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Applied Microsoft® .NET Framework Programming by Jeffrey Richter

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Delayed Signing

Earlier in this chapter, I discussed how the SN.exe tool can produce public/private key pairs. This tool generates the keys by making calls into the Crypto API provided by Windows. These keys can be stored in files or other "storage devices." For example, large organizations (such as Microsoft) will maintain the returned private key in a hardware device that stays locked in a safe; only a few people in the company have access to the private key. This precaution prevents the private key from being compromised and ensures the key’s integrity. The public key is, well, public and freely distributed.

When you’re ready to package your strongly named assembly, you’ll have to use the secure private key to sign it. However, while developing ...

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