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Multi-password option with complex/passphrase modes
Industry-first Dual Hidden Partition option
Waterproof up to 1.2 meters
Externally, the IronKey D500S looks like a rather bulky flash drive. Built with a ruggedized zinc casing, it's designed to take knocks and even immersion in water. The case is also the first line of defense against data being accessed. The internals of the drive are encased in epoxy, which provides a physical barrier against tampering.
A serial number and barcode are laser-etched into the casing of the drive, which means the device can't be surreptitiously swapped for another drive in the event of loss or in a situation where someone tries to infiltrate an organization with a rogue storage device.
On the inside, the IronKey D500S is just as well engineered for security. On boot-up, the drive scans for over-temperature or voltage conditions that will lead to drive shutdown, and it has digitally signed firmware, which makes it immune to BadUSB malware and brute force attacks. Brute force, password-attack protection is always enabled to prevent password-guessing techniques. Too many failed attempts will result in the drive being crypto-erased.
Losing the password means data is locked away for good, so the IronKey D500S supports up to three passwords: an admin, user, and one-time recovery. The admin can reset a user password, and also enable a one-time recovery password to restore access to data if the user password is forgotten. That's a nice touch.
On the password front, the IronKey D500S supports a traditional, complex password and a passphrase mode. Traditional, complex passwords can be between eight and 16 characters, using three out of four character sets. while passphrases can be ten to 128 characters.
There's also an industry-first feature on the IronKey D500S in the form of a Dual Hidden Partition option. This feature allows an admin to create two, custom-sized secure partitions for the admin and user, allowing for a Hidden File Store that can be accessed by both admin and user.
The IronKey D500S also supports two read-only/write-protected modes. These modes can be set per session to protect the drive from malware on untrusted systems, or the admin can set a global read-only mode that sets the drive to read-only mode until it is reset.
On the performance front, Kingston says you can expect the following speeds (which vary depending on interface and model):
USB 3.2 Gen 1
8GB – 128GB: 260MB/s read, 190MB/s write
256GB: 240MB/s read, 170MB/s write
512GB: 310MB/s read, 250MB/s write
8GB – 512GB: 30MB/s read, 20MB/s write
I tested the 128GB drive using MiniTool Partition Wizard and got very good performance. These are fast drives.
The Kingston IronKey D500S is offered in capacities that range from 8GB to 512GB, and prices start from $75. The IronKey D500S is a solid, reliable, and robust drive that's easy to set up and configure. Once you're up and running, all you need is the password and you can be sure that no one else is accessing your data.