No matter how careful you are when it comes to safeguarding your computer; there is still a probability for others to pry into your private files and folders. It’s also a no-brainer that they will be tempted to click on those files that are openly visible in your file directory. Plus, it’s so easy for them to view your hidden folders. Nevertheless, this doesn’t mean that you should just let them be. Perhaps you should consider using a more reliable folder lock and hide app such as Anvide Lock Folder.
What Is It and What Does It Do
Anvide Lock Folder is a free folder lock and hide app for Windows. What’s great about this app is that it is portable so you have the option to save it to your hard disk or USB flash drive. You also do not need to install this app on your computer. Just unzip its RAR file then click and launch the executable file that you have extracted from its archive. With Anvide Lock Folder, you can lock and hide multiple folders at the same time. You can also lock and protect specific folders and it is up to you if you want to protect each folder with a secure password. You can use a different password for each folder plus you can also use a master password to keep the app safe from unauthorized users.
- Simple, neat and intuitive user interface
- Interchangeable and downloadable skins – you can choose from system, dark, default and so on
- You can lock the app with a master password
- Can protect and hide folders from your file directory – the protected folders will not show up even if you opt to show your hidden files and folders
- Can password-protect your folders – you can use a different password for each folder, you can also set a password hint just in case you cannot properly recall your password
- Configurable user settings with hot key support
- No installation required – portable
- None of these are deal-breakers per se since this program doesn’t claim to do more than hide/lock folders, but they should still be mentioned:
- Cannot encrypt files and folders
- Cannot password-protect your hard drives and USB flash drives
- No built-in support for data backup and restore
When using Anvide Lock Folder, you have the option to “protect your folder with a password” or to “protect all of your folders without using a password”. If you choose the latter, then your protected folders will become totally invisible and inaccessible thru your file directory. On the other hand, your password-protected folders will not only be hidden from your file directory – these folders will also prompt you to provide the correct password. If you fail to provide the correct password, you will never be able to open the folder even if you attempt to open it by typing its actual location in Windows Explorer.
What I like about Anvide Lock Folder is the fact that it completely hides your folders. It doesn’t even matter if you chose not to secure your folders with a password. This means that even if you type the actual location of your folder in your file directory, you won’t be able to view anything unless you choose to “unprotect” or unlock the folders directly from your Anvide Lock Folder application. You can also lock the app using a master password.
Another thing that I like about this app is that it allows the usage of hot keys. If you want to lock or “protect” a folder, press F5. If you want to protect all folders, press F6. If you want to unprotect a folder, press F9. If you want to unprotect all folders, press F10. It’s as simple as that.
Appearance wise, this portable folder lock and hide app sports a simple and intuitive user interface with multiple skin support. By default, you can choose from the app’s three available skins and you can even adjust its skin contrast and color. You can also apply some aero and animation effects. Out of the app’s three available skins, I find the “dark” skin way more attractive because its white font blends well with its dark background color.
All in all, this app does what it is intended to do. It is very stable and it won’t give you those annoying bugs and forced close errors. It also sticks to its core functions. It may not sport a lot of advanced features (ex. file and folder encryption, hard drive and USB flash drive protection) but if you just want a tool that could safely keep your confidential files away from snooping folks, then you can definitely rely on this app to protect your files and folders.
Conclusion and Download Link
Anvide Lock Folder is a stable and reliable folder lock and hide app for Windows. It’s also portable so you can use it on any computer without install. It may not sport a bunch of advanced features but it is extremely useful especially when it comes to keeping your private files safe from unauthorized users. Do keep in mind, however, Anvide Lock Folder is not a replacement for encryption and should not be used for “high-stakes” data. See dotTech’s review on best free encryption software for Windows if you want to protect your files and folders with the best level of security.
Version reviewed: 2.40
Supported OS: Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8
Download size: 1.27MB
VirusTotal malware scan results: 2/47 
Is it portable? Yes