Info on sub keys?
alphasigmax at gmail.com
Sat Jun 3 19:32:19 CEST 2006
Felix E. Klee wrote:
> I've a couple of newbee questions concerning sub keys:
> * Aside from convenience, is there any difference between a sub key and
> an ordinary key signed with the master key?
A subkey cannot issue a certification signature - at least not in any
> * Can such an ordinary key be transformed into a sub key?
Yes, with difficulty. See http://atom.smasher.org/gpg/gpg-migrate.txt
> * Since when (date and version) does PGP and since when does GnuPG
> support signing sub keys? I ask because I read that old versions, at
> least of PGP, support only encryption sub keys, not signing sub keys.
PGP 8 supports signing subkeys; no other offical version of PGP before
then does. It's possible that 6.5.8ckt and 2.6.3ia supported them as well.
> * Are signing sub keys part of the OpenPGP standard?
Yes. They wouldn't be in GPG if they weren't.
> * One can include any number of sub keys into a key, right? I ask
> because I recall reading that there was/is some problem with key
> servers and sub keys.
PKS keyservers (pre version 0.9.6) had a bug that mangled keys with
multiple subkeys. Fortunately they are mostly SKS and/or newer than this
now. However, most versions of PGP will ignore the key flags on an RSA
subkey, so you may end up getting messages encrypted to your signing
> If there is any good documentation on sub keys, aside from technical
> specifications (such as RFC 2440), then please let me know.
Adrian von Bidder wrote an excellent tutorial on subkeys at
Death to all fanatics!
Down with categorical imperative!
OpenPGP key: http://tinyurl.com/lvq4g
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