Review: Enpass UWP
While uber-geeks like me might play around with (open source) KeePass secure databases, the wise user keeps things simpler and standardises on a commercial solution from day one. Enpass is one of the newer breed of properly supported secure stores - there are extensions on the desktop for password injection, but here I'm looking at Enpass on Windows 10 Mobile, the synced and backed up place for all your secret stuff. And apart from some 'fit and finish' and the usual import issues, it works pretty well.
One note before I start - although not shown below in the review, Enpass is also available for Windows Phone 8.1 in the Store. Just look on your old Lumia and you'll find it. And it all syncs in the same way, don't worry!
Enpass, it seems, has done just about everything right. Cross platform? Check. Cloud-synced? Check. Import facilities from just about every other secure system in the world? Check*. Make the desktop clients free? Check. Sell the mobile clients as one-off purchases rather than a silly subscription system? Check.
The * in the last paragraph is because, by its very nature, there's no way to seamlessly import data from another system. That is itself encrypted and Enpass can't know exactly how, so even with the password it's necessary to do a manual export of data (e.g. into XML or CSV text files) and then import these intermediate files into the Enpass desktop clients, and thence to the Cloud. Which worked OK for me, though all group and category information was lost in the transfer. And, somewhat unfortunately, there's no way that I can see to assign or rebuild these groups/categories in Enpass on either desktop or on the phone.
Therefore, I'd recommend, not for the first time, that you only attempt to get going with Enpass (or any other secure database system) if you have less than, say, 40 secret items already, i.e. few enough that some massaging, copying and pasting, or even retyping wouldn't be the end of the world. Me, I have over 2000 items in my KeePass 2 secure database (which dates back a decade and which lives mirrored in Google Drive and OneDrive, plus on all computing devices I own by extension) and any importing would have to be utterly seamless.
But don't let me put you off, since Enpass is very slick. Here it is in action under Windows 10 Mobile on my Alcatel IDOL 4 Pro:
The star feature, over and above the Windows Hello support, is probably the synchronisation system, which works at the entry/record level. Meaning that even if you add something to your desktop Enpass client and also (say) change something on the phone, at the next sync both alterations will be seamlessly merged. I tested this and it works brilliantly.
I came away impressed by Enpass as a whole but somewhat underwhelmed by its stability under Windows 10 Mobile. From small cosmetic glitches to crashes back to the Start screen when logging in, it does seem as though it was left 99.9% complete and that an extra bug fix stability update is needed. In fairness, this could also be down to Windows 10 Mobile itself, which hasn't exactly had a lot of TLC from Microsoft in the last year, other than essential security updates.
Comments welcome - I know Enpass has been mentioned a number of times in the past here on AAWP, so real world data points would be handy. Has it saved the day for you - or let you down at all?
In the meantime, Enpass is here in the Store. And also on every other computing platform known to man. Which is cool.
Reviewed by Steve Litchfield at