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Run the following from a linux based operating system (e.g. debian) and accept the defaults.
Note, it may take some time to generate the random information.

gpg --gen-key

To see all the keys - yours and your friends etc.:

gpg --list-keys

Example of above:

pub 1024D/32j38dk2 2001-06-20 you <>
sub 1024g/289sklj3 2001-06-20 [expires: 2002-11-14]

All the public keys you know are stored in the file: ~/.gnupg/pubring.gpg pub = Public Key Public Key ID (UID) = 32j38dk2

To send your key (public) to a person:

-o is for a file name (steve)
-a is for an ascii file
gpg --export -o steve -a UID

To import a key manually from someone:

gpg --import filename

Upload Public Key to key server:

gpg --send-keys --keyserver UID

To edit keys - Typically used for signing keys
(cant change name or comment, only password and expiry)
UID = See example above

gpg --edit-key UID

To Search for Keys:
(This Will also allow you to download and include the person)

gpg --search-key --keyserver stephen burke

To Create a gpg fingerprint so you can PRINT out your Key fingerprint:
This allows you to take away to a "Key Signing Party" and sign other keys verifying the person's identity using two forms of id.

gpg --fingerprint

Add User ID

Adding in a User ID:

gpg --edit-key UID
uid n  //Toggles selection of user id with index n. Use 0 to deselect all. 

See the * beside the Current User id. After current ID is selected type:


That should be it. Upload keys with command above.

KeySigning Procedure

See original:

gpg --search-key --keyserver firstname lastname
#Send a signed and encrypted email, asking for a signed reply. When a signed reply is obtained, then:
gpg --ask-cert-level --sign-key UID
gpg --send-key UID


Extend GPG Expiry

So my gpg key recently expired and I was wondering why pine was giving out to me saying "no default key available"!

There is a great guide at:

Some of the main points:

gpg --list-keys
gpg --edit-key UID
{type} key 0
//enter new expiry date
{type} key 1
//enter new expiry date
gpg --keyserver --send-keys UID
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