GnuPG skips the passphrase when creating a keypair

Charly Avital shavital at
Wed Oct 20 21:01:05 CEST 2010

Raditya Arthapraja wrote the following on 10/20/10 9:57 AM:
> Hi, 
> I'm using MacGPG2 version 2.0.14RC2 with MacOS X 10.6.4 - Snow Leopard as the OS.

Me too.

> When trying to generate a keypair, MacGPG skips the step to input the paraphrase and continues to create the key.
> ex:
> ---terminal---
> me$ gpg --gen-key
> Please select what kind of key you want?
> 1
> Please specify how long the key should be valid.
> 0
> *entered name, comment & email
> Change (N)ame, (C)omment, (E)mail or (O)kay/(Q)uit? o
> You need a Passphrase to protect your secret key.    
> You don't want a passphrase - this is probably a *bad* idea!

Did you actually skip that option?


> Enter the new passphrase for this secret key.

Here, if everything is working correctly, you should have the pinentry
window show on screen, requesting you to enter the passphrase (with a
small square that, if unmarked, will enable you to actually see what you
are typing).

Once this down, a similar pinentry window where you are requested to
type the passphrase again, for confirmation.

> gpg: problem with the agent: Not supported

Did you check whether gpg-agent is running and available?

In Terminal
gpg-agent [return]
you should get:
$ gpg-agent
gpg-agent: gpg-agent running and available

Also in Terminal:
$ which gpg-agent
you should get:

If you don't get that Terminal output, could you please copy-paste what
you get?

Please note that there is a dedicated list for gpg2 users:
Macgpg2-users mailing list
Macgpg2-users at

You might want to join that list and post to it.


> ---terminal---
> I don't now if anybody else is experiencing this problem or not, if so has this been resolved?

I just tried to generate a key, in Terminal. I didn't skip the
passphrase option, entered a passphrase, etc...key was generated.

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