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Microsoft Crypto Files


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#1 Casual Brouser

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 08:59 AM

I've searched the web, I've tried to search these forums, to find out if I need all these Microsoft Crypto files that appeared some time ago, and I'm becoming greatly frustrated.

I've learned they're used by the "Micosoft Cryptographic Service" or Cryptography providers and I've not seen one single post that tells me if -I- need them on my XP Home PC, what might have created them, and can I delete them.

I'm amazed at my inability to find a straightforward answer, my search-fu is often fairly good.

If anyone could please point me in the direction of my answer I would appreciate it.

Also, I could not find an option to search these forums for a keyword in the title, am new here so apologies for that!

Thanks!

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#2 hamluis

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Posted 05 June 2012 - 10:46 AM

It helps...if you tell us just what files you are talking about.

<<all these Microsoft Crypto files>>

That...I don't consider very descriptive. The file names and paths would be more useful, IMO.

I would also suggest that you should be careful about what data you read on the Web...and assume that the writer knows what he/she is talking about when it comes to deletion/removal of system files (if that is what you are referring to).

Louis

#3 Casual Brouser

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 08:01 PM

Louis, I very much agree with your warning, and I guess I fe3lt the file types and paths would be obvious to anyone who knew the question.

An example of the files I'm referring to are in

C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Microsoft\Crypto\RSA\MachineKeys\

There are currently 3,514 files each seem to be about 921 bytes and have long lettered names. As best as I can determine these are supposed to be some sort of cryptography keys.

Even if they are, there are 3.500 of them. I only have 3 users (all me) on my PC.

I'm trying to find out how they got there, and what happens if I delete them.

#4 Animal

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Posted 06 June 2012 - 08:07 PM

Take a look here: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc962112.aspx

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#5 Casual Brouser

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Posted 07 June 2012 - 12:20 PM

Thank you for your response. At first glance that link tells me about how and when to backup "private keys" but I still have no idea what "private keys" are and what a CSP is and why one would be operating on my computer.

I did in fact find that one of my applications is causing these files to appear and stay permanently, and I am asking their technical support team for further information.

I know what a key is technically, its file type, size, locations, etc., and I know that have something to do with sercurity, but I have no clue whatsoever where and when a so-called "CSP" is involved, and why, and I am shocked to find no useful information anywhere except involving IIS.

I wonder if the problem is that very few people, if any, know....

#6 Animal

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Posted 07 June 2012 - 01:38 PM

More on what a CSP is: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc962093.aspx

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