I've been trying off and on for weeks get the portable version of KeePass to work from a flash drive on a computer that doesn't have KeePass already installed on it. I want to be able to access passwords when I'm traveling, staying in hotels and using their computers. I download the portable version to my desktop, extract the files to the flash drive, import the database from the desktop version to the flash drive and allow the database to use the same key. When I try to open the database.dbk.dbk on the flash drive in a strange computer (same OS...Win 7 SP1 Home) I get a message that "Windows can't open this file...". When I open Keepass.exe, it's empty even though I thought I imported everything fro my desktop.
What am I doing wrong or not doing at all...please??
"Windows can't open this file..." is probably Windows telling you that it does not know what to do with the file you just clicked on i.e. the file is not associated with a program.
You probably should not associate the password database file (.kdbx file) with KeePass running from a USB drive or your computer will get confused whenever you try to open a .kdbx file when the USB drive is not attached. Instead start KeePass by running KeePass.exe on the USB drive. Once KeePass is open use 'File>Open>Open File...' from the KeePass menu to open your database. After that start KeePass whenever you wish to access the database and KeePass will open the last used database file.
If you want to force KeePass to always open a specific database file use a shortcut to start KeePass with a command line argument or define a trigger to open a specific database at startup.
Note: You don't need to import your database. Just copy it to the USB drive and open the copy using the portable version of KeePass on the USB drive.
What I want to be able to do is to carry a small flash drive with me and plug it into a computer in, say, Italy and be able to retrieve a password without having to rely on KeePass already being installed on that Italian computer. I was under the impression that the "portable" in KeePass Portable meant that I would be able to do that.
I would think that would mean that I would have to have a stand alone installation of KeePass on the flash drive because there won't be one on the Italian computer. But I can't get KeePass portable to run standalone on any of my laptops that don't have it otherwise installed.
Is KeePass.exe on the USB drive? What happens when you double click on it?
Note: Make sure there are no other instances of KeePass running, otherwise KeePass will just activate the currently running version. If you want KeePass to run multiple instances (I don't recommend that) you can can uncheck 'Limit to single instance' in Tools>Options>Advanced(tab)>Start and Exit(section) for every copy of KeePass that runs on the computer. You must also exit KeePass after changing the setting.
KeePass V1 will run as you describe, assuming the computer you are using allows you to run executables from USB. KeePass V2 will work if, and only if, the computer has .NET installed - this is not the case on most of the public access computers I've seen in my travels, they tend to be old XP installations.
I'd buy a tablet and use WiFi. Then you know the tablet is secure and you only need to worry about the security of the WiFi connection.