How can I access my encrypted files if I deleted the remote and/or deleted the config file

Quite sure. I copy and pasted them from my password manager into command prompt. I use both Ctrl+C and right click to copy. I made sure the password was in my clipboard.

you used rclone config or directly edited the rclone.conf
if you directly edit the rclone.conf, then need to rclone obscure the password(s)

i am out of ideas, we have enough debug info for others to comment.

I used rclone config and edited the remote from there.

I won't waste your time with this anymore. I already spent hours trying to solve it on my own. Who knows, maybe I copied the password wrong when I made the remote 2 years ago? Maybe I missed a character during copy paste. I'm lucky there is nothing important in that directory. I was just hoping to learn something here in case I have a problem in the future.

I appreciate you taking the time to help me.

The password(s) alone should be enough to recreate the remote. You do need to know which type of file/directory encoding you used though.

However since the rclone config is plain text and short, I recommend storing that in your password manager for next time. Run rclone config show and paste the result into the notes in your password manager.

I did record the passwords into my password manager. It may just have been user error on my part.

You mention showing the password with rclone config show. I thought the password stored in config file was an "obscured" version. Will that password even work if I don't have the config file? The password (and salt) that I was saving, was the one generated when I created the encrypted remote.

You'd take the whole output of config show and just paste in a text file to the new machine.

You can store the actual passwords but I'd rather just cut and paste the whole thing.

Right, I get that the best way is just to move or copy the rclone config, but I was making a hypothetical scenario here. Would those "obscured" passwords in the config, be able to decrypt your content on a new computer, or would you need the password you created / generated, when you created the remote?


I think you are over complicating it a bit.

Run rclone config show

Save that whole text

Paste into a few file


Like I said, hypothetical scenario. One could easily forget to backup their rclone config, but still have the passwords saved in a password manager.

Anyway, you said no to the "obscured" passwords. That's all I really needed to know.

If you put those obscured passwords straight into the config file (not via rclone config) then they will work fine. This is equivalent to copying the config file.

You can't put obscured passwords into rclone config though when it asks you for a password.

I'm confused. So what is the difference between the password you create / generated password and the obscured version of that? Both can be used to decrypt your content on a new machine? The former using the rclone config command and the latter using a new / blank rclone config file?

hi, that is correct.

let's say the password is password
the output of rclone obscure password is uK4S4JXgm9L8uejb6HIM2419FK65iIWA

--- using rclone config command, you would type password and then rclone will obscure it, save it to rclone.conf

--- directly editing the text file rclone.conf, need to use the obscured version.

type = crypt
remote = remote:
password = uK4S4JXgm9L8uejb6HIM2419FK65iIWA

so with your password manager, save the entire remote, not just the passwords.
and if needed, copy and paste the entire remote into the rclone config file, rclone.conf

Just ran into the "empty crypt folder" problem myself. I was able to solve it thanks to the answers above, but I thought it worth mentioning where I went wrong in case others have the same problem.

I was trying to recreate my rclone setup on a new machine. I could have copied the config file, but I wanted to run the setup process manually to remind myself how to do it.

I ran rclone config on the old machine, and chose "Edit an existing remote" to see what the current settings were. The problem occurred at the prompt to edit the remote's password, which looked like this on my old machine:

Value "password" = "f1e2d3c4b5a......"
Edit? (y/n)

(Recent versions of rclone don't display the current password here, but I hadn't updated in a while so this is what I saw.)

The value displayed at the edit password prompt is the current obscured password, but if you go ahead with the edit then you have to type a new unobscured password, which isn't very intutive. (Presumably this is why newer versions of rclone don't display the current password at this prompt.)

Anyway, not knowing about obscured passwords, I simply copied what I saw and tried to use it with rclone config on the new machine, which obviously didn't work for me, hence I went searching and came across this thread. I solved it by pasting the original password from my password manager. (As mentioned above, copying the entire config file would also work.)

The reason I didn't use the password manager originally is that I saw it contained a different password to the one displayed in rclone config. Both passwords are long and random so I didn't know which one was right. I assumed the rclone config password was right and that I simply hadn't updated the password in the password manager, but really the one in rclone config was just an obscured version of the one in the password manager.

hello and welcome to the forum,

good to know that help you and hopefully others.

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Thanks! As always, the trick is knowing the right word to search for when you need help. :smile:

Perhaps you could make this easier by storing passwords like this in the config file:

password_obscured = f1e2d3c4b5a

Instead of how they are currently stored:

password = f1e2d3c4b5a

Similarly, whenever an obscured password is displayed, it should say "obscured" somewhere nearby to distinguish it from the unobscured password, and to give users a clue what to search for when they need help.

i agree that it can be confusing

anyone can contribute to improving the documentation, even me, jojothehumanmonkey :wink:
if that is something you are interested in?

and here are some snippets from the docs

Your password is: JAsJvRcgR-_veXNfy_sGmQ
Use this password? Please note that an obscured version of this
password (and not the password itself) will be stored under your
configuration file, so keep this generated password in a safe place.

Important The crypt password stored in rclone.conf is lightly obscured. 
That only protects it from cursory inspection. 
It is not secure unless configuration encryption of rclone.conf is specified.
It will be stored in the configuration file, in a lightly obscured form. 
If you are in an environment where you are not able to keep your configuration secured, 
you should add configuration encryption as protection

Note that passwords are in obscured form. 
Also, many storage systems uses token-based authentication instead of passwords, and this requires additional steps. 
It is easier, and safer, to use the interactive command rclone config instead of manually editing the configuration file.

note: as mentioned several times in those snippets.
at some point, might want to encrypt the entire config file.

My config file is encrypted already. I'm a software developer myself so I have a reasonably good feel for how RClone works.

In a way, that's the problem: I thought I already knew how it works. I managed to get it working on my first machine after all, so there was no reason for me to check the documentation again when attempting to set it up on the second machine.

But it's only the second time around that certain details become clear, such as the difference between "encrypting" the file and "obscuring" the passwords inside. If I saw references to passwords being obscured the first time around then I probably just thought they were obscured because the file was encrypted. I diligently wrote the original passwords down in my password manager, but that was just as a safeguard in case I couldn't decrypt the config file.

As well as being a developer, I also do a bit of work as a usability designer. The documentation text you quoted above is fine, but it's not a substitute for putting the necessary information in front of the user right at the moment when they actually need it, which is when they see an obscured password, not when they create one.

If I see a message in the terminal, or line in a config file, that says:

password = f1e2d3c4b5a

Then I will assume that f1e2d3c4b5a is my password. It doesn't matter what messages or documentation I might have read 3 years ago when I created the config file. It doesn't matter that I diligently followed the instruction to keep the real password safe. Right now, RClone is telling me that the password is f1e2d3c4b5a so that is what I will enter as the password on the new machine.

yes, this needs work.

great, as i mentioned, you are more than welcome to edit the docs.
or if you think that rclone config process, needs a tweak,
then you can edit the docs for that or submit a Pull Request.

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