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README

Hi! :)
	A short preamble: Gringotts is the name of the inviolable wizard bank in a
famous children book series, known in all the wizardry world for the truculent
fate that awaits all the wannabe robbers. I think it's a quite fitting name for
a program which purpose is to secure sensitive data, isn't it? :-)

libGringotts is a small, easy-to-use, thread-safe C library originally
developed for Gringotts; its purpose is to encapsulate data (generic: ASCII,
but also binary data) in an encrypted and compressed structure, to be written
in a file or used elseway. It makes use of strong encryption algorithms, to
ensure the data are as safe as possible, and allow the user to have the complete
control over all the algorithms used in the process.

For encryptions, libGringotts makes use of the MCrypt and MHash libs by
Nikos Mavroyanopoulos, two really powerful and easy to use C libraries.

Being Free Sofware, you're *encouraged* to take the code and do just
whatever you want with it... as long as you retain the original
copyright note, of course. Every contribution is more than welcome! Now
it's time to read INSTALL and the HTML manual!

Have a nice day, and thank you very much,

    Mano :)

------------------------------------------------------------------------


Features

This library aims to be as complete as possible, but with a stress on 
lightness and simplicity. Currently it features:

    * High stress on safety & security
    * Any data sequence can be used as password and as data, in any
      combination. You can use files as passwords, for example.
	* Highly customizable & easy to use
    * 8 encryption algorithms are available:
          o The AES winner:
                + RIJNDAEL-128
          o AES finalists:
                + SERPENT
                + TWOFISH
          o Other AES contestants:
                + CAST 256
                + SAFER+
                + LOKI97
          o Other strong algorithms:
                + 3DES
                + RIJNDAEL-256
    * 2 160-bit hash algorithms, used to generate the key
          o SHA1
          o RIPEMD 160
    * 2 compression types, with 4 compression levels each
          o ZLib
          o BZip2
	* Encapsulated data can be left in memory, or written securely
	  to files, with a convenient and minimalistic API.
    * Provides functions to write data to temporary files in a
	  totally secure way, with the same strong encryption of the
	  data files.
    * pkg-config support
    * it's easy to write a magic file for the GNU file utility

------------------------------------------------------------------------
The authors

This library has been originally designed & written by Germano Rizzo
(aka Mano) (aka me :-) <mano@pluto.linux.it>

Nice patches and a major bugfix by James Antill	<james@and.org>.

Good ideas from Marcin Gibula <sh@xcom.pl>.

File format 3 comes from a very interesting discussion with Bob Mathews
<bobmathews@alumni.calpoly.edu>.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Copyright notes

The "libGringotts" library itself is (c) (better, copyleft) 2002 by 
Germano Rizzo <mano@pluto.linux.it>.

You can use, modify and redistribute them /as you wish/ (it's free
software! :), under the terms of the GNU General Public License
<http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/gpl.html>, v.2 or later.

My deepest thanks to the Free Software Foundation <http://www.fsf.org>
and the GNU project <http://www.gnu.org>for having created such a
wonderful concept!

Being quoted by Joanna K. Rowling's books, the very name Gringotts could
be (c), (r) or (tm) by her or someone in her behalf, altough I'm not aware 
of it. In case I'm violating any law, just let me know.
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