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java.security
public interface: Key [javadoc | source]

All Implemented Interfaces:
    Serializable

All Known Implementing Classes:
    RSAMultiPrimePrivateCrtKey, KerberosKey, RSAPrivateKey, DSAPublicKey, PublicKey, KeyImpl, PrivateKey, ECPrivateKey, ECPublicKey, DHPublicKey, RSAPublicKey, SecretKeySpec, RSAPrivateCrtKey, SecretKey, DHPrivateKey, DSAPrivateKey, PBEKey

The Key interface is the top-level interface for all keys. It defines the functionality shared by all key objects. All keys have three characteristics: Keys are generally obtained through key generators, certificates, or various Identity classes used to manage keys. Keys may also be obtained from key specifications (transparent representations of the underlying key material) through the use of a key factory (see KeyFactory ).

A Key should use KeyRep as its serialized representation. Note that a serialized Key may contain sensitive information which should not be exposed in untrusted environments. See the Security Appendix of the Serialization Specification for more information.

Field Summary
static final  long serialVersionUID    The class fingerprint that is set to indicate serialization compatibility with a previous version of the class. 
Method from java.security.Key Summary:
getAlgorithm,   getEncoded,   getFormat
Method from java.security.Key Detail:
 public String getAlgorithm()
 public byte[] getEncoded()
    Returns the key in its primary encoding format, or null if this key does not support encoding.
 public String getFormat()
    Returns the name of the primary encoding format of this key, or null if this key does not support encoding. The primary encoding format is named in terms of the appropriate ASN.1 data format, if an ASN.1 specification for this key exists. For example, the name of the ASN.1 data format for public keys is SubjectPublicKeyInfo, as defined by the X.509 standard; in this case, the returned format is "X.509". Similarly, the name of the ASN.1 data format for private keys is PrivateKeyInfo, as defined by the PKCS #8 standard; in this case, the returned format is "PKCS#8".