PGP Add-on Components
 
 

All versions of PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) offer a core set of functions collectively known as PGPmail: email and file encyption/decryption as well as email and file signing/verifying. Since PGP was taken over by Network Associates (NAI), this basic set of encryption and signing functions has been complemented by several add-on components.

Some of these newer components are included only in Corporate Desktop, Desktop Security, Personal Security, and Personal Privacy versions, not Freeware versions. Still further, the upcoming release of PGP 8.0 in November of 2002 from the newly formed PGP Corp. will drop some of these add-on components (see the news about PGP 8.0).

Not all PGP add-on components are supported in every version of Windows since Windows 95. The tables below summarize the compatibility of PGP add-on components since PGP 6.0.0 with various versions of Windows.

 

PGP Versions 6.x

Version 6.0.0 6.0.1 6.0.2 6.5 6.5.1 6.5.2a 6.5.3 6.5.8
component disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire
Win95 (1) Y --- --- Y --- --- Y --- --- Y Y --- Y Y --- Y Y --- Y Y --- Y Y ---
Win98 Y --- --- Y --- --- Y --- --- Y Y --- Y Y --- Y Y --- Y Y --- Y Y ---
WinMe (2) y --- --- y --- --- y --- --- y n --- y n --- y n --- y n --- y n ---
NT4 (3) Y --- --- Y --- --- Y --- --- Y Y --- Y Y --- Y Y --- Y Y --- Y Y ---
Win2K (4) y --- --- y --- --- y --- --- y n --- r r --- Y (R) --- Y (R) --- Y (R) ---
WinXP (5) n --- --- n --- --- n --- --- n n --- n n --- n n --- n n --- n n ---

PGP Versions 7.x & PGP 6.5.8ckt

Version 7.0 7.0.1 7.0.2 7.0.3 7.0.4 7.1 7.1.1 6.5.8ckt 08
component disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire disk net fire
Win95 (1) Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y r r r r r r Y Y ---
Win98 Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y ---
WinMe (2) y n y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y N ---
NT4 (3) Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y ---
Win2K (4) Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y Y (R) ---
WinXP (5) n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n n y (r) (r) Y (R) ---
 

Notes

Note Description
1 PGP 7.0-7.0.4 require at least Windows 95 B (OSR 2). Windows 95 not officially supported starting w/ PGP 7.1 
2 Windows Me officially supported starting w/ PGP 7.0.1
3 PGP 6.5.x requires at least SP3. PGP 7.x requires at least SP4. 
4 Windows 2000 officially supported starting w/ PGP 6.5.2a, but PGPnet is not supported until PGP 7.0.
5 Windows XP never officially supported on any version of PGP

Symbol Key

Symbol Functional? Officially supported?
Y Yes, component works; Windows version officially supported
y Yes, component works; Windows version not officially supported
N No, component doesn't work; Windows version officially supported
n No, component doesn't work; Windows version not officially supported
(R) PGP refuses to install this particular component; Windows version officially supported
r PGP refuses to install; Windows version not supported
(r) PGP refuses to install this particular component (but will otherwise install fine); Windows version not supported
--- Not available in this version of PGP
 
 
PGPdisk
 
 

PGPdisk is included with PGP Corporate Desktop, PGP Desktop Security, PGP Personal Security, and PGP Personal Privacy versions 6.0.x and higher (incl. 6.5.x , 7.x, and 8.0). PGP CKT versions 6.0.x and higher also contain PGPdisk..PGPdisk is not included with PGP Freeware or PGPi versions (except PGP 6.0.2i, which does include it). PGPdisk is a utility that allows you to encrypt files on your hard drive and store them in large, encrypted "container files" that can be mounted as "virtual drives," making encryption and decryption of files a snap. For a short tour of PGPdisk (with screenshots), click HERE.

Unlike PGPnet or PGPfire, PGPdisk from PGP 6.x, PGP 7.x, and PGP 8.0 is compatible with most versions of Windows. To use PGPdisk on Windows XP, though,  you'll have to obtain a copy of the new PGP 8.0 Desktop or Personal, which includes full Windows XP compatibility. You can also use the older PGP 7.1.1 Corporate Desktop or PGP 6.5.8ckt build 08 (or later), as PGPdisk from earlier versions of PGP will not work on Windows XP. (For Windows 2000, you should get at least PGP 6.5.2 Desktop Security or Imad's latest PGP 6.5.8ckt build, though PGPdisk from earlier PGP versions appears to work on Windows 2000.) 

PGPdisk has gone through some changes from the earliest standalone version (PGPdisk 1.0, which was later incorporated into PGP 6.0.0) through the latest versions found in PGP 7.x:

  • PGP 6.0.2, PGP 6.5.x, PGP 7.x, and PGP 8.0 will insist on converting PGPdisk volumes from PGPdisk 1.0 or 
    PGP 6.0.0 in order to correct a security bug that was discovered in those early releases of PGPdisk. Once converted,
    those volumes will be unreadable by PGPdisk 1.0 or PGP 6.0.0.

