GPG Keychain: Revoked key & created new key - still being asked for the old password?

Chris's Avatar


08 Feb, 2023 07:12 PM

New to this so bear with me..I installed GPG suite a while back as a requirement for work, unfortunately I cannot find or recall the password for the key that was created and linked to my email at the time. I followed some steps in a tutorial to revoke this key and then created a new one for the same email address, sent the public key to the key server and validated it through my email.

The old key says the validity is 'revoked and disabled', from what I understand the key is supposed to be expired on the date it is revoked, but it still says it wont expire for a few years. The new key says validity 'ultimate'.

I then downloaded some new files, but whenever I try to open them I am prompted to enter the password for the old key.

What am I missing? Any help is appreciated.

  1. Support Staff 1 Posted by Steve on 09 Feb, 2023 12:09 AM

    Steve's Avatar

    Hi Chris,

    welcome to the GPGTools support platform. Sorry to hear you are having problems using GPG Suite.

    From your description this sounds like you turned all the right knobs and pushed the correct buttons in good order.

    Even revoked or expired keys can be used to decrypt content. Otherwise revoking a key would mean you would loose access to any content that has ever been encrypted with the corresponding public key.

    New content can not be encrypted using expired or revoked public keys. If however a contact of yours has the public key of your revoked key pair and has not updated that public key from the key servers recently, that public key will still be valid, since without the key update they are not yet aware of your keys new revoked state.

    I would recommend sending out an email to your contacts explaining that you have a new key, share the fingerprint of your new key and ask them to delete the old public key of yours or update it from the key server (GPG Keychain with old public key selected + menubar > Key > Update from key server …)

    You could attach your new public key to that email if you want.

    Hope this helps,

  2. Steve closed this discussion on 20 Apr, 2023 03:59 PM.

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