I am using Ubuntu Linux 9.04.
I want to simply hash up a text file, so I can just push a button or enter a short password to unlock it. This doesn't need to be bulletproof; when I was running Windows, I used EditPad Lite's ROT-13 function for the same purpose. It does, however, need to be portable: I want to be able to encrypt a file on the laptop, and open it on the desktop using the same application.
The gedit GNOME text editor has an Encrypt/Decrypt plug-in, but it drops into the OpenPGP "Passwords and Encryption Keys" application, which is a) incomprehensible gobbledygook1, b) overkill worthy of SlitherSting2, and, most importantly c) not, insofar as I can tell, particularly portable: any pass phrase I come up with will be linked to a locally-stored Encryption Key File.
That last one HAS to be wrong. The whole point of PGP is to pass encrypted files around, right?
OpenPGP also makes
Heck, I've got a command-line ROT-13 hash app for Ubuntu. If I knew enough about the Ubuntu equivalent of a DOS .BAT file, I'd whip something up that just let me enter "Innocuous Command" at the command prompt, and it would turn it into "Decrypt location/hashfu.bar > location/useful.txt", and another one to go the other way.
Now, I wouldn't mind PGP-level security, if I could make it portable and access it with a minimum of fuss.
1"Ubuntu" is not in the default dictionary for the spell-checker in Ubuntu, but "gobbledygook" and "thingamabobs" are.
2Yes, that will get an Argot entry eventually.
You know, I'm gonna Andy Rooney here for a minute.
There's an ongoing and, as far as I can tell, unsolved conflict between Keeping Your Data Secure and Actually Being Able To Use It Yourself.
I constantly hear that :
- Passwords should be hard to guess.
- This, of course, makes them hard to remember.
- The best passwords are completely random.
- ... making them impossible to remember.
- You should have different passwords for every site and log-on.
- ... giving you vast amounts to remember.
- You should change your passwords regularly.
- You should never, ever write them down, because anyone who finds your password book has access to your whole life.
- Not that you have much of a life, since you spend all your time trying to access sites whose passwords you no longer remember.
- You shouldn't store them on your computer, either, because anyone with physical access to your machine will, again, have full access to Your Whole Life.
- Besides, if anything happens to your computer, or if you have to use a different one, you'll have totally forgotten all your passwords.
Summary: Online Security and Password Protection lie somewhere between Catch-22 and Kobayashi Maru. Unless you spent the points for Full Eidetic Memory, you have to compromise on at least one of the above, and probably more.
That's not really a question. It's just me bitching.