Problem removing a public key whose private key is gone

Jeremiah Foster jeremiah.foster at
Wed Mar 8 18:15:27 CET 2006

On Tue, 2006-03-07 at 19:35 -0500, Atom Smasher wrote:
> On Tue, 7 Mar 2006, Jeremiah Foster wrote:
> > I overwrote the partition upon which my private key was stored. To 
> > confuse matters I generated a new secret / public key pair on the same 
> > machine and even imported my old public key, thinking, rather foolishly, 
> > that I might somehow be able to restore the destroyed secret key.
> >
> > How do I properly remove the old, unusable public key when I do not 
> > possess the secret key any longer and without destroying my entire gpg 
> > installation.
> ================
> you can remove any public key from your keyring with:
>  	gpg --delete-key {key-id}

This prompts for the secret key id, which I do not have.

> if you have any doubts about doing it right, or if you're having a bad 
> day, backup the keyring before trying to delete anything from it.
> if no one else has a copy of the key, you're done. if the key is in 
> circulation among key-servers (and if you don't have a revocation 
> certificate) you're beat.

The key is on key servers and I do not have a revocation cert. Would you
elaborate on "beat"?  


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