Smartcards and 1.4

John Clizbe John at
Fri Jan 20 01:54:37 CET 2012

David Shaw wrote:
> On Jan 17, 2012, at 5:50 AM, Werner Koch wrote:
>> Hi,
>> GnuPG 1.4 uses the smartcard code from 2.0.  This is made possible by
>> using some glue code and copies of the required source files.  The
>> problem with this approach is that testing the smartcard functions is
>> very time consuming.  Thus I consider a change for post 1.4.12:
>> Either:
>> 1. Drop the smartcard stuff completely.
>> 2. Feature freeze, keep the code as it is and don't update it from 2.0.
>>   (I will do this for 1.4.12)
>> 3. Keep the functionality but require the use of the gpg-agent.
>>   (As of now gpg uses the gpg-agent if available but falls back to an
>>   included copy of scdaemon code other wise).
>> Comments?
> I still use 1.4.x heavily (baked into various things), and smartcard support
is important to me, so I'm obviously against #1.
> As I see it, #2 and #3 both still allow using smartcards with 1.4.x. #2 will
keep working for a while, but eventually the built-in code will be old enough to
cause a problem, after which the agent will be the only way to do it? Do I
understand you correctly?
> David

Like David, I have 1.4 wired into a fair amount of scripts and they often need
to access a smart card.

One additional question, would the addition of gpg-agent support into the
Windows 1.4.x allow the simultaneous use of more than one reader?

Currently in 1.4.11, --card-status will see both readers, but only return
resilts for Reader #0.

It's not a show stopper for me, but it would be nice to know.

John P. Clizbe                      Inet: John ( a ) Enigmail DAWT net
FSF Assoc #995 / FSFE Fellow #1797  hkp://  or
     mailto:pgp-public-keys at

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