1Password is the ultimate password generator / storing app for the Mac. Today we are reviewing version 3.0 of the app – and giving AppleReviews readers a chance to win 1 of 2 copies. More information about the giveaway can be found after the review.

1Password 3 Hands on Review.

Downloading and installing 1Password is a cinch. As with any mac application, you download the .dmg, open it and drag the icon to your applications folder. Job done. 1Password is no different here and the install is complete within moments. However, 1Password is a little different here in that the app looks gorgeous. We really do get spoiled as mac users – surrounded by so much awesome app design of which 1Password is one of the top.

Once installed, and we’ve entered our license info, everything is ready to go!

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First step is to click on “New Data File”. The next screen allows us to enter our master password. It also features a beautifully intricate icon of a safe.

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Obviously, we wont show you what we put here. This password will be used to access your data file, so make sure you remember it!

Next up, we need to install browser extensions. These give 1Password access to the application or service you want it to remember the password for.

Add-ons are available for:

  • Safari
  • Firefox
  • Camino
  • Omniweb
  • WebKit
  • NetNewsWire
  • DEVONagent
  • Fluid
  • Flock
  • iCab

And that’s it! You just need to enter in your identities (so you can sign-up to new sites and services with 1click!).

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1Password looks awesome and makes you feel like a spy or hacker from the movies when using it. Genius!

Features

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Once your in you can really appreciate the app. Its very, very easy to use.

You have the option to store log-ins for sites, accounts (such as those for MobileMe or emails), Identities (which offer up address and contact details storage), secure notes, software licenses and Financial passwords e.t.c)

Security

Of Course, if your like me, you want to know if all this data is secure. Here’s what 1Password say about the matter:

Passwords Are Encrypted Using Your Master Password

When you run 1Password for the first time, you create a Master Password that is used to encrypt your data. No one will be able to view your passwords or other confidential information without knowing the password.

All you need to do to stay secure is to pick one strong password and commit it to memory. Since it is only a single password, you can make it long and secure. A password nine characters or longer that is not based on a dictionary word or phrase will protect you from even the toughest criminals.

For the real techno-geeks, here’s some info about the actual encryption method used.

How Strong is 1Password’s Encryption?

The short answer is that it is very strong.

The slightly longer answer is that your data is encrypted using AES, the same state-of-the-art encryption algorithm used as the national standard in the United States. 1Password uses 128-bit keys for encryption, which means that it would take millions of years for a criminal to decrypt your data using a brute force attack.

For the really long answer, full technical details on the encryption algorithm, key generation, and FIPS compliance, please see the Agile Keychain Design document.

Over your head? Rest-assured this app is pretty darn secure.

Test

Now it’s time to give this app a whirl. I enter my twitter account information.

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Hey, stop peeking!

Now with the browser bar, I can shoot on over to twitter, and….

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I’m logged in. It’s that easy!

Some of the features I found most useful was the ability to make boring, ordinary credit card purchases into one-click actions. Like most of the mac community, I have a fair few Macs. You can sync between the 2 (or more) by using an app like DropBox. The user guide has a tutorial on how to do so.

agile.ws/products/1Password/user_guide

We should also note that the 1Password Firefox and Safari manager automatically gives you a pop up box when you fill in a new form, asking if you would like to save a new identity. This is the most helpful and easiest way to just ‘set it and forget it’ for your passwords. As long as you backup with Dropbox (or MobileMe) you should be pretty much good to go. One of the team members here at Apple Reviews has been using 1Password for around 2.5 years, with MobileMe sync, from a Mac Pro to a Macbook Air, with no problems at all, even after a hard drive fail, since data is in 3 places at once, it easily syncs back.

1Password is available for the jaw-droppingly good value of $39! Your going to make that money back within a week of not having to fill out forms and logins anymore! You should check out the 1Password site here.

Giveaway

As promised, we have 2 copies of 1Password (worth $39 each) to giveaway. To get your hands on one of them, all you need to do is follow our twitter account @applereviews and tweet the following message. Big thanks to the guys at 1Password for providing us with the copies. Winners will be announced on Wednesday 2nd December.

follow @AppleReviews to win a copy of 1Password by @1Password http://bit.ly/R2StS

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