HOW TO: Encrypt Files and Folders with PGP Desktop 9.x for Windows

Article:HOWTO41999  |  Created: 2007-08-13  |  Updated: 2011-03-16  |  Article URL http://www.symantec.com/docs/HOWTO41999
Article Type
How To




This Article describes how to encrypt files and folders with PGP Desktop 9.6 for Windows.


PGP Desktop uses the PGP Zip program to encrypt files and folders. There are two methods with which the PGP Zip program can be accessed. First, PGP Zip may be accessed from within the PGP Desktop program by selecting the PGP Zip portion of the Control Box.

Second, the PGP Zip program can be accessed by right clicking on the desired file/folder in Windows Explorer and selecting PGP Desktop from the context menu. When a file or folder is encrypted using PGP Zip, a .pgp extension is appended to the file. The newly encrypted file will appear displaying an icon with a PGP and a lock.

 

Note: This answer pertains to PGP Desktop 9.5 and 9.6 running in Windows 2000, XP, or Server 2003. The context menu options to encrypt a file/folder have changed from PGP Desktop version 9.x.


 

Using PGP Zip within PGP Desktop

Follow the instructions in this section to create,open, or edit a PGP Zip file.

Create a PGP Zip file

To encrypt a new file using PGP Zip, perform the following steps.  

  1. Open PGP Desktop.
  2. Locate the PGP Zip in the Control box in the left pane of the PGP Desktop main screen.
  3. Click New PGP Zip.  (An additional icon will also be available below the file menu in the main screen.
  4. A PGP Zip Assistant will start to provide an intuitive guide for file encryption.
  5. Files or folders may be added by Drag and dropping the files to the window or adding files by selecting the available icons below the window. (After encryption, the option to shred the original files is also available.)
  6. After the files are added, please select Next.
  7. Select how the file will be encrypted and select Next.
  8. When encrypting to a PGP Key, an Add User Keys dialogue box will display to allow the addition of user keys. Click on the down arrow to select the desired key and click the Add... button. The PGP key will be displayed in the User Keys window.
  9. When encrypting to a passphrase or creating an Self Decrypting Archive (SDA), a Create a passphrase dialogue will display and allow the creation of a passphrase to encrypt the file to.
  10. From the Sign and Save screen, select the desired Signing Key and the desired location for the encrypted file to be saved and click Next.
  11. The final screen will show the options and summary of the file to be encrypted. Click Finish.
Caution: This process does not remove the orginal unencrypted file from the disk. To remove the original file from the disk, please use the PGP Shredder or edit the PGP Zip file in PGP Desktop and select Shred Original Files from Disk.


Open a PGP Zip File

To open a previously created PGP Zip file, the file may be opened by double clicking on the file and entering the passphrase or by opening the file in PGP Desktop. Opening the file in PGP Desktop may be accomplished by the following:  

  1. Open PGP Desktop.
  2. Locate the PGP Zip in the Control box in the left pane of the PGP Desktop main screen.
  3. Select Open a PGP Zip from the PGP Zip menu.
  4. Browse to the desired file and select Open.

Edit a PGP Zip File

Opening the file in PGP Desktop may be accomplished by the following:  

  1. Open PGP Desktop.
  2. Locate the PGP Zip in the Control box in the left pane of the PGP Desktop main screen.
  3. Select the PGP Zip file which will be edited and click the Edit button.
  4. The file can be edited to append additonal PGP user keys or additional files to the PGP Zip.

 

Using PGP Zip with Windows Explorer

Whenever a file is selected in Windows Explorer and right clicked upon, the PGP Desktop menu is available for encryption and decryption processes. This option will provide access to the same access to the PGP Zip program.

Encrypt a file using PGP Zip with Windows Explorer  

  1. Right click on a file or folder.
  2. Select the PGP Desktop option from the Windows Explorer Context menu and select Add "file name..." to new PGP Zip...
  3. The PGP Zip Assistant will display and allow the same options when opening with PGP Desktop.

PGP Desktop has additional menu items available from the Windows Explorer context menu which allow access to encrypting files using the PGP Zip program. The following list provides a general summary of the functionality of the additonal items available from the Windows Explorer context menu.

  • Secure "File Name..." with key - Encrypts the selected file or folder to a PGP key.
  • Secure "File Name..." with passphrase - Encrypts the selected file or folder with a passphrase.
  • Encrypt to "Master Keys..." - Encrypts the selected file or folder to key(s) contained within the Master Key List
  • Add "File Name..." to PGP Netshare - Encrypts the selected file or folder as a PGP Netshare encrypted folder. ( A PGP Netshare enabled license is required for this functionality.)
  • PGP Shred "File Name..." - Shreds the selected file utilizing the PGP Shredder.

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754


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