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Bitwarden vs. KeePass: Which Is the Best Password Manager?

When talking about password managers there are only two names that pop up in our heads.

Bitwarden vs. KeePass: Which Is the Best Password Manager?

So, what about if we compare Bitwarden vs KeePass and see which one offers more security.

Bitwarden and KeePass are two outstanding password managers that stand out from the crowd since they are open-source and virtually entirely free (Bitwarden has an optional paid plan.). However, there are some significant variances. Here’s how to decide which one to go with.

Using Bitwarden vs KeePass

The UI is the most noticeable distinction between Bitwarden and KeePass. However, both interfaces are far less sleek than commercial password managers such as LastPass and 1Password.

KeePass takes this to the next level with a desktop program UI from the 1990s. That’s hardly surprising given that it’s been around since 2003.

KeePass is a more traditional desktop program for “power users.” Compared to current premium password managers, its menus, for example, are relatively jargon-filled.

Although it is developed in.NET and the non-Windows clients run via the Mono framework, this program operates on Windows, Linux, and Mac.

Bitwarden, on the other hand, provides a more recent, simplified user experience suitable for 2016 software.

Although it isn’t as slick as LastPass, it is much more precise and well-thought-out than KeePass in this aspect. It just looks nicer and is much more user-friendly. It is also compatible with Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iPhone.

Of fact, the distinctions between KeePass and Bitwarden go beyond the surface. Bitwarden is not only nicer on the eyes, but it is also simpler to use, owing to web browser autofill and built-in automatic sync.

Autofill is a handy feature that allows your password manager to automatically fill in the login and password fields on each website you wish to visit. It’s what transforms password managers from just handy to time-saving tools: You are not only not required to remember passwords, but you are also not required to write them out.

Automatic sync (short for “synchronization”) refers to the ability to run the same software on several devices (such as your laptop and smartphone) and have the data automatically transmitted between them. Any account you establish on your computer, for example, might be auto-filled on your smartphone. Bitwarden performs this automatically (and with a credit card and ID numbers), but KeePass requires you to manually transmit the file containing your passwords.

Autofill and sync are two of the most valuable features a password manager can have, and it’s difficult to suggest any tool that lacks one, much alone both. On the other hand, KeePass has an ace up its sleeve in the shape of plugins.

KeePass Plugins

Unlike Bitwarden, a company-created application, most of KeePass’s functionality outside of the leading software is given by its community through plugins.

These software extensions add a particular feature to KeePass or allow it to run on Android, iPhone, and iPad devices.

The KeePass community is quite active and provides a wide range of plugins, including ones that can enable autofill and automatic sync so that you could add that capability that way. In most circumstances, installing a plugin to KeePass is simple:

You may add the plugin using the menu in the main KeePass client after downloading and unpacking the file into the KeePass directory, but specific plugins may need additional procedures.

However, there is the matter of whether or not you want to install plugins in the first place.

Because password managers are meant to be applications that simplify life, it may seem contradictory to some to add a slew of additional steps to add features that other software, such as Bitwarden, already has built-in.

KeePass’s plugins are pretty handy for computer enthusiasts who like tinkering with applications.

With the correct plugins, you can, for example, entirely modify the design of KeePass or add services that many of its rivals do not provide, such as automated backup or extensive scripting.

In brief, the usability difference between KeePass and Bitwarden is that Bitwarden is simpler to use.

However, when used as its inventors intended, KeePass provides a lot more flexibility at the expense of being more difficult to use. ( Bitwarden vs KeePass )

As a result, KeePass may be a good match for those already familiar with computers. Still, Bitwarden is a better alternative for anyone searching for a more user-friendly solution.

Bitwarden vs KeePass Security

So far, we’ve covered the primary distinctions between Bitwarden and KeePass. Now, let’s look at some of their key commonalities. Whatever option you choose, your passwords and any personal data you submit will be secure.

Bitwarden keeps your passwords in the cloud but encrypts them on your PC with the “military-grade” AES-256 cryptography, rendering them unreadable to anybody viewing them on the server. Third-party security organizations evaluate the corporation regularly to guarantee that client data is secure.

KeePass employs the same encryption key but keeps all passwords on your computer, which means you must ensure that no one who isn’t meant to have access comes into contact with it.

Even if someone does get access, KeePass encrypts your passwords. It utilizes AES-256 by default, but you may also choose from other alternatives, such as ChaCha20.

Furthermore, both apps are open source, which means that anybody can look at their code on GitHub and see any flaws.

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Bitwarden also enables users to report any bugs or security holes they discover to collect a reward.

Like with other password managers, the only actual vulnerability is your master password, which you need to access the application. This exact issue is unknown to KeePass and Bitwarden.

This implies that if you forget your master password, you’ll never be able to recover it. At the same time, it means that no one will be able to find out what it is until you provide it to them.

Are KeePass and Bitwarden Free?

The good news is that both applications are free; however, you may give them to the folks behind KeePass if you want to help them out.

Bitwarden’s free plan is a fully working password manager, and as such, there is no need to pay for it; however, it provides certain additional features to paying clients.

Bitwarden charges $10 per year for a Premium Account, which includes additional choices for connecting two-factor authentication systems (such as YubiKey or U2F Key) and vault health reports, which assess the security of your passwords.

The Family/Organization Plan costs $40 per year and enables you to share your account with up to six other people. This implies that everyone may share certain safe data—for example, family Netflix accounts or the workplace VPN.

The Bottom Line

In the end, selecting between Bitwarden and KeePass will probably come down to what you want from a password manager. KeePass is an excellent option if you wish to something adaptable to tailor it to your preferences and requirements.

Bitwarden, on the other hand, is excellent if you want something that you can get up and running quickly. In any situation, you will not have to pay a dime, and your passwords will remain secure.