The Keyring is responsible for managing a set of keypairs. As such the only function it has it to allow you to add and remove pairs to an interface. Each pair in itself is a specific account and on each of these accounts you can perform functions such as signing, verification and encryption/decryption of the account.
Substrate supports a number of different crypto mechanisms. As such the keyring allows for the creation and management of different types of crypto. There is
ecdsa (non-Bitcoin compatible) as well as an
ethereum type (this is only used on Moonbeam and not supported out-of-the-box by Substrate in general).
When the Keyring is initialized, it is empty. However on development chains, Substrate has a number of standard accounts that are pre-funded. Generally when operating on development chains you will be introduced to pars such as
Ferdie. In a later section we will walk through creating these accounts, for now just be aware of the existence of these in any non-public chains.
After this brief walk-through and overview, we will create a keyring, and add some accounts in the next section.