Enabling BitLocker automatically without MBAM

Enabling BitLocker can be done a number of ways with and without interaction. When deploying Windows with SCCM you can enable BitLocker in a task sequence, or if you have Microsoft BitLocker Administration and Monitoring (MBAM), you can require BitLocker be enabled post deployment. I wanted a way to automatically enable BitLocker with Group Policy, without requiring user interaction and without requiring MBAM and figured a PowerShell script was the easiest way to do it.

Specifically, the full requirements were as follows:

  • Enable BitLocker without requiring any interaction from an end user.
  • Couldn’t require anything beyond Group Policy.
  • Must support Windows 7 or later.
  • Must be able to capture the output to a log file and save it centrally for monitoring.

Microsoft added some really nice PowerShell cmdlets for Windows 8 and higher to manage BitLocker which I unfortunately wouldn’t be able to use by requiring the script to work on Windows 7 as well. This left me with the option to either use manage-bde and capture the output to act on, or use the built in WMI classes and methods to work more naturally in PowerShell. Despite having to dig through the documentation (which I must give kudos to Microsoft for as it was easy to discover and clear), it was in the end a far more reliable way to enable BitLocker in a seamless way

With the script already using WMI classes to enable BitLocker, writing a filter for Group Policy was pretty straight forward to ensure that a policy could be scoped to machines where BitLocker wasn’t enabled but could be.

With the above in mind I came up with the PowerShell script below. You can grab a copy from GitHub here as well. The comments hopefully provide a idea of what each stage is doing, but in bulleted form a quick breakdown is:

  • Define the requirements that PowerShell be version 3 or higher, and that it is running with Administrator privileges.
  • Quick check to see if the system volume is in the “FullyDecrypted” state. * this is just so that if the script encrypts the drive and restarts that it doesn’t attempt to run again just because it isn’t “FullyEncrypted”
  • Define a function to write the log output in the CMTrace format to C:\Windows\Logs\BitLocker\Enable-BitLocker.log.
  • Check the operating system is capable of enabling BitLocker.
  • Create WMI objects for the TPM and EncryptableVolume classes in order to use the methods they provide.
  • Check if a hardware test is pending.
  • Check the conversion status of the system volume.
  • Check if the TPM is owned (and take ownership if required).
  • Check that there is enough free space on the drive. * I chose 20GB and primarily for Windows 7 due to it encrypting the entire drive. On Windows 8 and higher I encrypt used space only so this isn’t critical but I wanted to ensure that the device had free space before enabling it.
  • Check for and create a key protector for the drive if necessary.
  • Backup the recovery key to Active Directory.
  • Check for and create a TPM protector if necessary.
  • Enable BitLocker.
  • Reboot if no one is logged in. If users are logged in this is skipped but they’ll see the notification to restart to enable BitLocker.
  • Copy the log to a file share. * The script is running as system when deployed via Group Policy so the share must be writable by Domain Computers.

It is assumed that you have a separate group policy defined that requires the recovery key to be backed up to Active Directory, and any other requirements such as what encryption level to use.

#Requires -Version 3.0
#Requires -RunAsAdministrator

## Quick check if the drive is FullyDecrypted. 
Try {if ($((Get-WmiObject -Query "Select * from Win32_EncryptableVolume where (DriveLetter = `"$env:SystemDrive`")" -Namespace 'root\CIMv2\Security\MicrosoftVolumeEncryption' -ErrorAction Stop).GetConversionStatus().ConversionStatus) -ne 0) {Return}} Catch {}