     
  • PGP 7.x and PGP 8.0 will insist on converting PGPdisk volumes from PGP 6.0.2 or PGP 6.5.x to a newer format.
    Once converted, those volumes will be unreadable by earlier versions of PGPdisk.

     
  • PGPdisk from PGP 7.x and PGP 8.0 includes a number of new features, including the ability to use the Twofish-256 
    algorithm to encrypt volumes (all previous versions of PGPdisk are limited to CAST5-128).

If you're interested in creating and using virtual encrypted drives, there are several third-party OTFE (on-the-fly-encryption) programs that are viable alternatives to PGPdisk. For Windows 9x/Me you could use Scramdisk or E4M. E4M can also be used on Windows NT 4.0. For OTFE programs known to be compatible with Windows NT/2000/XP, check out BestCrypt or DriveCrypt.

For more information on PGPdisk (incl. limitations, usage problems, and incompatibilities between PGP 7.x/8.0 and older versions of PGP) please consult Tom McCune's PGP Questions & Answers page. You may also want to check out THIS page, which discusses PGPdisk Volume Sizes.

 
PGPnet / PGPvpn
 
 

PGPnet is included in NAI's PGP versions 6.5.x (including PGP CKT versions) and 7.x. According to NAI, "PGPnet, a Virtual Private Network (VPN), is an easy-to-use encryption application that allows you to communicate securely and economically with other PGPnet users." PGPnet, also known as PGPvpn, is not included in the new PGP 8.0 from PGP Corp. (see the news section above). 

If you have no specific need for PGPnet or PGPfire, it would be safest NOT to install either one. Be careful not to install a version of PGPnet on an unsupported version of Windows:

  • The minimum supported release of PGPnet for Windows Me is PGP 7.0.1. Earlier versions of 
    PGPnet (even that from PGP 7.0 or PGP 6.5.8) will cause networking problems and system 
    instability on Windows Me
     
  • The minimum supported release of PGPnet for Windows 2000 is PGP 7.0 (even though 
    Windows 2000 is officially supported starting with PGP 6.5.2a). As on Windows Me, PGPnet 
    from any version of the PGP 6.5.x series will cause networking problems and system instability. 
     
  • If you do plan to install any version PGP on Windows XP, do NOT install PGPnet or PGPfire
    Doing so can cause severe networking problems on Windows XP.

If you have installed PGPnet or PGPfire on Windows XP and have encountered networking problems (including lost connectivity), see Microsoft KB article on How to Reset Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) in Windows XP for instructions to get your networking back to a working state. Also check out THIS post from the PGP Users Mailing List for instructions on using the command sc config IPSec start= system to restart the IPsec service, which is required for Windows XP TCP/IP connectivity.

For still more information on PGPnet (incl. limitations and reported usage problems) please consult Tom McCune's PGP Questions & Answers page.

 
PGPfire
 
 

PGPfire is included only in PGP 7.x Desktop Security and PGP 7.x Personal Security. It is NOT included PGP 7.0.3 Freeware or earlier versions of PGP (including PGP 6.5.8). According to NAI, PGPfire is a  "fully configurable Application Level and Packet Filtering firewall with Personal Intrusion Detection." PGPfire is not included in the new PGP 8.0 from PGP Corp. (see the news section above).

If you have no specific need for PGPnet or PGPfire, it would be safest NOT to install either one. 

  • The minimum supported release of PGPnet and PGPfire for Windows Me is PGP 7.0.1. Earlier 
    versions of  PGPnet & PGPfire (even those from PGP 7.0) may cause networking problems and 
    system instability on Windows Me
     
  • If you do plan to install PGP on Windows XP, do NOT install PGPnet or PGPfire. Doing so can 
    cause severe networking problems on Windows XP.

Keep in mind that until PGP 7.1, PGPfire does not provide outbound filtering and blocking capabilities, unlike many popular personal firewalls like ZoneAlarm, Sygate Personal Firewall, Kerio Personal Firewall, Agnitum Outpost, or Norton Internet Security. PGPfire in PGP 7.1.x Corporate Desktop does offer application-based outbound filtering and blocking.

If you have installed PGPnet or PGPfire on Windows XP and have encountered networking problems (including lost connectivity), see Microsoft KB article on How to Reset Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) in Windows XP for instructions to get your networking back to a working state. Also check out THIS post from the PGP Users Mailing List for instructions on using the command sc config IPSec start= system to restart the IPsec service, which is required for Windows XP TCP/IP connectivity.

For still more information on PGP 7.x (incl. limitations, usage problems, and incompatibilities with older versions of PGP) please consult Tom McCune's PGP Questions & Answers page.

 

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2000, 2001, 2002 Eric L. Howes