation functioned immediately, with no additional setup needed. Bitwarden doesn’t do much hand-holding through the setup process, although its Help pages are actually pretty helpful.
She has been reporting and writing for nearly 10 years, and her work has appeared in Wirecutter, Lifehacker, NBC BETTER and CN Traveler, among others. The main screen is just your KeePass database listing your categories and a search box above them. Either way, make your master key something both secure and memorable. Completely free & open-source Extensive plugin support Gives you full control of your data.
To unlock the full power of KeePass, you really need to install plugins and extensions. Cloud syncing is built-in, with support for most major cloud-storage solutions, and I quickly and easily added my database from Google Drive. KeePass’ core version is missing a number of features when compared to the strongest offerings out there like Keeper, LastPass or Dashlane, although the many third-party plug-ins made for the service help fill in the gaps. To create a new entry, either type "Control + I" or tap the icon of the key with a green download arrow on it. Strongbox covers the basics in terms of giving you access to your KeePass database on your iOS device, but I would take a look at one of the paid apps or the new Keepassium app to see if one of them delivers a bit more features.
This premium tier also comes with 1 GB of secure storage, priority support, advanced 2FA options such as YubiKey and "health reports" — basically, security audits (manually generated) that show you if your passwords are weak, recycled or have been exposed in a data breach. Toggle the Send icon on the bottom toolbar and select the plus sign in the upper right corner. Virtually every option is greyed out until you create your database by clicking File > New, which is when you’ll be prompted to create a master password, create a key file or use your Windows user account. The question is whether it is worth saving $35 to $60 per year. Bitwarden: Costs and what’s covered.
KeePass plugins and extensions. There are more than 100 KeePass plugins and extensions that can add functions and transform the looks of the application. Form filling for identities and payment info is included with this tier, but on the desktop versions only. This may increase save/load times for your database, however. This worked each time I tested it, though you’ll want to be careful that Bitwarden saves updated passwords properly.
I ran into a few that hadn’t been updated in three or more years, which is a risk you run with open-source software. Instead, you’ll find it under View in the main application toolbar. While Keepass2Android is a completely basic Android app, it looks more modern than some other password managers’ apps.
You can also access your vault via any web browser at vault.bitwarden.com. Tom’s Guide Verdict. There are Bitwarden desktop browser extensions for Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, Brave, Microsoft Edge, Vivaldi and the Firefox-based Tor browser. If you know how to set up a server, then Bitwarden also offers self-hosting (versus cloud hosting) options with all plans for anyone who wants complete control over their data using their own server.
Once KeeAnywhere was installed, I transferred my database over to a cloud drive and then selected File > Open > Open from Cloud Drive to be up and running with my remote-syncing KeePass database. It’s not as extensive as some of the breach-scanning features available with the paid versions of Keeper or Dashlane, but it’s free. You can select a date on which access to your send will expire, or on which your send will be permanently deleted, as well as a maximum access count.
The Premium tier also supports Duo Security, YubiKey and FIDO U2F-compliant USB security keys. While some other password managers, such as 1Password, have a bit of a utility feel to them, KeePass feels like a utility from the late ’90s. But if all you want is a free — and highly secure — way to store and sync logins, Bitwarden is the obvious choice. Tap on the key with the sun next to it to see additional password options or to jump into the full password generator. Bitwarden will auto-fill usernames and passwords through its browser extensions on the desktop and with the Bitwarden mobile apps on iOS and Android.
Tapping a group displays the included accounts, with the URL and username for each. Tap on the three horizontal dots to view, edit or copy the account information. KeePass relies on AES-256 encryption to secure its password database, like most other password managers. The free and open-source password manager KeePass has been around since 2003 and offers a huge number of customization options, as long as you’re willing to put up with a bit of a learning curve.
The interface and functionality are almost exactly the same, so the experience will be similar no matter which device you’re on. KeePass doesn’t integrate with your browser to capture login credentials as you create or update them. With that said, if you enjoy the process of customizing and working with your software, the core KeePass application is solid. Bitwarden: Setup.
