Improving the command line UI of gpg

Dirk Gottschalk dirk.gottschalk1980 at
Wed Jul 25 22:04:13 CEST 2018


Am Mittwoch, den 25.07.2018, 21:19 +0200 schrieb Dashamir Hoxha:
> On Wed, Jul 25, 2018 at 2:03 PM Dirk Gottschalk via Gnupg-devel <
> gnupg-devel at> wrote:
> > 
> > I see no reason for a wrapper in the GnuPG release. That's
> > something
> > what's up to the users usecase for gpg. most commands on the CLI
> > which
> > are used on a regular basis are as easy to use as possible, I
> > think.
> > 
> I agree.
> > 
> > Gpg is used in so many ways by it's users, I wouldn't wonder if
> > even
> > Werner didn't think about some of them, before he heard of them.
> > 
> > Distributing wrapper scripts with gnupg is not a goof idea, they
> > would
> > have to be provided for any platform. That means as shell scipts
> > for
> > Linux/Unix, as batch file for windows and so an. Python would not
> > be an
> > option because it would generate a dependency on python, what, for
> > example, means an additional installation for python on windows.
> > 
> I don't agree that bash scripts for Linux should be converted to
> batch
> files for windows. There are ways though to run bash scripts on
> windows.

Yes, with additional software, that's what i talked about.

> > For long command line commands I created aliases, where this is   
> > enough,
> > or I wrote my own scripts, where it is neccessary.
> > 
> In my opinion this confirms the need for making the CLI of GnuPG a
> bit
> more user-friendly (or more comfortable, as some people say), so that
> people don't have to write their own scripts all the time.

That's the point. Every user has different claims about the work with
gpg. You can't write wrappers for all of them.

Sure, the moist used tasks could be wrapped in scripts, that's not a
bad idea, but i would offer them as optional add-on.
For this you could start a project on GitHub or something like that and
propagate it on this list. I think the GnuPG team would even add it to
the list of related software on the website, where the GUIs and MTAs
are listed, which support gpg. 

> There are even many GUI-Frontends for gpg out there, seahorse and GPA
> > for example, and much more.
> > 
> > Blowing up GnuPG itself, or the installation routine to install
> > more
> > dependencies, is nut a good idea, in my opinion.
> > 
> My idea was not to blow up GnuPG (or its installation), but to have
> more support about this project (or mini-project, or feature,
> whatever it
> is).
> If there is no general consensus that implementing this wrapper would
> be a good thing, and it can potentially make things a bit easier for
> the
> users,
> and if there is no support from the core developers (at least moral
> support),
> there is no point in spending time to implement it.

Support should be not a problem. Here you get as much support as
possible. The development team is still there to help and open for
anything. At least on this list, or the users list, help is there as
much as possible. That is what I found out in the month I am now
following this list.

> I have been foolish enough in the past to spend time implementing
> ideas that seemed good and useful to me, and the result has been
> that nobody has supported them, nobody has helped to implement them,
> instead people have called them "single-man projects", so not worth
> of being taken seriously or being trusted. I don't want it to happen
> again.

As far as I know, a long time ago, even GnuPG was a one man show.
Yes, many people think this way, I know exactly what you mean, but not

> I don't even see any need for implementing a "personal" wrapper
> script, if I have to be its only user. It can only be useful if it is
> meant to be used by lots of users.

Just a second. It ain't over, 'till the fat lady sings.
Have you any ideas what could or should be implemented in those
wrappers? Any suggestions? I think we should at least discuss those
things. IMHO this list is the right place for this discussions,
especially about things that are not good solved in GnuPG, ot what
could be improved with wrappers.


Dirk Gottschalk
Paulusstrasse 6-8
52064 Aachen
Tel.: +49 1573 1152350
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