Review: 1Password for Mac OS X

This may be the twenty-first century, for Pete’s sake! Wouldn’t you expect the chore of getting to recollect dozens of passwords to be a thing of the past? After all, isn’t that the complete function of a laptop computer, to handle our information for us?

Instead, the Internet has built a large number of additional passwords we need to recollect. Every shopping site requires its password. So does every social bookmark submitting site. And every forum. And every social media site. And, and, and…

And yet, built-in computer tools don’t do a very good job of managing our passwords.

That’s why I recommend a browser add-on/standalone software combination called 1Password ($40) from Agile Web Solutions.

Why use a password manager? Doesn’t the Mac keep track of passwords using its keychain? I can supply the answer in a single word: Firefox.

Firefox will be the 800-pound gorilla of browsers, no less than as much as web marketers have concerns. This is because Firefox supports many plug-ins which might be necessary to Web marketers, as described in the earlier section. Firefox uses its own password scheme for remembering your logins. That means sites that you create in Firefox won’t be obtainable in Safari.

1Password does require yet another investment of $40 and, yes, it really is another software program that you will learn to utilize, so normally I might not work with it, but, as Internet marketers, we have to cope with a large number of websites. Not only the websites we create, but social network sites, social bookmark management sites, the blogs we reply to, the blogs we create guest posts on, and the like. So the additional investment essential for a plan like 1Password is unquestionably worth it.

Personally, I was fed up with the erratic behavior of Apple’s keychain. I don’t know whether it really is some sort of corruption on my own Mac or possibly a bug in the software, but Safari would fill within the password for a website sometimes although not others. On OnlyWire, for instance, Safari filled in a password when I visited the web page for several days back to back after which suddenly stopped the process. Much to my annoyance, I found your website wasn’t even listed inside the keychain.

Enter 1Password. Of special usefulness to Web, marketers are 1Password’s ability to store separate logins for a similar website. So, if you’re promoting several unique unrelated websites on, say, Twitter, you may create separate identities that correspond to each site you promote. This way you can keep your tweets relevant to each identity.

1Password even offers your password strength generation feature for the creation of totally random passwords so you aren’t tempted to use something like your dob or the same login for every website. Since 1Password keeps track of your passwords, it’s not necessary to bother about causing them to be memorable. 1Password boasts a “Strength” meter to tell you how “unguessable” your password is (but this is just in line with the length of the password, not whether it contains letters, numbers, and symbols, so it’s simply a rough guide).

If your Mac is just not 100% secure (as an example, if you use a laptop) you should use 1Password to store your private data, such as Social Security number, credit card numbers, and in many cases software serial numbers. 1Password is secured which has a master password and uses 128 bit AES encryption.

In addition to your desktop Mac and laptop, 1Password can run using your Windows PC, iPad, and iPhone or iPod touch, which means you can share passwords among devices.