gnupg-agent problem

Malte Gell malte.gell at
Wed Feb 25 11:23:53 CET 2004

Am Dienstag, 24. Februar 2004 23:09 schrieb John:
> I keep getting an error on start-up
> telling me that this has been selected but the agent is not running.
> I have followed the instructions at
> Could someone tell me how to start the agent on start-up or what is
> going on here please?

What does "set | grep GPG_AGENT" say? It has to say something like this:

malte_gell at linux]~· set|grep AGENT

If this isn't the case, gpg-agent is either not running at all or it's 
not setup correctly.

Make sure gpg-agent is not running, then you could try what I have used  
to start gpg-agent:
in ~/.xinitrc put the following very ugly stuff

# starting gpg-agent
if test -e ~/.gpg_agent_info; then
       .  ~/.gpg_agent_info
gpg-agent --daemon --sh >>  ~/.gpg_agent_info

.  ~/.gpg_agent_info

If your distribution doesn't have ~/.xinitrc then there might be a 
template somewhere in /etc/X11/, but check in /etc/X11 that an existing 
~/.xinitrc will be executed, otherwise you may wonder again why 
gpg-agent hasn't started.

Then make sure, there's a ~/.gnupg/gpg-agent.conf which may look like 
pinentry-program /usr/bin/pinentry-qt
default-cache-ttl 3600

Is pinentry-qt a reasonably new version? IIRC some older versions had 
bugs which prevented pinentry-qt from starting correctly, while 
gpg-agent was running correctly this looked like a broken gpg-agent, 
but actually it was pinentry-qt which didn't work.


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