Why I'm now using 1Password

Howdy πŸ‘‹

I recently purchased an idevice. “Fantastic”, I hear you say, but what’s that got to do with the title of this post?

For years I’ve been an ardent KeePassXC user, syncing database files between devices using Syncthing or similar self hosted tools and annoying everyone with the warm glow of smug self reliance. Sadly, Idevices don’t like that kind of thing. It’s iCloud or the highway for syncing files. Not wanting to iCloud all the things I decided to check out the big bad world of cloud hosted secrets management.

Spoiler, I put nearly all my secrets in the cloud ☁️

While searching online itI discovered there are two big players worth looking at, 1Password and bitwarden. Bitwarden scored points for self hoΓ₯sting and 1Password came with a glowing review from my mate.

Picking 1Password

I decided to give 1Password some money based on the following features:

  • Everything their side is encrypted, with keys supplied by the client
  • Great reputation across the industry
  • CLI tools for accessing secrets
  • RBAC and granular sharing capabilities
  • Applications for every operating system I use
  • Browser extensions for firefox and chrome
  • Easy export capability

I started testing the water, moving a few things from KeePassXC into 1Password.

A few days later I threw down money for a 1Password subscription.

Here’s why:

This one is a bit of a game changer… This has changed my workflows. I no longer have keys per device. Instead, keys exist per service and context.

1Password has an SSH Agent built in and can manage SSH keys. The docs are easy to use and clear.

Use the nightly version of the 1Password application. If you don’t sessions won’t persist and you will be requested for auth on each connection. Not cool if your Terraform or Ansible are using SSH.

Set SSH_AUTH_SOCK variable in your rc file or similar:

# without SSH_AUTH_SOCK being set you won't be able to list keys using ssh-add -l
# Note the path is for MacOS only
export SSH_AUTH_SOCK=~/Library/Group\ Containers/2BUA8C4S2C.com.1Password/t/agent.sock

Taking 1Password a step towards Hashicorp Vault, secrets automation gives your infra the ability to consume a private REST API.

1Password has worked with fastmail to create automatic unique email addresses per account.

This is pretty cool!

I mostly use direnv and the 1Password CLI tool, however, it’s nice to have config rendering available.

    host: http://localhost
    port: 5432
    username: op://prod/mysql/username
    password: op://prod/mysql/password

If you need to create custom templates for new entries in your vault 1Password has you covered.

Travel Mode makes certain vaults unavailable when you are travelling. Won’t protect you from Mossad, but will give you piece of mind in normal travel situations…


Two months using this service and I keep finding useful features. It’s well worth the money!