To get started you will need to create a gpg key and put it on a key server. There are many key servers available, so choose one that people will be able to use. My key is available on the

There are some GUI or point and click programs available and here are two common ones. These programs will allow you to create, export, update, sign, send and sync with the servers. In Linux Mint there are three servers configured by default: Ubuntu, SKS, and

Seahorse is a GNOME application for managing encryption keys. It also integrates with nautilus, gedit, and in other places for encryption operations.
* install on a Debian based system

sudo apt-get install seahorse

KGPG is a simple, free, open source KDE frontend for gpg.
* install on a Debian based system

sudo apt-get install kgpg

CLI gpg tools
or if you would rather use the command line then here is the process
Using GnuPG to generate a key

gpg –gen-key

The prompts are fairly self explanatory, it will ask what kind of key (first one is a good option), Enter your name, email, and comment like a nick name. It will also ask for a pass phrase, Don’t forget it.

Once the key is created then you want to have your key available for applications in the terminal. add this line to your ~/.bashrc

export GPGKEY=[key-id]

to find your key-id use the numbers after 2048R/

gpg –list-keys
pub 2048R/DB47TTEE 2013-09-24
uid Anthony Bemus (Tony the Gray)

Send your key to the server. In this case its the Ubuntu server

gpg –send-keys –keyserver $GPGKEY

Backup your keys:
Public Key

gpg -ao _something_-public.key –export $GPGKEY

Secret Key

gpg -ao _something_-private.key –export-secret-keys $GPGKEY

Restore your key
To restore your keys – copy the two files created above to the machine and type:

gpg –import _something_-public.key
gpg –import _something_-private.key

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