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Take Control of 1Password

Assemble All the Pieces of a Secure Password Strategy

Save 20% and learn both password theory and practice when you buy with Joe Kissell’s companion book Take Control of Your Passwords for only $24!

Mar 03, 2016
The Author

Joe Kissell has written more than 50 books about the Mac, including many popular Take Control ebooks. He runs Joe On Tech and is also a contributing editor of TidBITS and a senior contributor to Macworld.

Take Control of 1Password, Second Edition

Easily create and enter secure passwords on all your devices!

Wrangling your Web passwords can be easy and secure, thanks to 1Password, the popular password manager from AgileBits. In this book, Joe Kissell brings years of real-world 1Password experience into play to explain not only how to create, edit, and enter Web login data easily, but also how to autofill contact and credit card info when shopping online, audit your passwords and generate better ones, handle two-factor authentication (2FA), and sync and share passwords with various techniques—including 1Password for Teams and 1Password for Families.

Joe focuses on 1Password 6 for the Mac, but he also provides details and directions for the iOS, Windows, and Android versions of 1Password.

More Info

Meet 1Password: Set your master passcode, explore the various 1Password components, and decide on your ideal usage strategy.

While reading Take Control of 1Password on my iPad I was furiously highlighting passages and following along with 1Password open on my Mac. [The book] showed me how some of my passwords were weak or duplicates. I immediately changed those passwords to unique and secure ones.
—Elisa Pacelli, in her MyMac book review.

Master logins: In 1Password, a typical login contains a set of credentials used to sign in to a Web site. Find out how to create logins, sort them, search them, tag them, and more. You’ll especially find help with editing logins. For example, if you change a site’s password from dragon7 to eatsevendragonsforlunchatyahoo, you’ll want to incorporate that into its login. Or, use 1Password’s password generator to create highly secure random passwords, like dGx7Crve3WucELF#s.

Understand password security: Get guidance on what makes for a good password, and read Joe’s important Password Dos and Don’ts. A special topic covers how to perform a security audit in order to improve poor passwords quickly.

Go beyond Web logins: A primary point of 1Password is to speed up Web logins, but 1Password can also store and autofill contact information (for more than one identity, even), along with credit card information. You’ll also find advice on storing passwords for password-protected files and encrypted disk images, plus ideas for keeping track of confidential files, scans of important cards or documents, and more.

Sync your passwords: Discover which 1Password syncing solution is right for you: Dropbox, iCloud, or a Finder folder, as well as a device-to-device Wi-Fi sync.

Share your passwords: Learn how 1Password integrates with the 1Password for Teams and the 1Password for Families online services.

You’ll also discover the answers to key questions, including:

  • Should I use my Web browser’s autofill feature?
  • What about iCloud Keychain? Should I use that too?
  • What can I do quickly to get better password security?
  • What’s the best way to buy 1Password?
  • How can I find and update weak passwords I created long ago?
  • What’s the best way to work with the password generator?
  • What should I do about security questions, like the name of my pet?
  • How can 1Password provide a time-based one-time password (TOTP)?
  • How can I access my 1Password data on another person’s computer?
  • How do I initiate 1Password logins from utilities like LaunchBar?
What's New

What’s New in Version 2.1

Shortly after version 2.0 of this book was published, AgileBits made some significant improvements to 1Password. This revision addresses those changes and a few other small items:

  • Added a clarification about sharing 1Password licenses with family members using iCloud Family Sharing; see Configure 1Password

  • Rewrote the First Run for Mac Users description, as the process has changed considerably

  • Updated the Watchtower and Heartbleed sidebar to clarify that Watchtower alerts you to other vulnerabilities besides Heartbleed (Watchtower is also now available in 1Password 6.2 or later for iOS.)

  • Described the new “Always open to” pop-up menu (for Mac only) in Configure Other Mac Preferences

  • Revised the description and screenshots of the Android version to include the new features and revised user interface

  • Updated the chapter Use 1Password for Teams to include information about 1Password for Families

  • Adjusted the wording of vault names for those using 1Password for Teams; as of 1Password 6.0.2, the Everyone and Your Vault vaults have been renamed to Shared and Personal, respectively; see Create a Team Vault

What Was New in Version 2.0

This completely revised second edition brings the book up to date with the most recent releases of 1Password (on all platforms) as well as the latest versions of OS X, Windows, and iOS. Among the larger and more notable changes are the following:

  • Updated Make First-run Decisions to cover the new setup processes on OS X, Windows, and iOS; and to add Android coverage