function Write-ScriptLog
    param (
        [string]$LogType = "Information",
        [string]$LogFile = $(if ($Script:LogFile) {$Script:LogFile})
    ## Setting a default LogFile location if one isn't set
    if ((-not($LogFile)) -or (-not(Split-Path -Path $LogFile -Parent))) {
        Write-Warning -Message "LogFile wasn't specified or does not include a valid path. Generating a log name and defining path."
        if ($PSCommandPath) {
            [string]$LogDir = $PSScriptRoot
            [string]$LogName = ((Get-Item $PSCommandPath).BaseName) + ".log"
        } else {
            [string]$LogDir = $PWD
            [string]$LogName = (Get-Date -Format yyyyMMdd) + "-" + (Get-Date -Format HHmmss) + ".log"
        [string]$Script:LogFile = Join-Path -Path $LogDir -ChildPath $LogName;$LogFile = $Script:LogFile
        Write-Warning -Message "LogFile is $LogFile"
    } else {
        [string]$LogDir = (Split-Path -Path $LogFile -Parent)
        [string]$LogName = (Split-Path -Path $LogFile -Leaf)
    ## Create the log if it doesn't exist
    if (-not(Test-Path -Path $LogFile)) {
        if (-not(Test-Path -Path "$LogDir")) {
            # Create the log directory
            New-Item -Path (Split-Path -Path "$LogDir" -Parent) -Name (Split-Path -Path "$LogDir" -Leaf) -ItemType Directory -Force -ErrorAction Stop | Out-Null
            # Creating the log file
            New-Item -Path "$LogDir" -Name $LogName -ItemType File -ErrorAction Stop | Out-Null
    ## Defining the required variables to create a CMTrace compatible log file
    [string]$CMTraceFormat = '<![LOG[{0}]LOG]!><time="{1}" date="{2}" component="{3}" context="{4}" type="{5}" thread="{6}" file="{7}">'
    [string]$CMTraceSource = $(if ($PSCommandPath) {Get-Item $PSCommandPath | Select-Object -ExpandProperty BaseName} else {Write-Output "ISE"})
    [string]$CMTraceLogDate = (Get-Date -Format "MM-dd-yyyy").ToString()
    [string]$CMTraceTimeZoneOffset = [timezone]::CurrentTimeZone.GetUtcOffset([datetime]::Now).TotalMinutes
    [string]$CMTraceLogTime = ((Get-Date -Format "HH:mm:ss.fff").ToString()) + $CMTraceTimeZoneOffset
    [string]$CMTraceContext = [Security.Principal.WindowsIdentity]::GetCurrent().Name
    if (-not($Script:Component)) {$Script:Component = "Not Defined"} else {$Component = $Script:Component}
    switch ($LogType) {
        "Information" { $CMTraceType = 1; $Color = "White" }
        "Warning" { $CMTraceType = 2; $Color = "DarkYellow" }
        "Error" { $CMTraceType = 3; $Color = "Red" }
    $LogEntry = @($Message,$CMTraceLogTime,$CMTraceLogDate,$Component,$CMTraceContext,$CMTraceType,$PID,$CMTraceSource)
    [string]$Output = $CMTraceFormat -f $LogEntry
    Add-Content -Value $Output -Path $LogFile -ErrorAction Stop 
    Write-Host $Message -ForegroundColor $Color

Try {

    ## Setting initial variables
    [string]$LogFile = Join-Path -Path $env:windir -ChildPath 'Logs\BitLocker\EnableBitLocker.log'
    [string]$Component = 'Requirements'

    ## Validating requirements
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] OS Version"
    if (-not(Get-WmiObject -Query 'Select * from Win32_OperatingSystem Where ((ProductType != 1) and (Version like "10.0%" or Version like "6.[1-3]%")) or ((Version like "10.0%" or Version like "6.[2-3]%") and (Caption like "%Pro%" or Caption like "%Education%" or Caption like "%Enterprise%")) or ((Version like "6.1%") and (Caption like "%Enterprise%" or Caption like "%Ultimate%"))')) {
        Throw "BitLocker cannot be enabled on this version of Windows"
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK] OS Version"

    ## Creating a WMI Object for the Win32_TPM Class
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] Win32_TPM"
    $Win32_TPM = Get-WmiObject -Class Win32_TPM -Namespace 'root\CIMv2\Security\MicrosoftTPM' -ErrorAction Stop
    if (-not($Win32_TPM)) {Throw "[Failed] TPM not present"}
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK] Win32_TPM"

