When you create preshared keys manually, the keys are stored in files in the /etc/inet/secret directory. The ike.preshared file contains the preshared keys for Internet Security Association and Key Management Protocol (ISAKMP) SAs. The ipseckeys file contains the preshared keys for IPsec SAs. The files are protected at 0600. The secret directory is protected at 0700.
You create an ike.preshared file when you configure the ike/config file to require preshared keys. You enter keying material for ISAKMP SAs, that is, for IKE authentication, in the ike.preshared file. Because the preshared keys are used to authenticate the Phase 1 exchange, the file must be valid before the in.iked daemon starts.
The ipseckeys file contains keying material for IPsec SAs. For examples of manually managing the file, see How to Manually Create IPsec Security Associations. The IKE daemon does not use this file. The keying material that IKE generates for IPsec SAs is stored in the kernel.
Preshared keys cannot take advantage of hardware storage. Preshared keys are generated and are stored on the system.