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Interface Understanding

As a beginner, you’re only required to swiftly comprehend a few crucial sections of the page. The exploration that follows will gradually unveil additional functionalities. Bear in mind that interfaces may vary across different versions.

Interface

Text Editor

The text editing zone allows you the liberty to input any desired text or establish a new tab through the “New” choice in the file menu at the top. Moving or closing tabs can be done with ease as per your needs.

Numerous operations can be performed on your text using options available in the Operations Bar. Alternatively, you may utilize standard shortcuts like Ctrl+C/V/S for copy, paste, and save operations, or even searching within the text.

The edited text within the text box is encoded in UTF8 without any formatting. This plain text format ensures that no message alteration leads to confusion. While we have plans to introduce rich text editing in the future, the specifics are still being deliberated.

Large Text File Support

GpgFrontend accommodates opening larger files without hindrance. However, when dealing with relatively large files, editing of the tab won’t be feasible until the entire file is loaded. During this time, despite not being able to edit the file, you still have the capability to view it.

Information Board

GpgFrontend presents the outcome of the current tab page operation on the Information Board, signifying the success or failure of the operation. Additionally, the Information Board’s text includes supplementary details to assist in understanding the particulars of your encryption, decryption, signature, and other operations. Depending on your language settings, the output displayed on the dashboard may differ.

The Information Board was conceived to provide a comprehensive view of more information within the same space. However, GpgFrontend plans to incorporate a graphical interface in the future to augment the user’s comprehension of this information.

Color Coding

  • Green: Indicates a successful operation that has been thoroughly verified and found devoid of any issues. The appearance of green font color signifies an all-clear.
  • Yellow: Denotes a successful operation with some potential issues detected during result testing. The yellow font color serves as a subtle alert for the user, necessitating a detailed review of the operation.
  • Red: Symbolizes an unsuccessful operation or a significant discrepancy in the operation’s outcome. The red font color acts as a clear warning, demanding the user to meticulously inspect the operation’s specifics to ensure security.

Customizable Font Size

Should you find the font size on the information board to be diminutive, you can easily adjust it under the ‘Application’ section in the settings. The default font size is 10, and it can be modified to any value ranging from 9 to 18.

Dashboard Actions Menu

The dashboard actions menu facilitates quick and easy access to common functionalities related to the content of the information board. It empowers users to efficiently manage and process large chunks of content on the Information Board for various purposes.

Copy

This function allows users to swiftly capture significant portions of content from the Information Board for other applications.

Save File

This operation archives the contents of the information board into the file system, utilizing the UTF-8 format. Although the resultant output file lacks a suffix, it is essentially in a plain text format.

Clear

This command promptly purges all content from the information board. The clearance includes both the contents and statuses of the information board. A new operation (such as encryption) will automatically trigger this clearing process.

Optional Actions Menu

In addition to the Information Board, an Optional Actions Menu will be presented below it. If any auxiliary operations can be performed post your main operation (such as displaying more detailed information, sending encrypted text via email, etc.), the access points for these supplementary tasks will be made available here.

Key ToolBox

This feature presents a comprehensive list of key pairs stored on your device, intended for use with Gpg operations. The keys within the ToolBox are classified into multiple categories, each corresponding to a unique usage context. Additionally, the ToolBox provides access to a variety of common operations, all of which can be found in the Key List Menu.

Usage

Most Gpg-related operations require specifying a key pair (for tasks like encryption, decryption, signature, etc.). You can select the checkbox in the first column of the Key ToolBox’s table to designate one or more keys for your operation. Categories that contain only public keys are frequently utilized in cryptographic scenarios.

Classification

The ToolBox showcases categories via tabbed display. None of these categories include any expired or revoked keys. To view such keys, you should refer to the Key Manager. The default category comprises all private and public keys. During any operation, only the keys from the currently selected category will be considered for input.

Columns

Understanding this list is crucial. Let’s walk through its components step by step.

  • Select: Check the box in this column to notify Gpg Frontend that you wish to use the key from this row for your subsequent operation.

  • Type: This column informs you about the key type and whether the primary key exists in your key pair.

    • pub signifies that it is a public key, which can be used for encryption or verification operations.
    • pub/sec indicates that the key pair contains both public and private keys. It can be employed for nearly all operations (consult the ‘Usage’ column to confirm this).
    • pub/sec# shows that the key pair has a public key and a private key, but the primary key is absent from the key pair. This suggests you won’t be able to perform certain specific operations (like adding subkeys, signing other key pairs, etc.)
    • pub/sec^ implies that one or more keys (subkeys or master keys) from the key pair are in the smart card.
    • pub/sec#^ denotes a simultaneous occurrence of the previous two situations.
  • Name: Represents the identity information of the key pair.

  • Email Address: Also denotes the identity information of the key pair.

  • Usage: Determines which operations the key pair can execute. Composed of four uppercase letters, each letter signifies a specific use.

    • C stands for Certificate. Key pairs containing the primary key generally have this usage.
    • E stands for Encrypt. The key pair can be used for encryption operations.
    • S stands for Sign. The key pair can be used for signing operations.
    • A stands for Authenticate. The key pair can be used to perform operations like SSH authentication.
  • Validity: A Gpg concept that roughly represents the level of trust in this key.

Operations Bar

Here, you can execute corresponding operations by clicking on the buttons provided. For instance, after inputting text into a text editor and specifying the desired key in the key toolbox, you can click the encryption button to perform the operation.

Some operations require key specification, while others do not, as will be detailed in the respective sections of this document.

Customization

For operations that you may not use for a while, you have the option to uncheck the associated function group in the top menu view. Conversely, for the operations you frequently use, you have the ability to add them here.