    ## Creating a WMI Object for the Win32_EncryptableVolume Class for the System Drive
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] Win32_EncryptableVolume"
    $Win32_EncryptableVolume = Get-WmiObject -Query "Select * from Win32_EncryptableVolume where (DriveLetter = `"$env:SystemDrive`")" -Namespace 'root\CIMv2\Security\MicrosoftVolumeEncryption' -ErrorAction Stop
    if (-not($Win32_EncryptableVolume)) {Throw "Failed to create a WmiObject for drive $env:SystemDrive"}
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK] Win32_EncryptableVolume"

    ## Checking to see if the hardware test has been requested -- https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/secprov/gethardwareteststatus-win32-encryptablevolume
    ## Results are 0 -- Not failed, not pending, 1 -- Failed, 2 -- Pending
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] Hardware Test Status"
    [string]$Result = $Win32_EncryptableVolume.GetHardwareTestStatus().TestStatus
    switch -Exact ($Result) {
        0 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK] Not pending"}
        1 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Warning] Hardware test failed" -LogType Warning}
        2 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Warning] Pending restart - Exiting" -LogType Warning; Return}
        default {Throw "[Failed] Return code $Result unknown"}
    ## Checking the conversion status -- https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/secprov/getconversionstatus-win32-encryptablevolume
    ## Results are 0 -- FullyDecrypted, 1 -- FullyEncrypted, 2 -- EncryptionInProgress, 3 -- DecryptionInProgress, 4 -- EncryptionPaused, 5 -- DecryptionPaused
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] Conversion Status"
    [string]$Result = $Win32_EncryptableVolume.GetConversionStatus().ConversionStatus
    switch -Exact ($Result) {
        0 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK] FullyDecrypted"}
        1 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Warning] FullyEncrypted - Exiting"; Return}
        2 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Warning] EncryptionInProgress - Exiting"; Return}
        3 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Warning] DecryptionInProgress - Exiting"; Return}
        4 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Warning] EncryptionPaused - Exiting"; Return}
        5 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Warning] DecryptionPaused - Exiting"; Return}
        default {Throw "[Failed] Return code $Result unknown"}

    ## Checking the TPM status
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] TPM Ownership"
    if (-not($($Win32_TPM.IsOwned().IsOwned))) {
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Warning] TPM is not owned" -LogType Warning
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] TPM - Is Ownership Allowed"
        if ($($Win32_TPM.IsActivated_InitialValue) -and $($Win32_TPM.IsEnabled_InitialValue) -and $($Win32_TPM.IsOwnershipAllowed().IsOwnershipAllowed)) {
            ## Taking ownership of the TPM -- https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/secprov/takeownership-win32-tpm
            [string]$Result = $Win32_TPM.TakeOwnership().ReturnValue
            switch -Exact ($Result) {
                0 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK] Successfully took ownership of the TPM"}
                2147942487 {Throw "[Failed] The OwnerAuth parameter is not valid"}
                2150105108 {Throw "[Failed] An owner already exists on the TPM"}
                2150105123 {Throw "[Failed] No endorsement key can be found on the TPM"}
                2150105099 {Throw "[Failed] An owner cannot be installed on this TPM"}
                2150107139 {Throw "[Failed] The TPM is defending against dictionary attacks and is in a time-out period"}
                default {Throw "[Failed] Return code $Result unknown"}
        } else {Throw "[Failed] Unable to take ownership of TPM - Validate that the TPM is enabled"}
    } else {
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK] TPM Is Owned"

    ## Checking to ensure that there is enough free space on the drive (not necessarily required but for Windows 7 especially it is recommended)
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] Disk Space > 20GB"
    [int]$Result = $([System.Math]::Round((Get-WmiObject -Class Win32_LogicalDisk -Namespace 'root\CIMv2' -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue | Where-Object -FilterScript {$_.DeviceID -eq "$env:SystemDrive"} | Select-Object -ExpandProperty FreeSpace) / 1GB))
    if ($Result -lt 20) {
        Throw ("[Failed] " + [string]$Result + "GB of disk space remaining. Exiting.")
    Write-ScriptLog -Message ("[OK] " + [string]$Result + "GB of disk space remaining")

