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Windows: File Explorer Icon Display

PK Protect Icons

The PEM Agent has the ability to display different icons for different files being encrypted. A single file archive (an archive with only 1 file in it) will display the standard icon for the file in the archive. If the archive is encrypted, there is a PEM Agent badge added to the icon. If the file is not encrypted, it will only be displayed as the standard icon for the file in the archive.

Examples:

In the above example, all the files are zip file archives. They are all single file archives. You can see the icon displayed has a PK Protect badge for files that have been encrypted, and files that are not encrypted only render the original icon for the file in the archive.


For multi-file archives (zip archives containing many files), the PEM Agent will render an archive icon. If the archive is encrypted, there is a PK Protect badge added to the icon.

File Explorer Columns

If you prefer viewing File Explorer in the detail view, there are some new columns and column data which can enhance the ability to work with PEM Agent archives. To add new column, right click on an existing column to open the column choosing menu, and select "More"

From the list of available columns, the PEM Agent populates data in the tags, original type, and encryption status fields for archive files.

Description of File Explorer Columns and Column Data
ColumnDescription
Tags

This is a standard Windows column. The PEM Agent will populate the column data with a semi-colon separated list.

  • Original file in zip
    • If many, files is skipped
  • Encryption Status
  • File Type

Original Type

This is a custom Windows column that the PEM Agent will add and populate data to display.

  • For single file archives, the PEM Agent will display the file type in the PEM Agent Archive (like PDF, or Microsoft Word Document)
  • For multi-file archives, PEM Agent will display the count of files in the archive
Encryption Status

This is a standard Windows column. The PEM Agent will populate the column data.

  • Encrypted - If the file is somehow encrypted (Smartkey, passphrase, x509 certificate, PGP keys, etc.).
  • Unencrypted - If the file is unencrypted and not protected by the PEM Agent.
Example File Explorer

Do not want the icons and columns for the PEM Agent?

You can skip installing the enhancement for using the icons rendering and column value data. When using the custom option in the PEM Agent installation package, you can un-select the feature from installation:

Not seeing the custom columns?

Microsoft Office updates seem to unregister customization that applications load. This issue has been identified to Microsoft:

https://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/office/en-US/01877e3d-a091-4860-a24c-0bb8d5a6d166/office-updates-breaks-registered-property-schema-explorershell?forum=officegeneral

Known workaround

Open Add / Remove Programs, find and select the PEM Agent, and click Repair

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