Bitwarden’s free version has the basics of a good password manager, and its premium features are inexpensive. Bitwarden password manager review: Bottom line. One nice touch: Keepass2Android has templates for new entries beyond just logins, such as credit cards, ID cards and secure notes. The free tier comes with most of the basic features you’d want in a password manager, making it a good option if you’re just looking for safe storage.
LastPass , one of our other top freemium picks, now limits syncing on its free plan to only computers or to only mobile devices, a significant gap that Bitwarden fills. Unlike the browser extension (and the mobile app, as described below), the Bitwarden desktop app does not have a separate tab for the password generator. The Bitwarden app has a built-in password generator, which allows you to set the parameters for the password and copy it to paste directly into the app or website. The browser extension looks a lot like a mobile app, with tabs for your main vault, Bitwarden Send, a password generator and your settings. However, it’s a great value for anyone on a budget who’s willing to figure it out.
And with the right collection of plugins, you can build it up into a product that gets reasonably close to the features of the high-end options, all without having to pay a dime. But if you don’t mind spending some time to learn and manage a very powerful application, you can do a lot with KeePass. Bitwarden is a highly secure, open-source password manager that does the basics really well and at little cost.
Emily Long is a Utah-based freelance writer who covers consumer technology, privacy and personal finance for Tom’s Guide. Bitwarden has server specifications and instructions here , and there’s a good third-party walkthrough here . My Chrome shortcut was set to something different by default, so if that’s the case, you can view and configure different shortcuts in your browser if needed. If you tap on Login or another item type or folder, you’ll see the full list of items in that category. A self-professed "wearer of wearables," Sean Riley is a Senior Writer for Laptop Mag who has been covering tech for more than a decade.
Finally, Bitwarden’s $40-per-year Family plan is basically Premium for up to six users with unlimited sharing between accounts. However, Bitwarden isn’t the most intuitive platform to use. If you don’t see your service in the built-in import options, it’s a safe bet there’s a plugin for it. It’s a safe bet that KeePass can import whatever you have, as KeePass has the longest list of supported services and browsers for import that I have seen.
Restart KeePass and your plugin will be operational. You don’t need to customize anything, but the fact that you can is just one example of the flexibility of this very simple-looking app. It simply requires too much work and potential frustration to get everything up and running. Bitwarden’s password generator is a little bit clunky compared to those of other password managers — you have to manually go into the Bitwarden extension to create and copy/paste a password. As with most aspects of KeePass, it takes a few steps to achieve this, but everything worked as advertised once I got a handle on it.
If you would like a full walkthrough, KeePass does have a pretty solid " First Steps Tutorial ." Our Verdict. It’s the best password manager option if you want to maintain complete control of your data. I’ll cover that here and will address plugins in a later section.
When you create a new login on a website, Bitwarden should ask if you want to save it to your vault. File sharing is available only with a Premium account, though you can send text links on the Free tier. His articles have also appeared in Tom’s Guide, TechTarget, Phandroid, and more. If you are on any other platform, scroll down to the "Contributed/Unofficial" KeePass Ports and KeePass Packages sections to find your OS. Turning to iOS, I went with Strongbox, which like Keepass2Android is free.
Bitwarden is a solid password manager, especially at such a low price point. For this review, I used KeePass on a 2017 MacBook Pro 15 running Windows 10 and macOS 10.14 Mojave, an iPhone 7 Plus, and a Google Pixel 3. If you want to get really elite, there’s a command-line version that works on Windows, Mac and Linux alike. There’s also a password generator and an innovative feature called Bitwarden Send for sharing sensitive text-based information. As we’ve noted, Bitwarden Free is a solid option for basic password management — maybe the best one out there.
You can drag and drop any set of credentials into any group and you can create, edit and delete groups. Not many bells and whistles Not all features are intuitive to use. You’ll need to download a KeePass version on the "2.x" development path. Bitwarden: Security. When she’s not working, you can find her trail running, teaching and practicing yoga, or studying for grad school — all fueled by coffee, obviously.
