Question about FAQ section 7.1

David Shaw dshaw at
Fri Sep 24 23:41:29 CEST 2004

On Fri, Sep 24, 2004 at 04:10:43PM -0400, Atom 'Smasher' wrote:
> On Fri, 24 Sep 2004, David Shaw wrote:
> >> Also, does anyone see any basic problems in encrypting =<700MB files 
> >> using --recipient (My-Name) --encrypt (File), i.e. encrypting to one's 
> >> self for files only for yourself. Is it better to encrypt with say 
> >> TWOFISH, or a Key-pair even though you are only encrypting to yourself.
> >
> > No basic problem.  Some people like to use --symmetric when encrypting 
> > to themselves, and some people like to use their public key.  It's 
> > really a matter of taste.  I prefer to use my public key so I don't have 
> > one more passphrase to remember ;)
> ======================
> if i'm making an encrypted backup of my HD i use a symmetric passphrase 
> (in addition to my public key), because if i lose my HD it will be 
> inconvenient to recover my secret key from the backup, if the backup is 
> only encrypted with my secret key.

I have backups of my secret key off of my HD, burned onto a CD and
stored in a secure place.  Don't forget one of the best backup
methods: export the secret key packet with ASCII armor and print it
out.  Paper generally is the safest thing out there in terms of media
decay.  If all else fails, I can re-type the thing in.


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