    [string]$Component = 'KeyProtectors'
    ## Checking for numerical password key protectors - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/secprov/getkeyprotectors-win32-encryptablevolume
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] Numerical Key Protectors"
    [string[]]$NumericKeyProtectorIDs = $Win32_EncryptableVolume.GetKeyProtectors(3).VolumeKeyProtectorID
    if (-not($NumericKeyProtectorIDs)) {
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK] Numerical Key Protectors - Not Found"
        ## Adding a Numeric Key Protector - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/secprov/protectkeywithnumericalpassword-win32-encryptablevolume
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Action] Add Numerical Key Protector"
        [string]$Result = $Win32_EncryptableVolume.ProtectKeyWithNumericalPassword().ReturnValue
        switch -Exact ($Result) {
            0 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Success] Added Numerical Key Protector"}
            2147942487 {Throw "[Failed] The NumericalPassword parameter does not have a valid format"}
            2150694912 {Throw "[Failed] The volume is locked"}
            Default {Throw "[Failed] Return code $Result unknown"}
        [string[]]$NumericKeyProtectorIDs = $Win32_EncryptableVolume.GetKeyProtectors(3).VolumeKeyProtectorID

    ## Saving the key protectors in Active Directory - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/secprov/backuprecoveryinformationtoactivedirectory-win32-encryptablevolume
    foreach ($NumericKeyProtectorID in $NumericKeyProtectorIDs) {
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Action] Save KeyProtectorID $NumericKeyProtectorID to Active Directory"
        [string]$Result = $Win32_EncryptableVolume.BackupRecoveryInformationToActiveDirectory($NumericKeyProtectorID).ReturnValue
        switch -Exact ($Result) {
            0 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Success] Saved KeyProtectorID $NumericKeyProtectorID to Active Directory"}
            1 {Throw "[Failed] Group Policy does not permit the storage of recovery information to Active Directory"}
            2150694920 {Throw "[Failed] BitLocker is not enabled on the volume. Add a key protector to enable BitLocker"}
            2150694970 {Throw "[Failed] The specified key protector is not a numerical key protector. You must enter a numerical password protector"}
            default {Throw "[Failed] Return code $Result unknown"}

    ## Checking for a TPM key protector - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/secprov/getkeyprotectors-win32-encryptablevolume
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] TPM Protector"
    if (-not($($Win32_EncryptableVolume.GetKeyProtectors(1).VolumeKeyProtectorID))) {
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK] TPM Protector - Not Found."
        ## Adding a TPM Key Protector - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/secprov/protectkeywithtpm-win32-encryptablevolume
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Action] Add TPM Protector"
        [string]$Result = $Win32_EncryptableVolume.ProtectKeyWithTPM().ReturnValue
        switch -Exact ($Result) {
            0 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Success] Added TPM Protector"}
            2150694912 {Throw "[Failed] The volume is locked"}
            2150121480 {Throw "[Failed] The TPM cannot secure the volume's encryption key because the volume does not contain the currently running operating system"}
            2147942487 {Throw "[Failed] The PlatformValidationProfile parameter is provided but its values are not within the known range, or it does not match the Group Policy setting currently in effect"}
            Default {Throw "[Failed] Return code $Result unknown"}

    [string]$Component = 'Enable'
    ## Enabling BitLocker - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/desktop/secprov/encryptafterhardwaretest-win32-encryptablevolume
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Action] Enable BitLocker"
    [version]$OSVersion = Get-WmiObject -Class Win32_OperatingSystem -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue | Select-Object -ExpandProperty Version
    if (($OSVersion -gt 6.1) -and ($OSVersion -lt (6.2))) {
        [string]$Result = $Win32_EncryptableVolume.EncryptAfterHardwareTest(0).ReturnValue
    } elseif ($OSVersion -gt 6.2) {
        [string]$Result = $Win32_EncryptableVolume.EncryptAfterHardwareTest(0,0x00000001).ReturnValue
    switch -Exact ($Result) {
        0 {Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Success] Enabled BitLocker - Pending Hardware Test."}
        2147942487 {Throw "[Failed] The EncryptionMethod parameter is provided but is not within the known range or does not match the current Group Policy setting"}
        2150694958 {Throw "[Failed] No encryption key exists for the volume"}
        2150694942 {Throw "[Failed] The volume cannot be encrypted because this computer is configured to be part of a server cluster"}
        2150694971 {Throw "[Failed] No key protectors of the type `"TPM`", `"TPM And PIN`", `"TPM And PIN And Startup Key`", `"TPM And Startup Key`", or `"External Key`" can be found. The hardware test only involves the previous key protectors"}
        2150694969 {Throw "[Failed] The volume is partially or fully encrypted"}
        2150694952 {Throw "[Failed] The volume is a data volume. The hardware test applies only to volumes that can start the operating system. Run this method on the currently started operating system volume"}
        2150694956 {Throw "[Failed] No key protectors of the type `"Numerical Password`" are specified. The Group Policy requires a backup of recovery information to Active Directory Domain Services"}

