I am wondering if it would be possible to take out a Bitlocker encrypted SSD from a PC, put in another one and use the PC, then swap the original drive back without it having to be Bitlocker unlocked. The drive in question would be the only drive in the PC, so the OS is on it.

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  • Is this the same question as superuser.com/questions/1373402/… ? And what do you mean by swap the original drive back without it having to be Bitlocker unlocked? If the drive is encrypted before unplugging it, why wouldn't it be encrypted after plugging it back in? – Xen2050 Nov 9 at 16:08
  • I'm not very knowledgeable about Bitlocker, but I have seen situations where the PC would go into a Windows recovery-style menu and ask for a Bitlocker unlock key before allowing you to fully boot into the OS. I'm just wondering whether swapping the SSD could trigger this unlock menu. – takatak Nov 9 at 16:10

I am wondering if it would be possible to take out a BitLocker encrypted SSD from a PC, put in another one and use the PC, then swap the original drive back without it having to be BitLocker unlocked.

What you describe absolutely will result in you having to provide the recovery key multiple times. If you are attempting to avoid having to provide the recovery key, in order to boot Windows, it cannot be avoided. BitLocker will require you provide the key when you use the BitLocker protected HDD in the other machine, provided you are using a TPM on the first machine, so you need the recovery key to do what you describe.

The only way to avoid it would be to turn off BitLocker. So it is much easier to just provide the recovery key. You might be able to avoid the prompt if you suspend BitLocker, however, providing the key you should already have is the best option.

I'm not very knowledgeable about BitLocker, but I have seen situations where the PC would go into a Windows recovery-style menu and ask for a BitLocker unlock key before allowing you to fully boot into the OS. I'm just wondering whether swapping the SSD could trigger this unlock menu.

What you describe absolutely will result in the prompt to provide the recovery key.

  • Thank you for the reply. Just to make sure I worded it clear enough, I would not be using the Bitlocker SSD in an other machine. I would just set it aside while I use the PC itself with an other SSD inside, then swap the Bitlocker SSD back into the original PC to use it again. – takatak Nov 10 at 8:45
  • @takatak - If you don't want to be asked for the recovery key, suspend BitLocker, before you do that. – Ramhound Nov 10 at 12:49

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