Importance of time in pgp algorithms

David Shaw dshaw at
Tue Jan 27 18:26:42 CET 2004

On Tue, Jan 27, 2004 at 05:13:14PM -0500, Nicholas Paul Johnson wrote:
> Hello,
> I've two questions.
> 1.) I have a laptop that does not keep good time.  Will the clock skew 
> affect GPG adversely while encrypting or decrypting emails?

It depends.  How much skew are we talking about here?  If you skew
enough that the clock reads a time before your key was created or
something dramatic like that, you could get some errors.  See the
--ignore-time-conflict option if your clock is that bad.

> 2.) I also use a desktop.  Is it secure for me to simply duplicate my 
> ~/.gnupg directories on each machine (assuming that I copy the files in a 
> secure way), or should I create a different key-pair for the desktop 
> machine?

It is secure.  As to whether you do it, it's your choice.  Some people
like two different keys in that situation.  Some people use the same


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