    # Checking for logged on users
    Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Check] Logged On Users"
    [string[]]$Restart = quser 2>&1 | Select-String 'No User exists for'
    if ($Restart) {
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[OK ] No Users Found - Restarting"
        Start-Process -FilePath 'shutdown.exe' -ArgumentList '-r -t 120 -c "Restarting to begin encryption' -WindowStyle Hidden
    } else {
        Write-ScriptLog -Message "[Warning] Users Found - Skip Restart" -LogType Warning

} Catch {
    ## Writing error to log
    if ($Error[0].Exception.Message) {
        [string]$ErrorMessage = $Error[0].Exception.Message
    } elseif ($Error[0].Message) {
        [string]$ErrorMessage = $Error[0].Message
    Write-ScriptLog -Message $ErrorMessage -LogType Error

## Copying the log to a file share
Try {
    Copy-Item -Path $LogFile -Destination "\\SPECIFYFILESERVER\SPECIFYSHARE\SPECIFYFOLDER\$env:COMPUTERNAME-BitLocker.log" -Force -ErrorAction Stop
} Catch {
    ## Do nothing

For WMI filters, I used three filters in total.

  • One to check that the TPM was enabled.
  • The second to check that BitLocker was not enabled on the system volume (assumed C:).
  • The third was to validate that the Windows version supported BitLocker.

When adding the WMI filters, you may encounter an error if the Group Policy Management window isn’t running elevated (due to it being unable to read two of the three classes). They can be ignored but you’ll want to validate the filter in PowerShell (especially if you change it).

The WMI filters are below

Namespace: root\CIMv2\Security\MicrosoftTPM
Query: Select * from Win32_TPM Where (IsActivated_InitialValue = "True") and (IsEnabled_InitialValue = "True")

Namespace: root\CIMv2\Security\MicrosoftVolumeEncryption
Query: Select * from Win32_EncryptableVolume Where (DriveLetter = "C:") and (ProtectionStatus = "0")

Namespace: root\CIMv2
Query: Select * from Win32_OperatingSystem Where ((ProductType != 1) and (Version like "10.0%" or Version like "6.[1-3]%")) or ((Version like "10.0%" or Version like "6.[2-3]%") and (Caption like "%Pro%" or Caption like "%Education%" or Caption like "%Enterprise%")) or ((Version like "6.1%") and (Caption like "%Enterprise%" or Caption like "%Ultimate%"))

I used a group policy scheduled task to trigger the script with the base settings as follows:

- Action: Replace
- Description: Enable BitLocker
- User Account: NT AUTHORITY\System
- Run with highest privileges: Checked
- Triggers: At task creation/modification
- Action: Start a program
* Program/Script : %windir%\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0\powershell.exe
* Add arguments: -NonInteractive -ExecutionPolicy Bypass -File \\SPECIFYFILESERVER\SPECIFYFILESHARE\SPECIFYFOLDER\EnableBitLocker.ps1
- Remove this item when it is no longer applied: Checked

When group policy processes the task will be created/replaced and the script will run. Once the volume is encrypted the policy won’t apply anymore and the task will be deleted.

Hopefully the above is helpful to others! One of the sites I came across while developing the above was this one which also has some useful information about BIOS/UEFI PCR Settings. It’s definitely worth a quick read as well.