exporting secret keys

Ian Bruce ian_bruce at fastmail.fm
Fri Apr 16 04:33:02 CEST 2004

I recently wanted to move an ElGamal/DSA keypair to another machine. I
used the "--export-secret-keys" option to write a keyfile. After
importing the key on the other machine, it appeared that only the secret
key had been transferred, but not the public key. I have a few questions
about this.

-- under what circumstances would you want to transfer ONLY a secret
key? Shouldn't the public key always go with it? Why doesn't GnuPG do
this by default?

-- in any case, isn't the public key easily computable from the secret
key? Or is that only true for RSA?

-- this seems like a fairly common thing to want to do. How is it
supposed to be accomplished? Can you use the "--export" and
"--export-secret-keys" options simultaneously? I couldn't find any
mention of this in the documentation.

Thanks for any explanation of what you're supposed to do in this

Ian Bruce
ian_bruce at fastmail.fm

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