----- Original Message ----- 
From: "R.Sriram" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Sent: Friday, October 10, 2003 1:20 AM
Subject: Internal format of RSA private keys in microsoft keystore.

> Greetings,
> In the process of trying to work around some of the limitations
> of the m$-CAPI API, I'm trying to decipher the internal representation
> of private keys in the default m$ key store, in order to extract
> the private key out.

If you could acquire a context, you could export the private key into 
a blob and then read it from that, but you can't acquire a context.
As Tom mentioned, the keys are encrypted in the container.
The FIPS 140 security policies for M$'s CSPs say that the task 
of protecting the keys in the system is delegated to Data Protection 
API (DPAPI).  There is a brief explanation in the security policies, 
see for example
section "Key Storage".
You might be able to find more detailed information somewhere else...

Good luck!


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