“keyctl” is a command-line utility in Linux that allows you to manipulate the Linux kernel keyring, which is a mechanism for storing and managing encryption keys, authentication keys, and other sensitive data in the kernel. The keyring is designed to provide a secure storage location for keys and other sensitive data, which can be accessed by different processes and users on the system.
The keyctl utility provides a number of different commands for managing keys and keyrings, such as adding and removing keys, listing keys and keyrings, and changing the properties of keys and keyrings. Some of the functionality that keyctl provides include:
- Adding a key to the keyring.
- Linking a key to another keyring.
- Changing the permissions of a key.
- Searching the keyring for a specific key.
- Revoking a key.
The keyctl utility is useful for system administrators and developers who need to manage encryption keys, authentication keys, and other sensitive data in a secure manner. It can be used to securely store keys and other sensitive data that are needed by different processes and users on the system. It also can be used in conjunction with other tools such as PGP, SSH, and TLS to handle secure data storage.
keyctl Command Examples
1. List keys in a specific keyring:
# keyctl list target_keyring
2. List current keys in the user default session:
# keyctl list @us
3. Store a key in a specific keyring:
# keyctl add type_keyring key_name key_value target_keyring
4. Store a key with its value from standard input:
# echo -n key_value | keyctl padd type_keyring key_name target_keyring
5. Put a timeout on a key:
# keyctl timeout key_name timeout_in_seconds
6. Read a key and format it as a hex-dump if not printable:
# keyctl read key_name
7. Read a key and format as-is:
# keyctl pipe key_name
8. Revoke a key and prevent any further action on it:
# keyctl revoke key_name