You probably won’t need to worry about it disappearing anytime soon, despite the fact that it is free software. Google Chrome was my primary browser across all platforms but testing on macOS and iOS was also done with Safari. You can create groups to sort your login information. The core KeePass desktop application supports password generation and management, syncing via local hard disks or network shares, auto-type form-filling and auto-type hot-key form filling.
Totally unlimited free version Consistent design across platforms Inexpensive premium pricing Open-source and very secure. There’s a plus sign in the upper right corner to create items and a search icon to search your entire vault. Tap the icon to open the extension and select the password you want to auto-fill. Now, return to the File menu to import any passwords you may have stored with another password manager or in your browser. I’m going to highlight only a few, but the plugins and extensions page on the KeePass site has the complete list.
Like the desktop app and browser extension, the Bitwarden mobile app is basic. I opted for Keepass2Android Password Safe on Android and Strongbox on iOS. The Bitwarden desktop application supports Windows 7, 8.1 and 10; macOS 10.14 and later; and most major distributions of Linux. KeePass can natively sync your other devices using local network shares or the internet protocols FTP, HTTP and WebDAV.
Bitwarden’s free version has the basics of a good password manager, and its premium features are inexpensive. To auto-fill credit cards or identities (addresses, for example) when checking out or filling out forms, toggle the Bitwarden extension icon and hit Tab on your keyboard. You can also opt for KeePass Portable, a version that can be installed on a USB stick and plugged into a PC, Mac or Linux box.
What I primarily needed was support for cloud syncing, which Strongbox offers. Bitwarden is not the most intuitive service to navigate, and it has some clunky functionality compared to other password managers. Search the selected category using the search bar at the top and add a new record using the plus icon at the bottom. It offers more on its free tier than most competitors do, and its premium plan — with features such as advanced two-factor authentication (2FA) and secure storage — will set you back just $10 per year. LastPass does include some of Bitwarden’s Premium features, such as the ability to use an in-house authenticator app, in its free tier, but at $36 per year, its premium option costs nearly four times what you’ll pay for a similar Bitwarden plan.
KeePass mobile apps. KeePass password manager review. Just be sure to check the dates on plugins before you install them.
There isn’t a lot of extra functionality baked into Strongbox, but you can access, edit and create new items in your database. Browser extension plug-ins are available for Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Microsoft Internet Explorer, Apple Safari and Opera. Even if your database should be obtained by someone else, it should remain safe, as your files can be unencrypted only on your device.
Bitwarden on desktop. Bitwarden offers three pricing tiers for consumer accounts: Free, Premium ($10 per year) and Family ($40 per year). Bitwarden is also SOC 2 Type 2 and SOC 3 compliant, meaning the organization has met standards set by the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants (AICPA) for handling consumer data.
You’ll also choose your master password and an optional password hint. I used Google Chrome for browser testing. However, you cannot auto-fill cards or identities on mobile. The Premium plan is a bargain when compared to similar tiers offered by other password managers, which often run about $35 per year.
Critically, it did what it needed to do. The core KeePass application offers just the password-manager basics. KeePass on the desktop. You can also launch the website or app directly from Bitwarden. Tom’s Guide Verdict.
Platforms: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux Free version: Limits on file sharing and 2FA 2FA: Yes Browser plugins: Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Opera, Brave, Microsoft Edge, Vivaldi, Tor Form filling: Yes Mobile PIN unlock: Yes Biometric login: Face ID, Touch ID on iOS and macOS, fingerprint and face unlock on Android, Windows Hello Killer feature: Unlimited syncing across all devices on free version. The KeePass desktop interface looks like a standard file-manager window, with your database(s) on the left and the data on the right. Like most password managers, Bitwarden uses AES-256 encryption to protect the data stored in your password vault.
If you toggle Send at the bottom instead, you can create file or text links to content on your computer, which you can the copy or share to send. Then I selected Google Drive and signed into my Google account, and all of my data was imported and syncing.