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  1. #1
    5 Star Lounger
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    Digital Signature (Office XP)

    Can anyone offer insights/suggestions regarding digital signing of template for Office XP. I'd be interested in information comparing Verisign with other companies offering this service, cost, support, etc.

    Thanks,
    Richard Barrett

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    Silver Lounger Charles Kenyon's Avatar
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    Re: Digital Signature (Office XP)

    I've only done it with Office 2000. (My XP is still in the box on the floor.) As far as I know the only companies offering this are VeriSign and Thawte. Thawte is apparently a subsidiary of VeriSign! Thawte's prices are approx. half those charged by VeriSign.

    It is a painful process, or at least it was for me. Thawte's support consists of a FAQ which is less than wonderful. I did manage to figure it out, although it will be a pain when I switch computers, as I plan to do soon.

    I lost my certificate last year when my computer crashed. Although I had backups of the requisite files, I had forgotten my password (it was stored in a lost file). Thawte eventually allowed me to purchase a new certificate at their renewal rate.

    If you digitally sign documents/templates, their code is unviewable and uneditable in Word 97.
    Charles Kyle Kenyon
    Madison, Wisconsin

  3. #3
    5 Star Lounger jujuraf's Avatar
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    Re: Digital Signature (Office XP)

    I'm having problems with a new VBA cert I got from Thawte. I can't install it and as you said in your post, their KB is useless. I sent email at their request (after the LIveChat person couldn't figure it out) with a sample .xls that showed the cert was never installed. All they can say is that they had some customers have problems with SR-1. I have Office 2000 SR-2.

    How did you get your Thawte cert to work? <img src=/S/please.gif border=0 alt=please width=31 height=23> They don't include installation instructions with the cert. I have the .pvk file and the mycert.spc file that was downloaded after they finalized the authentication process. I right-clicked the file and installed it but it never shows up in the list of certs in the Excel VBE. There is no Thawte entry in the registry either. I'm really confused <img src=/S/confused.gif border=0 alt=confused width=15 height=20>I have a bunch of certs I created from the MS selfcert.exe program.

    I too found the whole purchasing process from Thawte a nightmare. Their customer service folks are idiots. <img src=/S/hairout.gif border=0 alt=hairout width=31 height=23> The price was $200 but VeriSign charges either $400 or $695 (for Pro package, whatever that is). MS sells certs too don't they? I wonder why there is such a price difference when VeriSign owns Thawte.

    Thnx, Deb <img src=/S/flee.gif border=0 alt=flee width=25 height=25> <img src=/S/flee.gif border=0 alt=flee width=25 height=25>

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    Re: Digital Signature (Office XP)

    Price difference presumably relates to the quality of the service. I assume that Thwates is designed to position Verisign to charge what it does <img src=/S/bash.gif border=0 alt=bash width=35 height=39> - you'll be able to see the higher price as 'valuable'

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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: Digital Signature (Office XP)

    <P ID="edit" class=small>(Edited by jscher2000 on 08-Nov-02 20:01. Another link!)</P>What are the instructions for installation?

    Microsoft supplies an import utility described in this article in the download center: PVK Digital Certificate Files Importer --
    <hr>Some certification authorities, such as Verisign and Thawte, may provide digital certificates for code signing. Some of these certification authorities use the PVK file format to store the private key of the digital certificate. The public part of the digital certificate is stored in an SPC file. The private part is stored in the PVK file. If you have a Verisign Class 3 certificate or a Thawte Developer Certificate, these digital certificates are currently provided to you in a pair of SPC and PVK files. If you want to use your SPC and PVK digital certificate in VBA-enabled applications, you will need to use the PVK Digital Certificate Files Importer to import your SPC+PVK into your personal certificate store. <hr>
    Hope this supplies the missing link. Here's a slightly expanded version: PVK Digital Certificate Files Importer (MSDN VBA section).

    This page might or might not help with subsequent steps... Thawte's Code-Signing Certification Support "Technical" FAQ

  6. #6
    5 Star Lounger jujuraf's Avatar
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    Re: Digital Signature (Office XP)

    That's part of the problem, there were no installation instructions included. <img src=/S/bash.gif border=0 alt=bash width=35 height=39> I had to go to their knowledge base to find something and it only told me how to attach the cert to the Excel project. That's the trivial part!

    I am sending emails back/forth to one of their tech support people who is looking into the problem. He hasn't mentioned any of the stuff that you did in your emai so I'll see if I can figure it out on my ownl. I need to run this from two different computers as well. He said that I need to first do it on the original computer (the one I used to download the cert file) and then later do something else to get it to work on another PC.

    I wish I knew what a hassle it would be to buy and use this <img src=/S/toilet.gif border=0 alt=toilet width=24 height=26> thing I would of gone elsewhere. Even buying it was total pain in the butt <img src=/S/moon.gif border=0 alt=moon width=15 height=15>, the customer service folks were idiots and contradicted themselves all the time. <img src=/S/argue.gif border=0 alt=argue width=50 height=25>

    When/if I get a real answer, I'll write up some docs of my own and post them for others.

    Thnx, Deb <img src=/S/dizzy.gif border=0 alt=dizzy width=15 height=15> <img src=/S/dizzy.gif border=0 alt=dizzy width=15 height=15>

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