verifying signatures when GNUPGHOME is on a read-only filesystem

Bryce Nichols bryce at
Mon Jul 11 20:08:53 CEST 2005

I would like to use gnupg to verify signatures when $GNUPGHOME is on a 
read-only filesystem.  Using --lock-never and --no-auto-check-trustdb 
allows this except that the code that opens the trust database (in the 
file ${GNUPGHOME}/trustdb.gpg typically) will conclude it's a fatal error 
if the file cannot be opened read-write, unless the errorcode was only 
EACCES.  Therefore, to make this work for my situation (where the 
errorcode is EROFS), I've applied the following patch to the 1.4.1 version 
of GnuPG:

diff -ur gnupg-1.4.1/g10/tdbio.c
--- gnupg-1.4.1/g10/tdbio.c 2004-10-14 03:11:56.000000000 -0400
+++ 2005-07-11 13:24:57.000000000 -0400
@@ -591,7 +591,7 @@
      log_fatal( _("can't lock `%s'\n"), db_name );
  #endif /* __riscos__ */
    db_fd = open (db_name, O_RDWR | MY_O_BINARY );
-  if (db_fd == -1 && errno == EACCES) {
+  if (db_fd == -1 && (errno == EACCES || errno == EROFS)) {
        db_fd = open (db_name, O_RDONLY | MY_O_BINARY );
        if (db_fd != -1)
            log_info (_("NOTE: trustdb not writable\n"));

This may not be the "right" solution to the problem, but it works for me. 
Perhaps a better way to do this is to add a flag that is explicitly for 
working with a strictly read-only $GNUPGHOME.  Or maybe 
--no-auto-check-trustdb should enable the behavior (it's still needed 
anyways for the verification to succeed on a read-only mounted 

Thank you,


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