Questions about generating keys

Sven Radde sven at
Thu Aug 23 12:39:19 CEST 2007


Robert J. Hansen schrieb:
>> Ok, so RSA isn't always significantly faster, as I thought it was. I
>> had read somewhere that it was, (probably on this list) and my own
>> testing with my 4GB backup files showed RSA to be notably faster.
I second Robert here. With 4GB of data, the hashing / symmetric 
encryption takes so long that it is almost totally irrelevant whether 
you use RSA/DSA/ElGamal. The amount of time for the asymmetric 
encryption/signing is constant and does not depend on the size of the data.

About the only scenario where you would be seriously concerned with 
asymmetric processing time would be a rapid exchange of very small data 
packets such as in an instant-messaging session. However, reducing 
keysize is far more effective here than changing algorithms (according 
to my experiences with Miranda's GnuPG plugin).
>> - RSA has a hash firewall
> Yes, but I am unconvinced that this is something an average user needs
> to be concerned about.  (I'm concerned about it, but I freely admit to
> being paranoid.)
I am paranoid, too. Could someone therefore please explain to me what a 
hash firewall actually is (possibly off-list)?
I don't seem to get much info from Google (only hash values from 
firewall applications... ;-).

cu, Sven

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