hashed user IDs redux [was: Re: Creating a key bearing no user ID]

John Clizbe John at enigmail.net
Sat Jan 28 14:37:17 CET 2012

MFPA wrote:
> On Friday 27 January 2012 at 12:48:30 AM, Doug Barton wrote:
>> put whatever you like in the name and e-mail fields, and notify the people
>> you communicate with
> Which is exactly what I do already, using a key with "MFPA <a at b.c>" as
> its sole User ID.
>> There is no software modification needed to accomplish what you want
>> to do.
> I also want people who already have an email address for me (or potentially a
> name, if not too common) to be able to use that as a search string to find my
> key from a server.
> To achieve the two simultaneously would need some string in the UID that
> could be found by searching for the email address or name but could not be
> converted back to that search string.

This is simpler than you're trying to make it.

Try this experiment

   gpg --keyserver pool.sks-keyservers.net --search-keys gswot

Note that the search results returns the key and all the UIDs if just one of the
UIDs contains your search term. The keyservers break a UID down into words and
index each word. If I search for MFPA, I'll get all keys that have an UID
containing MFPA along with all the UIDs on those keys.

To achieve the two goals, you only need to put each in its own UID. Just
remember once they locate the matching key, they will have all the information
in all the UIDs. You may need --allow-freeform-uid as Werner pointed out earlier
when creating these User IDs.

Sorry, but there is no way to only return a single UID matching the search term.
Things were never designed that way. (So there's really no reason not to put all
three in a single ID.)

John P. Clizbe                      Inet:John ( a ) Enigmail DAWT net
FSF Assoc #995 / FSFE Fellow #1797  hkp://keyserver.gingerbear.net or
     mailto:pgp-public-keys at gingerbear.net?subject=HELP

Q:"Just how do the residents of Haiku, Hawai'i hold conversations?"
A:"An odd melody / island voices on the winds / surplus of vowels"

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