How to use the gnupg card with an akasa smart card reader?

Chris Knadle Chris.Knadle at
Fri Aug 27 21:32:09 CEST 2010

On Friday 27 August 2010 14:04:22, David Mohr wrote:
> On 08/27/2010 04:36 AM, Chris Knadle wrote:

> > In the meantime... someone was able to get this device /almost/ working:
> >
> > 
> > Note that this was done using a Linux kernel version 2.6.31 on Ubuntu
> > 9.10
> I had found that report but thought the guy was using a different reader
> afterall since it was identified as MSI StarReader.
> But your pointer caused me to try it again, and I found out that I
> didn't have pcscd installed! Without this, pcsc_scan seems to be pretty
> useless. I'm sure there is a reason not to have a dependency on there in
> Debian, but it would have been pretty helpful in my case :-).

Huh.  Yeah, not even a 'recommends' for it in the control file for pcsc-tools.  
Interesting.  You might consider writing a 'wishlist' bug for pcsc-tools to 
list the pcscd package under 'recommends'.

Was easy for me to check, as I'm also running Debian Sid.

> I must
> have overlooked that package since it was mentioned on the linked
> ubuntuforum post.
> Now I get some sensible output:
> % gpg --card-status
> gpg: detected reader `MSI StarReader SMART [Smart Card Reader Interface]
> (20070818000000000) 00 00'

Definitely a start.

> > I did some digging to try to figure out when the device was supported by
> > GNU/Linux, which seems to happen on Debian/Ubuntu via the 'usbutils'
> > package.

> Thanks for doing some digging. Sometimes another little hint is all
> that's required! :-)

When it comes to drivers it's useful to know /when/ support was added 
especially when it comes to which particular Linux kernel (or package) 
versions support a device.  I know I didn't have to go that far -- but once I 
found the git repo for usbutils I wanted to see that I could go through the 
history for a particular file and find the commit where the change was added.

  -- Chris


Chris Knadle
Chris.Knadle at

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