  • Revised the sidebar Locking Here, There, and Everywhere to reflect the way locking is currently handled in Windows

  • Thoroughly revamped the description of the 1Password Data Vault

  • Massively updated the discussion of how to Set Up Syncing

  • Reworked Create and Save Logins to reflect current behavior, including new options available when you Generate Random Passwords

  • Added a sidebar, About Diceware Passwords, that explains this new password-generation option (sometimes referred to as Words in 1Password)

  • Revised the sidebar Why Doesn’t 1Password Autofill and Autosubmit? with new information and AgileBits’ perspective

  • Added an important new topic, One-time Passwords, about using time-based one-time passwords in 1Password

  • Updated Work with Multiple Vaults to cover new ways of working with multiple vaults in OS X and Windows

  • Added the topic Custom Fields on a PC to cover this capability that was added in 1Password 4 for Windows

  • Revised Update Old Passwords to show the latest user interface changes in both Mac and Windows

  • Expanded and updated the sidebar Watchtower and Heartbleed

  • Made significant changes to both Share 1Password Data and Import and Export Data

  • Rewrote the bulk of the Use 1Password on the Go chapter, which now covers the iOS extension, 1Password on the Apple Watch, and the latest Android version of 1Password

  • Added a major new chapter, Use 1Password for Teams, that describes AgileBits’ new system for syncing and sharing password vaults in a business or family


What Versions of OS X Does 1Password 6 Work With?

1Password 6 runs on 10.10 Yosemite and 10.11 El Capitan. You can upgrade for free from 1Password 4 or 1Password 5.

What about 1Password 4?

Good question! 1Password 4 runs under 10.8 Mountain Lion and 10.9 Mavericks. (If you need help with 1Password 4, please get in touch with us, since if you buy the second edition about 1Password 6, we can make the first edition of this book available to you.)

If you have a Mac running 10.6 Snow Leopard or 10.7 Lion, you can run 1Password 3, instead. Note that you can sync/share data between 1Password 3 and 1Password 4. AgileBits has an enthusiastic support article about this topic, How do I use 1Password 4 in Snow Leopard or Lion?.

(A lot of the information in the first edition applies to 1Password 3, but this ebook doesn’t have special notes for 1Password 3 users; it assumes 1Password 4.)

  1. What You Get with a 1Password Individual Subscription

    AgileBits is now offering a new way to pay for 1Password in the form of a monthly individual subscription. You can still pay for the app (or use the free version of the iOS app), just as in the past, but you can also switch to a $2.99 per month subscription (billed annually).

    Subscribers receive these benefits:

    • Sign up before September 21, 2016, and get 6 months free
    • Free use of all 1Password apps on all platforms
    • Automatic sync with 1Password’s cloud service (this service is also used by 1Password for Families and 1Password for Teams)
    • Web-based access to your data
    • Item history for restoring accidentally edited or deleted items
    • Secure document storage
    • A special two-factor security measure, called Account Key
    • Cancel at any time and you can export your data

    For more about the new personal subscription option, see the TidBITS article 1Password Introduces Individual Subscriptions and the AgileBits blog post that introduces individual subscriptions.

    Speaking for myself, I signed my family up for 1Password for Families last spring, partly to test the service so that I could more effectively help with editing this book, but also because my family had reached a point where sharing highly secure passwords easily felt essential. Because I’m already using 1Password for Families, there’s no reason for me to consider a personal subscription as well (AgileBits has a Web page that compares the two services and offers Sign Up buttons).

    Should you sign up for an individual subscription? If you’ll save more money by signing up, or if the features look attractive, or if you just want to support AgileBits by providing them with a more even and predictable amount of cash flow, then go for it! If not, you can continue using 1Password just as you have in the past.

    Posted by Tonya Engst (Permalink)

  2. Joe and Chuck Discuss the Latest 1Password Features

    1Password is new and improved in version 6, giving Joe and Chuck Joiner (of MacVoices) a perfect opportunity to tell you what’s new and improved not only in the app but also in Joe’s Second Edition of his book, which covers it. Best of all, you don’t need a password to watch the interview!

    Posted by Michael E. Cohen (Permalink)

  3. Take Control and eSellerate Unaffected by Heartbleed Bug

    For anyone who is wondering, neither the Take Control Web site nor the eSellerate ecommerce site that we use for purchases were ever vulnerable to the Heartbleed bug, so you don’t need to worry about the security of your Take Control transactions or account information. There’s no reason to change your Take Control password either, although it’s always a good idea to do that if your current password is weak.

    Posted by Adam Engst (Permalink)