Password Manager

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Introduction

If you're like me you have passwords or pins for your e-mail system(s), bank account(s), social media, and so on. Everyone providing an on-line system seems to require a password no matter how inconsequential it is: Oracle requires an account with a password just to access the JDK, AVWeb requires a sign on just to take the quizzes they periodically post and so on. Everyone has their own rules about what constitutes a valid password - it must start with a digit, it must have upper and lower case letters, it must have upper and lower case letters plus at least one special character, it must be at least 8 characters long, it can't be based on a dictionary word, .... I found that at 1842 different passwords my memory began to fail me so I needed a solution. I still spend a good deal of time on my desktop system and, of course, I carry a smart phone (Android) and now have a(n Android) tablet. So I wanted a solution that I could install on all three and synchronize them. Of course you mustn't store un-encrypted passwords on any device so developing these apps gave me an opportunity to get familiar with Password Based Encryption (PBE) for local storage and public/private key encryption for communication between the desktop and the Android devices.

The system originally released in 2014 was written using Java Swing to create the GUI. Not only is Swing moribund but the installation and support mechanism - JNLP (Java Network Load Protocol) - has also been removed from the latest versions of Java. The official path to updating Swing apps is to use JavaFX. Now JavaFX has been removed from the latest versions of Java (versions later than 1.8) requiring a more complex installation than the original distribution.

This version Password Manager System is a JavaFX app with a companion Android app for easy entry & recall of systems & their passwords. It is compatible with the initial Android app and will handle datastores on the PC that were created with the original Swing version of the app.

This page describes the installation of the desktop system. To get the Android version go to the Android Apps market ("Google Play") and look for JCST Password Manager.

Installation

There are 2 very different ways of installing and running the Password Manager System: the "traditional" method and the "modular" method

1. The "traditional" method requires installing Java and installing JavaFX:

The app can now be run by executing the launcher.sh or PasswordManager.bat depending on your operating system.

There is an application icon that can be used if creating a desktop shortcut.

2. The "modular" method does not require Java (or JavaFX) to be installed but there are separate installation files depending on the operating system you are using. To install this version of the app:

There is an application icon that can be used if creating a desktop shortcut.

Getting Started

The first time the system starts it displays the End User License Agreement:

EULA

You must Accept this to continue. If you Decline, an error will be posted and when you acknowledge the error message the system will exit.

Once you accept the End User License Agreement the system will open the main window with an empty list of System/Passwords:

New Password Manager


At this point you can press the F1 key to invoke the on-line Help

Next you must specify the file in which the system/passwords will be stored. The system will automatically start in the directory where the application is installed. The easiest way is to enter a file name in the File: text box by adding a slash (backslash on Window) and the new file name after the directory name, enter a password in the Password: text box and press Open (or just press Enter) to create the new file in the installation directory.

Alternatively or to create a file in a directory other than the installation directory (you can create as many password files as you want in the same or different directories) press the Browse button that will open a File Chooser window to allow you to navigate to the directory of your choice and enter a file name:

File Chooser


The File Chooser will always start in the directory in which you installed (and started) the system but you can choose any directory that you can write into (some versions of Windows will not let you write into the root of the C: drive). Enter a (new) file name and press Open. Once you have created a file (or files), thereafter when you start the system it will default to the file that was in use when the system was last closed. To open a different file use the Browse button to navigate to the file you want to open.

The system returns to the main screen with the full file name entered. Next enter a password that will be used to secure this file. The Open button will be active whenever there is anything in the Password: field. Since this is a new file and it is vitally important that you know exactly what password you set, the system asks for confirmation:

Confirm Password

Re-enter the password and press OK button. If you press Cancel the system will return to the main window without creating the file. If the passwords do not match a warning dialog will be displayed and when it is acknowledged, the system will return to the main window.

Note: it is imperative that you remember this password, it is the key to accessing the file and if it is lost or forgotten there is no way to access the file. It is equally important to back up the file(s) which you have created to store your passwords.


Using the System

Once the system is running pressing the F1 key will bring up the on-line Help for the screen with the focus. The Help will provide information on how to make use of the system.

Recent Updates

No updates are available yet.

Android Version

The Android version of the Password Manager System is called JCST Password Manager

The Android version of the system is available on the Android Market; look for JCST Password Manager in beta testing.

Legal Stuff

The Password Manager System installed from this page is free software.
 
The Password Manager System is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. 

You will be required to accept the terms of the license before you can use the system.

Questions

Contact the developer at jcstdev@gmail.com




Prepared: February 15, 2014
Modified: August 28, 2019
Copyright \A9 Johnson Computer Software Team Limited.  2014 - 2019