NinjaStik FAQ

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A few of the most commonly asked questions regarding the NinjaStik, you can also find specifications and additional details on the Support pages.

How fast does the NinjaStik boot up?

From a USB 3.0 drive the average time from power off to a loaded desktop is about 40 seconds. We say 60 seconds, but usually it is faster than that. It’s nice to under promise and over deliver. It does vary by the computer that you are using. The fastest so far was 7 seconds when running from a pci express drive. The slowest test was on a 17 year old computer – a P3 Compaq with 512mb – and it was still only 80 seconds to a working desktop.

Is the NinjaStik USB 2.0 or 3.0? 

We recommend loading your NinjaStik image onto a USB 3.0 drive. Name brand drives are usually better and more reliable.

Are there any extra charges, fees, memberships etc?

No. Never. period. You just buy the NinjaStik and use it. The NinjaStik does not have any limitations, bandwidth charges, monthly fees, extra costs EVER.

What happens if my NinjaStik is lost, confiscated, seized, stolen, or left at a friends?

If your encrypted NinjaStik is lost or confiscated no one will be able to access the files and history that you have saved. Read about AES encryption, determine your threat level and if it covers what you need.

Can I change the encryption passphrase?

Yes you can and it is highly recommended! The NinjaStik has a default passphrase and password. Both of these need to be changed when you build each NinjaStik (it takes less than a minute to do).

What is Reencrypting and why do I have to do it?

The NinjaStik image that you download is encrypted with a master key. You want to change that master key to ensure no one else can use it to get access to your data. The NinjaStik includes an reencryption tool to make this simple and easy to do.

How big is the NinjaStik download?

Approximately 5 GB

Do you promise perfect anonymity?

No, the NinjaStik can encrypt your communications, encrypt your storage and secure your data but it will not prevent you from doing something yourself that jeopardizes your anonymity. Even with the Tor Browser Bundle, as the creators of Tor say themselves “Tor can’t help you if you use it wrong” Learn more from the source torproject

Does it protect me from browser fingerprinting?

No it does not – Browser fingerprinting uses the unique combination of hardware, software, fonts, plugins and even connected devices of your computer to determine a unique ‘signature’ from the viewpoint of the site or network you visit.

How much space is available for saving files on the NinjaStik?

The NinjaStik image is built on an 8GB drive but has very little space left for storage, about 800MB. You should install it on a 16GB drive or larger for more space.

If I plug a NinjaStik into a computer that is turned on and running Windows or OSX, what will I see?

You will see nothing. Absolutely nothing at all. The NinjaStik is fully encrypted and unreadable unless the passphrase has been entered. If you plug your NinjaStik into a computer already turned on and running Windows it will pop up a message stating that the drive is empty and needs to be formatted. It is a very nice feature if anyone decides to be nosy and try to see what is on your NinjaStik. btw – Do not format your NinjaStik! (read the next question if you have….)

What happens if I mess up my NinjaStik while trying to add programs or if I accidentally corrupt it or even format it?

If you ever format, wipe, corrupt or mess up the software on your NinjaStik, you can simply reload the NinjaStik image you downloaded. Keep in mind, reloading will wipe any existing data so make sure you have your stuff backed up.

Does the NinjaStik work on Apple computers?

The NinjaStik will work on Intel based Mac computers. The NinjaStik has been tested using a first gen MacBook Pro and a second gen Mac Mini, both worked flawlessly. Check the support pages for more details.

Does the NinjaStik work on ___ brand computers?

The easiest way to determine this – if your computer can boot from USB, it can run a NinjaStik. There are a few computers that require modifying the boot options. If in doubt, send us an email.

Does the NinjaStik work on Chromebooks?

No. Well, not many. Most Chromebooks are based on mobile processors which won’t run a Linux O/S.

Is the NinjaStik selling free software?

The NinjaStik is not selling free software, it is selling a downloadable image with the free software installed and ready to use. Read more about distributing free software HERE. What we are selling is convenience and great customer service.

Is there an email client installed?

Yes, the NinjaStik comes with Thunderbird email client and also includes Enigmail the Open PGP encryption plugin pre-installed.

Read more about Enigmail at

Is there a Bitcoin wallet installed?

Yes, the NinjaStik comes with the Electrum Bitcoin wallet. You can learn more about it here.

Can the NinjaStik get viruses and malware?

Not in the way that Windows can. The NinjaStik runs on Linux so it it almost impervious to viruses compared to Windows. You can add anti-virus and malware detection to your NinjaStik if you want to. It’s a very comforting feeling to have.

What operating system is NinjaStik using?

The NinjaStik runs on Lubuntu. It is a much faster, lighter and cleaner operating system than regular Ubuntu. The version on NinjaStik has no modified source code, just a lot of unnecessary games and programs removed in favour of space and speed. It has been themed to look very familiar to most users. If you are used to working with Windows, the NinjaStik will be very easy to use.

How does the NinjaStik keep up-to-date?

The Lubuntu operating system automatically checks for any updates to the entire distro, including Tor, Firefox and kernel updates as well as any security updates for any program. The automatic updater will pop up to announce updates – from there it is simply click, password, click click and your done.

Is browsing on TOR slow?

Sometimes, but usually the browsing speed is great. The speed of your connection is determined by the speed of the exit node, which can be slower than browsing in the clear. If you find that your connection is slow, open the Tor control button (the green onion on the browser) and click on ‘new identity’. This will connect you to a new exit server and is usually faster.

Can I view PDF files on the NinjaStik?

Yes you can – the NinjaStik uses an open source PDF viewer. Advanced PDF manipulation (editing, concatenation, etc) is not available.

Can I use a VPN along with the NinjaStik?

Yes you can.

Does NinjaStik have a remote backup option?

We do not offer a cloud based backup.

Can I add programs like an email or Bitcoin client to the NinjaStik?

Yes you certainly can.

Common Questions from Windows Users

Can I use the NinjaStik with Windows?

– The NinjaStiks run on your computer, but is not a program that runs on Windows.

Can I use my existing programs with the NinjaStik?

– No, the NinjaStik is a self contained system running Linux.

Can I run ___ program or application on the NinjaStik?

– If it is a Windows program, No. There are program emulators to run Windows programs on Linux but the security of the emulators and the Windows programs are not know; therefore the NinjaStik does not include the ability to run Windows programs.

Can I access my existing files, pictures, data on my Windows PC?

– Yes you can access those files through the NinjaStik file browser.

If you have a question, send us an email. We are always happy to answer any questions, before and after you buy.