GPG guide/Public Review

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Welcome, and thanks for giving feedback on Email Self-Defense.

This page is for recording and seconding suggested improvements. If you have found an error, broken link or typo, or if one of the guide's links to external documentation is no longer linking to what it seems like it should be linking to, please contact the FSF at campaigns@fsf.org so we can fix it as soon as possible.

When leaving feedback on this page, make sure to include: what step your feedback refers to (unless it's more general), how experienced you are with GPG, what version of the guide you are using (see the footer), and what operating system you are using.

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Feedback

  • I have dual boot desktop computer with Windows and Linux. Mozilla Thunderbird in Windows uses POP settings while the Thunderbird in Linux has IMAP settings. The email address is the same for both and Enigmail is set up in both with the same encryption keys. I send and receive message in both. IMAP is also used in my mobile phone for the same email account. Could this set up lead to any problems? if, so could this be dealt with somewhere in the instructions?
  • The Windows page needs specific instructions for specific email providers and email clients. Here's an example.. https://support.google.com/mail/troubleshooter/1668960?hl=en&ref_topic=3397500 See, first they tell the user how to enable IMAP or POP, then they offer specific setup instructions for specific mail clients. We need to do that or link to it. Can we find similar guides for Yahoo, Apple's mail thing, and Hotmail? Does anybody have an up-to-date list of the most common email providers? Sebboh 12:22, 5 June 2014 (EDT)
  • the "check people's identification before signing their keys" section says 'Answer honestly in the window that pops up and asks "How carefully have you verified that the key you are about to sign actually belongs to the person(s) named above?".' This is the equivalent of gpg --ask-cert-level. But ask-cert-level is a bad idea. People should leave that choice as "I will not answer" Dkg 12:50, 9 June 2014 (EDT)
  • Step 6 Next Steps/Keysigning - What happens next after signing another person's public key? Do I have to upload the signed key to a key server? Will I send back the signed key to his/her owner? I understand that the concept of "Web of Trust" is elementary but following the manual I don't unterstand how to manage by personal web of trust. I really hope that I won't be the only one who doesn't understand this part. treje 11:21, 16 June 2014
    • The best idea is to send the key back to the owner in an encrypted email. That way, if the owner does not have access to the email address they won't be able to get the signed key. You manage the web of trust by setting ownertrust in a key. There are 3 levels: no trust, marginal trust, full trust and ultimate trust (This level should only be used on your own keys). A key needs to be signed by 3 marginally trusted keys or one fully or ultimately trusted key to be valid. Valid means that you can be sure that the key really belongs to its owner. You can set the level of trust by right-clicking on a key and selecting "Owner Trust" or something similar. --Gpcf 12:12, 16 June 2014 (EDT)
    • Thank you for the reply, Gpcf. As far as I understand it your way of processing signed keys adds a further tier of security to the process. Additionally I found a paragraph in the gpg manual which is also an answer to my issue ("Distributing Keys"). And I also realized that step 4.A on emailselfdefense answers my question, too. I obviously overlooked that step on my first attempt. Both sources suggest to upload the signed key to a public key server. The process of uploading signed keys raises other questions in my opinion. Newbie questions perhaps. Do the public key server sync their stored keys? Could be good to know to retrieve keys of new recipients. --treje 17:55, 17 June 2014 (CEST)
    • Yes, all keyservers except keyserver.pgp.com (which is rarely used) syncronize. It may take a few minutes until the changes have spread over all keyservers. --Gpcf 13:00, 17 June 2014 (EDT)
  • On Step 6 of the Windows version of the guide, under "Switch to GNU/Linux for maximum safety", it speaks to a Mac OS audience like it does for the Mac version of the guide. I checked to see if it was only about Mac for all versions of the guide, and the Linux version is not the same since it doesn't even have a section for "Switch to GNU/Linux for maximum safety". I think the guide should be changed to mention how Windows is a nonfree operating system instead of Mac OS when viewing the Windows version of the guide. Credentials: I use Windows because my college uses Windows software, but I've had years of user experience with various Linux distributions. This guide is my very first introduction to using GPG for email purposes, but I've used it to check the integrity of packaged software before. --Flaurs 16:21, 18 June 2014 (EDT)
  • In mac.html, Windows is given as an example of proprietary software. Why not say "Mac OS and Windows" in all 3 guides?
  • The styles of the "join" and "donate" buttons are not quite the same. This departs from the elegant style of the page. Besides, the buttons are difficult to localize because the background of the svg is a bitmap (i.e. the circle with the FSF logo can't move). FWIW, I redrew the background in Inkscape; the only bitmap element is "FSF" (from the FSF logo). The result is here: https://static.fsf.org/nosvn/enc-dev0/svg/fr/
  • As for the guide itself, I think it is a pity that you don't give us detailed information on how to use GNUPG and Claws-Mail (not simply GNUPG in Claws Mail). Apparently, Enigmail (Thunderbird Add-on) is far from perfect, and doesn't follow the PGP standard, and may be misleading as it offers too many and useless options.
  • Would be good to include a configuration for also encrypting the email for yourself, so that you can read it.
  • Section 1.a) How about a link to https://www.mozilla.org/thunderbird/ or a text like "Open whatever program you usually use for installing software, and search for Thunderbird, then install it." for people who haven't installed Thunderbird/Icedove. --raff 08:56, 13 July 2014 (EDT) (feedback via mail)
  • Enigmail-Plugin for Windows (v1.6) has a bug concerning the OpenPGP-Assistant: at one step, the Assistant wants to change the defaults - but apparently nothing happens. This happens when Enigmail has not found the correct Binary for gpg - in my case, it tried "gpgv2.exe" instead of "gpg2.exe". Please mention this in the explanations. I'll also append my explanation to the bug report on sourceforge regarding Enigmail. --Rince 15:33, 13 July 2014 (MEST)
  • Someone contacted the FSF and said it would be good to put in a recommendation of how often to remake one's keys Zakkai 16:32, 7 August 2014 (EDT)

Accessibility

  • full-infographic.png (gnupg-infographic.svg) provides a lot of information that is inaccessible to screen readers, unless you extract the svg from the source package and weed through it. We could write a text description of the images, and intercalate the explanations. The description could be linked from the main page. -- Tgodef 09:44, 25 July 2014 (EDT)
  • Likewise, smaller images could use more descriptive alt attributes. -- Tgodef 09:51, 25 July 2014 (EDT)
  • I find the less important text extremely difficult to read (for example "The program will take a little while to finish the next step...") Indeed, the luminosity-contrast ratio is only 2.45 (http://springmeier.org/www/contrastcalculator/index.php, text #999, background #f4eed7). In the French version, the text color is #707070 instead of #999. The contrast is better, but still not sufficient to satisfy W3C criteria. -- Tgodef 09:44, 25 July 2014 (EDT)

German and French versions

  • Encoding in Edwards reply is wrong. The source is UTF8 (Linux CR/LF).
  • There are problems with accents in the French version too.


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